January 29, 2015 at 2:40 pm

Parent outraged with alleged bullying at middle school

JACKSONVILLE, FL — Erica Prince, 37, has a daughter in the Bridge to Success program at Matthew Gilbert Middle School.

“The only reason she is in the program is to get promoted to the right grade,” said Prince. “but I can’t keep sending her to school to keep getting beat up.”

Prince is tired of her child being bullied; the latest incident was Tuesday during the lunch hour in the cafeteria.

“That was not a fight,” she said. “That was an attack.”

And it was captured on cellphone, like many are these days, and posted in social media.

“It made me cry,” said Prince. “I couldn’t watch the whole video.”

The video is only 14 seconds long, but long enough to make her angry and to remind Sierra Prince of her environment. Prince is an ESE student in the eighth grade.

“I’m a good student,” she said. “I have my moments sometime, but I’m a good student.”

Prince,16, said bullying has been her biggest challenge all school year.

“They try to cut my hair, they throw stuff at me,” Sierra said. “They also try to push me down the stairs.”

She said it may not seem like a big deal to some, but to her it is too much. She told her mother she is ready to call it quits.

“I told her I want to kill myself because this is everyday,” said Prince.

Is it really that bad that it would drive a teenager to suicidal thoughts? She said it is that bad.

“There is a lot going on and I don’t want to go through that everyday,” she said.

Her mother is very concerned and is trying to save her daughter from the horrors of middle school bullying.

“I made countless reports to the bully hotline and they do nothing,” said Erica Prince.

The mother of four agrees that the middle school years can be challenging for students but she said that is no excuse for bullying.

“I want my daughter to be able to go to school without being attacked, without being threatened,” she said.

Prince wants the school district to do something; her daughter was sent home pending an investigation.

“They even bully her online,” said Prince. “What parent sends their child to school for this?”

Tia Ford, spokesperson for the Duval County School Board said the school administration has investigated the case and issued this statement:

“The school has conducted its investigation regarding this incident and is disciplining all students involved. Fighting is a major offense and a violation of the district’s Student Code of Conduct. Any student engaged in this behavior, and those who videotape, are disciplined for these violations.”

Ford said this so far this school year only 93 complaints have been reported to the bullying hotline, which is 390-CALL (2255).

This is the monthly breakdown of reports:

http://www.firstcoastnews.com/story/news/education/2015/01/28/i-dont-sent-my-child-to-school-for-that/22482157/

at 2:40 pm

Parent outraged with alleged bullying at middle school

JACKSONVILLE, FL — Erica Prince, 37, has a daughter in the Bridge to Success program at Matthew Gilbert Middle School.

“The only reason she is in the program is to get promoted to the right grade,” said Prince. “but I can’t keep sending her to school to keep getting beat up.”

Prince is tired of her child being bullied; the latest incident was Tuesday during the lunch hour in the cafeteria.

“That was not a fight,” she said. “That was an attack.”

And it was captured on cellphone, like many are these days, and posted in social media.

“It made me cry,” said Prince. “I couldn’t watch the whole video.”

The video is only 14 seconds long, but long enough to make her angry and to remind Sierra Prince of her environment. Prince is an ESE student in the eighth grade.

“I’m a good student,” she said. “I have my moments sometime, but I’m a good student.”

Prince,16, said bullying has been her biggest challenge all school year.

“They try to cut my hair, they throw stuff at me,” Sierra said. “They also try to push me down the stairs.”

She said it may not seem like a big deal to some, but to her it is too much. She told her mother she is ready to call it quits.

“I told her I want to kill myself because this is everyday,” said Prince.

Is it really that bad that it would drive a teenager to suicidal thoughts? She said it is that bad.

“There is a lot going on and I don’t want to go through that everyday,” she said.

Her mother is very concerned and is trying to save her daughter from the horrors of middle school bullying.

“I made countless reports to the bully hotline and they do nothing,” said Erica Prince.

The mother of four agrees that the middle school years can be challenging for students but she said that is no excuse for bullying.

“I want my daughter to be able to go to school without being attacked, without being threatened,” she said.

Prince wants the school district to do something; her daughter was sent home pending an investigation.

“They even bully her online,” said Prince. “What parent sends their child to school for this?”

Tia Ford, spokesperson for the Duval County School Board said the school administration has investigated the case and issued this statement:

“The school has conducted its investigation regarding this incident and is disciplining all students involved. Fighting is a major offense and a violation of the district’s Student Code of Conduct. Any student engaged in this behavior, and those who videotape, are disciplined for these violations.”

Ford said this so far this school year only 93 complaints have been reported to the bullying hotline, which is 390-CALL (2255).

This is the monthly breakdown of reports:

http://www.firstcoastnews.com/story/news/education/2015/01/28/i-dont-sent-my-child-to-school-for-that/22482157/

at 2:40 pm

First-time author hopes to helps kids with bullying

First-time author hopes to helps kids with bullying

First-time author hopes to helps kids with bullying

PHOTO CONTRIBUTEDAuthor Thomas A. Russell poses with his book “Finding Your True North: A Bullied Teen’s Journey of Hope.” Russell will hold a book signing at Better World Books Feb. 6. 



Posted: Thursday, January 29, 2015 3:00 am

First-time author hopes to helps kids with bullying

THE GOSHEN NEWS

Goshen News

GOSHEN — Though bullying has been prevalent for decades, it seems to have reached a critical stage in today’s society. Young adults bear the brunt of humiliation to the point they don’t know how to address it. As a consequence, many suffer from lack of self-confidence.

In his book, “Finding Your True North: A Bullied Teen’s Journey of Hope,” first-time author Thomas A. Russell depicts a story of Charlie, a 14-year-old teenager who lives an embattled life of incessant bullying.

Coupled with living in a dysfunctional family, he feels his only recourse is to run away. He discovers, however, that escaping his problems by running away has its own set of challenges. After settling in an unfamiliar town, he experiences life-changing events that alter how he looks at his life.

Russell, 53, of Mishawaka said the idea for his first book came from working with the organization Five Star Life.

Working with middle schools kids, the organization’s program teaches sacrifice, integrity, respect responsibility and courage.

“I wanted to tailor a book by incorporating those five core values,” Russell said in a phone interview with The News Wednesday. “But I wanted to have a different take on the whole thing. Bullying is going to happen regardless if you try to stop it or not. We have to find a way to build these kids’ self esteem up.

“When someone shows them they’re worthy. The sky’s the limit is for them. That’s when you take the power away from the bully.”

Russell, a former editor and freelance writer, said the response to his book has been “incredible” and that an adult who read the book said he was impacted by it.

He hopes to use the success of the book to set up presentations in schools and with local businesses about the topic of bullying.

“It’s just such a passionate thing for me,” Russell said. “When I talk to kids who have been bullied, you have to speak life into them. And that’s what I want to do.”

Russell will be signing books at Better World Books Feb. 6 between 6 and 8 p.m. for First Fridays.


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http://www.goshennews.com/news/entertainment/first-time-author-hopes-to-helps-kids-with-bullying/article_1b9cb239-96c7-52ba-8ba9-ff4f19b0c875.html

at 2:40 pm

First-time author hopes to helps kids with bullying

First-time author hopes to helps kids with bullying

First-time author hopes to helps kids with bullying

PHOTO CONTRIBUTEDAuthor Thomas A. Russell poses with his book “Finding Your True North: A Bullied Teen’s Journey of Hope.” Russell will hold a book signing at Better World Books Feb. 6. 



Posted: Thursday, January 29, 2015 3:00 am

First-time author hopes to helps kids with bullying

THE GOSHEN NEWS

Goshen News

GOSHEN — Though bullying has been prevalent for decades, it seems to have reached a critical stage in today’s society. Young adults bear the brunt of humiliation to the point they don’t know how to address it. As a consequence, many suffer from lack of self-confidence.

In his book, “Finding Your True North: A Bullied Teen’s Journey of Hope,” first-time author Thomas A. Russell depicts a story of Charlie, a 14-year-old teenager who lives an embattled life of incessant bullying.

Coupled with living in a dysfunctional family, he feels his only recourse is to run away. He discovers, however, that escaping his problems by running away has its own set of challenges. After settling in an unfamiliar town, he experiences life-changing events that alter how he looks at his life.

Russell, 53, of Mishawaka said the idea for his first book came from working with the organization Five Star Life.

Working with middle schools kids, the organization’s program teaches sacrifice, integrity, respect responsibility and courage.

“I wanted to tailor a book by incorporating those five core values,” Russell said in a phone interview with The News Wednesday. “But I wanted to have a different take on the whole thing. Bullying is going to happen regardless if you try to stop it or not. We have to find a way to build these kids’ self esteem up.

“When someone shows them they’re worthy. The sky’s the limit is for them. That’s when you take the power away from the bully.”

Russell, a former editor and freelance writer, said the response to his book has been “incredible” and that an adult who read the book said he was impacted by it.

He hopes to use the success of the book to set up presentations in schools and with local businesses about the topic of bullying.

“It’s just such a passionate thing for me,” Russell said. “When I talk to kids who have been bullied, you have to speak life into them. And that’s what I want to do.”

Russell will be signing books at Better World Books Feb. 6 between 6 and 8 p.m. for First Fridays.


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http://www.goshennews.com/news/entertainment/first-time-author-hopes-to-helps-kids-with-bullying/article_1b9cb239-96c7-52ba-8ba9-ff4f19b0c875.html

at 2:40 pm

Fontana plans anti-bullying summit



FONTANA At a time when schoolyard bullying has led children to take their own lives or sink into clinical depression, the city is offering a free anti-bullying seminar to help families and children identify and handle the harmful behavior.

“We hope to arm the victims of bullying, arm parents and the bystanders in the bullying equation to have the compassion to stop bullying and to stand up for their friends,” said Jason Hendrix, Fontana community services coordinator. “ We want to create more awareness, compassion, sympathy and empathy for bullying victims.”

The Teen Summit on Anti-Bullying is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 21 at Summit High School, 15551 Summit Ave. The first 500 attendees will receive a free lunch.

The event is designed to teach Fontana children ages 9 to 18 and their families skills to recognize and respond to bullying, also known as peer aggression, to resolve situations through assertiveness and ask for help to prevent a situation from escalating, organizers said. Guest speakers, a resource fair and presentations by students and adults are also part of summit activities.

Statistics on bullying in the city since 2012 when the Mayor’s Youth Advisory Council was formed, compiled from community centers and after-school programs, showed a nearly 60 percent reduction of bullying-related reports at the Jack Bulik Teen Center and Fontana After School Program sites, Hendrix said.

“We were having a lot of specific bullying issues in previous years,” he said. “When we started doing the anti-bullying events we noticed a reduction especially in the cyber bullying incidents.”

Cyber bullying is the most common forum where Hendrix has seen the aggressive behavior.

“We had a lot of kids saying that they would go home from camp or the teen center … and such and such person said my shirt was ugly or that I’m fat or some situation like that,” he said. “So they would let us know and we would have to talk to the parents or kids.”

The harassment would sometimes continue with a bully continuing online by writing that the victim had reported them, Hendrix said.

Data from the Fontana Police Department since 2012 showed arrest rates for those ages 10 to 17 declined steadily. In 2012 arrests were at 573, while in 2013 that number dropped to 381, Hendrix said.

In 2014 juvenile arrests are projected to be 364.

Although the reduction in juvenile arrests coincides with the start of the city’s anti-bullying program, the drop could not be directly attributed to it, Hendrix said.

“I would say it’s a combination of a lot of things,” from staff trained on bullying awareness to anti-bullying programs, Hendrix said.

For more information about the anti-bullying event, call the Jack Bulik Teen Center at 909-349-6944.

http://www.sbsun.com/social-affairs/20150128/fontana-plans-anti-bullying-summit

at 2:40 pm

Fontana plans anti-bullying summit



FONTANA At a time when schoolyard bullying has led children to take their own lives or sink into clinical depression, the city is offering a free anti-bullying seminar to help families and children identify and handle the harmful behavior.

“We hope to arm the victims of bullying, arm parents and the bystanders in the bullying equation to have the compassion to stop bullying and to stand up for their friends,” said Jason Hendrix, Fontana community services coordinator. “ We want to create more awareness, compassion, sympathy and empathy for bullying victims.”

The Teen Summit on Anti-Bullying is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 21 at Summit High School, 15551 Summit Ave. The first 500 attendees will receive a free lunch.

The event is designed to teach Fontana children ages 9 to 18 and their families skills to recognize and respond to bullying, also known as peer aggression, to resolve situations through assertiveness and ask for help to prevent a situation from escalating, organizers said. Guest speakers, a resource fair and presentations by students and adults are also part of summit activities.

Statistics on bullying in the city since 2012 when the Mayor’s Youth Advisory Council was formed, compiled from community centers and after-school programs, showed a nearly 60 percent reduction of bullying-related reports at the Jack Bulik Teen Center and Fontana After School Program sites, Hendrix said.

“We were having a lot of specific bullying issues in previous years,” he said. “When we started doing the anti-bullying events we noticed a reduction especially in the cyber bullying incidents.”

Cyber bullying is the most common forum where Hendrix has seen the aggressive behavior.

“We had a lot of kids saying that they would go home from camp or the teen center … and such and such person said my shirt was ugly or that I’m fat or some situation like that,” he said. “So they would let us know and we would have to talk to the parents or kids.”

The harassment would sometimes continue with a bully continuing online by writing that the victim had reported them, Hendrix said.

Data from the Fontana Police Department since 2012 showed arrest rates for those ages 10 to 17 declined steadily. In 2012 arrests were at 573, while in 2013 that number dropped to 381, Hendrix said.

In 2014 juvenile arrests are projected to be 364.

Although the reduction in juvenile arrests coincides with the start of the city’s anti-bullying program, the drop could not be directly attributed to it, Hendrix said.

“I would say it’s a combination of a lot of things,” from staff trained on bullying awareness to anti-bullying programs, Hendrix said.

For more information about the anti-bullying event, call the Jack Bulik Teen Center at 909-349-6944.

http://www.sbsun.com/social-affairs/20150128/fontana-plans-anti-bullying-summit

at 2:40 pm

UNL Holds Cyberbullying Discussion

Posted by in Cyber Bullying




One student at UNL says she

LINCOLN, Neb. – With an increase of social media, bullying has taken on a new meaning.

Statistics show 1 in 4 people are cyberbullied, and there’s no age discrimination. That’s why UNL decided it’s time to talk.

One student at UNL says she’s been cyberbullied for the past three years, with it just barely coming to an end.

Brianne Debose says it all started for her during her freshman year, all because of a boy she was interested in.

“They got online, they made up a Facebook page and a Twitter page, and it all started from me dating this guy,” Debose says.

Zach Myers, who sat on the Bully Talk panel, says most of the time, people use social media for the sake of it potentially being anonymous.

The Bully Talk panel suggested many think bullying and cyberbullying is only seen in children, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Even an older man at the discussion says he’s been bullied.

Jason Lucht says speaking up is a step in the right direction to end cyberbullying.

“Fighting back, standing up, saying ‘Hey, that’s not right,’ could save a life.”

Brianna says in her situation she’s even taken legal action, in hopes of ending it once and for all.

One more note for parents, the bully talk panel says many younger kids don’t report cyber bullying because they’re afraid their parents will take away the phone or tablet.

http://www.1011now.com/news/headlines/UNL-Holds-Cyberbullying-Discussion-290158181.html

at 2:40 pm

UNL Holds Cyberbullying Discussion

Posted by in Cyber Bullying




One student at UNL says she

LINCOLN, Neb. – With an increase of social media, bullying has taken on a new meaning.

Statistics show 1 in 4 people are cyberbullied, and there’s no age discrimination. That’s why UNL decided it’s time to talk.

One student at UNL says she’s been cyberbullied for the past three years, with it just barely coming to an end.

Brianne Debose says it all started for her during her freshman year, all because of a boy she was interested in.

“They got online, they made up a Facebook page and a Twitter page, and it all started from me dating this guy,” Debose says.

Zach Myers, who sat on the Bully Talk panel, says most of the time, people use social media for the sake of it potentially being anonymous.

The Bully Talk panel suggested many think bullying and cyberbullying is only seen in children, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Even an older man at the discussion says he’s been bullied.

Jason Lucht says speaking up is a step in the right direction to end cyberbullying.

“Fighting back, standing up, saying ‘Hey, that’s not right,’ could save a life.”

Brianna says in her situation she’s even taken legal action, in hopes of ending it once and for all.

One more note for parents, the bully talk panel says many younger kids don’t report cyber bullying because they’re afraid their parents will take away the phone or tablet.

http://www.1011now.com/news/headlines/UNL-Holds-Cyberbullying-Discussion-290158181.html

at 8:40 am

Mom upset over bullying at one local charter school

By Darian Trotter
Fox News San Antonio
Twitter

SAN ANTONIO – A mother is outraged by what she says her teen-age daughter was subjected to at a local school.
     
According to Julie Pettegrew, her daughter was mentally tortured, and her personal property defiled.  It’s an extreme case of bullying that’s taken place over the past several weeks at a charter school located on the far Northwest Side.
  
Fox News San Antonio talked to school leaders at the Anne Frank Inspire Academy to find out what happened and what will be done about it.
    
“I think it’s completely ridiculous that anyone would even think of doing something like that,” Pettegrew says.  She cannot believe what she says her daughter has been dealing with the past several weeks at the school.  She says the seventh-grader has been taunted and teased both verbally and through text messages.    

“There’s a lot of threatening going on. Actually, today she received text messages from one of the girl’s phone calling her the four letter C-word,” says Pettegrew.

Fox News San Antonio concealed the identity of the seventh-grader to protect her from further emotional trauma.

“If I felt good that day, somebody would always tell me something that would make me feel upset and that I’m not worth anything,” the unnamed student said. 

She says students also borrowed her cell phone and did the unthinkable.

“When she got her phone back it was not in working order because she says it was purposely dropped in the toilet and defecated on,” says Pettegrew. “Definitely not something a mentally-stable person would do to another person – defecate on their phone,” she added. 

She said her daughter’s grades have suffered and she’s been depressed by what they describe as continued bullying.

Charter school Superintendent Bruce Rockstroh says the students suspected of bullying have confessed; and the appropriate action has been taken. 

“It’s something that we’re going to address, and have addressed. It’s not something that’s going to happen at our school,” he says.

School leaders have offered to replace the student’s iPhone 5.  Rockstroh has also asked the family to reconsider withdrawing from the school.

Mom upset over bullying at one local charter school

http://www.foxsanantonio.com/news/features/top-stories/stories/mom-upset-over-bullying-at-one-local-charter-school-9985.shtml

at 8:40 am

Anti-bullying policy raises free speech concern from professor

A recently introduced anti-bullying policy at the University of Wisconsin is causing concern among faculty and staff, who worry that an abuse of the policy may infringe on free speech and thinking.

After realizing UW did not have any standard procedures to deal with instances of harassment between faculty members in the academic environment, two faculty members outlined a process for dealing with those instances.

Soyeon Shim, dean of UW’s School of Human Ecology, and François Ortalo-Magné, dean of the UW business school, introduced the policy that the Faculty Senate passed in November. 

http://badgerherald.com/news/2014/12/04/uw-initiates-policy-to-stop-bullying-among-colleagues/#.VMhGgFqJnzI

Donald Downs, a UW political science professor, said he believes the policy is good ‘as written,’ but has concerns about the way it might be improperly applied in the future and, as a result, infringe on certain freedoms of speech.

“You can have the best policy in the world and people can apply it in a way which will be a problem,” Downs said. “The question is how it gets applied. In the wrong hands, it can be abused, and that’s where the concern really is, in my view.”

Downs said he is not certain how widespread the problem of bullying is between faculty and administration members, and that he personally has not seen any instances of bullying.

“I haven’t seen it much,” he said. “I have been privy to some cases where some faculty have claimed that some administrative people have been bullying in their positions — not that many, but it has happened.”

Downs said he believes that in the several months it has been in place, the anti-bullying policy has not been used improperly.

In an Inside Higher Ed article, Shim said she thought a policy could help jumpstart a campaign for civility.

“I strongly believe that nobody excels in an environment that is not civil,” she said. “Civility is needed to maximize talent.”

Faculty objections revolve around the fact that with thousands of personal interactions on campus daily, the “potential for mischief” is great unless the limits of the policy are strictly enforced, Downs wrote in an essay on Minding The Campus.

Shim portrayed the policy as a general civility policy even though the policy expressly denies that intent, Downs said in the essay.

“If Dean Shim’s comments reflect the intentions or orientations of individuals who will be bringing claims or who will be involved in the enforcement process, the policy will prove to be a mistake,” Downs wrote in the essay.

Shim declined an interview, stating in an email to The Badger Herald “it has now been turned over to the provost’s office and the university committee.” The provost’s office was unable to be reached for comment.

Downs is an adviser to The Badger Herald.

http://badgerherald.com/news/2015/01/28/anti-bullying-policy-raises-concern-among-faculty/

at 8:40 am

Educators on board with Casey’s anti-bullying bill

Sen. Bob Casey

Sen. Bob Casey

Sen. Bob Casey during an Intelligencer and Bucks County Courier Times editorial board meeting in Doylestown on Monday morning.



Posted: Thursday, January 29, 2015 12:00 am
|


Updated: 12:26 am, Thu Jan 29, 2015.

Educators on board with Casey’s anti-bullying bill

By Gary Weckselblatt
Staff Writer

Bucks County Courier Times

When it comes to education, Joyce Mundy can expound passionately on just about any topic. But when the conversation turns to bullying, her emotion rises to another level.

It was that way Tuesday when the Centennial School District superintendent learned that U.S. Sen. Bob Casey planned to introduce the Safe Schools Improvement Act this week. Casey, a Pennsylvania Democrat, put together the bipartisan legislation with Illinois Republican Sen. Mark Kirk.

“I am thrilled to see the SSIA being brought back to the forefront and receiving bipartisan support,” said Mundy, who has traveled to Washington each year to lobby for the legislation.

She contends it will help remedy the bullying problem because it requires schools to take more specific steps for prevention, education and responsiveness to reporting bullying and harassment both in school and online.

Casey’s measure requires school districts to specifically prohibit bullying and harassment, including conduct based on a student’s actual or perceived race, color, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or religion.

It also ensures that schools focus on effective prevention programs to better prevent and respond to incidents of bullying. Additionally, it requires that states report data on incidents of bullying and harassment to the U.S. Department of Education.

“Bullying is a challenge that impacts far too many children and families across the country,” Casey said.

He cited a 2009 Department of Education study that found bullying and harassment affects nearly one in every three American students between the ages of 12 and 18. Another study estimates that 160,000 students in the U.S. do not attend school each day because they fear being bullied.

Research shows that bullying and harassment have adverse long-term consequences, including decreased concentration at school, increased school absenteeism, damage to the victim’s self-esteem, and increased social anxiety, he said.

Newer technologies can heighten the problem as the advent of text-messaging and social media provide the victim with no safety zone.

“Many children find they cannot escape the harassment when they go home at night,” Casey said. “It follows them from the moment they wake until the moment they go to sleep.”

Karin Kasdin, bully prevention resource center director at the Peace Center, called Casey’s bill “great news.” She said that while bullying has been a problem forever, its severity has grown because of social media.

“There’s no panacea that prevents 100 percent of bullying in schools,” she said. “Programs need to be put in place that promote climate change in schools. One speaker coming in is great, but it’s not enough. It has to be an ongoing program.”

And, she said, it should include the entire school community, including bus drivers, cafeteria and school aides.

In Centennial, for example, administrators are trained to handle bullying concerns and complaints through a comprehensive reporting and response system. The district is implementing programs in all grades to help students and adults to be connected in handling bullying behaviors and conflicts.

“We are doing restorative practices at our high schools, schoolwide positive behavioral support programs at our two middle schools and numerous programs at the elementary level,” Mundy said. “We have a program for middle school girls to build resiliency and assertive communication. Lastly, we formed a diversity and equity task force to help our students, staff and community recognize our differences as our strengths.”

In Hatboro-Horsham, Keith Valley Middle School has created the K’NEX program, which focuses on best practices to prevent bullying and has had several anti-bullying assemblies.

“Each year Keith Valley K’NEX brings in a speaker with a dynamic message,” said Andrew Osborne, a school counselor. “The message isn’t so much anti-bullying as it is pro relationship — leadership, citizenship and community building. The more kids feel connected, the better they’ll be with learning and achievement.”

The Langhorne-based Peace Center, which has years of experience helping schools deal with conflict resolution, works with each of Bucks County’s 13 districts.

Kasdin said while the Peace Center is dependent on receiving grants, a key issue for schools dealing with bullying going forward might be budgetary.

“Schools want to be proactive,” she said. “The question might be whether or not they have the funds to bring in or hire a bully prevention specialist. I think, perhaps, legislation will make this necessary for schools to put in their budgets.”

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on

Thursday, January 29, 2015 12:00 am.

Updated: 12:26 am.


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http://www.buckscountycouriertimes.com/news/communities/hamptons/educators-on-board-with-casey-s-anti-bullying-bill/article_f0b3b9c2-1c4c-5278-84b5-ac9e605260e4.html

at 2:40 am

Irish School Plans Workshop Against Anti-Homophobic Bullying, Then Cancels It …

A gay-rights organization had their plans to host an anti-homophobic bullying workshop cancelled at the last minute, after the school cited concerns from parents, Irish Times is reporting.

ShoutOut is an organization that, according to their website, hosts workshops in schools throughout Ireland to teach the students about anti-LGBTQ bullying.

“Our one hour interactive sessions build understanding for people who are struggling with their sexuality, foster support amongst friends and classmates, and encourage a supportive and welcoming school environment for LGBTQ students.”

ShoutOut spokesperson Declan Meehan claims that his organization was prepared to run the workshops at Coláiste Eoin in Stillorgan until they were told to back off at the last possible minute.

“We were booked in for today and were to deliver four workshops to more than 80 students and that booking was made before Christmas. We got an email at 10.30am this morning cancelling the workshop. [sic]”

The reason for the cancellation, according to Breaking News, was that the school’s Catholic management felt that “both sides of the argument should be represented.”

Coláiste Eoin is an all-boys “non-fee-paying” school; roughly equivalent to what would be called a “public school” in the United States. However, in Ireland, even state-funded schools are largely under the control of the local Catholic diocese, according to Saluanassabay.

Since the news broke of the school’s canceling the anti-bullying workshops, the school has disputed some aspects of ShoutOut’s version of the story.

First, the school rejects the claim that the workshops were planned and about to happen, and then cancelled at the last minute. Rather, the school claims that it was only in the beginning stages of considering hosting the anti-bullying workshops at an unspecified date in the future, according to the Irish Times.

Second, the school denies that the decision to ban the workshops was made because of concerns about “both sides” being presented. Rather, the school claims, via a statement issued to parents, that the workshops were withdrawn after a number of parents expressed concern.

“Shout Out have in recent years made workshop presentations to Transition Year students in Coláiste Eoin and no issues or objections have arisen from such. On this particular occasion, however, the Board of Management have received written communications from a number of parents outlining their concerns regarding the workshop. In this context it was incumbent on the Board to address all issues and to seek the advice available from Catholic management representative bodies available to secondary schools. It was at all times made clear to Shout Out that the scheduled workshop was not being cancelled and it is incorrect on their part to suggest otherwise… Coláiste Eoin is a Catholic school and as such endeavours to promote a caring, tolerant and inclusive school community.”

Regardless of which version events is true, one thing is clear: the boys at Coláiste Eoin won’t be attending an anti-homophobic bullying workshop any time soon.

[Image courtesy of Fox News]

http://www.inquisitr.com/1794926/irish-school-plans-workshop-against-anti-homophobic-bullying-then-cancels-it-because-both-sides-should-be-presented/

at 2:40 am

Father fights bullying since his son’s suicide


BETHLEHEM, Pa. –

After losing his son to suicide, a father is using his heartbreak to educate parents and kids across the county.

John Halligan, of New York, spoke to students at Nitschmann Middle School in Bethlehem on Wednesday.

Halligan says his son Ryan was tormented by bullies online and in school. The young boy committed suicide in 2003, when he was just 13-years-old.

” I do this presentation because I know there is a potential Ryan out there who feels the way my son felt,” said Halligan.
After Ryan’s death, Halligan quit his job at IBM and now travels the country to almost two hundred schools a year, with one simple mission.

” If we could get one kid to try and change their mind about suicide, it’s a gift,” said Halligan.

“Cyberbullying is a big issue in schools in Pennsylvania and we thought it’s important for all students to have information and talk about the issues,” said Peter Mayes, Pricipal at Nitschmann Middle School.

Halligan says parents must monitor their child’s social media accounts If you are a parent, make sure you know your children’s passwords, the websites they frequent, and what their profiles look like.

As for students, Halligan encourages kids to treat others with respect and if you see bullying behavior report it immediately.

“Just step in and do something,” said Halligan.

You can find more resources on Halligan’s website

http://www.wfmz.com/news/news-regional-lehighvalley/father-fights-bullying-since-his-sons-suicide/30974866

at 2:40 am

Port Huron Schools tackles bullying with challenge

Port Huron Schools is about to tackle bullying in a big way — and the district wants the community involved.

The schools will have a district-wide anti-bullying challenge day on Feb. 10.

The program, “Rachel’s Challenge,” includes multiple programs that involve student empowerment, anti-bullying and kindness.

“I have seen this work in a big way when I was previously at Croswell-Lexington schools,” said Theo Kerhoulas, Port Huron Schools achievement and innovation director.

The programs are targeted for grades three through 12.

Rachel’s Challenge is a group of programs based on writings and practices of Rachel Scott, a 17-year-old who was killed in the Columbine High School shootings in 1999.

Scott’s father and stepmother started the program when they realized how much of an impact their daughter had in other students’ lives through her notes and drawings.

“We have an assembly and then let kids carry out their acts of kindness however they want to,” Kerhoulas said. “I’ve seen kids decorate each other’s lockers with positive compliments and things like that.”

On the day of the assembly, students will sign a Rachel’s Challenge banner committing to take the challenge.

“Every school in our district is starting this at the exact same time on the same day,” Kerhoulas said. “That’s empowering.”

Kerhoulas said he has also seen kids make inspirational posters and create a kindness Facebook page.

He said there is bullying in every school in the United States, and Port Huron is no different.

“If we don’t challenge bullying and take it on in multiple ways, we will never end it,” Kerhoulas said. “I really believe you can’t end bullying with just punishment. You have to replace it with something. In this case, kindness.”

Tracie Eschenburg, Port Huron Schools employee and student services director, said this is the first time the district is doing something in unison.

“Certainly all of our individual schools have rules, themes and previous activities such as speakers and assemblies that combat bullying and promote kindness and acceptance,” she said. “However, this is the first time that Port Huron Schools has done an initiative this wide reaching. This will impact all buildings in a consistent manner and we will have a common experience and language to build upon.”

Kerhoulas said it takes the whole community to end bullying — and to that end, there will be an anti-bullying event at 6 p.m. Feb. 10 at the Port Huron High School Performing Arts Center. The event is free.

“If we are going to make the culture in our school stronger, then we need everyone to participate,” Kerhoulas said.

Contact Nicole Hayden at (810) 989-6279 or nhayden@gannett.com. Follow her on Twitter @NicoleHayden_TH.

http://www.thetimesherald.com/story/news/local/port-huron/2015/01/28/port-huron-schools-tackles-bullying-challenge/22482575/

at 2:40 am

Man accused of cyberbullying Amanda Todd says he’s innocent

Posted by in Cyber Bullying

Coban’s lawyer, Christian van Dijk, confirmed the letter was written by his client and says Coban, who also faces charges in Canada, only plans to speak to the judges in his case, because the police change his words in a bad way.

http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2015/01/28/man-accused-of-cyberbullying-amanda-todd-says-hes-innocent.html

at 2:40 am

Accused in Amanda Todd cyberbullying case denies allegations in letter

Posted by in Cyber Bullying

VANCOUVER — The Dutch man accused of cyberbullying a British Columbia teen who died by suicide has penned an open letter from jail in the Netherlands proclaiming his innocence and denying he was “the so-called tormentor” of Amanda Todd.

Aydin Coban released the four-page, handwritten composition through his lawyer to mark one year of his imprisonment and to address the “many blatant lies” he says have swirled about his case worldwide.

“I’m not the so-called tormentor of Miss. Amanda Todd or of anyone else for that matter. I’ve been in jail exactly a year now for things I haven’t done,” he writes in the letter dated Jan. 13.

“Yet the worldwide media and their audience have been branding me as the monster behind it.”

Todd was a 15-year-old from Port Coquitlam, B.C., whose image went viral after she died by suicide in October 2012. Not long before her death, she silently used flashcards to recount her disturbing encounters with an online harasser in a video she uploaded to YouTube.

Her story of sexual exploitation spurred a national conversation about online bullying and prompted the Canadian government to introduce legislation that would criminalize the distribution of intimate images without the person’s consent.

Coban, then 35, was apprehended by Dutch police in January 2014 on a host of allegations, including that he encouraged underage girls in several countries to perform sexual acts in front of a web camera.

It wasn’t until last April that it became known Todd was listed among his alleged victims, and authorities in Canada moved in with their own charges.

RCMP want Coban on five charges including extortion, criminal harassment, Internet luring and child pornography.

None of the allegations against Coban have been proven in any court of law.

B.C.’s criminal justice branch said Wednesday it is preparing materials for an application to the federal Justice Department to seek Coban’s extradition, but a spokesman said the case against the man would have to conclude in the Netherlands before he could be tried here.

A spokesman for Mounties in B.C. said the RCMP are not in the position to discuss specifics or evidence while the matter is before the courts.

Coban’s lawyer said in an email that his client wants to tell Canada he is innocent.

“He will speak only to the judges, not the police since they are changing his words in a bad way,” said Christian van Dijk.

With neat script, Coban accuses international media and its audience of committing “character assassination” against him by orchestrating a “hate campaign.”

“A fair trial has been made impossible,” he writes.

He states that he has made use of his right to remain silent until now because police are “blinded by their tunnel vision” and “tried to twist” anything he’s told them.

He provides a detailed analysis of his view of the case against him, including dissecting what he labels “The Facebook Security Report” and “The Dutch National police infecting computers.”

He also gives an alibi for a portion of the time that police in Canada have selected to peg their charges. Coban says he was living in “another city far away” from the computer router connected to the Internet Protocol address in the Netherlands linked to some of the alleged cyber activity.

“This Facebook Security Report used by prosecution as their foundation is poorly founded and incomplete,” he writes lower in the letter. “It’s a report based on hearsay and cherry picking.”

Coban concludes with a description of how he’ll continue to spend his days in detention “productively.”

“I’ve had interesting experiences, met diverse people with colourful life stories, read many books, gave guitar lessons and so forth,” he writes, adding he’s been documenting everything in detail since his arrest one year ago.

“Should be a good read.”

With files from James Keller

http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/accused-in-amanda-todd-cyberbullying-case-denies-allegations-in-letter-1.2210283

at 2:40 am

Accused in Amanda Todd cyberbullying case denies tormenting teen in open letter

Posted by in Cyber Bullying

VANCOUVER – The Dutch man accused of cyberbullying a British Columbia teen who died by suicide has penned an open letter from jail in the Netherlands proclaiming his innocence and denying he was “the so-called tormentor” of Amanda Todd.

Aydin Coban released the four-page, handwritten composition through his lawyer to mark one year of his imprisonment and to address the “many blatant lies” he says have swirled about his case worldwide.

“I’m not the so-called tormentor of Miss. Amanda Todd or of anyone else for that matter. I’ve been in jail exactly a year now for things I haven’t done,” he writes in the letter dated Jan. 13.

“Yet the worldwide media and their audience have been branding me as the monster behind it.”

Todd was a 15-year-old from Port Coquitlam, B.C., whose image went viral after she died by suicide in October 2012. Not long before her death, she silently used flashcards to recount her disturbing encounters with an online harasser in a video she uploaded to YouTube.

Her story of sexual exploitation spurred a national conversation about online bullying and prompted the Canadian government to introduce legislation that would criminalize the distribution of intimate images without the person’s consent.

Coban, then 35, was apprehended by Dutch police in January 2014 on a host of allegations, including that he encouraged underage girls in several countries to perform sexual acts in front of a web camera.

It wasn’t until last April that it became known Todd was listed among his alleged victims, and authorities in Canada moved in with their own charges.

RCMP want Coban on five charges including extortion, criminal harassment, Internet luring and child pornography.

None of the allegations against Coban have been proven in any court of law.

B.C.’s criminal justice branch said Wednesday it is preparing materials for an application to the federal Justice Department to seek Coban’s extradition, but a spokesman said the case against the man would have to conclude in the Netherlands before he could be tried here.

A spokesman for Mounties in B.C. said the RCMP are not in the position to discuss specifics or evidence while the matter is before the courts.

Coban’s lawyer said in an email that his client wants to tell Canada he is innocent.

“He will speak only to the judges, not the police since they are changing his words in a bad way,” said Christian van Dijk.

With neat script, Coban accuses international media and its audience of committing “character assassination” against him by orchestrating a “hate campaign.”

“A fair trial has been made impossible,” he writes.

He states that he has made use of his right to remain silent until now because police are “blinded by their tunnel vision” and “tried to twist” anything he’s told them.

He provides a detailed analysis of his view of the case against him, including dissecting what he labels “The Facebook Security Report” and “The Dutch National police infecting computers.”

He also gives an alibi for a portion of the time that police in Canada have selected to peg their charges. Coban says he was living in “another city far away” from the computer router connected to the Internet Protocol address in the Netherlands linked to some of the alleged cyber activity.

“This Facebook Security Report used by prosecution as their foundation is poorly founded and incomplete,” he writes lower in the letter. “It’s a report based on hearsay and cherry picking.”

Coban concludes with a description of how he’ll continue to spend his days in detention “productively.”

“I’ve had interesting experiences, met diverse people with colourful life stories, read many books, gave guitar lessons and so forth,” he writes, adding he’s been documenting everything in detail since his arrest one year ago.

“Should be a good read.”

— With files from James Keller.

Follow @TamsynBurgmann on Twitter

http://ca.news.yahoo.com/accused-amanda-todd-cyberbullying-case-denies-allegations-letter-194734721.html

January 28, 2015 at 8:40 pm

Osakis Review Editorial: Wait for facts in bullying incident

Unfortunately, not everything is so clear-cut, at least initially. That’s the case with an alleged bullying incident at Osakis High School on January 16. A photo circulated through social media that showed a student sitting on the floor, hands bound behind his back with a hoodie tied tightly over his head.

The mother of the boy believes it’s a clear case of bullying and something that

goes on every day in that class.

The Osakis police chief, who investigated the incident and interviewed the students, came up with a different conclusion – that the boy chose to participate.

The Douglas County Attorney’s Office, as of Monday, was still studying the police chief’s preliminary investigation and is awaiting written statements before it will decide to press charges.

The school district, meanwhile, is bound by data privacy laws and isn’t talking until it completes its own investigation.

Our stories about the incident sparked furious debate on Facebook about what actually happened and who is right and what went wrong. We know that the district office has been receiving angry calls from upset parents, anti-bullying groups and others.

We urge readers to refrain from leaping to conclusions. Talking about bullying, what causes it and how to prevent it are extremely important topics to discuss. But pointing fingers, making wild speculations and sweeping generalizations does more harm than good.

Let’s address this important topic with more light – and when they become available, more facts – not heat.

http://www.theosakisreview.com/opinion/editorials/3665079-osakis-review-editorial-wait-facts-bullying-incident

at 8:40 pm

Monmouth County delayed school openings for Jan. 28

Posted by in School

 

Due to lingering effects from Tuesday’s winter storm, schools throughout Ocean County announced that they would have delayed openings on Wednesday, Jan. 28.

Below is our list of the school districts that are affected:

Asbury Park Public Schools – Half day

Atlantic Highlands School District – Delayed opening

Avon School District – 2-hour delayed opening

Brielle School District – 10:15 a.m. delayed opening

Eatontown Public Schools – 90-minute delayed opening

Fair Haven Public Schools – Delayed opening

Freehold Regional High School District – 90-minute delayed opening

Henry Hudson Regional High School – 2-hour delayed opening

Highlands School District – 2-hour delayed opening

Howell Township Public Schools – 90-minute delayed opening

Keansburg School District – Delayed opening

Little Silver School District – Delayed opening

Manalapan-Englishtown Regional School District –  90-minute delayed opening

Marlboro Township Public School District – 2-hour delayed opening

Monmouth Beach School District – Delayed opening

Monmouth County Vocational School District – Delayed opening

Monmouth Regional High School – 90-minute delayed opening

Neptune City School District – Delayed opening

Red Bank Borough Public Schools – 2-hour delayed opening

Red Bank Regional High School – 2-hour delayed opening

Rumson School District – 90-minute delayed opening

Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School – 2-hour delayed opening

St. John Vianney High School – 2-hour delayed opening

Shrewsbury Borough School District – Delayed opening

Spring Lake Borough – Delayed opening

Tinton Falls School District – 2-hour delayed opening

–This list will be updated as more information becomes available.

http://www.nj.com/monmouth/index.ssf/2015/01/monmouth_county_delayed_school_openings_for_jan_28.html

at 8:40 pm

Providence school head is YouTube star on snow day

Posted by in School




Cats, move over. The Internet has fallen in love with a new breed: school principals singing about snow day cancellations.

Over the past year the genre has exploded. YouTube is full of educators — with varying amounts of musical talent — crooning snow-day-themed lyrics set to Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,”Vanilla Ice’s “Ice Ice Baby,” and Billy Joel’s “Allentown,” among others.

Continue reading below

Without question, this blizzard’s breakout star is Matt Glendinning, the head of the Quaker Moses Brown School in Providence, and his parody of “Let it Go.

The beautifully produced video opens with a fade of Glendinning, 50, crossing a field wearing striped mittens, a hat and scarf, a goofy nod to “Frozen’s” Elsa walking up a mountain in the Disney video.

“The snow blows white on Route 95,” Glendinning sings (or lip syncs, but more on that later), “not a tire track to be seen. We could make you come to school, but that would just be mean. The plows are running, but still traffic starts to slide. So don’t come to come to school, just stay inside.”










The catchy video has gone viral, but on Tuesday, with 281,464 YouTube hits and counting, Glendinning was still answering his own phone.

“Prior to shooting this,” he revealed, no handler to declare it off the record, “I had not seen ‘Frozen.’”

But the school’s newly hired director of communications sure had. As the father of two young girls and a boy, Adam Renn Olenn had listened to “Let it Go” more times than he cares to count. He saw his shot at fame.

“I banged out the lyrics in 15 minutes,” said Olenn, who previously worked as a web content producer at the Berklee College of Music.

The video he wrote and directed has gone national and global, but like many a tortured artist, Olenn was thinking about what he could have done better. “After we shot it [at Celebration Sound studios in Seekonk] I thought of what I could re-write,” he said on Tuesday.

Now about those lip-synched lyrics. They were sung by Justin Peters, the chairman of the Moses Brown School’s performing arts department, a tenor with a beautiful voice.

“I’m a choral director,” Peters said, noting that he teaches classical, jazz, and world music — but decidedly not Disney. “The students are going to give me a hard time.”

Beth Teitell can be reached at beth.teitell@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @BethTeitell.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/lifestyle/2015/01/27/providence-school-head-youtube-star-with-his-parody-frozen-let/GCRUApZsVMduNgCERJzJPJ/story.html