Bully-busting happens this week at Chemainus Secondary School.
The school’s small student population — about 320 kids — would likely out louts bent on roughing up smaller pupils, or even attacking them on social media. Still, student leaders and teachers aims to give kids tools to deal with cowardly behaviour wherever it happens, and without violence.
Wearing anti-bully pink on Compassion Day has been part of twelfth-grader Emily Adams’ life for five years. Now she’s a member of the district student advisory council organizing the week’s multi-cultural day, random acts of kindness day, Pink Day and rainbow day.
It’s all part of the push back against bullies.
“I think it’s having an effect, not because of Pink Day, but because people are more aware of what bullying does,” she said. “These activities teach kids to stand up to other people and for themselves.”
Bullying may be buried.
“It may be cyber bullying,” said Adams, 17, who believed bullying is real at CSS.
So Pink Day offers tips on bully-busting such as “what to do while it’s happening, to stop it from happening again.”
Tactics include telling kids to find other friends, or just ignoring that offending person, Adams said.
Bullies need to be aware of their consequences too.
“Beating someone up, you’d likely get suspended, but what are the consequences of cyberbullying?”
Punching a bully in the face may backfire.
“Think of what’s going to happen after you do that,” advised Adams. “You don’t want to end up regretting something you did in the past.”
Gwynne Parry, 16, is leading an assembly, with Brooke Dillabough, so students can talk about bullying cases.
Parry believes “quite a few” kids have been bullied in some form.
The idea is showing it’s not cool to be a bully, or to be bullied.
“It’s OK to talk about it, or intervene to get help. The first thing could be insulting you, or pushing you in the hallway,” said Parry. “People should get help, or talk to the person trying to bully them.
Parry said pink programs are working, as shown by what she believed are declining bullying rates.
“Programs like this bring awareness that it should be stopped.”