Preventing Bullying – Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention Summit – a Perspective

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 Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention 2012 Summit

I attended the Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention 2012 Summit sponsored by the White House.It was an incredible set of resources, plenaries and panels.. There is a lot of new information on the site including the definition of bullying and cyberbullying.There are resources to help people who are being bullied. If you need help, go to the website and you will see lots of resources to help you decide what to do.

RESOURCES

Here is the federal website with all kind of resources,.You will really like the way they want to involve students in using the media to tell their stories in a contest..Students were at the conference and they contributed a lot by their presence and involvement.Summit Duncan students

Student leaders from Quantico high school, 4H, Baltimore Intersection and DC Mayors Youth Advisory Council played a big role at the Bullying Prevention Summit. A subset of these students spoke with Secretary Arne Duncan and Assistant Secretary Deb Delisle about their student led bullying prevention efforts. I was replacing a Teen Angel. That’s a group of students who work with Wired Safety. There was a weather delay in New York and she was not able to get to participate.

The ultimate message of this Summit is to  be more than a bystander. The Summit was the unveiling of the new web site, project page for the video contest and kids page as well. Watch the short webisodes from the site  and discuss them with our young people..There was also a webinar for further  participation. Part of the conference was streamed to allow virtual participation.

The webinar is over. Here is a summary of the event.Today’s youth use technology more than ever before. While technology can be a great tool to communicate and learn, it can also be used in harmful ways, and allow some kids to take bullying from school hallways into cyberspace. This form of bullying, cyberbullying, happens when kids bully each other through electronic technology, including sending mean text messages, posting embarrassing photos on social networking sites, or creating fake profiles of another individual. Hosted by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) within the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) through the Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention, this webinar detailed current trends in cyberbullying, particularly on how schools, parents, and communities can all work to help prevent this growing problem, including how to create a supportive environment and how to speak to kids about the impact of cyberbullying. Much of the information is on the website.

Research Video

http://www.stopbullying.gov/videos/2012/08/misdirections.html

You will need the latest version of Adobe Flash Player exitdisclaimer to watch the video.

This six-minute video features Dr. Catherine Bradshaw, a national expert in bullying prevention. She discusses approaches to avoid in bullying prevention and response.

 A lesson we learned at the Bullying Prevention Summit. Don’t be a bystander.

Telling Our Stories

The Washington Post used the story of Deborah Temkin the organizer of the summit to share the importance of the event. Deborah , led the Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention 2012 Summit . Her story is a compelling one that was told in the Washington Post in an article.

What is Your Story?

We all have stories about Bullying

Mine is that I was the daughter of a teacher in a community that did not value education and so I ran home a lot to escape being taunted. I ran like the wind. They would laugh as I tore down the street trying to escape being hit as in a gaunlet. It was a tough neighborhood that my dad taught in and he thought we should attend the school as a part of showing his commitment to the community in Alexandria, Virginia but I could not always out run trouble. Most of the time, I did a good job, but . finally, I gave up I turned and fought. After that. I rode to school with my dad in the car most of the time, that worked for me. I did not know what else to do. I wimped out.

Your Story?

You may have a story that is compelling about bullying. The thing is there are groups who want to make Bullying go away, and that includes Cyberbullying .groups, foundations and state departments of education , as well as law enforcement.. I am interested in digital citizenship because a lot of people even in education stay away from the Internet because of fear. That includes schools and communities who should be online.fir transforming new educational practices.

Another Story

When I went to the bank, I was carrying the program from the Summit. A banker took me aside and asked if he could tell a story. I said, sure… he said that his eleven year old boy, saw a boy that he knew with a huge black eye.  But he did not know what to say. Finally the boy said to him” I guess you are wondering about my black eye. The other child said , well yes, but I thought it would be impolite to ask. The other child saidn,”My dad did this to me. ” The eleven year old said to the other kid,:”That kind of thing should not happen and so he convinced the child to go to the nurse or to office to report the incident..  Over the next few days, the helping child did not see the child again and was worried. What if the father did even more to hurt the child? Did he do the right thing? . He was very worried because the child who was hurt, did not attend school for several days . Finally. after several  days the child showed up with new clothes, and shoes and looking happy.. So the boy politely asked, ” What happened?” The child told him that  had been removed from the home because of the incident, and injury that the father had done to the child. It was not the first time the child had been bullied.. He was placed in a foster home and was  now sleeping well and feeling much safer.The child who had asked the question and guided him to the office breathed a sigh of relief.. Don’t be a bystander.

      What is Bullying?

Bullying Definition ( Click the Link)

When I first wrote about the conference some people told me that bullying can be controlled by aggression toward the person bullying. That never worked for me. I don’t remember anyone discussing it in pre or post service education in all of the years in which I took professional development. So I am sharing from the site so you will have some idea of the ideational scaffolding, or the way in which the information has been sorted to help us learn more about the subject.

I am a member of SITE.org.we are the Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education, and it is our mission to promote research, scholarship, collaboration, exchange and support. and participating with others  in a Facebook Grant for Digital Citizenship.

The Born This Way Foundation, and Wired Safety to name a few of the groups that are also seeking to make a difference in this area or contributing to the public knowledge.The BTW foundation launched in February.

. Kids need to know ways to safely stand up to bullying and how to get help.

Cyberbullying was also addressed  

Professional development modules are available in several formats from the Department of Justice.

Many groups that represent foundations, grants, organizations that work to stop Bullying and CyberBullying were in the audience and participated in the exchange of ideas. There were groups like the Boys and Girls Club, The National Guard, The 4 H and lots of small community organizations.

A Special Collaboration

An early  push to stop Bullying was at Harvard.  Lady Gaga and her mother,Cynthia Germanotta had put to gather with the educators from Harvard , the Mc Arthur Foundation a symposium on the topic,  and we did seminars and groups and sections of thought as well.There was a separate symposium which involved youth.

“…feeling that you care about what happens to another individual and not just yourself, that to me, is the biggest thing we can all do,”

Those are the words Born This Way Foundation’s president and co-founder Cynthia Germanotta spoke during the third annual Bullying Prevention Summit in Washington D.C.

Cynthia Germannotta shared the stage with Valerie Jarrett, special assistant to the President, and Dr. Bob Ross, president and CEO of the California Endowment.

The Washington Examiner reported on her thoughts for building a kinder and braver world. You can also read Valerie Jarrett’s thoughts on the summit: Empowering Young People to Build a Kinder, Braver World.

A New Acronym for Many

Something new for many  educators, parents and community was the frank discussion of LBGT, and a panel or two that helped us to learn, become familiar with and understand these youth. These youth told their stories to the assembled group and fielded questions.

Lady Gaga interacted with the youth for the most part at Harvard. Not being a student, all I know is that she had success in her outreach to them and to Oprah.

The symposium at Harvard also created new ways of helping us think about these youth. The lyrics from Lady Gaga’s song, Born this Way…tell the story .

LBGT , are you familiar with this acronym. Wikipedia defines it this way? No Pun intended.

Many teachers have not had access to the information that is a part of this summit.

Lady Gaga’s mother is a magnet for kids. Lot of them want to be hugged by her. She has  a kind of magic with the students..You can reach her at the Born This Way Foundation.

You can reach me at the Wired Safety website, I do education policy for the group and work with TeenAngels. I am lucky to have people like Cynthia Germanotta and Parry Aftab as guides to this important work.

To follow up with the work of the Summit , go here. Free professional development tools.

Across the country, local leaders are stepping up to address bullying in their communities. Now that more and more people are taking a stand, many have asked for resources to help them become more effective. In response, StopBullying.gov pulled together research-based recommendations to provide some guidance. We know that every child, family, school and community is unique. So the real question is, “How can we connect the dots to find out what works for youth in my town?”

The Health Resources and Services Administration, an agency that is part of the US Department of Health and Human Services, has developed the Bullying Prevention Training Module and Community Action Toolkit.

When you go to this web address sign up for updates.

Bonnie Bracey Sutton

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