October 20-26 is Kentucky Safe Schools Week. The week is focusing on safety, teamwork, opportunities and power to S.T.O.P. bullying, violence and risky behavior in schools.
According to the National Education Association bullying affects nearly one in three sixth through tenth graders in America and six out of every ten America teenagers witness bullying in school once a day.
Bullying is a form of youth violence that can include attack or intimidation with the intention to cause fear, distress or harm that is physical, verbal or psychological. It can be a real or perceived imbalance of power between the bully and victim. It can also be repeated attacks or intimidation between the same children over time.
According to the Kentucky Center for Safe Schools, the best way to stop and prevent bullying is to report it. Jon Akers, Executive Director for the Kentucky Center for Safe Schools, says many times neighborhood issued get brought into schools. He explains bullying doesn’t happen in front of teachers anymore. If teachers don’t see bullying, and they don’t know it is going on, they can’t do anything about it.
Akers says for parents to monitor their children’s cell phones. He says many times kids won’t report cyber bullying via text message or social media because kids are afraid their cell phone will get taken away.
The Kentucky Center for Safe Schools has put together an anti-bullying checklist.