By Richard Bammer
A Kindness Video Contest presentation, recommended budget reductions for the 2017-18 year, and the sunshining of a classified contract proposal are on the agenda when Fairfield-Suisun Unified leaders meet Thursday in Fairfield.
As they have recently at other area trustee meetings, staff from the offices of Supervisor John Vasquez and District Attorney Krishna Abrams will present information about a contest the two have devised: The Power of Kindness.
The seven-member governing board is expected to approve a resolution in support of the video contest.
In a presentation earlier this month to Vacaville Unified trustees, Vasquez and Tonya Covington, representing Abrams, told trustees that their families had been affected by bullying.
The contest asks students, through video, to illustrate positive behavior and show others the power that kindness can have on their school and community.
Source: Kindness contest, proposed budget reductions on Fairfield-Suisun district agenda
By Richard Bammer
The beginning of the annual review of LCAP goals, discussion about the harmful effects of bullying, and configuration models for elementary schools are on the agenda when Dixon Unified leaders meet tonight in Dixon.
Mike Walbridge, assistant superintendent for educational services, will lead the discussion about the district’s first and second goals under its Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP), the document in California districts that typically guides all spending, particularly for English learners, poor students, and foster youth.
Goal No. 1, according to agenda documents, is providing “a well-rounded, relevant curriculum,” with a specific focus tonight of K-8 intervention programs. Goal No. 2 is an effort to “engage all students in continued learning” based on state standards.
Source: Bullying, elementary school configurations on Dixon Unified agenda tonight
By Richard Bammer
From Vacaville-area school hallways to the offices at the California Department of Education in Sacramento, educators say they will not tolerate bullying or discrimination in the wake of Donald Trump’s election as president.
Kris Corey, superintendent of Fairfield-Suisun Unified, and Jane Shamieh, superintendent of Vacaville Unified, and Brian Dolan, superintendent of Dixon Unified, said they have heard reports of “minor incidents” of bullying and racially-tinged comments at their respective campuses.
Source: Post-election, local educators report ‘minor incidents’ of bullying, discrimination – The Reporter
By Kristin DeCarr
A new study performed by researchers at Syracuse and New York Universities takes a closer look at bullying within the school system, finding that students at the top of a grade span, more commonly referred to as “top dogs,” have a better experience than those on the bottom.
The report, “Do Top Dogs Rule in Middle School? Evidence on Bullying, Safety, and Belonging,” found that schools with larger grade spans typically have less instances of bullying. The authors state that as students move through grade levels, they take on more of a leadership role and are less likely to be bullied by other students within the school.
After studying reports from more than 90,000 students in over 500 city schools broken up into grade ranges of K-8, K-6, 6-8, 5-8, and 6-12, results were found matching those from a 2011 study performed by some of the same lead researchers, which found traditional elementary and middle school age ranges were worse for student test scores.
Source: Bullying Less Common In Schools With Larger Grade Spans
By NPR Staff
You’re at a cafeteria, you’ve got your lunch … and then you just don’t know where to sit. You don’t want to sit alone, but you also don’t know who would be friendly and let you sit with them. Sixteen-year-old Natalie Hampton has been there. She’s an 11th-grader from Sherman Oaks, Calif., and the creator of a new app called Sit With Us.
Hampton recently spoke about the app with All Things Considered host Audie Cornish. A transcript of their conversation follows, edited for clarity.
Source: Teen Creates App So Bullied Kids Never Have To Eat Alone : The Salt : NPR
By Evie Blad
Some common ways schools work to prevent and respond to bullying are ineffective and, in some cases, counterproductive, a panel of researchers assembled by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine wrote in a report released today.
Tough penalties for bullying, which have grown popular as public awareness of its effects has grown, may actually make the problem worse, the researchers found. That’s because victims may view the consequences as too harsh or fear retaliation, which may keep them from reporting bullying.
Zero-tolerance policies, which lead to suspensions for offenders, “are not effective at reducing bullying and thus should be discontinued, with the resources redirected to evidence-based policies and programs,” the report says.
Source: Tough Penalties for Bullying Ineffective; Broader Approach Needed, Report Says – Rules for Engagement – Education Week
By Linda Flanagan
After years of dealing with school bullying through traditional punishments, Carolyne Quintana, the principal of Bronxdale High School in New York City, introduced restorative justice approaches at her school because she wanted students to feel trusted and cared for.
“It wasn’t just about bullying incidents, it was about the whole school culture,” she said.
To build community and handle “instances of harm” among the students, teachers bring the kids together to talk in “restorative circles,” where everyone has an opportunity to listen and be heard. Bronxdale uses circles for most of its group communications, including parent meetings and ninth-grade orientation. The circles are a natural outgrowth of the Socratic method teachers use in class, Quintana said.
Source: How to Develop a School Culture That Helps Curb Bullying | MindShift | KQED News
By Amy Maginnis-Honey
More than 60 Green Valley Middle School seventh- and eighth-graders rose to the challenge Monday.
The challenges of Challenge Day involved hugs, some patty cake playing and the opportunity to stand before the group and compliment someone.
The goal of the all-school-day session was to break down barriers and encourage the students to be the change they want to see.
Participants were nominated by their teachers. Crowd-source funding raised enough for T-shirts and lunch for the participants.
via Middle school students up for challenges of Challenge Day.
By Kristin DeCarr
A new study published in JAMA Pediatrics suggests that certain state laws have aided in the reduction of bullying and cyber-bullying among teenagers.
A 2013 survey conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention saw around 20% of high school students report being the victim of bullying while on school grounds within the last 12 months. In a separate question, 15% of those surveyed said they had been cyberbullied within the past year.
Over the past 10 years, many states have implemented prevention policies as a result of an increase in public awareness concerning the health effects of childhood bullying, including anxiety, depression, feelings of isolation, substance abuse, and suicide attempts, reports Ashley Welch for CBS News.
via Study Suggests That Anti-Bullying Legislation Pays Off.
By Dr. Jennifer Fraser
We would never let a teacher or coach physically strike or sexually molest our child. Why then do we allow teachers and coaches to bully our children? There are three major reasons why this occurs:
- Sexual and physical abuse can be documented on the body and are in the criminal code. The law takes them seriously, therefore so do parents. In contrast, emotional abuse is not in the criminal code, so it can still be confused with “motivation” — especially in the education system.
- Bullying can be hard to detect because, when done by teachers and coaches, its often mistaken for passion and a demand for excellence. Parents believe in authoritative teachers and coaches who say they know whats best for children.
via What Neuroscience Reveals About Bullying by Educators | Edutopia.
By Amy Maginnis-Honey
Larry Bluford, founder of Operation Thugs Inc., is launching a new program, “Operation Restoration: The Bullying Prevention Project.”
The two-day event, March 6-7, was spurred by the Jan. 12 assault on Bluford’s daughter.
After people read his story, Bluford began hearing from families whose children were being bullied and Operation Restoration was born. Bluford has partnered with different organizations to bring the event to fruition.
It kicks off with a revival 7:30 p.m. March 6 at City Church, 743 E. Tabor Ave., Fairfield. It will focus on the spiritual and emotional toll of bullying.
via 2-day event will focus on bullying prevention Daily Republic.
By Amy Williams
Some recent studies show that an astonishing half of workplace bullying and 40 percent of school bullying will go unreported. Whether this is because of insensitivity toward the issue, a normalization of the practice in our culture, or simply an inability to identify it, something must be done to rectify the situation.
Bullying is becoming an epidemic in America, and social media has helped catapult it to an astronomical level where parents, educators, and those in a position to help simply don’t know what to do. According to a sobering report from the Center for Disease Control, one out of 12 teens have attempted suicide, and one in six high school students have seriously considered it.
via What Bullying Looks Like in the Digital Age and How to Prevent It | Edutopia.
By Christina Samuels
Bullying of students with disabilities such as diabetes, depression, or food allergies could result in a denial of those students’ right to a free, appropriate public education—and as such requires immediate steps on the part of the school to remedy the situation, according to guidance in a “Dear Colleague” letter released Oct. 21 from U.S. Department of Education’s office for civil rights.
The most recent guidance refers specifically to students covered by Section 504, a part of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. That act prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities by organizations that receive federal money, such as schools.
via Ed. Dept. Expands Guidance on Bullying and ‘504’ Students With Disabilities – On Special Education – Education Week.
By Lisa Currie
Phrases like “random acts of kindness” and “pay it forward” have become popular terms in modern society. Perhaps this could be best explained by those who have identified a deficiency in their lives that can only be fulfilled by altruism.
It seems that we just can’t get enough of those addictive, feel-good emotions — and with good reason. Scientific studies prove that kindness has many physical, emotional, and mental health benefits. And children need a healthy dose of the warm-and-fuzzies to thrive as healthy, happy, well-rounded individuals.
via Why Teaching Kindness in Schools Is Essential to Reduce Bullying | Edutopia.
By Megan McCarter
Fifth grader Malcolm Lyon is especially tall and well spoken for his age. When asked what he loved most about his school, Malcolm answered simply, “No bullying.” This might be surprising given the struggle with bullying that schools face nationwide. This August, Malcolm started his eighth year at Odyssey Community School, a small private school in Asheville, North Carolina, where the subject of bullying is addressed with four guiding fundamentals.
1. Recognize that bullying and conflict are not the same thing.
The community Malcolm is describing is not a place without conflict. Disagreements happen, feelings are still hurt, words are still powerful, and kids are still learning how to navigate the complex world of friendships. Odyssey is not a paradise in which human nature is checked at the door. Conflict is a natural part of our human story, and conflict resolution is a skill that children and adults alike need practice navigating with grace.
via How to Cultivate a Bully-Free Community | Edutopia.
By Irma Widjojo
The vicious bullying of a Wisconsin man about two decades ago became the focus Tuesday night of an anti-violence discussion at Solano Community College.
“We tend to focus on the violence that is in your face,” the session’s facilitator Professor Sandra Moore said. “But there are some more understated forms of violence, like bullying, that are not so in your face. By talking about it we can prevent it from escalating into a bigger problem.”
Moore teaches a class at the college on peace and non-violence conflict resolution and Tuesday night’s talk and screening of a short documentary film was part of the opening day of the college’s three-day Peace Summit.
via Solano College’s Peace Summit discusses bullying – Vallejo Times Herald.
By Ryan McCarthy
The superintendent of the Fairfield-Suisun School District spoke Thursday about being bullied as a seventh-grader, said misinformed people from around the country have emailed the district and that a court order is not the answer the extremely serious issue of bullying.
“The key to stopping bullying is not a restraining order,” Kris Corey said. “It is education.”
Her remarks during the superintendent’s report at the school board meeting came after national media attention to the Fairfield-based district. The father of a Rolling Hills Elementary student obtained a temporary restraining order against a 9-year-old that requires the youth stay at least 2 yards away from the man’s son at Rolling Hills.
via Restraining order isn’t answer to bullying, Corey says Daily Republic.
By Evie Blad
This is a cross-post from Inside School Research.
A research review has found that a reprimand from a teacher or a gesture of friendship from a fellow student can go a long way toward protecting victims from the harmful impacts of bullying. But in order to truly create a safe environment for all students, schools need to make more sweeping changes such as creating and enforcing anti-bullying policies that also address cyberharassment. Additionally, certain school characteristics—such as racial homogeneity, stand-alone middle schools, and academic tracking—are associated with higher rates of bullying.
These are just some of the findings and implications of a narrative research synthesis of more than 140 studies of bullying. The synthesis, authored by University of California Los Angeles professors Jaana Juvonen and Sandra Graham, appears in the current issue of the Annual Review of Psychology, a peer-refereed journal. The synthesis defines bullying as “targeted intimidation or humiliation,” typically by someone who is stronger or more popular than the victim. In other words, bullying does not need to be physical. In fact, physical bullying decreases with age to the point that, in high school, boys (who engage in more physical bullying throughout childhood) are just as likely as girls to turn to relational bullying such as ostracism or rumor mongering.
via Students See Less Risk of Bullying in Racially Diverse Schools, Study Finds – Rules for Engagement – Education Week.
Brianna Boyd, Editor
It is estimated that one in seven children and teens in kindergarten to twelfth grade has either been bullied or is a bully.
It’s an alarming statistic, especially when considering the potential lifetime effects on both children who have been bullied and those who are the bullies. From depression and anxiety to alcohol abuse or incarceration, bullying could impact a person for years to come. And it now comes in many more forms than the traditional verbal, social or physical abuse. In today’s electronic world, cyber bullying – using the Internet, social media, or cell phone to bully – has become increasingly popular. About 71 percent of students believe bullying is an ongoing problem at their school.
via Timeline Photos – The Dixon Tribune | Facebook.
By Ross Brenneman
There’s a bully for everyone.
Based on the success of the Safe Zone movement propelled by gay rights advocates, the Secular Student Alliance announced in a press release this week that it plans to start safe zones for secular students, too.
The SSA contends that despite the growth in atheism over the past decade, nonreligious students continue to face ridicule and need a place to discuss faith—or at least a lack thereof.
via How Many Kinds of Safe Zones Does a School Need? – Rules for Engagement – Education Week.