The challenge of working a bullying case.
As we set out to launch a bullying prevention agency in 2006, it became clear- very early on-that dealing with bullying issues is quite the task. Dr. Daniel Olweus, a pioneer in bullying research and its effects, was right in concluding that it takes effort by the students, school, family and community to eradicate bullying (Olweus, 1940).
There are so many possible variables that impact bullying, including but not limited to, family and school dynamics that may comprise the details of a "bullying case". For example, there is the fallout of an old relationship where students values, developmental needs and lifestyles may change; the newly arrived student facing the formidable task of a new culture; or the school climate void of anti-bullying tools.
It does not end there. Other variables can become catalysts that create a bully-victim situation. Students feeling as though they are being left behind by the academic system and it's many demands, the student who was identified by a bully and became the victim. Let's also consider the students caught in family storms, such as divorce, abuse, or other traumatic experiences. The possibilities are sometimes endless.
In light of the many issues potentially brimming under the surface, where does an agency like Blueskies begin? A careful gauging of the situation is mandatory. Sometimes our team feels like CSI Miami. That's is correct!
Dissecting one case at a time, one school at a time, and one event at a time. Sorting out the variables, putting immediate interventions in the school, home or community, and laying out a short, and long term plan to plan that provides the student with reprieve and intervention needed, finally filing with the necessary empowerment and education, and the schools with needed professional support and collaboration to restore harmony and academic health. All in a day's work!
Be looking for more of Blueskies "All in a Day's Work" detailing the bullying prevention process.