By Kayla L. Lindstadt
KLR Elementary School
Monticello, New York, USA
Do you know what one of the biggest problems in school districts is? Bullying! Schools have a responsibility to provide a “bully free” zone.
Bullying is seen in the forms of pushing, stealing, name-calling or just making anyone feel unsafe or uncomfortable for being who they are. Two main reasons why people are bullied are first, because of their appearance and second, their social status. Bullies pick on the people that they don’t think fit in; maybe because of how they look or how they act [for example, kids who are shy and withdrawn]. Bullying can affect everyone: Those who are bullied, those who do the bullying and those who witness it.
There is another form of bullying called cyber-bullying. It is you make fun of a person or say hurtful things to them or about them online. It is just as hurtful seeing it online as it is hearing it in person.
One thing that can help prevent being bullied is to not respond to or forward cyber-bullying messages. You should block the person who is doing the bullying, keep evidence of cyber-bullying by recording the dates, times and descriptions of the instances when the cyber-bullying has occurred and save and print screenshots, email and text messages. Use this evidence to report Cyber-bullying to web and cell phone service providers. This information should also be handed into school authorities.
If you are getting bullied or know someone who is getting bullied, DON’T WAIT!!! Tell someone right away who will help solve the problem. If kids would just tell their parents and teachers, this would help to backfire on the bully’s efforts. If you get bullied, no matter how much you want to, don’t fight physically because this could make things worse.
“Treat others the way you want to be treated” is a good motto. Together we can stop bullying!