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Linden Parents Worried About Bullying in School

Area school districts have taken steps to combat bullying, but some parents say it hasn't been effective.

Linden parents believe bullying is still happening regularly at Linden High School.

Several parents spoke on the issue on Wednesday's school board meeting, Mlive Media reported, claiming incidents have been reported without much action. The article stated that School Board President Scott Maker said the district is looking more into the issue.

After the suicide death of Josh Pacheco in November, Fenton Patch reported that superintendents were discussing how their schools handle bullying.

Linden Community Schools added anti-bullying hot lines students can call or text. Linden Superintendent Ed Koledo said the district would have suicide and bullying counselors come in to work with the entire district, including staff, on what they can do if they witness bullying.

“The work with bullying is never done,” he told Fenton Patch in December.

Lake Fenton has also taken steps to combat bullying. Students formed an anti-bullying group called The Starfish Initiative, which held an anti-bullying walk in December. The school also hosted anti-bullying speaker Keenan West in January.

Fenton schools participated in an anti-bullying march on Dec. 9 with Lake Fenton schools. The The Bullycide Project has also been performed several times at the school. Fenton fifth-grader Jaden Williams also started an anti-bullying club at Tomek-Eastern Elementary School.

“The big thing is to report it, so the adults can handle it and respond appropriately so the kids can feel safe in our building,” Fenton Superintendent Tim Jalkanen told Fenton Patch in December.

Dusty Craine February 21, 2013 at 03:36 PM
I don't believe this falls entirely on the school. It falls on the parent's shoulders too. My kids have been told time and time again that bullying is NOT tolerated in our home. They know that life is going to be miserable at home if we ever find out that they are bullying someone. We've encouraged them to stand up for those who seem unwilling or unable to stand for themselves. With that being said, we can't watch them 24/7. But we can be accountable. If we got a call from school that our child or children were bullying, you can bet that we'd be getting to the bottom of that situation. How difficult is it for the school to take these complaints and contact parents? I definitely do not believe that the school should play judge and jury without the parents involvement. I think the school needs to make a call and say: "We were notified that your son/daughter was engaged in bullying a student. This is hearsay and may be a misunderstanding but we'd appreciate if you'd talk to your child and see if something is going on. Please remind them of common human decency and remind them that bullying is not tolerated. If this is a misunderstanding, let's arrange for a meeting." I don't need the school parenting for me, but I do need them to be my eyes and ears when I cannot be. This is a team effort. Not us versus them. Surely others must feel the same way.
Terra February 21, 2013 at 07:16 PM
I absolutely agree, Dusty. The same type of standard is raised in our home. Not only is bullying uancceptable, standing by silently is equally bad. Unfortunately, not all parents hold their teenagers accountable, and some wouldn't believe you if you told them what was done. I agree that the type of school-parent contact you suggest would be very refreshing, with appropriate follow up and accountability held. It certainly is a team effort; it takes a village to raise a child. You're absolutely right that we need the school to be our eyes and ears when we aren't around. We entrust our most precious gifts, our children, to our schools... trusting that they will watch out for their best interest EVERY DAY... including holding kids accountable for their actions as responsible citizens, regardless of what they are being taught (or not taught) at home. In most cases, I think most of these kids who are bullying have been raised much better than to behave the way they are, and their parents are probably unaware. It's just too easy for them to get away with it. Just as I said when Josh died, we are all responsible... parents, friends, faculty, everyone.
arlene betty thatcher February 21, 2013 at 08:33 PM
The students have to want to help for it to work...
Terra February 21, 2013 at 09:28 PM
Arlene, I would like to hear more of your thoughts. To my knowledge, it is the students who are asking for help. They are the ones making the initiative for action, what more can they do at this point?
Teachyourchildrenwell February 22, 2013 at 03:04 PM
The parents I agree can help however, some bullies come from a home where bullying is taught- then what? If it is how you were raised, then somewhere something has to be done to break the cycle.

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