Every day, more than 160,000 children nationwide stay home from school to avoid being bullied. Not only are the effects of bullying on a child felt immediately, but they can also be lifelong - or even tragic. That's why TheCitizensWhoCare.org is inviting the community to be part of Bullying Prevention Month activities during the month of October. The goal is to understand that "The End of Bullying Begins with You" by providing you with the information you need to learn more about the issue.
"Bullying can lead to painful results not only for the youth who are bullied, but for the students who engage in it, the school, and the whole community," said Gordon Clay.
"This is a very real and painful issue that kids are facing," said Julie Hertzog, director of PACER's National Bullying Prevention Center. "But they don't have to face it alone, and bullying can be prevented if we all work together."
During the month of October, students, schools and communities across the nation unite to raise awareness of the issue of bullying prevention.
Bullies usually feel badly about themselves and that's why they pick on people. I know you want to stand up to them, but try hard not to get mad or let them provoke you. If you feel like you can handle it, try to stand tall and say, "I'm not going to fight with you." But remember, you don't have to handle it on your own. We're here for you and if you need us to talk with your teacher or principal, we will.
For boys, most of them love action. But action need not become violence. Parents must distinguish between the two and help their boys do so as well. Allow them safe and healthy outlets for their natural energy. And recognize that talking-especially about violence-is different for boys than for girls. Boys may feel ashamed to express their real feelings about violence. Instead of sitting down for a " talk," initiate the topic while the two of you are engaged in an activity he enjoys. Provide privacy for these conversations. And be ready to listen when he's ready to talk, even if the timing isn't ideal.
Girls, on the other hand, often participate in culturally accepted forms of abuse: verbal abuse and slapping, hitting, or kicking boys. While the culture generally accepts this behavior, and it is displayed daily in soaps, sit coms, reality television, etc., the culture only sees it as abusive if the boy does it and doesn't take action to stop when girls do it. Nevertheless, it is still abusive behavior and should not be acceptable.
In spite of the significant impact that bullying can have on a target, it often continues to be viewed as acceptable behavior. There are many misperceptions that adults and administrators may have about bullying, all of which can lead to minimizing the behavior. Learn more about responses such as boys will be boys or its only teasing at.http://bit.ly/Pd2gxR
Drama. Bullying. Teasing. Harassment. No matter what you call it, it hurts. If youre pushed, hit, or your things are ripped off or trashed, it can hurt physically. If youre ignored by friends or cruel things are posted about you online, it can hurt emotionally. If it happens to you, youve probably asked yourself, Why me? You know how painful it is to be treated this way. So seriously, what can you do? A lot! Learn how at http://bit.ly/QdQGV8
If the word bullying makes you think of one child picking on another in the school yard, it is time to update your image of how students bully. While the face-to-face harassment certainly still exists, new ways of bullying have emerged that can be particularly harmful to children. With the easy access to cell phones, instant messaging, mobile devices, social networking websites, and other technologies, bullying has found its way into cyberspace. Learn more at http://bit.ly/TMn0kz
Are you a parent looking for ways to help your child? You can prepare yourself to talk with your children by considering how they are going to handle your childs questions and emotions. You can also decide what information you would like to give your child about bullying http://bit.ly/Orfvya
Here is a guide containing three steps to take when your child is being bullied at school; work with your child, work with the school and work with district administration. http://bit.ly/PtG7gP
Next, check out ten steps you should take in reporting bullying to the school. http://bit.ly/PtFYd9
Parents should contact school staff each time their child informs them that he or she has been bullied. Parents can start with a template letter as a guide for writing a letter to their childs school. These letters contain standard language and fill in the blank spaces so the letter can be customized for your childs situation. http://bit.ly/2eCS03L
Pertinent Oregon School BOard policies can be found at http://bit.ly/2esXz5o
As a student, bullying is something that impacts you, your peers, and your school whether youre the target of bullying, a witness, or the person who bullies. Bullying can end, but that wont happen unless students, parents, and educators work together and take action.
The first step is to create a plan that works for you and your situation. This student action plan is an opportunity for you either on your own or with your parents and teachers to develop a strategy to change whats happening to you or someone else. Its your chance to make a difference.
To get started: download the Student Action Plan and learn more about developing a plan. http://bit.ly/OI4Pao Then, download My Personal Plan to develop your own student action plan against bullying. http://bit.ly/Q3V4TM
When a child is a target of bullying, parents need to document the events and develop a record (or history) of what is happening to their child. These records can help parents keep a concise, accurate timeline of events.
This record is useful when talking with school educators, law enforcement personnel, or other individuals who may need to assist parents in intervening against bullying. Records are important. Remember if it is not in writing, it does not exist. http://bit.ly/Orfnik
We've also placed a couple of electronic surveys on the web to provide an anonymous way to let us know what has been happening. The one if you have been bullied is at http://bit.ly/T0E1rW and one if you have observed someone being bullied is at http://bit.ly/QlSviU Each survey takes less than 5 minutes and will help you release some of the energy you might be carrying by holding on to the information. It might also help others understanding your experience and start developing plans to help prevent others in the future from having to go through a similar situation.
The word bullying often conjures up an image of a school yard scene, with a big, intimidating student towering over a small, cowering child. Thats just one face of bullyingand of children who bully. Another face of a bully might be that of your child. Surprised? Many parents are. Often they have no idea that their child is harassing other children. Yet knowing the factsand acting to change the situationis vitally important in making the future safer for your child and all children. http://bit.ly/Orfydk
The U.S. Department of Educations Office for Civil Rights has released several guidance letters on the obligation for schools to address harassment and specific considerations for sexual harassment and disability harassment. http://1.usa.gov/QUcxgH
When the bullying is based on the child's disability, federal laws can also apply under Section 504, Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) and Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008(ADAAA). Version for a Student with a 504 Plan http://bit.ly/Oipssd Version for a Student with an IEP Plan http://bit.ly/TMnx5Z
These sample letter(s) can serve two purposes. First, the letter will alert school administration of the bullying and your desire for interventions against the bullying. Second, the letter can serve as your written record when referring to events. The record (letter) should be factual and absent of opinions or emotional statements.
This handout provides an overview of important facts for parents, educators and students to know about students with disabilities and bullying. http://bit.ly/Np5ekA. Oregons anti-bullying laws and policies key components they contain can be found at http://1.usa.gov/RN99UA
Students with disabilities who are eligible for special education under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) will have an Individualized Education Program (IEP). The IEP can be a helpful tool in a bullying prevention plan. http://bit.ly/QkOhpt
One of the best ways to teach children about a disability is to talk to them at school. For many families, presenting at school is an annual event. Sometimes, an IEP team writes it into a childs Individualized Education Program (IEP) document. http://bit.ly/PcXNeM
Self-advocacy is a key step in becoming an adult. It means looking out for yourself, telling people what you need, and knowing how to take responsibility. No one is born knowing these skills. Everyone has to learn them. Ready to begin learning? Here is some great information from teens, for teens, that can start you on your way. http://bit.ly/RSZRLd
While any child can be a target of bullying, children with disabilities can be especially vulnerable. Although few studies exist concerning children with disabilities and bullying in the United States, the studies available indicate an increased risk for children with special needs. Parents can help protect their children with disabilities from bullying and its devastating effects if they promote effective strategies such as PACERs Peer Advocacy Program, use the Individualized Education Program (IEP) as a tool, work with the school, and know their childs rights under the law. http://bit.ly/SFWb20
Bullying happens in the workplace as well. There is an InfoBrief developed by PACER Center in partnership with the National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth. The InfoBrief is designed to help youth, including youth with disabilities, recognize signs of bullying in the workplace. It offers examples of bullying situations at work and strategies to help address the issue. Much is understood about the negative consequences of bullying at school, but youth should also be made aware that bullying does not always end at school and is often encountered at work. http://bit.ly/PtHtbn
We want to thank PACER's National Bullying Prevention Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota for the contents of much of this report. Founded in 2006, the Center unites, engages and educates communities nationwide to address bullying through creative, relevant and interactive resources. PACER's bullying prevention resources are designed to benefit all students including students with disabilities. Learn more at PACER.org/bullying or call 952-838-9000.
Additional Resources: http://bit.ly/OGaQTF