SAFER SCHOOLS NEWS – VOL. 18
Bullying in School
Recognition and Intervention
- Susan’s parents are suing the school district because they cannot stop the bullying that she endures everyday at school.
- Johnny’s parents have withdrawn him from school and are trying Home Schooling after Johnny was hit by a bully everyday for the first month of school.
- At another school, two victims of years of daily bullying came to school with firearms to solve their problem.
- At another school, one student commits Bullycide after extreme bullying goes unchecked.
A recent study showed that 23% of all school students reported being the victims of a bully.
Something must be done!
In many states, schools have been required to address bullying in their policy manuals. This seems to parallel the requirement to develop policies addressing earthquakes and severe weather. Knowing how to react to these uncontrollable situations is a very good idea, but is bullying as uncontrollable as the weather? No. Bullying is a behavior and behavior can be controlled, changed or managed. This behavior is heighten in districts that allows this behavior to go unchecked or in Districts which Staff are bullying Staff (an environment given to Bullying, Intimidation, and a silence). What is needed is training rather than directives.
Keys To Safer Schools.com has developed its “Bullying Stops when Respect Begins – Campaign” to deal with bullies. It is apparent that the need is actually in four areas:
- The Victim:
- How to handle being bullied by a peer.
- The Bully:
- How to identify the need for bullying and better ways to meet that need.
- The School:
- How to deal with both sides of bullying in a productive manner and to manage their own issues as adults. Lastly, changing their school’s environment.
- The Parent:
- How to recognize signs that your child is being bullied, help your child cope with bullies and how to interact with the school about a bullying situation.
The victim of bullying can loose interest in school because it becomes an unpleasant place to be or even to think about.
In the extreme cases, victims suffer mental health trauma that may last for years or a lifetime. And in the very worst of cases, the victim turns the tables and becomes the bully, often with deadly consequences such as the recent school shootings or commits Bullycide.
The bully is acting out of some need that he or she may not understand. Left uncorrected, bullying seldom corrects itself. The bully is likely to become isolated and suffer relationship problems because friendship building skills and empathy have never been learned.
It is more productive for the school and/or individual, if bullying is addressed as a cry for help rather than punishment.
The school is faced with the difficult task of sorting out bullying actions and responses. A sneaky bully is never seen in the act by anyone other than the victim who may be viewed as a tattletale or troublemaker for reporting it. It is important for teachers to become skilled in ways to spot bullying and to learn how to catch them in the act. This removes the victim from being a tattletale and from possible retaliation from the bully. Because sometimes confronting the bully may make matters worse for the victim later on. Over protecting the victim may create a dependent personality trait. Sometimes, the school official identifies with one or the other and takes sides, which can have devastating results.
Training is the Keys!
The parent whose child is hurt by a bully feels powerless, unable to protect this precious little person from being picked on. The parent whose child has become a bully feels frustrated by all the calls from parents and the school and from the defiance or indifference displayed by their child. What can be done?
Keys To Safer Schools .com has the help that is needed.
Keys To Safer Schools.com