Saturday, May 23, 2009

Is being bullied a good thing?

Last month I asked Why do the adults put up with government schools? Ting-Yi Oei, an assistant principal was directed to investigate if students were using their cell phones to exchange sexy pictures. He found one instance, and was told to save the picture on his computer. Then a public prosecutor filed charges of child pornography. After spending $150,000 of his own money defending himself the judge threw the case out of court.

I wondered why adults put up with the abuse in public schools. It seems like too many teachers, and others involved with government schools, get way too many hassles.

A day after the post a reader sent me a link to an article on how Being Bullied Can Make Kids Stronger. I finally responded today. I've been working through old email, trying to get my inbasket back under control.

The article tries to look for a silver lining in the ugly cloud of school bullying. The writer speculates that little children in elementary schools who suffer from abuse will end up being stronger.

After reading the article the thought hit me, hard, if a parent some inflicted the kind of abuse these bullies inflict, Child Protective Services would yank the children away from the parents. So why is it that society seems to allow, and even justify, this ugly bully situation?

Clearly part of it is many parents feel obligated to send their children to government schools, and they are not able to protect their children. What is even worse, often schools won't protect the children. Our society has become "sue" happy. Many teachers won't discipline a bully because the bully's parents might sue the school and the teacher.

I remember few bullies at any of my schools. Kids did get in fights now and then, but there was no pattern of wide spread abuse.

There may be a few students who will suffer through the abuse of a bully and end up being stronger for it. But I expect most children are not better off for having been teased, taunted, or tortured. A long history of being made to feel scared or worthless does little to make children strong.

I am so glad Janine and I homeschool. Our daughters have had few interactions with bullies. We're able to intervene and protect them. This is our job as parents.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, government schools, public school, public education, education


Marbel said...

I think people who say being bullied can make kids stronger are just justifying their own behavior and beliefs. Everyone needs to learn how to deal with difficult people, but not as children.

Kat said...

I agree. Bullying is not helpful in any way, shape or form. I homeschool 2 children and I do not believe for a minute bullying would make them stronger.
Bullying has a long lasting effect on children and is in no way a positive thing.

Happy Campers said...

Well said, and I couldn't agree more!

C T said...

There's a study report posted at Medical News Today entitled "Children Who Suffered Bullying Are More Likely To Develop Psychotic Symptoms In Early Adolescence". So bullying doesn't make children stronger; it makes them psychotic! (The link is