Update on Hendricken Cares, Bullying/Abuse Policy

Last spring, we introduced Hendricken Cares, an initiative aimed at helping students navigate wellness, and the challenges that come with it, in their high school years.

Inspired by Bishop Hendricken’s mission and rooted in faith, the mission of Hendricken Cares is to enhance a school culture of psychological, physical, and spiritual well-being through awareness, education, and action.

In May, Hendricken Cares committee members hosted open feedback forums with students to better understand the topics they wanted pritotized to be addressed with the Hendricken community. Following these sessions, committee members also invited faculty and staff members to do the same.

In reviewing the feedback from students and faculty, one key topic that the Hendricken Cares committee has decided to focus on an idea that is central to our mission as a Catholic school: the dignity of each and every member of our brotherhood.

We wanted to provide some important updates to our school community on the Hendricken Cares committee’s steps to assure and fortify dignity within the brotherhood.

At a faculty and staff meeting on Thursday, November 3, 2022, Hendricken Cares committee members, Laura Zaniol, LICSW and Jamal Gomes ’91, presented on this very topic. As part of the discussion, important intervention steps were outlined for faculty and staff who may witness or encounter bullying in any form. The committee emphasized that the adults on campus — teachers, counselors, staff members, coaches, moderators — are the first, trusted line of defense in reporting, intervening, and stopping any form of bullying.

Committee member Fr. Brian Morris ’03 also provided an overview of Catholic social teaching to faculty and staff members to remind them of our call to protect the dignity of each and every person.

Our Hendricken Cares committee, and the School Leadership Team, wholeheartedly thank the members of Born to Stand Out, Bishop Hendricken’s affinity group for students of color, for their perspective on our previous policy which resulted in the enhancement of our current Bullying/Abuse Policy and procedure. This example is exactly what we mean when we say that Hendricken men are empowered to speak up, make a difference, and know no limits.

You can view the new policy, which becomes effective immediately, here. This policy will also permanently live on Hendricken’s website at the very bottom of each page.

As part of our updated Bullying/Abuse Policy, we’re also proud to introduce a fully digital and fully anonymous Bullying Incident Report Form. All members of the Bishop Hendricken community — students, parents, and school professionals (faculty and staff) — are strongly urged to report incidents of bullying using this form.

The reporting form is anonymous unless the reporter would like to provide their contact information. If contact information is provided, it will be kept confidential. While reported bullying incidents can be made anonymously, no disciplinary action shall be taken against a student solely on the basis of an anonymous report, per state law. Those reporting on this form are asked to provide as much specific information on the reported incident as possible for the purposes of investigation.

You can access the Bullying Incident Report Form, here. This form will permanently live on Hendricken’s website at the very bottom of each page.

As we’ve stated previously, our work is just getting started. We’ll continue to provide updates on our progress. As always, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.