Archive for bullying

Corinne Gregory’s latest book in the “Education Reform & Other Myths” series hit #1 on Amazon Kindle today, a week after it’s release.

Today only, Amazon is offering a copy of the book for free to anyone.  Amazon Prime members can continue to get a copy of the book for free and there is also an option to “borrow” it once a month just like in a library.

“Breaking the Bullying Culture” takes a detailed and in-depth view of many of the issues involved with bullying in our schools and communities. It profiles some high-level incidents of bullying and bullycide, as well as some less-publicized cases. The book also examines the popular “solutions” offered in response to bullying and cyber bullying, identifies why these solutions aren’t working as well as we expect, and offers more effective alternatives.

To get your copy of “Breaking the Bullying Culture” click on the link below:

http://www.amazon.com/Education-Reform-Other-Myths-ebook/dp/B00772XLHS/ref=pd_rhf_dp_p_t_1

The first book in the series, “The Stumbling Blocks in the System and How to Fix Them” is also available on Amazon at

http://www.amazon.com/Education-Reform-Other-Myths-ebook/dp/B0071NAX2O/ref=pd_rhf_dp_p_t_1

Be one of the first 10 people to get a copy of either book and write a review and we’ll send you a copy of the other book FREE!  Just contact us with your review details once it’s posted on Amazon and we’ll send you the other book to the email address you provide!

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A recent article in EdWeek shared how the fight against bullying is moving into Congress.  Many people wcongress debates bullying lawould likely cheer that our Federal lawmakers are now taking on the problem of bullying (quick editorial: is it me, or do you find it ironic that CONGRESS is trying to enact laws against bullying…”do as I say?…”)

However, I don’t think this is a reason to get excited, for several reasons:

  • How effective do you really think a federal law against bullying is going to be in stopping the problem? As of this writing 46 states already have laws on the books addressing this issue (for more on this see “You Can’t Bully Me, It’s Against the Law!!”)
  • What is the purpose of this legislation? According to the EdWeek article this legislation is intended to “…protect students from bullying and harassment that would apply to every school and district in the country.”  How, please, explain, HOW will legislation do that? By calling for schools and districts to have policies in place, establish reporting and consequences for violation.  Swell. We have that. What good does it actually do? How did THAT help the 34 kids who killed themselves because of bullying last year?
  • In this proposed legislation, there is a recommendation that special language be included to address bullying of LGBT students. WHY? Yes, the data shows that a high percentage of LGBT students are harassed and bullied. But, news flash: so are non-LGBT kids.  Are you saying, Congress, that students that have alternative sexual preferences are somehow more “special” or deserving of protection than other children? Are you not, then, in fact, discriminating against those children who are unfortunate enough to not fall into your “special categories?”

Let me make the point: bullying is an equal opportunity epidemic. According to Minnestoa Senator Al Franken, 9 out of 10 LBGT students are harassed or bullied.  Ok, that’s a high percentage, I agree. Further, one third of LGBT students report skipping school because they are afraid or don’t feel safe.  Overall, in our nation, over 160,000 kids miss school each day. I’d be interested to see what the percentage of LGBT students are in that 160,000. My guess is that these students make up the minority of kids overall who are scared. Certainly there are more “mainstream” students than there are LGBT, so one could argue that we have MORE mainstream kids to protect than LGBT kids.

We have to get to the real issue here: we need to solve bullying — for all kids, not just LGBT.  Bullying happens because of issues of power. The students who are bullied are picked on because they are PERCEIVED to be different.  Those “differences” can be real — they can be LGBT students, for example. Maybe the student is fat, or skinny, or is poor and doesn’t wear the trendy clothes. But the differences can also be just perceptions: the “smart” kid gets picked on because he or she makes the others feel inadequate or dumb. They pick on a child of German descent, calling him a “Nazi,” or a Muslim student for being a “terrorist.”

The sad truth is that laws will NOT protect kids from bullyingRead More→

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On days when I doubt if what I’m saying in my presentations about bullying and cyberbullying makes any difference, I am honored by a comment such as this one. See video comments and feedback from an attendee of today’s “Many Faces of Bullying: Traditional and Online” Workshop I conducted today at the Iowa Library Association’s Annual Conference.

 

bullying, speaker for bullying, impact of bullying, cyber bullying

 

 

 

Need some of these same impacts and information for your school or organization? Contact Corinne directly to get her on your schedule!

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Oct
11

Bullying – we can’t just wish it away

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bullying, cyber bullying, stop bullyingI’m sitting in a plane at 34,000 feet and even here I can’t get away from the topic of bullying. In this week’s People Magazine, there’s an article profiling four families who lost their children to bullycide in 2010.  What the article doesn’t mention is that we KNOW of 34 documented suicides in 2010 caused by bullying. And those only list the ones we know about or can prove a connection to bullying.

For me, the irony is that I’m reading this article as I’m flying to Iowa where I’m presenting both a 3-hour pre-conference workshop on “The Many Faces of Bullying: Traditional and Online — Causes, Effects and What to Do about It” at the Iowa Library Association’s Annual Conference. As is typical of media focus on bullying, the article is high on tragedy and “awareness” but does nothing to suggest a solution. Of course, the implication is that when you read these stories you’ll be left thinking,” Well, this is horrible!  We have to DO something.”  Yes, we do.  But, how long after you watch Anderson Cooper’s latest show on bullying, or once you close the magazine cover will this passion stick with you? Enough to actually take action?

Probably not.  Life is notoriously fickle when it comes to change.  Bullying is not a new problem.  And, in the past several years, it has received an increasing amount of attention, partly because the extent of the tragedies and the impacts not only on students and families, but entire communities, is become more visible. Read More→

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Today, a picture shared by one of my friends inspired this post.  While it’s a very cute picture in and of itself, I think  it says alot about what our response should be to bullying we observe or hear about.

take a stand against bullying, protecting others, bullying solutionsCertainly we “get” that the stronger dog in this picture is standing guard over the smaller “kid” (as in goat, in this case). But let me tell you what deeper meaning I take from this as well.  Notice how “different” these two are.  They are completely different species, one is “dark” and the other “light.” (Yes, I think we can take race and culture in this meaning as well…)  Yes, one is “stronger” — the dog is clearly the more mature and powerful of the two and it’s natural to think of us protecting the young or disadvantaged.

But a lesson I hope we take from this is that while we may be “different” from someone else, we are more alike than unalike. We all have the same basic needs, wants and dreams.  We want peace, we want to be loved, we want to matter. We want security, we want to belong.

And, we want someone to stand up for US if we were being harassed, teased, or bullied, right? If we felt in danger or frightened, we’d want someone to help US, even if “they” weren’t from our neighborhood, class or culture.

The importance of intervening in bullying cannot be minimized. According to research on the effectiveness of peer intervention on bullying in schools, when peers intervene, bullying stops within 10 seconds, 57% of the time.  Ten seconds. That’s virtually instantaneous. What this says is that we have the power to stop a bullying incident almost immediately, if only we were to step in to help.

It’s statistics and case studies like these that I’ll be sharing with attendees in ten days at the Iowa Library Association’s Annual Conference. Read More→

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