Dignity For All Students Act (DASA)
What is DASA?
- The Dignity for All Students Act was established with the broad legislative intent to provide a school environment free of discrimination and harassment.
- Prohibits harassment of students on school property or at school functions, and designates many forms of bullying as unlawful discrimination.
Preventing and Addressing Bias-Based Harassment in Schools
The Dignity for All Students Act (DASA) took effect July 1, 2012. Its purpose is to provide students with a school environment free of discrimination and harassment by peers and by school personnel. It applies to behaviors on school property, in school buildings, on a school bus, as well as, at school-sponsored events or activities. Incidents of harassment and discrimination may include, but are not limited to, threats, intimidation or abuse based on a person’s actual or perceived race, color, weight, national origin, ethnic group, religion, religious practice, disability, sexual orientation, gender (including gender identity or expression), and sex. These eleven categories are referred to as protected classes.
What is Bullying?
Bullying is defined as unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involve a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group on purpose.
Cyberbullying is defined as bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chats, and websites.
Cyberbullying Amendment to DASA
The New York State Legislature passed an amendment to the Dignity for All Students Act to specifically address cyberbullying not only within schools but also incidents that occur off school property that could disrupt the school environment. This amendment took effect July 1, 2013.
NYSED Website on DASA