It's Time for Change

May 24, 2012
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It’s time that Teachers, Principals, Senators and anyone out there trying to make an effort to eliminate bullying realize that a piece of paper is not going to do that. In my school the administrators have instilled in our classrooms and all around the halls signs that read “This is a no bullying zone.” My first thought--along with many others at our school whom I asked--was, do they really think this is going to prevent a student from getting bullied? No. This is nothing but a method to save the schools behind. If a parent were to complain that their son or daughter is being bullied, they immediately have something to revert to, the signs. They would argue that they have done their part in order to prevent bullying.

A couple weeks ago in my Journalism class, one of my peers came up to me and asked me if I would join him in his efforts to start a movement at our school to prevent bullying. Without hesitation, I quickly said yes, but being an aspiring Journalist I was curious as to what sparked him to all of a sudden start this movement.

He told me that lately one of the kids at school had been harassing him online. He showed me the messages in which the bully not only used derogatory names, but also threatened to use physical violence towards him. It didn’t stop with one simple Facebook message, but rather continued on with various other messages and on to Twitter as well. Reading those tweets and Facebook messages directed towards my classmate angered me, but instead of taking it upon himself to handle this situation he took it to our school administration who insists to students to report any sort of online bullying. They assured him it would be taken care of, but as the days and weeks went by nothing happened and the online bullying continued. He later went a second time to report it, this time to the school police officer who assured him again that it would be taken care of. Days and weeks went by and nothing happened. He then decided to take it upon himself to write an article for the school newspaper challenging the school's efforts to stop bullying. The response? A press release that sounded fabricated. Where’s he to go next? The people he’s been lead to believe are there for him have let him down.

If this happened at my school, I could only imagine how many other schools it’s happening at. It’s time for students to take a stand. Administrators at high schools need to re-evaluate their efforts to stop bullying. Instead of creating a bullying prevention system from their point of view, why not construct one from a victim's point of view?





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