"Let there be Peace on Earth, and let it begin with me."
I must help you, school district.
I must help you because that's the only way I can be peaceful on the issue of bullying prevention.
Here, then, is how to make your own policy work; here, then, are concrete
steps to assist you:
an assistant principal or a dean of discipline as your "Bullying Investigator." Counselors should not be that.
Counselors should be the employees leading your prevention efforts. Why must your "Bullying Investigator"
be an administrator? Because administrators are the only employees authorized to declare events "founded/unfounded"
bullying. They must be a part of all investigations. The key, though, is to not have to investigate bullying events.
The key is to prevent them from happening.
Require the five lessons be delivered through your Social Studies classes. You must require that Social Studies teachers
facilitate the bullying prevention lessons twice monthly. You will need to review the lessons to assure you have all materials
for each lesson. I can help you with that. Counselors, then, become facilitators of the lessons' implementation.
3. Form a "Bullying Prevention
Team." The principal, an assistant principal, representatives from all departments, a counselor, a social worker,
a security monitor, perhaps a bus driver, a parent and, ideally, a few students, must participate in weekly or bi-weekly meetings
around the issue of the effectiveness of your bullying prevention efforts. You must tell them you require this, otherwise,
principals and assistant principals will find other things to do.
4. You must engage the student population in your efforts through contests
and the like. There are plenty of resources out there. I can help you with that too.
5. You must train all staff, including bus drivers, cafeteria servers,
and, importantly, security monitors. You will then empower your employees to intervene effectively when they see bullying
events. You will also be creating, little by little, a respectful place.
I think you just don't know what you are doing and not doing around this
pernicious issue of bullying, I think you need some help. I think, maybe, those of you at the tippy top of the
school district: you, Mr. Superintendent and you, Mr. and Ms. School Board Members, don't have a clue. You just don't.
And then, maybe, you scratch your heads and say to yourselves, "Yeah, but we gave principals the movie, "Bully!":
we put together a district team to address this, how come kids are so freaking out of control?"
It's because you are not assuring you are doing the things you say you
are doing. You are only saying you are doing it.
this helps you. I know it's helped me. Whew! I feel--at least a little--peaceful now.