Honestly, guys, if you really want to do something about bullying — not that you can back the bus up — you need to remember freedom of speech comes with freedom of thought. Thought is a developed thing. As adults we are concerned about our kids well being and futures.
Bullies do it for self-worth purposes. Victims do it for self-worth purposes. Why not teach self-worth and respect for other people?
There are certain things you cannot teach kids because they have to experience it for themselves. Discipline and etiquette can be taught, though. Organizations such as DeMolay, Rainbow Girls, Boy Scouts and even church are typically where people get those lessons.
Leadership abilities come from social skills. The social skill that is definitely needed — which satisfies both the bully’s needs and the victims’ needs — is self-worth. Set up a freshman class that covers social skills, right down to even the proper way of setting a table. Practice in athletic programs makes you better, so see how a practice class for social etiquette — with “please,” “thank you,” “you’re welcome,” opening doors, sitting up straight, etc. — makes a difference in a person’s life. Proper dress has much more to do with how you feel than peer visions of pretentiousness.
After-the-fact policies that reflect too little, too late grasp at air. Backlash from resistant self-taught freedom thinkers that think that everything is OK is all you are going to hear at this point. Leave a child to teach himself social skills and he will choose the “power” version with no compassion for others or respect for himself.
What comes naturally is not necessarily the best for all. Enable a child with self-worth so that he may claim responsibility for his actions.
One of the first things my granddaughter learned was to be gentle. There isn’t much that she is not allowed to touch, opening her exploration of the world.