Com­ing to grips with bul­lies

The Compass - - OPINION - — Kunda Mweemba writes from Car­bon­ear

Edi­tor’s note: the author of this let­ter is a stu­dent at As­cen­sion Col­le­giate in Bay Roberts, and penned th­ese words as part of a writ­ing course.

Bul­ly­ing has seen a dra­matic in­crease in to­day’s so­ci­ety. Many stu­dents are bul­lied, but the sad part is they do not seek help to stop the bul­ly­ing. No one should have to go through any type of bul­ly­ing alone. Bul­ly­ing can be pre­vented, and I be­lieve that if we could only work to­gether we could do some­thing about this and hope­fully min­i­mize bul­ly­ing.

Bul­ly­ing hap­pens all around us, in our ev­ery­day lives. Ac­cord­ing to stopab­ully.ca, bul­ly­ing oc­curs once ev­ery seven min­utes on the play­ground and once ev­ery 25 min­utes in a class­room. No child should ever have to go to school know­ing they will be bul­lied. Not only is bul­ly­ing hurt­ful it dam­ages stu­dents’ abil­i­ties to per­form well in school and in the fu­ture.

One out of 10 stu­dents drops out of school be­cause of be­ing bul­lied. Statis­tics show that each day, 160,000 stu­dents miss school for the fear they will be bul­lied. Can you imag­ine that many stu­dents stay­ing home in one day? How can th­ese stu­dents pre­pare for the fu­ture if they miss school so of­ten?

There are mul­ti­ple signs to show that your child is pos­si­bly get­ting bul­lied. One of the main points tends to be: in­vent­ing new ill­nesses such as headaches or stom­ach aches to be able to miss school. An­other ma­jor point: change in school work and at­ti­tude. An ex­am­ple of this is a hard work­ing stu­dent al­ways striv­ing to achieve the best pos­si­ble marks, ends up with no mo­ti­va­tion to do the work and grades start to drop (stop­bul­ly­ing.gov).

Two thirds of stu­dents sur­veyed said that they did not think schools re­sponded well to bul­ly­ing in­ci­dents, (dosome­thing.org). If this could change I be­lieve that many more stu­dents would freely ap­proach teach­ers

about be­ing bul­lied. If teach­ers started to mon­i­tor stu­dents whose be­hav­iour and at­ti­tude to­wards school changes, I be­lieve that we could elim­i­nate some of the bul­ly­ing go­ing on.

I am glad to see that in my school and sur­round­ing schools, bul­ly­ing as­sem­blies are per­formed. This is a great way to seek help and ed­u­cate stu­dents on the sever­ity of bul­ly­ing. I also be­lieve it helps those stu­dents that are get­ting bul­lied know that there are peo­ple who care.

I am also glad to see that many schools around the prov­ince wear pink to sup­port anti-bul­ly­ing days. Th­ese days, like the as­sem­blies, help the stu­dents get­ting bul­lied know they can speak up about it and get help. It is great to see so many stu­dents get­ting in­volved in anti-bul­ly­ing days.

To­gether, I truly be­lieve we can help re­duce bul­ly­ing and pre­vent many stu­dents from be­ing afraid. All it takes is mo­ti­va­tion and be­lief. Ev­ery stu­dent has the right to feel happy and safe at school, so let’s stand up to­gether against bul­ly­ing and put a stop to it.

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