Bully . . .
Since the inception of the one room schoolhouse in the 18th Century, bullying has occurred on school campuses across our nation.
Lately, with increased cyber bullying, we have seen an increase of suicides related to bullying. We can no longer remain on the sidelines holding the notion that, “kids will be kids”.
Laurie Massar wrote in Leadership 2011, “While most administrators and teachers understand the global realities of the problem, the larger problem lies in their ability to recognize bullying on their own campuses. In the adolescent world, secrecy on behalf of peers is and forever shall be, sacrosanct.”
Far too many of our students suffer in silence, being haunted in our hallways and tormented in cyberspace.
In Newark Unified School District, we conduct seminars and professional development for staff on an anti-bullying campaign. The key is, it cannot be a “one and done”. We must be vigilant by:
1. Being observant and document what is seen
2. Encourage students/adults to report incidents of bullying
3. Be on the lookout for bully/victim
4. Listen to and report rumors of bullying
5. Provide close supervision to vulnerable to vulnerable students
6. Adopt strong board policy to enforce consequences for bullying behavior
7. Understand the dynamic of cyber-bullying. (text, you-tube, cellphones, etc.)
Attached is a sampleof a staff professional development regarding bullying conducted at Newark Unified School District. In addition, on the district websiteunder Student Support is a link to “No Bully Zone”,an excellent resource for families and educators.
Some online resources include:
· A Thin Line, this targets young people, www.athinline.com
· Bullying in Schools and What To Do About It, free materials and research briefs with a restrictive justice approach to bullying, www.kenrigby.net
· Cyber bullying Research Center, updated information about the causes and consequences of cyber bullying among adolescents, www.cyberbullying.us
Together, we can make an impact!
Dave Marken, Superintendent