Standing Up to Bullying

 by Christian Lincoln:

I’m sure we have all felt the sting of someone’s ill aimed words. Being told you are not good enough, pretty enough, or smart enough is stronger than off putting, it’s degrading. But who will speak up against the abuse? At Kennedy, it’s Biology teacher Jennifer Green and a group of very noble students.

Bullying is an omnipresent problem, one that will not be conquered easily, but a covey of dedicated advocates are working to shine light on this problem.

Green explained,” We wanted to make schools more aware of the bullying issue, what it looks like and how to prevent/intercede when it does.” With October being National Anti-Bullying Month, now is as good a time as ever to preach awareness. Ms. Green’s students have spent the last couple weeks on several bully awareness skits, which are to be performed for local middle schools. The students will also be painting murals in the middle school to make sure future generations still understand the dangers of bullying.

Unfortunately, bullying can take on more than one shape. Junior Jeymz Hipolito, one of the students participating in the activity, said, “Indirect bullying is bullying without the direct intend of hurting someone. Stuff like not including someone, talking about them behind their back, and gossiping.”

This kind of bullying is thought to be one of the most common types of abuse in high school, as well as cyber bullying, which is using networking sites or technology to verbally attack someone. In 2006, ABC News reported on a survey prepared by I-Safe.Org that 42% of students have been cyber bullied. With social networking even more popular today, the numbers are sure to have swelled.

The most miraculous thing about this project, however, is that it is almost completely student run and operated. Green’s Teaching Experience class is split into six group, each responsible for a different aspect of the project. The students call the middle schools, set up the dates, organize the skits, design brochures, ect. Every part of the activity is managed by the students. Green’s pupils are not only raising attention about bullying, they are learning what it takes to be a great teacher

Every 7 minutes, a child is verbally or physically bullied in America. 160,000 students miss school everyday because they fear being bullied. Green expressed her dissatisfaction. “I hate seeing students who could have been successful, or who think outside the box, being bullied.  It really makes me mad.” Students, not only at this school, but at every school, are tormented and vexed. People like Jennifer Green and her class are doing all that they can to make sure that this problem does not live in the dark, and that no child needs to live in fear of her fellow students.