Are You Responsible?

“Are You Responsible?”
Excerpt from Out of the Fowler’s Snare
Chapter 35 p. 188-189

One problem with bullying is that victims are not always in your classroom or in your personal care. It doesn’t take long for most bullies to figure out that this is not something appropriate to do in front of grownups. The teachers and staff at school can try to prevent bullying, but bullies usually find ways to circumvent protective and compassionate adults. What happens on the school bus, or walking home, or on the far end of the playground, usually isn’t found out by attentive and caring bus drivers, teachers, or parents. Bullies know this! I have overheard absolutely shocking words through my open classroom window when unaware students are on the playground. If there is no adult visually present or within likely earshot, students will say the cruelest and most vile things.

Unfortunately, not all school staff have the determined motivation to keep bullying from happening at school. While they may agree that it is wrong, it takes a lot of effort, time, and wisdom to follow through with a bully. Some professional and paraprofessional support staff just plain don’t want to get involved with bullies. Besides the time and effort that it takes away from other things, they say that kids need to work it out between themselves or that victims need to learn to deal with it in one way or another. They may justify that there will always be bullies, so each person needs to learn how to deal with the bullies that they meet.