Across the country it seems people are finally becoming aware that bullying is a very serious problem in our schools. The latest, chilling incident was caught on video last week and has gone viral on YouTube with over 1.3 million page views. In addition, the story has been covered by every major news network.
During the video, several students in North Greece, NY are heard mercilessly insulting and berating 68-year-old school bus monitor Karen Klein. Klein does her best to ignore and not engage the boys, but the insults last for more than 10 minutes, and she is eventually forced to tears.
Whether you’re a parent, student or just anyone with a heart, it’s painful to watch, and raises a lot of questions: How can children be so cruel? Where is this behavior being learned? Where is even a modicum of respect for adults?
The school district has launched an investigation, and in the wake of the incident Klein has received some good will from concerned citizens around the world. According to the L.A. Times, over $278,000 has already been raised to help Klein enjoy an “extended vacation.” The sheer amount of the donations is a good indication of how fed up people are with this kind of behavior.
While the donations are a fine gesture, it’s also clear more needs to be done. Here at CHARACTER COUNTS! we offer one-day workshops on how to successfully intervene when bullying occurs. We also have excellent resources available online here, which can help reduce incidents of youth violence and create a culture of caring at your school.