I was reminiscing about the anti-bullying class that Perfect Fit hosted a few weeks back and became inspired to get an insiders opinion on the matter. At the class we were very fortunate to be able to speak with a victim of bullying as well as a private investigator and social worker. So naturally I got curious to hear from the teachers who actually witness the bullying on a daily basis. I decided to speak to a friend of mine, Kristen Apanachic, who is a special education teacher in the Glastonbury school district of Glastonbury Connecticut. Kristen is currently a special education teacher at Glastonberry middle school.
Kristen told me that there is a lot of vocal bullying and cyber bulling going on at the middle school and that there is more cyberbullying in high school and does not typically take place during school hours. She says, “The faculty typically look towards peer mediation first and if that is not successful, they then contact parents and have them come in for a discussion. Kristen then brought up a good suggestion that I most definitely agree with. She suggests it would be valuable to have a police officer come into the school speak to the kids about the consequences of bullying. At such a young age, kids need to be reminded of consequences and that they can actually get in trouble or even arrested. If this ends up making a difference in the life of even just one victim of bullying, then it would be more than worth it.
Kristen also told me about a system the teachers have in place to stop and prevent bullying amongst her students. PBIS, or Positive Behavior Interventions Support, is a Tiered system that is targeted to catching bullying before it starts and has been adopted by 21,559 schools in the nation. PBIS has proven to be one of the most influential programs for bullying prevention and is all about celebrating positive behavior. It is geared towards positive reinforcement and presented to students as a lottery system where everyone can earn points towards prizes.
After hearing about the PBIS and all that it stands for, it is no surprise to me that it has proven effective for school systems. It is never too early to start stressing the importance of a positive attitude. Even as an adult, I have to remind myself to project positivity! I am optimistic about the future generations so don’t forget to stop spreading the love!
If you have children that are victims of bullies or are bullies themselves please contact Amanda Zaidmen from Constructive Parenting today. http://constructiveparenting.com/contact-me/