Across Canada, schools and school boards are planning activities and events around this year’s theme for National Anti-Bullying Week, Novemeber 13 – 19, 2011. The theme is “Stand Up! (to Bullying)”. This is directed at the bystander and helping them to fully understand and appreciate the significance of the role they play in bullying and victimization. I am pleased to see this issue being addressed as not only do our students need to better understand how to stand up to someone and for someone, but the person they tell must also know how to respond appropriately. We need to educate everyone that coming forward in defense of themselves or someone else is essential to breaking the cycle of bullying. We also need to ensure that when they do have the courage to come forward, there is follow through and a meaningful outcome. The stigma of “tattle tale” still exists and there needs to be education about removing this idea. Once the behaviors are identified then they can be addressed and the causes can be identified and dealt with.
For more information about this visit the Manitoba School Board Association website at www.mbschoolboards.ca