The Grandview Heights school board July 17 approved a revision of the district's policy regarding bullying and other forms of aggressive behavior.

The Grandview Heights school board July 17 approved a revision of the district's policy regarding bullying and other forms of aggressive behavior.

The revisions include the addition of "cyber-bullying through an electronic act" to the list of actions considered to be harassment, intimidation, bullying of students and/or "violence within a dating relationship" and prohibits them on school property or during any school-related event.

The cyber-bullying provision is required under a state law that will go into effect in November.

"Violence within a dating relationship" was another addition to the policy's language made during the review process, which included input from parents and community members. A definition of what constitutes violence within a dating relationship also was added.

Staff members are required to report any incident in which they believe bullying or other inappropriate and aggressive behavior may have occurred.

"We want people to understand we have a formalized report process teachers and administrators have to (use)," Superintendent Ed O'Reilly said.

A new provision requires all reports, regardless of whether a violation of the policy was found to have occurred, to be forwarded to the superintendent's office.

The policy also now includes a statement that any act by a student found to be in violation of the policy may result in suspension or expulsion from school or school activities.

O'Reilly said he will send a letter later this month to parents that will include a copy of the policy and an explanation to help parents sort through the language and provisions of the policy.

Over time, state legislators have mandated that districts add various new requirements and language to their policies, and those changes "are not necessarily reader-friendly," O'Reilly said.

The letter will include an explanation of the components that make up the definition of bullying, he said.

A parent had suggested including an explanation of what defines bullying could help parents understand the issue and explain it to their children, O'Reilly said.

With the policy's adoption, the next step is to determine the best way to reinforce and encourage positive behavior in students, he said.

The district's guidance team will lead an effort to form a set of recommendations that will be presented to the board later this year "to provide a platform for that next step," O'Reilly said.

The idea is to provide students with a set of "behavioral expectations," said board member Katie Clifford, who was actively involved in the bullying policy revision process.

One possibility is to create school safety teams that would include guidance staff, school psychologists and teachers and staff members "who are passionate" about the issue, Clifford said.

In other business, Grandview Heights High School Principal Dawn Sayre reported senior Ben Brannan earned a perfect score of 36 on his ACT.