November 12, 2008

Bullying Awareness Week

Bill Belsey, who I worked with about 10 years ago, emailed me and asked me to promote Bullying Awareness Week. It begins next week and the website offers some ideas for a school wide focus. Many of these resources may not be familiar to you.

Bullying Awareness Week 2008 –November 3, 2008 Cochrane, Alberta -Bullying.org

Bullying.org is pleased to announce that the sixth annual Bullying Awareness Week will take place from November 16th – 22nd, 2008. The theme will be “Stand Up to Bullying!”

“I cannot believe how much this grassroots, community-based movement has grown over the past six years”, says Bill Belsey who is President of Bullying.org and the original founder of the annual event. “We have gratefully received support from businesses like Family Channel and organizations like the Canadian Teachers’ Federation”, acknowledges Belsey.

“It is very gratifying to know that this simple, but powerful idea has grown to now involve schools and communities around the world”, observes the father and classroom teacher from Cochrane, Alberta. “Some people say that by talking about bullying it will just make things worse, but the world’s leading researchers say that you must name the problem and discuss it in order to prevent it. The whole idea of the week is to prevent bullying through education and raising awareness in a positive, proactive way. For far too long society has seen bullying as a ‘rite of passage’ or a ‘normal” part of life. Being scared to go to school, being full of anxiety because of a harassing boss or co-workers, or thinking of hurting yourself or others because of bullying is not normal”, notes Belsey.

“I would like to invite all schools and communities to join this annual grassroots initiative, because bullying is not simply a school issue, it is a broader community health and wellness issue”, encourages Belsey.

For more information, go to www.bullyingawarenessweek.org.

Related Research:
-bullying occurs in school playgrounds every 7 minutes and once every 25 minutes in class (Pepler et al., 1997).

-only one in four children report that teachers intervene in bullying situations, while seven in ten teachers believe they always intervene most bullying occurs close to adults.

-bullying is reduced in a school if the principal is committed to reducing bullying. -(Charach et al., 1995)

-85% of bullying episodes occur in the context of a peer group -(Atlas and Pepler, 1997, Craig and Pepler, 1997)

-83% of students indicate that watching bullying makes them feel uncomfortable. -(Pepler et al., 1997)
-bullying stops in less than 10 seconds, most of the time when peers intervene on behalf of the victim. (Pepler et al., 1997)

-by age 24, 60 percent of identified bullies have a criminal conviction. Young children who were labeled by their peers as bullies required more support form adults from government agencies, had more court convictions, more alcoholism, more anti-social personality disorders and used more mental health services.

Note: Bill Belsey is the founder and President of Bullying.org. He is the creator of www.bullying.org,
the world’s most-visited and referenced Website about bullying, www.cyberbullying.ca, the worlds’ first Website about cyberbullying, the annual Bullying Awareness Week, see www.bullyingawarenessweek.org and www.bullyingcourse.com, which offers online courses and Webinars for parents, educators and concerned citizens about the issues of bullying and cyberbullying.