September 21, 2014 at 7:09 pm

Family: Repeated Bullying Drove Fla. Teen to Suicide

Last week, Lamar Hawkins III, 14, had had enough. The Greenwood Lakes Middle School student took his father’s gun to school and shot himself in the bathroom, the report says. Deputies found his body after the family searched for four hours. The gun had been properly stored at home, the report says.

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Venezuela’s president is bullying a Harvard professor

Global Post LIMA, Peru — Expressing intense differences of opinion at Ivy League universities is not exactly new. It is actually the schools’ lifeblood.

But it’s not every day that you hear an eminent Harvard professor accused of being a “bandit” and “financial hit man.”

That’s how Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela’s beleaguered and increasingly thin-skinned president, reacted last week to an opinion piece co-authored by economist Ricardo Hausmann about whether the nation should default on its debts.

The article reportedly even contributed to a drop in Venezuela’s bond prices.

Maduro, political heir to Hugo Chavez, instructed Venezuela’s attorney general to take unspecified “actions” against Hausmann, who heads Harvard’s Center for International Development and is a former Venezuelan planning minister.

Hausmann, you might think, has good reason to worry about the Venezuelan economy. Inflation is around 60 percent. The official fixed bolivar-to-dollar exchange rate is less than a tenth of the black market rate. And the country is plagued by shortages of a lengthy laundry list of basic necessities, from bread to cancer drugs.

Meanwhile, Venezuela has one of the world’s highest murder rates, with rich and poor fearing to leave their homes even in broad daylight.

The governments of Maduro and his late mentor Chavez have managed all that despite Venezuela having the world’s largest oil reserves.

The Harvard prof has history with the Chavistas. Hausmann’s brief time in office was in the elected but deeply unpopular government that Chavez sought to overthrow by force in 1992.

That coup failed and the brash young army colonel was jailed — but not before he gave a televised speech that rocketed him to fame and effectively launched his successful 1998 presidential run.

Since taking office last year, Maduro has ramped up Chavez’s intolerance for criticism, rights groups say, jailing several opposition leaders and overseeing the closure of critical TV and radio stations.

But what may really have hit a nerve with the president is Hausmann’s suggestion that the government’s insistence on honoring its debts to wealthy bondholders is hurting ordinary citizens.

“The fact that his administration has chosen to default on 30 million Venezuelans, rather than on Wall Street, is not a sign of its moral rectitude,” wrote Hausmann and co-author Miguel Angel Santos. “It is a signal of its moral bankruptcy.”

That’s a blow to Chavismo — which claims to rule on behalf of Venezuela’s long-neglected poor majority.

Maduro’s rant brought a predictable rallying around Hausmann. Harvard accused the president of intimidation.

“It is in the open exchange of opinions and ideas that people and nations can learn and prosper,” the dean and provost of the Kennedy School, where the professor is based, said in a statement.

Meanwhile, academics and other supporters penned a sharp open letter backing Hausmann and accusing the Maduro administration of confusing “dissent with treason.” Signatories included Mexico’s last president, Felipe Calderon, a Harvard fellow himself.

Hausmann was on a plane as GlobalPost worked on this story. But in earlier comments to Bloomberg News, he slammed Maduro’s scare tactics.

“This is Exhibit A in how Venezuela is not a democracy,” Hausmann said. “He [Maduro] uses his position as head of state to intimidate people who think differently.”

Maduro’s televised fury will do nothing to fix his country’s sinking economy. Many economists say Venezuela’s desperate situation appears set to get worse before it gets better.

In a cabinet reshuffle earlier this month, Maduro even ousted his oil minister, Rafael Ramirez, viewed as a pragmatist who favored reforming the “Bolivarian” socialist economic policies that have driven the country to ruin.

“He was the one person in the government that had at least been floating balloons about reforming the exchange rate or raising gas prices,” said Harold Trinkunas, a Venezuela expert at the Brookings Institution, a Washington, DC foreign policy think tank.

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Evans City aims to knock out bullying – Tribune

A new communitywide bullying prevention program for Evans City schools is about to go into full swing after a year of planning and recruiting.

The Evans City Community Cares coalition will kick-off its program at 6 p.m. Sept. 29 in the school’s large cafeteria.

The We Care program brings together the Evans City Elementary and Middle Schools with youth leaders, coaches, businesses, church groups and community organizations to address the issue of bullying. Evans City is part of the Seneca Valley School District.

Kendra Bertoti, coalition coordinator, said organizers wanted to take a positive approach to bullying prevention, by emphasizing positive behavior and a strong sense of community, rather than just urging students to stop bullying or punishing those that do.

“I wanted this to be kind of mom and pop. We wanted the rules and guidelines to be consistent in school and out in the community,� Bertoti said.

Participating members will post the coalition’s magenta colored “We Careâ€� signs with the logo of two hands in the shape of a “Wâ€� in windows and other visible areas.

“When children see the signs, they’ll know that there’s adults around that believe in the same message they’ve been getting in school,â€� said Marie Palano, Evans City Middle School principal.

Evans City Elementary and Middle Schools received a grant last fall from the Highmark Foundation and Center for Safe Schools, based in Camp Hill, for $3,000 to develop a communitywide bullying prevention program, Bertoti said.

The core members of the coalition — which include parent Lisa Davinsizer; Reid Moon and Eve Powell of the Good News Club; principals Lauri Pendred and Palano; and Bertoti — attended trainings on bullying prevention, and then began recruiting other community members to join the team.

With the help of design company Little Guy Creative and JC Winkler Photography, the coalition grew its concept into marketing materials featuring the We Care logo and design. Other marketing materials feature group photos of community members standing together.

“It really shows, like, ‘Hey, there’s my counselor, there’s my principal, there’s my bus driver,’ â€� Pendred said.

The We Care program will complement an anti-bulling program that has been in place at all Seneca Valley school buildings for the past five years.

Rachel Farkas is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-779-6902 or

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Site of former Sabin school undergoing transformation

Posted by in School

There’s a lot of change taking place on the block of Harrison Street just south of the Iowa City post office.

A former parking lot is being transformed into a five-story bank, a nearly 100-year-old elementary school will soon be leveled, and a unique construction project aims to merge residential town homes with a public parking ramp.

It’s that construction project, the proposed creation of a roughly 640 stall parking ramp at the corner of Harrison and Dubuque streets surrounded by 28 two-story condos, that city officials say embodies the type of construction they want to see in the Riverfront Crossings District.

“This I think is almost the poster child project really, when you get right down to it,” said Jeff Davidson, the city’s economic development administrator. “It’s a great project for Riverfront Crossings and will be keeping our momentum moving.”

But progressive development sometimes comes at a cost, and in this instance that means the demolition of Iowa City’s former Henry Sabin Elementary School.

Mike Haverkamp, staff development facilitator with the Iowa City Community School District and unofficial Sabin Elementary historian, said the pending demolition of the former school at 509 S. Dubuque St. has been foreshadowed since the school district’s administrative offices moved out in 2011.

But that doesn’t make the loss any easier.

“I’ll be sad to see it go; I think it’s a very visually interesting building,” Haverkamp said. “There was some pretty incredible craftsmanship that went into that building.”

Sabin’s legacy

Built in 1917-1918 to replace Iowa City’s First Ward School, Henry Sabin Elementary School was built with an almost identical footprint as Horace Mann, Longfellow and the now-demolished Kellogg schools.

Replacing post-Civil War era ward schools, Sabin and its three cohort schools were prime examples of the modern education facility of the early 20th century, Haverkamp said.

“They were very much cutting edge; they were the modern primary schools,” Haverkamp said. “They had a few minor changes from one to the next but that was the idea, they all started with basically the same floor plan.”

Sabin Elementary, named after iconic Iowa educator and State Superintendent of Schools Henry Sabin, who died the year the Iowa City school opened, operated as an elementary school through the late 1970s. The building then transitioned into an alternative school until Elizabeth Tate High School opened in 2006. The Iowa City Community School District’s administration offices moved into the Sabin building in the early 1980s and remained until moving to the district office’s current location at 1725 N. Dodge St.

While Sabin is slated for demolition, which could occur as soon as next year, the historic significance of the building has not gone unnoticed and Iowa City Senior Planner Robert Miklo said discussion has taken place to preserve some of the former school’s elements, including the ornamental limestone archways.

“The proposal is to salvage the entryway arches. They could be reassembled as an entryway or some sort of feature in the Riverfront Crossings Park,” Miklo said. “There would be some sort of plaque commemorating the history of the building.”

A unique project

Following the demolition of the Sabin building, Iowa City officials plan to create what has been described as a hybrid collaboration between public parking and private housing.

Unofficially dubbed the “Sabin Townhomes,” the proposed project would include a roughly 640-space, four-level parking ramp wrapped in 28 two-level stacked condos, Davidson said.

Kevin Monson, with Neumann Monson Architects, the firm designing the structure, said the town homes would act as a facade to hide the somewhat unappealing exterior of the parking ramp.

“They kind of almost hide the parking facility from the street,” Monson said. “It’s a unique product. I don’t think there’s anything like it in Iowa City. What makes it even more unique is (tenants will) have their parking spot outside their back door.”

Plans are being finalized and Davidson said he expects the Iowa City Council to formally discuss the project in October. The property is owned by MidWestOne Bank and the city likely would enter into a development agreement with the bank to spell out the city’s eventual acquisition of the parking ramp.

The roughly $15 million parking facility would take about 15 months to complete, while the entire project could take up to two years to complete, Davidson said. The city would lease to own the parking ramp, while the condos — geared toward working professionals — would likely be sold outright.

Monson, who also was involved in the design process of the nearby MidWestOne Bank building, said both projects were designed to work in tandem, while keeping with the goals laid out in the Riverfront Crossings District master plan.

“It’s a very symbiotic relationship with the town homes creating life on the street and keeping Dubuque Street in the residential neighborhood feel, yet while providing parking,” Monson said. “Being able to develop the projects together made it all happen. Without being able to do them jointly, you’d never be able to do this.”

Building a new bank

On the corner of Clinton and Harrison streets, work continues full steam ahead on MidWestOne Bank’s five-story office building.

Kent Jehle, the executive vice president of MidWestOne Bank, said the project has seen a few slight delays, due in large part to a difficult winter, but the roughly $13 million project is anticipated to be completed next June.

The first three floors of the building will house the bank’s home mortgage center — which is currently operating in the former Sabin school — and a few other offices, while the top two floors likely will be leased or sold to commercial tenants as office space.

Close to 80 bank employees will work in the new building, Jehle said.

The events leading to MidWestOne’s relocation to Iowa City’s Riverfront Crossings District actually began more than six years ago when flooding in 2008 devastated the University of Iowa campus, including the School of Music complex.

Seeking a place to rebuild, UI officials struck a deal with MidWestOne Bank management to purchase the bank’s former home mortgage center at 325 S. Clinton St., where work on the future Voxman-Clapp Recital Hall is taking place.

In the agreement, MidWestOne leased the lower floor of the Sabin building to operate as a temporary location while work began on the bank-owned property directly to the west of the school for the future home mortgage center.

Jehle said the process was a little complicated but worked out great in the end, ultimately placing the bank building dead center in the rapidly growing Riverfront Crossings District.

“The timing of Riverfront Crossings and the timing of our need coincided; certainly it was motivated by the need of the university because of the flood in 2008,” Jehle said.

When the new facility is completed, all bank operations taking place next door in the Sabin building will move into the new bank, opening up the former school’s site for its impending demolition.

“The temporary location has worked fine for us, but we knew going in it was not permanent,” Jehle said.

Reach Mitchell Schmidt at or at 887-5402.

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Update: No "malicious intent" in Richlands Elementary School lockdown

Posted by in School


Investigation into the “suspicious person” on Richlands Elementary School’s campus have lead deputies to believe the lockdown was due to a case of mistaken identity, according to an update from the Onslow County School System.

After a review of surveillance tapes, deputies concluded there was no malicious intent involved in Friday morning’s lockdown.

It’s unclear what deputies saw on the tapes.

Here is the full version of the school system’s news release:

“The Onslow County Sheriff’s Department has concluded its investigation into the report of a suspicious person on Richlands Elementary School campus Friday morning. Following its investigation and thorough review of school surveillance tapes, the sheriff’s department notified Onslow County Schools they have determined this was a case of mistaken identity and there was no malicious intent involved.

Onslow County Schools would like to thank the Onslow County Sheriff’s Department and Emergency Services, Richlands Police Department and Highway Patrol for their quick response and coordination with the school system to protect our students.”

NewsChannel12 is working to figure out what deputies saw on the tapes.

PREVIOUS STORY: Police say they have stopped searching for a “suspicious person” spotted on the campus of Richlands Elementary Friday morning. The report prompted the school and three others nearby to go on lockdown.

Suzie Ubrich of Onslow County Schools said the suspicious person was first seen on the campus of Richlands Elementary at about 10:01 a.m. Friday, but did not enter the school building.

The suspicious person was described as a white man wearing camouflage pants and an Army-green shirt, law enforcement said. When asked whether the person was armed, authorities said they would not comment at this point of the investigation.

Richlands Elementary went on lockdown immediately after the person was spotted. Students and teachers were not allowed to leave the school as law enforcement searched for the person.

Three other schools– Richlands Primary, Richlands High School and Trexler Middle School– were also locked down as a precaution, said Ubrich.

“Any time there’s something like this, we want to go into a community lockdown,” said Dusty Rhodes, Onslow County Schools’ director of safety and security. “We want to protect every school and every child.”

Due to a calls from the school system, parents gathered in large numbers outside Richlands Elementary. Many were worried about the welfare of their children.

“We just heard there was people inside the school,” said Roger Habbs, who has a son that goes to Richlands Elementary. “We’re just trying to find out if that’s true or not. It’s really nerve-racking trying to figure out what’s going on right now.”

Law enforcement searched on foot and used a police K-9, but did not find the suspicious person. They searched the inside and outside of Richlands Elementary before deciding to lift the lockdowns at 12:45 p.m. Friday.

No one was hurt.

School continued as normal after the lockdowns. However, many parents did pick up their kids.

[UPDATE 12:45 P.M.] Lockdowns have been lifted for Richlands Elementary, Richlands Primary, Richlands High School and Trexler Middle School.

Investigators said the “suspicious person” seen on the campus of Richlands Elementary Friday morning has not been found.

He is described as a white man wearing camouflage pants and an Army-green shirt. When asked whether the person was armed, authorities said they would not comment at this point of the investigation.

No one is hurt.

[UPDATE 12:11 P.M.] Police have started using K-9s to sweep Richlands Elementary.

[UPDATE 11:55 A.M.] Troopers say authorities are searching Richlands Elementary, but have not found the suspicious person that was reported on campus.

Suzie Ubrich of Onslow County Schools says the suspicious person was first seen on the campus of Richlands Elementary at about 10:01 a.m. Friday, but did not enter the school building.

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Avondale high school students released after being on lock down for several hours

Posted by in School

An Avondale high school was on lock down for several hours Friday afternoon after reports of a possible weapon on campus, according to police.

Westview High School was secured while police searched the campus for a student seen wearing a holster, but police say a search turned up empty.

Parents got an automated voicemail from the school shortly before 2 p.m. alerting them to a situation on the campus at 107th Avenue near Indian School Road.

One angry parent, Sheri Mitchell, said she was frustrated with the minimal amount of information parents were given about the ordeal.

“Dr. Wilson, the parents are wondering why you coward behind the brick wall instead of addressing the many parents that were in front anxiously awaiting for their children,” Sheri Mitchell said, referring to school Principal Michele Wilson.

Several parents said they tried calling the front office multiple times during the lock down, but no one answered.

Itzel Palafox stood with other concerned parents outside of the school on Friday afternoon, awaiting more information from police officers at the scene.

Palafox said her daughter, Stephanie, a senior at the school, was texting her saying she was scared because she heard rumors that there was someone with a weapon in the building.

During the lock down, police were releasing the students class by class with an escort, said Sgt. Mathew Hintz, an Avondale Police Department spokesman.

Parents were asked to pick up their children at the school, but those students who usually walk home were kept in the school gym until the school was officially cleared by police.

All students had been released by 5 p.m.

Westview High School has about 2,000 students and 140 staff members, and is in the Tolleson Union High School District.

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Westport teen releases anti-bullying music video (video)

WESTPORT – After moving from her hometown of New York City to Westport at 11 years old, Nina Lee said she struggled to make friends as the new girl in town.

“It was a hard transition moving from a place where I had a life to being the new girl in school and not knowing anyone,” Nina said.

Describing her middle school years as a series of incidents where she was bullied and ostracized, the now 14-year-old Nina reached into her musical background to respond to her experiences and has recently released an anti-bullying anthem and video titled, “Try To Break Me.”

“It was a challenge for her when we first moved here,” said Nina’s father, Andrew Lee. “I had told her that middle school was going to be difficult, but that everyone is going to a new school and would be in the same boat, but what we didn’t think of is that the kids all knew one another, so it wasn’t easy for her.”

As the video follows Nina walking alone through school hallways, there is a scene that contains an element of reality as she removes a note with the message “you can’t sit with us” taped to her locker.

“There’s a store in Westport that sells ‘you can’t sit with us’ t shirts,” Nina said. “People wear them and sometimes people will say that.”

Nina’s father is outraged by the message.

“Those t shirts are giving life to the notion of mean girls and the popular clique,” Andrew said.

While it’s understandable that many may crumble in an environment that Nina said was a series of ‘put downs,’ she turned to her love of singing and acting as a coping mechanism.

“Even if things seem like they’re falling apart, you can always make them fall back together,” she said. “As I got older and got into dance and acting classes, I became more confident.”

Now in high school, Nina said that ‘things have gotten better’ but her experience during the middle school years spurred her into writing “You Can’t Break Me.”

“This was a song I thought needed to be released. My other songs are playful, but this one has a serious message,” she said. “I wrote it for people who are victims of bullying and to try to make things easier for them.”

She began writing the song in January of 2014, and when completed, her father reached out to Grammy-nominated New York producer Arty Skye of Skyelab Music Group.

“We put it together with Michael McCabe, who is experienced in video production,” Andrew said.

The video, which was filmed in New York’s upper west side, has had more than 1,200 views since its early September release.

“I feel I wouldn’t have been able to write it if I hadn’t had that personal experience,” Nina said. “What I really think now is that bullies are bullies because they’re insecure with themselves.”

Since the video release, Nina commented on the irony of the attention she has received from classmates.

“Some of the first people who congratulated me were the same girls who had been mean to me,” she said.

While Nina said that her current circle of friends doesn’t necessarily include classmates, she has found her niche in acting at Music Theatre of Connecticut.

“One message I would have for people is to find a group or activity where people have something in common with you,” Nina said. “Being cool is what you make of it.”

Nina’s father commented on his daughter’s resiliency:

“It was tough for her at the beginning,” he said “I’m very proud of her for standing up for herself.”

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Crone’s Tae Kwon Do to host bullying seminars

NEW KINGSTOWN — Crone’s Tae Kwon Do School in New Kingstown offers a series of classes and activities to combat bullying during October, which is National Bullying Prevention Month.

The “Done with Bullying” program will be held at the school at 24 E. Main St., New Kingstown, and is designed for parents and children ages 6 to 12. The free program is aimed at teaching practical strategies for identifying and dealing with bullying behavior, and how to “buddy” rather than “bully” others.

The four-session seminar will be held on Mondays from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

The first session is on Oct. 6 and will cover why people bully others.

The second session on Oct. 13 will cover what children should and shouldn’t do when seeing others being bullied.

The third session on Oct. 20 will address how children should deal with bullying, and the last session on Oct. 27 will cover “buddying.”

To register for the free seminars, go to or call 691-4116.

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Kids Dress Like Superheroes In Race Against Bullying

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A run Saturday morning helped raise awareness for bullying prevention and gave kids a chance to feel like superheroes.

It was Pacer’s Run, Walk, Roll against bullying.

They crossed the finish line wearing a cape and were congratulated by Vikings cheerleaders and Viktor the Vikings mascot.

The event helps kick off Pacer’s national bullying prevention month in October.

Since 2011, Pacer also has a special day on Oct. 22 called Unity Day, which works to bring the community together against bullying.

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Sibling Bullying Tied to Future Depression

Sibling Bullying Tied to Future Depression

Children who are bullied by siblings several times a week in early adolescence are twice as likely to become clinically depressed as young adults, according to a new study published in the journal Pediatrics. The bullied kids are also twice as likely to report self-harm compared to kids who were not bullied by siblings.

The study, conducted by researchers at the Universities of Oxford, Warwick and Bristol, and University College London, is the first to investigate the connection between sibling bullying and clinical depression and self-harm in young adults.

“Forms of bullying where victims are shoved around the playground or targeted at work have been well documented, however, this study uncovers a largely hidden form of bullying. Victims of sibling bullying are offered little escape as sibling relationships endure throughout development,” said lead author Dr. Lucy Bowes, from the Department of Social Policy and Intervention at the University of Oxford.

“We are not talking about the sort of teasing that often goes on within families, but incidents that occur several times a week, in which victims are ignored by their brothers or sisters, or are subjected to verbal or physical violence.”

Participants were the children of women enrolled in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC) in the 1990s.

At the age of 12, nearly 7,000 children completed questionnaires about whether they had experienced any form of sibling bullying and if so, how often it occurred. The same children were followed up at the age of 18 years.

Of the 3,452 children who provided data on both sibling bullying and mental health, 1,810 said they had not been bullied by a brother or sister. Of these, 6.4 percent had depression scores in the clinically significant range, 9.3 percent experienced anxiety and 7.6 percent had self-harmed in the previous year. Of the 786 children who said they had been bullied by a sibling several times a week, clinical depression was reported by 12.3 percent, 14 percent had self-harmed in the previous year and 16 percent of them reported anxiety.

Victims were more likely to be girls, and bullying was more common in families with three or more children. Older brothers were often the perpetrators.

On average, victims reported that sibling bullying had started at the age of eight. The link between being bullied by their siblings as a child and later mental health disorders was found to be similar for both boys and girls.

“Social learning and how to behave with peers starts at home, and when siblings are bullied it can have serious long-term consequences, as we found in our study. It is important that parents set clear rules about what is allowed in conflicts and they should intervene consistently when their children maltreat each other repeatedly,” said co-author Dr. Dieter Wolke, from the Department of Psychology and Division of Mental Health and Wellbeing at the University of Warwick.

Children who said they had been frequently bullied by siblings were more likely to report increased feelings of anxiety. However, anxiety was not found to be a significant effect after individual and family characteristics had been taken into account.

“Even though we cannot be certain that this relationship is causal, we think it likely that interventions to reduce sibling bullying would improve the mental health in the longer term,” said co-author Glyn Lewis, Ph.D., from the Division of Psychiatry at UCL.

Source: University of Oxford

Boy bullying his younger brother photo by shutterstock.




Abuse, Anxiety, Children and Teens, Depression, General, Health-related, LifeHelper, Parenting, Research


September 20, 2014 at 1:08 pm

Students dance along to stamp out bullying

FRANKLIN—Though he’s worked on MTV and recorded his own songs, JLINE told a crowd of J.P. King Middle Schoolers on Thursday that there’s only one job where he’s willing to give it his all, working 110 percent. That’s going on tour to schools in an effort to put a stop to bullying.

It didn’t take too long for the students to get into it, as they clapped, shouted, sang along to the familiar songs and some students even stood up to dance.

“I liked his style and his dance moves, and he can really sing,” said 15-year-old Kira Keys. “His message was really inspiring.”

Keys said she was going to pass it on to others.

“People do really good things, and sometimes nobody else understands them if they are not like them,” she said. “But it’s still good, and you shouldn’t be mean to them.”

After he’d done his show, singing original songs along with covers, JLINE talked to the students about bullying. Before 6th grade, his classmates liked him for being different, but something changed when he made it to junior high.

“I told myself, ‘Alright, being myself worked out for a little while, and now it has turned against me,’” JLINE told the 8th-graders assembled. “I asked myself, ‘What’s it going to take to get people to leave me alone?’”

People didn’t have to be his friend or even talk to him, he just wanted to not be made fun of. So he shut down, started dressing in all black and wouldn’t raise his hand to answer questions in class.

“I thought, maybe they’d leave me alone if I keep my mouth shut and didn’t speak a word,” he said.

But by 8th grade, his parents had caught on, as he had closed them out as well. They wondered why he didn’t have friends over anymore and why he didn’t speak to them.

So JLINE let them know about the bullying.

“I am sick to death in the morning about getting up and going to school,” he said. “But my parents let me know that I didn’t have to let that define me. I couldn’t let everyone else tell me what I like about myself.”

So they signed him up for a Tae kwon do class. At first, he stuck to the back and tried to not stand out. But then, some of the moves started to feel like dancing, and he liked it. He memorized the moves better than anyone else and was flying through the belts.

“People started noticing that I was doing well, and they’d come up to me for advice,” he said. “And I’d answer them. That’s about when I started opening up.”

Particularly so was when he was a senior, after he’d earned his black belt. He wanted to get on stage.

“I was scared that if people laughed at me, that I wouldn’t get over it,” he said. “But I told myself that people have laughed at me before, and I’m still here.”

JLINE wouldn’t be who he is today if he hadn’t gone through that class and got on that stage. He wouldn’t have been able to follow his dream of doing music.

“I know now why I went through that dark time,” he said. “It’s so I could emphasize with others going through this.”

Hearing about what JLINE and his two backup dancers had gone through was one of Kendall Brown’s favorite parts of the show.

“I really liked that they talked about their past and what they went through,” the 13-year-old said. “It was really inspiring. Bullying is really bad, and you shouldn’t mess with people.”

Alyssa Geary, 13, also thought it was inspiring.

“I thought it was awesome, and it sent a good message,” she said. “You shouldn’t let people just get bullied.”

Guidance Councilor Meta Stratton booked the show, and she said she was pleased with how receptive the students had been.

“I don’t see bullying as a big problem here, but programs like this can help keep it as a part of the daily conversation, or in the front of our minds,” she said. “That way, it never becomes a problem.”

at 1:08 pm

Sibling Bullying Tied to Depression in Adolescence

Sibling Bullying Tied to Depression in Adolescence

By Vishakha Sonawane | Sep 20, 2014 06:07 AM EDT


Sibling bullying can greatly affect the mental health of children, according to a new research.

Researchers from the University of Oxford found that those bullied by their siblings are twice as likely to report being depressed and to say they had self-harmed within the previous year compared with those who were not bullied.

“Victims of sibling bullying are offered little escape as sibling relationships endure throughout development,” Lucy Bowes, lead author of the study, said in a press statement. “We are not talking about the sort of teasing that often goes on within families, but incidents that occur several times a week, in which victims are ignored by their brothers or sisters, or are subjected to verbal or physical violence.”

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According to the National Institute of Mental Health, girls are more vulnerable to depression than boys. The National Comorbidity Survey-Adolescent Supplement states that almost 11 percent of the adolescents in the United States have a depressive disorder by age 18.

For the currents study, researchers examined the data gathered from at least 7,000 children of mothers registered for the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children in the 1990s. Researchers told the participants to answer questions in 2003 and 2004 related to their experiences of any form of sibling bullying and if so, how often it happened.

The same children were followed up at the age of 18 years and their mental health was examined using an online questionnaire, known as the Clinical Interview Schedule. The teenagers attended a clinic to fill up the questionnaire. They were asked about their feelings and any recent self-harming behavior.

Of the 3,452 children, 1,810 said they were not bullied by their siblings. Researchers noted that 6.4 percent had depression scores in the clinically significant range, 9.3 percent experienced anxiety and 7.6 percent had self-harmed in the previous year. The findings also showed that of the 786 children who reported being bullied by siblings several times a week, clinical depression was reported by 12.3 percent, 14 percent had self-harmed in the previous year and 16 percent of them reported anxiety.

Researchers found same association of being bullied by their siblings as a child and later mental health disorders in girls and boys.

“Social learning and how to behave with peers starts at home, and when siblings are bullied it can have serious long- term consequences as we found in our study,” Dieter Wolke, co-author of the study, said. “It is important that parents set clear rules about what is allowed in conflicts and they should intervene consistently when their children maltreat each other repeatedly.”

The findings were published in the journal Pediatrics.


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at 1:08 pm

Suit claims bullying over Clearview Schools class presidency vote – Chronicle

ELYRIA — A father has filed a lawsuit against officials at Clearview Schools that alleges his daughter was bullied by staff and lost a bid for sophomore class president as a result.

Lorain resident Charles Brown filed the suit Friday against Clearview High School principal Jessica Tafe, English teacher Lurlene West, guidance counselor Jean Branzel and the Clearview Board of Education.

The lawsuit is seeking $10,000 from each defendant named in the case.

Brown said in the lawsuit that his daughter, 16-year-old Aliceison Brown, suffered pain and mental anguish on the grounds of misconduct by staff members who allegedly cheated her out of a win for class president. The lawsuit contends defendants in the case conspired to cheat, disgrace, humiliate and bully Aliceison Brown.

Charles Brown, reached by phone Friday afternoon, said West bullied his daughter, made a mockery of her presidential speech and favored the winning candidate before the election was through.

“It was a simple win,” Charles Brown said. “Aliceison talked to most of the kids in her class who said they all voted for her.”

Aliceison Brown said in a phone interview Friday that she was interrupted by West during her speech, given less time to speak than the other candidate and was accused of bribing the student body when she tried to pass out candy. She said she was humiliated when West reportedly read her speech to other classes and made fun of it.

“I’m a very popular student at the school,” Aliceison said. “I’m always high-spirited and I’ve never had depression issues. I was class president last year and everything was going smooth for me. This year, it’s like all the teachers are against me.”

The Browns also allege the principal supported the bullying and announced the winner of the presidential elections before results were even counted.

“They ganged up on her so she would automatically lose,” Charles Brown said. “They got all the students against her.”

Clearview Schools Superintendent Jerome Davis said he has talked with Charles Brown and he realizes the Browns are upset about the loss. Davis said he has never encountered such a lawsuit before.

“I’ve talked to the principal,” Davis said. “Each class voted, and it was a tight race. She ended up losing and she felt she wasn’t given a fair chance.”

Davis said he isn’t sure what will happen with the lawsuit.

“The next step is just to wait and see what happens, I guess,” Davis said.

Charles Brown said he isn’t worried that he or his daughter will be perceived as sore losers because he feels others have been bullied and it’s time to speak out.

“I told my daughter, you win some and you lose some,” he said. “But other students told her they voted for her, we weren’t allowed to see the votes and other students said they’ve been bullied, too. Somebody needs to do something about this.”

Contact Jon Wysochanski at 329-7123 or

at 7:08 am

Dubuque schools begin new bullying and violence prevention program

DUBUQUE – Students are taking the fight against bullying into their own hands as part of a first-in-the-nation effort in Dubuque schools. The Dubuque Community School District is the first in the United States to train both middle and high school students in the Green Dot program.

Like so many others, middle school was a messy time for Morgan Allan.

“They would chase me down the hallway and call me really awful names that I won’t say, but they were very unpleasant to the point where I became depressed,“ Allan said.

Allan says her days got so dark; she had to see a psychologist.

Today things are much better for her. She’s now a junior at Hempsted High School, but she still sees her bully on a daily basis.

“I ignore them,” said Allan. “They don’t really say anything to me anymore because I did something about it. So they ignore me. It’s a mutual ignoring.”

That experience motivated Allan to get involved in the Green Dot program.

“Those crimes are not the biggest problem. But for students who suffer from those crimes, it’s their biggest issue. And we have the responsibility to deal with that,” said Dubuque School’s Mae Hintgen.

The program teaches students to step in and stop bullying and violence when they see it.

“When we have a potential offender and we have a potential target, if there are all these bystanders in the middle, there’s no way the offender can get to the target,” said Hintgen.

Green Dot experts say the recent domestic abuse case against NFL star Ray Rice is helping fuel conversations that could help stop bullying too.

“People are talking about it finally. We’re at this tipping point on college campuses and in high schools and communities and in the N.F.L. People are talking about violence and it’s never happened to this scale before,“ Green Dot’s Lea Hegge said.

It’s something Allan is talking about, and she’ll keep talking, in hopes of keeping other students from dealing with what she did.

at 7:08 am

Maryland High School Principal Accused of Bullying Staff

Prince George’s County leaders are calling for a high school principal to be fired over accusations of bullying and mistreatment of her staff.

Dr. Angelique Simpson-Marcus became Largo High School’s principal in 2007. Three years later a group of employees filed complaints of harassment and bullying against her.

“A counselor at Largo High School came to our office complaining about harassment, hostile work environment,” said Bob Ross of Prince George’s County NAACP.

The NAACP received several complaints. Then a white male teacher filed a case alleging reverse discrimination and won in federal court in August.

“When the case came out in August, we were not surprised that someone would win,” Ross said.

The teacher received $350,000 in a settlement and another $200,000 in back pay.

This week there was another settlement involving a school secretary. That outcome is sealed.

County Council member Mary Lehman called for Simpson-Marcus’ removal in a letter sent to schools CEO Kevin Maxwell.

“It is a strong case and surely there is a mechanism at the very, very least to place her on some kind of administrative leave to get her out of that building and out of that position of leadership and authority at Largo High Schoo,” said. “It’s completely inappropriate.”

The NAACP agrees and is also calling for Simpson-Marcus to step down.

“The principal at Largo needs to be removed for the good of all citizens in the county,” Ross said.

at 7:08 am

Entertainers J-Sol and Hussain Manawer give pupils a musical lesson about cyberbullying

Posted by in Cyber Bullying

Music performer J-Sol and Hussain, were at Northgate High School, Dereham, to promote both music and an anti-cyberbullying message. Picture: Ian Burt

Doug Faulkner
Friday, September 19, 2014

10:45 AM

Pupils were given a lesson on cyberbullying by an upcoming pop star and entertainer.

Music performer J-Sol and Hussain, were at Northgate High School, Dereham, to promote both music and an anti-cyberbullying message. Here J-Sol is pictured with (L) Eleanor Johnson and Lucy Horne. Picture: Ian Burt

Dereham’s Northgate High School hosted UK RB singer J-Sol and comedian and Youtube personality Hussain Manawer’s anti-cyberbullying tour.

The duo are visiting nearly 50 schools in five weeks to warn children about cyberbullying and what they can do to protect themselves online. Around 600 Northgate pupils got to see their show, which included them sharing their own stories as well as a musical performance.

J-Sol, whose hits include Keep It on the Low, Alien and Treat Her Like A Lady, said: “We want to make children feel good about themselves. Social media is one of the biggest things at the moment and we are letting them know how to stay safe.

“We share our stories about cyberbullying with them.”

Mr Manawer, who hosts Youtube show Hussain’s House, said: “We wanted to be able to inspire young people and to help them.

“Our lives are open for everyone to see, but not everyone can see what is really going on. We want young people to understand that.”

The visit to the school has coincided with the launch of the school’s new anti-bullying campaign which will see a number of pupils take up roles as anti-bullying ambassadors.

Deputy headteacher Andy Mason said: “We are really pleased to be able to support the tour that J-Sol and Hussain are doing. It is great for the pupils to hear this message from people like J-Sol and Hussain who they know and are getting to know.

“It is something we are always telling the children about, but it is a bit different when they hear it from someone they can relate to.”

A team of 30 students are taking up ambassadorial roles to help support their fellow pupils.

Anti-bullying ambassador Gemma Rymer, 15, said: “We recently reviewed the schools bullying policy and updated it. Part of it is to have anti-bullying ambassadors.

“We have a room and some of us will be there at lunch times. Students can come to us, perhaps because they don’t want to talk to a teacher, and talk to us and we can reassure them.”

Fellow ambassador Alice Booth, 15, said: “I think the talk by J-Sol and Hussain explains bullying in young peoples’ language which will help students understand it a bit more.”

Is your school doing something a bit different to help to tackle cyberbullying? Write to Doug Faulkner at

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    at 7:08 am

    Commack High School Students In Hot Water After Posting ‘Rape’ T-Shirt Photos …

    Posted by in School

    COMMACK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Commack school officials are investigating after two pictures appeared on social media apparently showing high school students wearing T-shirts spelling out the word “rape.”

    The two pictures appear to have been taken on the athletic field at Commack High School after the school’s annual “senior photo” event Thursday, the school said.

    One picture shows five teenage boys wearing T-shirts spelling out “rape?” In the second photo, the shirts spell out “rape.” and a sixth boy is seen on the ground with his hands tied, 1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera reported.

    Commack High School Students In Hot Water After Posting ‘Rape’ T-Shirt Photos On Twitter

    rape photo Commack High School Students In Hot Water After Posting Rape T Shirt Photos On Twitterwins audio logo Commack High School Students In Hot Water After Posting Rape T Shirt Photos On Twitter

    The pictures were posted briefly on Twitter, but were removed following complaints, Rivera reported.

    The school district said it’s appalled by the pictures and is weighing possible disciplinary action against the students involved.

    “There is no doubt that these students showed an inexcusable lack of judgment, and their actions are taken very seriously by the entire school community,” the school said in a statement. “At this time, we are actively engaged in a comprehensive investigation to determine the full scope of this matter and whether or not this was an isolated incident.  At this time, it does appear that this is an isolated incident.  Moving forward, and upon completion of our investigation, we will take the necessary and appropriate actions including, but not limited to, disciplinary and legal action if applicable.”

    “We deeply regret the turmoil caused by the actions of these students, and know that it does not reflect the values of the rest of Commack High School or the Commack community,” the school said.

    As CBS 2’s Jennifer McLogan reported, child guidance experts say the incident is a wake up call.

    “Everything going on with the NFL, in terms of domestic violence, child abuse and sexual assault, it is offensive to use social media to joke about rape,” Alane Fagin said with the Child Abuse Prevention Services of Long Island

    Many who saw the pictures said they found them upsetting.

    “It doesn’t look good to me,” parent Debbie Saporta said. “I just see it and get upset.”

    “I think it’s a good way to open discussions about what’s right, what’s wrong,” another parent said.

    “I think it’s horrible,” said Chris, whose sister is a student at the high school. “They should be punished for this, this is not a joke,”

    “They’re all great kids, some of them are athletes, good students,” Commack senior Ryan Elgar said. “It’s just unfortunate, really.”

    “A lot of kids in our school really don’t make the best decisions, but they’re 17 years old,” Nick Mueller, a senior at the school, said. “When I saw it I kind of understood that this could be very bad.”

    One parent said the whole incident has been blown out of proportion.

    “It’s an incident that was not criminal,” the woman said. “I don’t know why a big thing is being made out of it.”

    The school is providing counseling to students impacted by the incident and “will continue to educate our children regarding their personal and online actions and reactions.”

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    at 7:08 am

    "Possible Bomb" on Campus Prompts Evacuation of San Jose High School

    Posted by in School

    Andrew Hill High School in East San Jose was evacuated and students were escorted to another school as police investigated a bomb threat made by a man seeking ransom, a school district administrator said Friday.

    Investigators eventually determined the threat to be unfounded.

    Police spoke on the phone to “a strange man” who told them he placed a bomb on the school campus and asked for a “ransom,” East Side Union High School District superintendent Chris Funk said.

    The approximately 2,000 students enrolled at Andrew Hill were being evacuated and escorted on foot a few blocks south to Sylvandale Middle School at 653 Sylvandale Ave., Funk said.

    Police gave the “all clear” at about 4:30 p.m. But, before that happened, police also shut down the neighborhood around the high school, at 3200 Senter by East Capitol Expressway, as a precaution, Funk said.

    The school district notified parents by phone that they could pick up up their children at Sylvandale, Funk said.

    At about 1:28 p.m., a police dispatcher received a call that a bomb might be on the high school campus, according to police Officer Albert Morales.

    Police had students, teachers and staff locked into the buildings and the bomb squad was called in to investigate, Morales said. 

    No suspects have been identified and the investigation is continuing, police said.

    Friday night’s football game pitting Andrew Hill vs. Leigh High School was postponed until a later date due to the threat.

    Bay City News contributed to this report.

    at 7:08 am

    No weapon found at KCMO middle school after morning lockdown, search

    Posted by in School

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Smith-Hale Middle School, 8925 Longview Rd., was placed on lockdown Friday morning at about 8:30 after a ‘credible threat’ was reported at the school. Shortly after noon, the “all clear” was given and normal school operations were to resume. Police say they never found a weapon.

    The credible threat involved reports that a student brought a gun to school; a threat that was posted on social media and was reportedly connected to a fight the day before.

    Bonnaye Mims, a school board member in Hickman Mills S.D., was at Smith-Hale during the lockdown.

    Bonnaye Mims, a school board member in Hickman Mills S.D., was at Smith-Hale during the lockdown.

    “Allegedly a student says she saw somebody pass something so they started investigating. Now when there are fights in the community, if the parents would notify the schools. Sometimes we don’t find out about things until it comes to the school, so no one had told us,” said Bonnaye Mims, a school board member.

    At around 11:15 a.m., the school moved to a “shelter in place” situation rather than a lockdown, and police continued to search the entire building, including students and bags.

    Police brought out metal detectors to search each classroom.

    Students were “safe and secure in their classrooms” and were receiving “escorted water and bathroom breaks” according to a news release from the school.

    “I am very upset. I think it’s ridiculous that our kids can’t even come to school and be safe. I worry every day that I send my kids to school that it could potentially be dangerous for them,” said Stephanie Pierce, a mother with a child at Smith-Hale and another at Hickman. “And because we can’t afford to live in the more upscale neighborhoods, we have to worry.”

    Smith-Hale Middle School is in the Hickman Mills School District, which in August, decided to limit metal detector use and backpack searches at some schools because Superintendent Dennis Carpenter said it wasn’t especially useful and frustrates people.

    Some parents were upset that metal detectors were no longer in use, but Mims addressed their complaints while she was on the scene.

    “If you continue to treat them like they’re criminals, then they’re going to act like that,” Mims said. “We have police still stationed in our schools even though we took them out. But we also had a meeting and called for any parent, all parents that wanted to participate to come and listen to them so that we could make the parents aware.”

    Mims said only 25 parents showed up to that meeting about school security.

    This is a developing story and FOX 4 has a crew on the way to the scene and will have updates as soon as possible. Refresh this page for new details.

    at 1:07 am

    Study: 1 out of 5 quit due to bullying in the workplace

    SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A new CareerBuilder study finds 28-percent of workers feel they’re being bullied at their jobs.
    In fact, one out of every five people who feel bullied end up quitting their jobs all together.

    “That’s a high number, you know, but if it reaches that point, if that’s the only option that you have then, you got to do what you got to do so that you can just be happy at your job,” said Matt McBride of Hampden.

    Minorities, women, people with disabilities and the LGBT community are more likely to be bullied in the workplace.

    “I haven’t been bullied, but I know a couple of people who have been bullied and they almost feel like they need to leave their jobs because tensions rise at work and it just becomes too much,” said Steve McBride of Hampden.

    “You could only imagine that it would lower the self esteem, let alone make someone feel very uncomfortable in the workplace. May be to the point where they would feel they have to leave,” said Lina Racicot, Professor of Psychology at American International College.

    Though the effects of being bullied in the workplace can be psychologically damaging, there are a few tips you could use to resolve conflict.

    • Keep a record of all incidents, keeping track of time, place, and who was there.
    • Consider talking to the bully, and provide specific examples of how you feel you aren’t being treated with respect.
    • Finally, always focus on resolution: Center the discussion on how to make the present situation better.