Clark County School District has once again made great strides in making me laugh.
The District declared a Week of Respect beginning in October 2016, as an anti-bullying measure. I’m sure it’ll work. No doubt in my mind.
(This anti-bullying week will take place during the school year, presumably while classes are in session. Maybe it includes a weekend.)
I guess this means that kids will be expected to respect each other for seven days. Don’t worry, kids. It’ll fly by, and you can go back to being your old selves before you know it.
Kids will now be able to go a whole week out of nine months when they can expect respect from other students. According to the latest report from a kid who attends a middle school in the Clark County School District– Summerlin schools–which are part of Clark County–allow bullying on a widespread basis. I know my use of the word ‘allow’ is a little off center. I’m sure Clark County School District would disagree with it.
The school district’s efforts to defeat bullying includes having assemblies about it. They put up signs that say No Bullying Zone; they have Bullying Awareness Days and Bullying As An Extracurricular Activity, on the curriculum.
These efforts seem to be having the same effect on bullying as the Just Say No program had on not taking drugs. Which was none. No one has said ‘No’ yet to drugs, although social scientists have been eagerly awaiting a sighting of a cartoon bubble with the word No in the middle of it, just like in comics.
From what I understand from the news article, the school district subscribes to the Cool Hand Luke approach to bullying.
Today’s article in the View (an itsy bitsy paper that comes to us every Thursday), states that school administrators tell kids to use ‘non-verbal cues’ with bullies, and to not be afraid of confrontation.
Really? I wonder how that’s going for the child who’s still afraid of a physical or verbal confrontation despite clear instructions to NOT be afraid of it?
When faced with ten boys in the hallway, who are determined to reduce another student to molecules as an experiment for a science project, the potential victim should also say, “Knock it off.” (That’s a verbal cue, by the way, for the cue-challenged.)
I think saying “What we have here is a fail-yah to com-myun-icate” (this is the way they talked in the movie, Cool Hand Luke, which took place in the South), in order to stop the bullying is a fine approach, if your non-verbal cues don’t work. The administrators didn’t share with us what these non-verbal cues should be, so a failure to communicate is already a given.
Would these cues be the thumb-slice-across-the-neck, a la the Mob, or maybe the second finger held high? Or a glare from squinted eyes, accompanied by a Nostril Flare? Crazy Eyes, maybe?
My favorite ‘non-verbal cue’ would be peeing my pants in order to gross them out, but I don’t have to do that now. I’m bigger than most middle school kids, so I’d just smack ’em upside the head.
Clearly, my experience with the ‘non-verbal cues’ of a middle school student are lacking. I can’t figure out what those cues should be.
I can verify that saying “Knock it off!” to some asshat kid is about as effective as saying, “I’m telling!” I can vouch for that as a former substitute teacher. Kids rarely ‘knocked it off’ when I told them to, and when I said I was gonna ‘tell on them,’ it didn’t work until the hall monitors showed up at my classroom door.
That’s when I got to see some ‘fun’ bullying.