School staff learn about how to recognize bullying

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LAUDERDALE COUNTY, Miss. (WTOK) - Bullying is a common theme in schools throughout the country and our local schools are of course not free from the issue. Teachers and administrators with the Lauderdale County School District learned about the topic at Tuesday’s Professional Development Day.

“[Bullying] falls under that whole umbrella of school safety,” says Dr. John-Mark Cain, the superintendent for Lauderdale County Schools. “We just want to make sure that all people- our administrators, our teachers are fully of aware of what that looks like and the avenues that we need to take to ensure that our students have access to resources, and personnel, and people, and supports.”

Jim Keith, the attorney for the Mississippi School Boards Association, served as a guest speaker. He talked about laws regarding bullying and ways staff can recognize it.

“The main takeaway for teachers is to simply be ever vigilant for those kids who come to school in a state of distress so that they can get those children referred to proper help for counseling to the administration so we can deal with it,” Keith says.

Solving the issue of bullying can go a long way in helping everyone involved in those situations.

“If we do feel that a child is being bullied, we want to get that child some help,” Keith says. “But ironically, we also want to get the bully some help too because we don’t think that children should be bullies and obviously we will get them the help that they need as well.”

Just like in any school, bullying issues come up from time to time throughout Lauderdale County schools.

“We handle it on a case by case basis and you know, one’s too many and so, but we always try to do everything that we can if we’re aware of it to take care of it and provide the best support possible.”

Statistics show that 28% of students in the United States in grades 6-12 were victims of bullying. Around 30% of people say they have bullied someone before. Bullying is most common in middle school.