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New Committee Aims To Stop Bullying

The+committee+has+taken+action+by+handing+out+%E2%80%9CBe+a+Badger+--+Not+a+Bully%E2%80%9D+bracelets+to+students+and+also+started+a+video+campaign+for+Character+Wednesdays.
Joseph Neuenschwander
The committee has taken action by handing out “Be a Badger — Not a Bully” bracelets to students and also started a video campaign for Character Wednesdays.

The school has created a new anti-bullying committee due to a new law passed by the state over the summer. The committee has taken action by handing out “Be a Badger — Not a Bully” bracelets to students and also started a video campaign for Character Wednesdays. 

 “Each school needs a bullying committee and [the law] would like the bullying committee to consist of certain people,” assistant principal Paul Weinheimer said. “Mr.McQueen and I spoke and he asked me to take it on.”

The committee consists of parents, students and staff. 

“You always hear kids say that teachers don’t do anything about [bullying],” teacher committee member Jenn Moore said. “So I’m at a place in my life where, like, if I can do something about bullying or anything else that directly affects students’ lives, that’s what I’m going to try and do.” 

The school released a survey to see how they could work on the problem. 

“We have people who believe that there’s favoritism among athletes and people that others consider ‘popular,’” Moore said. “We also found out that people felt that you were bullied if you were different in some way, whether it be what you look like, or how you feel about something, or who you date, or what religion you are or what political party you are.” 

    Behavior intervention teacher Queszarrah Olson said the committee is a good start on the problem of bullying.

“Before, we didn’t have anything but an anonymous form, which I didn’t know if that was really reliable because we never saw an outcome to it,” Olson said. “I got high hopes for the committee.”

In the Character Wednesday video this week, the committee released “Stop Phrases” for both teachers and students to use when they see bullying.  

“I think it was a parent who came up with the idea of having a stop phrase, which means it’s a clear direct concise phrase that doesn’t instigate further confrontation,” Moore said. “So like, if I were a student and I saw somebody being bullied I could directly talk to the kid whose being bullied.”

Stop phrases include I honestly don’t appreciate how you’re treating me right now, and If you think I’ve done something to offend you, can we take a break and talk about it later?

      “If you’re brave enough in the moment, you could address the person who’s being bullied and say, ‘Stop. Please know what you’re doing is not appropriate,” Moore said. “So it takes your trying not to confront directly to where you’re going to make it contentious.”   

      Senior Lily Darby said she is worried the “Stop Phrases” will not work.

     “I have had friends who have been bullied and whenever they try to tell them to stop the bullying, they just ignore them,” Darby said. “Whenever they try to ask for help, nobody helps [the person being bullied].” 

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    LynneFeb 22, 2024 at 4:36 pm

    Bullies and bullying is a huge problem in our society. I work in healthcare and I witness bullying or directly experience it often. Zero tolerance policies that define what bullying is, identifies bullying behaviors, and who the victims are should be in place in workplace environments and schools.

    When bullying occurs, actions to address it and stop it should be implemented. They should include:

    1) Educating families, bullies, staff, and administrators about what behaviors are considered bullying.

    2) Adopt zero tolerance policies for intimidation and bullying behavior that terminates the employment of bullies in the workplace, and the expulsion of students guilty of bullying in the school environment.

    3) Pass legislation that allows victims of bullying to take legal action against employers and school administrators that are aware of bullying and allow it to continue.

    Reply