Local News

Parents Urged To Talk To Children About Bullying At School

Posted March 17, 2003

— Most teachers try to relay good behavior, manners and respect for one another to students, but many feel those students who do not learn those lessons are considered bullies.

"The main problem is that it is kind of a thing done when teachers' backs are turned," guidance counselor Kim Sigmond said.

If unresolved, experts say bullying can blow up into more serious incidents. Earlier in March, Johnston County charged a man with trespassing on a school bus headed for Cleveland Elementary School. He was reportedly angry about a boy who threatened to throw his son's glasses out the bus window.

According to the incident report, Frederick Hall boarded the bus with his son, ignoring requests from the bus driver to leave. Hall demanded the student stand up who threatened his son the previous day. He left the bus a few minutes later.

Guidance counselors said they prefer to deal with bullying problems within the school.

"The kids have to be heroes. They have to help the grownups in the school know about things that are happening," Sigmond said.

Denece Mundy said her son, Matthew, has not faced the problem with bullying, but she said she is glad his school is dealing with the issue.

"If parents talk about it and the school talks about it, maybe the children will talk about it," she said.

Miss America Erika Harold said she was the target of racial and sexual bullying in school. As a result, she made the issue a personal cause. WRAL could not reach Hall, who was ordered to stay away from the school bus and its pick-up route.

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