Today's Northwest Herald (Sunday, November 1; page 1D) carries an excellent article by Jami Kunzer about bullying in schools. What school district is involved? Woodstock District 200!
I heard Kelly Kucharski speak at the recent MCC event put together by Principled Minds, a new not-for-profit organization established by Harold Rail of Afterglow Creative Services, here in Woodstock.
It's too bad that you'll have to buy today's Northwest Herald to read this article. Apparently, it's not online, where it could be read and forwarded widely within District 200. A search on www.nwherald.com for "Kucharski" or "bullies" or "principled" does not find the article. I was told last week that NWH is having trouble with its search engine. It shouldn't be that hard to fix!
I have known of bullying in Woodstock District 200 schools since about 1998 and have fought many battles with them. Putting an end to bullying in District 200 is like trying to win the war in Afghanistan. Just when you think you winning, another "explosion" occurs and you find out you are losing.
And I can tell you from first-hand experience that it is not just the students who bully other students.
An Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) technical consultant was called in late one school year. Although she visited a student's classrooms on only one day and for only four hours, she reported that she had observed a teacher and staff "interacting inappropriately with the student, causing an escalation in undesirable behavior." Oh, you mean "bullying"...
When your kid comes home and reports problems at school, believe your kid first. When the school folks tell you that could never happen in their school, do not automatically believe them and distrust your own kid.
Parents must get involved and stay involved. We must stop all bullying in our schools!