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Bullying, Not to Be Tolerated!

Bullying, Not to Be Tolerated!  bully1.jpg

We want to live in a community that promotes positive behavior, self-esteem and a positive school climate. Of course, as with any problem, the best way to combat it, is to prevent it from happening. It is our hope that this resource will heighten your awareness of bullying and provide relevant information to help prevent it in the first place.

What Everyone Should Know About Bullying

Bullying among children is aggressive behavior that is intentional and involves an imbalance of power or strength. A child who is being bullied has a hard time defending him or herself. Usually bullying is repeated over time. There are four major types of bullying. Each one can have long lasting effects on the kids who are forced to endure them:

1. Physical bullying usually includes pushing, shoving, hitting or kicking the victim or abusing

personal property. Statistics show that bullies who resort to these types of practices usually

continue with similar behavior as adults. Physical bullying is where a student uses physical force to hurt another student by hitting, pushing, shoving, kicking, pinching or holding them down. Physical bullying also includes taking or breaking a student’s belongings or stealing or extorting money.

2. Verbal Bullying includes name calling and attacks with words to hurt or humiliate the victim.

Quick and easy to inflict, it can leave invisible scars that may never heal. Verbal bullying is when a student uses words to hurt another student. This includes threatening, taunting, intimidating, insulting, sarcasm, name-calling, teasing, slurs, graffiti, put-downs and ridicule. It also includes hostile gestures such as making faces, staring, giving the evil eye, eye rolling and spitting.

3. Emotional Bullying excludes the victim from social or group settings. More common among

girls than boys, it uses nasty rumors and unkind stories to discriminate and isolate at a time

when kids need their social connections the most. Relational bullying occurs when students disrupt another student’s peer relationships through leaving them out, gossiping, whispering and spreading rumors. It includes when students turn their back on another student, giving them the silent treatment, ostracizing or scape-goating.

4. Cyber Bullying: Using technology to repeatedly and on purpose say or do mean or hurtful things to another person who has a hard time defending himself or herself. (Cyber Bullying will be addressed in Message from the Sheriff, Bullying, Not to Be Tolerated! part 2).

Bullying is what happens when someone hurts, threatens, humiliates, or scares another person. The person being bullied usually has a hard time defending him/herself, so the bullying continues and/or gets worse. As stated before, punching, shoving, spreading rumors, exclusion, and teasing are all bullying techniques. Girls and boys can both be bullies, and their victims can be girls or boys, too.

Signs that your child might be bullied:

  • torn clothes
  • loss of appetite
  • mood changes
  • reluctance to go to school
  • bruises or injuries that can't be explained

Signs that your child might be engaging in bullying behavior:

  • impulsiveness
  • no empathy for others
  • a desire to be in control
  • may be an arrogant and boastful winner and poor loser in competitive games

What to do if you think your child is being bullied:

Talk with your child.  Be sure to be supportive, listen to your child and make them feel comfortable talking to you about what's happening.  Report bullying to your child's school.  There may be other children that this individual is bullying as well.  All Arkansas Public Schools are required to have a bullying policy in place.

Message to Kids:


Does another kid pick on you all the time? Call you names, try to trip you, take your things without permission, or push you? Sounds like you're dealing with a bully!

A bully can be a boy or girl, one person or a whole group. Their actions can make you feel scared, sad, embarrassed, even sick.

Everyone-big or small, young or old-has the right to be treated with kindness and respect, and to feel safe. Bullies may act tough, but inside they are really cowards. Here are some things you can try to get those bullies to back off:

  • You can try talking to them. Calmly say, "Why are you being mean to me?"
  • Walk away and ignore them. Sometimes, bullies think it's fun watching you react to something they say to you. If you ignore them, it won't be fun anymore and maybe they'll go away.
  • Make a joke. If you say something funny and laugh with them, the bully might forget to pick on you. If they pick on you a lot for the same thing, think of some lines you can use on them next time. Then, practice with a friend or adult.
  • Speak up. Loudly say, "Stop picking on me!"
  • Stick with your friends. Some bullies don't like to approach kids when they're with a group. They would rather corner someone when they are alone, and when there are no adults around.
  • Avoid places where the bullies hang out. If you can, take a different route to class, or home from school. Or leave a little earlier or later.
  • Tell an adult. If you've tried to solve the problem yourself and aren't getting anywhere, tell your parent, a teacher, counselor or the principal. Chances are the bullies could be picking on other kids too, and that's a problem an adult should handle.
  • Talk to the school security officers. Explain the problem to them and ask for their help.
  • If a bully is doing something that hurts you-like punching or kicking-tell an adult immediately.

What if you’re not bullied, and you don’t bully others, but have you seen it happening to others? You can help put a stop to bullying, here’s how:

  • Report the bullying to an adult. Many kids who are being bullied don’t feel strong enough to tell an adult, this is where you come in. Reporting bullying is not tattling, it is helping another kid.
  • Support someone who is being bullied. Sometimes the best thing you can do is to just be

there for the victim. Talk to that person, eat lunch or walk home with them.

  • Stand up to the bully. If you feel safe doing it, tell the bully that what he or she is doing is wrong and that nobody should be bullied.

We are always here to serve and protect the citizens of St. Francis County.  Again, we want to live in a community that promotes positive behavior, self-esteem and a positive school climate. Let us all work together to prevent bullying in our communities and continue to promote the safety of all of our citizens.

  Bobby May, St. Francis County Sheriff

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