The History of Seth’s Law | Corona, CA

bullyingIn the current climate, it’s fitting that we take a moment to reflect on a law passed in California that protects public school children from bullying. That law? Seth’s Law. Seth’s Law is a 2012 law that strengthens existing state anti-bullying laws to protect all students. This law requires CA public schools to update their anti-bullying policies and programs, focusing on protecting students who are bullied based on their actual or perceived sexual orientation and gender identity/gender expression, as well as race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, disability, and religion.

California law says that all public school students should have equal rights and opportunities. Yet many lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning students report that they experience significant bullying in California schools. And teachers, administrators, and other staff often fail to address the bullying when they see it.

Seth’s Law is named after a 13-year-old California student who tragically took his own life in 2010 after years of anti-gay bullying that his school failed to address.

Under this law, school districts will adopt a strong anti-bullying policy that prohibits bullying and implement a specific process for receiving and investigating complaints of bullying, including a requirement that school personnel intervene if they witness bullying. Additionally, publicize anti-bullying policy and complaint process, including support materials in all schools, offices and district websites.

Seth’s Law specifically contains the following requirement: “If school personnel witness an act of discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying, he or she shall take immediate steps to intervene when safe to do so.” (Education Code Section 234.1(b)(1))]

If you would like to learn more about Seth’s Law and what you can do to prevent bullying, contact Simple Acts of Care and Kindness at 866-459-7225 or visit www.simpleacts.org for additional information.

Understanding & Overcoming Bullying | SACK of Corona, Ca

ThinkstockPhotos-480003524Individuals bully for a number of reasons, understanding why they bully can help you overcome bullying or help others who may be being bullied move past it as well. The truth is bullies are basically lashing out as a form of concealing their own troubles or shortcomings.

Reasons why a bully is bullying:

-To look or appear powerful

-Because they themselves are being bullied

-To make themselves popular

-They are jealous of you

-To escape their own problems

Tip #1: Understand the truth about bullying

  • Walk away from the bully. Bullies want to know they have control over your emotions so don’t react with anger or retaliate with physical force. If you walk away, ignore them, or calmly and assertively tell them you’re not interested in what they have to say, you’re demonstrating that they don’t have control over you.
  • Protect yourself. If you can’t walk away and are being physically hurt, protect yourself so you can get away. Your safety is the first priority.
  • Report the bullying to a trusted adult. If you don’t report threats and assaults, a bully will often become more and more aggressive. In many cases adults can find ways to help with the problem without letting the bully know it was you who reported them.
  • Repeat as necessary. Like the bully, you may have to be relentless. Report each and every bullying incident until it stops. There is no reason for you to ever put up with bullying.

Tip #2: Reframe the problem of bullying

By changing your attitude towards bullying you can help regain a sense of control.

  • Try to view bullying from a different perspective. The bully is an unhappy, frustrated person who wants to have control over your feelings so that you feel as badly as they do. Don’t give them the satisfaction.
  • Look at the big picture. Bullying can be extremely painful, but try asking yourself how important it will seem to you in the long run. Will it matter in a year? Is it worth getting so upset over? If the answer is no, focus your time and energy elsewhere.
  • Focus on the positive. Reflect on all the things you appreciate in your life, including your own positive qualities and gifts. Make a list and refer to it whenever you feel down.
  • Find the humor. If you’re relaxed enough to recognize the absurdity of a bullying situation, and to comment on it with humor, you’ll likely no longer be an interesting target for a bully.
  • Don’t try to control the uncontrollable. Many things in life are beyond our control—including the behavior of other people. Rather than stressing, focus on the things you can control such as the way you choose to react to bullies.

Tip #3: Find support from those who don’t bully

Having trusted people you can turn to for encouragement and support will boost your resilience when being bullied. Reach out to connect with family and real friends (those who don’t participate in bullying) or explore ways of making new friends. There are plenty of people who will love and appreciate you for who you are.

  • Find others who share your same values and interests. You may be able to make friends at a youth group, book club, or religious organization. Learn a new sport, join a team, or take up a new hobby such as chess, art, or music.
  • Share your feelings. Talk to a parent, counselor, coach, religious leader, or trusted friend. Expressing what you’re going through can make a huge difference to the way you feel, even if it doesn’t change the situation.
  • Boost your confidence. Exercise is a great way to help you feel good about yourself, as well as reduce stress. Punch a mattress or take a kick boxing class to work off your anger.
  • Don’t beat yourself up. Don’t make a bullying incident worse by dwelling on it or replaying it over and over in your head. Instead, focus on positive experiences you’ve had(Source: help guide.org).

It’s important to keep in mind that it’s probably the bully thats actually suffering and not to dwell on it or think you’re less than. Recovering from bullying can take time, and everyone heals at his or her own pace. However, if you do find yourself dwelling on the incident(s), it’s important for you to seek help from a parent, school counselors, a teacher or a professional therapist.

How to Recharge on Your Winter Break! | SACK of Corona, Ca

Head And Shoulders Portrait Of Chinese GirlWhen winter break finally arrives, you have definitely earned some rest! However, the school year isn’t over – so relaxation and a plan of action to tackle the remainder of the school year are heat things to do during your winter break. Recharging while structuring the remainder of your school year is a great way to hit the ground running in 2016 and upon arrival back at school.

Here are 7 ways you can take some time to recharge over the holiday so you hit can hit the ground running in 2016:

1. Turn off your alarm clock: Is there anything better than switching off the alarm and sleeping in? Nope!

2. Binge-watch something!: It doesn’t matter which show you choose. The sheer joy of being able to do something unproductive for a few hours is what makes this a great relax-and-recharge tool.

3. Read: Grab that book that everyone’s been talking about, curl up and check out.

4. Get Outside: There’s nothing like fresh air to reinvigorate the senses. Talk a jog or a walk, regular exercise will keep you energized and your immune health up.

5. Take Naps: Take every opportunity to catch up on your rest during vacation.

6. Defining Goals: Take some time over the holiday break to write down on paper as many of your goals you hope to accomplish in the new upcoming year.

7. Create an Action Plan: Once you’ve defined your 2016 goals, set in to motion how you’re going to accomplish them.

Finding that balance is the key to a winter break that is not only restorative for you, but provides long-lasting benefits into the remainder of the school year and beyond!

Back to School Tips | SACK of Corona, Ca

Close-up of a smiling little girl

It’s that time of year again, do you hear the school bells ringing? It can be hard to adjust from summer and begin to focus on school again.

Heading back to school comes with a lot of emotions. Excitement, anxiety just to name a few! Some of us cope with returning to school differently than others. Some are hopeful, some are fearful, some are completely unprepared for the new school year to even start!

Below are some tips to help you or your child get back in to the swing of things:

Meet the new teacher(s).
For kids, one of the biggest back-to-school fears is “Will I like my new teacher?” Breaking the ice early on is one of the best ways to calm everyone’s fears. Take advantage of your school’s open house or back-to-school night. Some teachers welcome phone calls or e-mails — another great opportunity to get to know each other before the year begins.

If personal contact with the teacher isn’t possible, try locating the teacher’s picture on a school website or in a yearbook, so your child can put a name with a face. If your child’s teacher sends a welcome letter, be sure to read the letter together.

Tour the school.
If your school hosts an open house, be sure to go. Familiarizing your child with her environment will help her avoid a nervous stomach on the first day. Together you can meet her teacher, find her desk, or explore the playground.

With an older child, you might ask him to give you a tour of the school. This will help refresh his memory and yours.

Connect with friends.
A familiar friend can make all the difference when heading back to school. You might try calling parents from last year’s class and finding out which children are in your child’s class this year. Refresh these relationships before school starts by scheduling a play date or a school carpool.

Tool up.
Obtain the class supply list and take a special shopping trip with your child. Having the right tools will help him feel prepared. While keeping basic needs in mind, allow for a couple of splurges like a cool notebook or a favorite-colored pen. These simple pleasures make going back to school a lot more fun.

School supply lists also provide great insight into the schoolwork ahead. Get your child excited about upcoming projects by explaining how new supplies might be used. Let him practice using supplies that he’s not used before — such as colored pencils or a protractor — so he will be comfortable using them in class.

Avoid last-minute drilling.
When it’s almost time to stop playing, give a five-minute warning. Giving clear messages to your child is very important.

Chat about today’s events and tomorrow’s plans.
While it is important to support learning throughout the summer, don’t spend the last weeks of summer vacation reviewing last year’s curriculum. All kids need some down time before the rigors of school begin. For some kids, last-minute drills can heighten anxiety, reminding them of what they’ve forgotten instead of what they remember.

Ease into the routine.
Switching from a summer to a school schedule can be stressful to everyone in the household. Avoid first-day-of-school mayhem by practicing your routine a few days in advance. Set the alarm clock, go through your morning rituals, and get in the car or to the bus stop on time. Routines help children feel comfortable, and establishing a solid school routine will make the first day of school go much smoother(Source: pbs.org).

Every new school year is a opportunity for a fresh start, new friends, and to make it count. You have the potential to make this year one of the best ones yet!

For more information call us at 866-459-7225 or visit our website at http://simpleacts.org

Celebrities who have Triumphed Over Bullying | SACK of Corona, Ca

Beyond name recognition and a familiar face, celebrities who speak about having been bullied are also living proof that sometimes the very thing that brought them torment when they were younger turned out to be their triumph.

Justin Timberlake once told Ellen DeGeneres,  “I grew up in Tennessee, and if you didn’t play football, you were a sissy. I got slurs all the time because I was in music and art.”  Tyra Banks has said, “People called me Olive Oyl, Lightbulb Head, and Fivehead, because my forehead was so big.” And Victoria Beckham told Elle Magazine, “They were literally picking things up out of the puddles and throwing them at me, and I just stood there, on my own. No one was with me. I didn’t have any friends. People would push me around, say they were going to beat me up after school, chase me. It was miserable, my whole schooling, miserable. I tried to be friends with people, but I didn’t fit in. So I kept to myself.” It’s hard to believe that these people were bullied. Such bright talents in the music and fashion world. It can happen to any of us. So how did these celebrities overcome their bullied pasts?

In 1999 Tyra Banks started the TZONE Foundation. The 5ft 10in star says that she is trying to help other youngsters in her position through her foundation at the Lower Eastside Girls Club in New York, which fosters female entrepreneurship. Victoria Beckham turned her bullying in to strength to succeed. Victoria has said, “If she could go back in time she says that she would tell her teenage self to have more confidence. Listen to your inner voice not to the comments that other people make.”

Justin Timberlake wants you to just, ‘Rock it! And BE DIFFERENT!’ We couldn’t agree more!

Check out what Justin Timberlake told Ellen,  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JLhvTcEWbEg (Source, youtube.com & Ellen)

Many people can resonate with a familiar face, we’ll be bringing you more stories of celebrities that have triumphed over bullying.

Stop the Bullying!

For more information visit our website at: http://simpleacts.org/

What can be done to help someone who is being bullied? | Norco, CA

Support a child who is being bullied:

  • You can listen to the child and let him or her know you are available to talk or even help. A child who is being bullied may struggle talking about it. Consider letting the child know there are other people who can talk with him or her about bullying.
  • Give the child advice about what he or she can do. You might want to include role-playing and acting out a bullying incident as you guide the child so that the child knows what to do in a real situation.
  • Follow up with the child to show that you are committed to helping put a stop to the bullying.

Address the bullying behavior:

  • Make sure a child whom you suspect or know is bullying knows what the problem behavior is and why it is not acceptable.
  • Show kids that bullying is taken seriously. If you know someone is being a bully to someone else, tell the bully that bullying will not be tolerated! It is important, however, to demonstrate good behavior when speaking with a bully so that you serve as a role model of good interpersonal behavior.

If you feel that you have taken all possible steps to prevent bullying and nothing has worked, or someone is in immediate danger, there are other ways for you to help.

The problem

What you can do

A crime has occurred or someone is at immediate risk of harm. Call 911.
Someone is feeling hopeless, helpless, or thinking of suicide. Contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline online or at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). This toll-free call goes to the nearest crisis center in a national network. These centers provide crisis counseling and mental health referrals.
Someone is acting differently, such as sad or anxious, having trouble completing tasks, or not taking care of themselves. Find a local counselor or other mental health services.
A child is being bullied in school. Contact the:

  • Teacher
  • School counselor
  • School coach
  • School principal
  • School superintendent
  • Board of Education
Child is being bullied after school on the playground or in the neighborhood
  • Neighborhood watch
  • Playground security
  • Team coach
  • Local precinct/community police
The child’s school is not addressing the bullying Contact the:

  • School superintendent
  • Local Board of Education
  • State Department of Education

 

“One’s dignity may be assaulted, vandalized and cruelly mocked, but it can never be taken away unless it is surrendered.”
― Michael J. Fox, Actor

 

 

For more information about how you can help call us at 866-459-7225 or visit our website at http://simpleacts.org

S.A.C.K. also proudly serves Corona, Riverside, Norco, San Bernardino, and surrounding areas.

There are 5 reasons kids may not ask for help when being bullied | San Bernardino, CA

Most people reading this information right now know a child who has stayed home from school this week because they were afraid of being bullied – but you may not realize it. The estimations are that an average of 160,000 students around the country stay home daily out of fear of being bullied each day. But adults, for many of reasons, have no idea that the bullying is taking place.

For those parents and adults who may be wondering why the children are not telling them that they are bullied, there are 5 universal reasons:

  1. They have been taught not to tattle and often think that they are tattling on the bully. It is vitally important that children learn the difference between tattling about unimportant things and telling someone when bullying is taking place.
  2. Children may fear retaliation especially if they tell an adult they are being bullied. While the adult may be able to address the issue with the child doing the bullying, there will probably be another time right around the corner when the adult is there to help. Children may fear that things could escalate if the issue is addressed.
  3. Some children feel that they will not be listened to and that the issue will not be believed. They think that they will tell an adult and that person will not believe them or will suggest that maybe they did something to bring the bullying on themselves.
  4. A majority of children believe that telling an adult does nothing to stop the bullying. Sadly, research tends to support this thought. Many adults don’t do anything about the bullying, or they simply brush it off.  Often kids are told to “toughen up”, or “that it is just a part of growing up”. If children learn that adults won’t help, then they are not very likely to report the incidents.
  5. When children are bullied, they often feel ashamed or embarrassed. These feelings alone can keep them from reporting issues, because they don’t want people to know that they were being bullied.

Around half children who are being bullied don’t end up telling an adult that it’s happening. The more we as parents and adults can understand about the issues and address the reasons behind them not telling, the easier it will be to help solve the bullying problem our nation’s children and schools facing.

The challenges that children face when not telling adults that they are being bullied can be dealt with and defeated. This can happen by having a bully prevention program in place in every school, as well as parents and adults talking to children about bullying and the importance of telling someone in authority when it happens. It is also vitally important that when children do tell adults about bullying that it is addressed in a positive manner so that they feel confident in their decision to report it the next time it happens.

Bullying builds character like nuclear waste creates superheroes. It’s a rare occurrence and often does much more damage than endowment.”
― Zack W. Van, Author

For more information about how you can help call us at 866-459-7225 or visit our website at http://simpleacts.org

Bullying Facts and Solutions | Riverside, CA

With as much media attention as has been given to the sometimes tragic consequences of bullying, one only has to read the comments section of online articles about bullying to really see that many adults still don’t fully comprehend the negative impact that bullying has on so many children every day.

Below you will find some facts and statistics to help adults and parents come to realize bullying is a big problem for not only their community but, likewise, across the entire country.

Bullying Facts and Statistics

  • Because of bullying, 160,000 kids in the US stay home from school every day.
  • 83% of bullying incidents receive no intervention and continue to happen.
  • Bullies are four times more likely to engage in criminal behavior as an adult and often develop suicidal thoughts.
  • Male bullying more often consists of verbal and physical abuse, whereas female bullyies more commonly use more verbal abuse and social bullying by spreading of rumors.
  • Only half of educators have received training on how to handle bullying situations. That is like going to a dentist to get treated for the flu!
  • In a 2007 report it showed that nearly 80% of students who experienced bullying stated that it occurred inside the school grounds.
  • Verbal assaults amongst children more often target appearances and behaviors rather than race or religious affiliations. Often in those instances, the bullies felt that the victim was at fault for these behaviors or appearances.
  • 33.1% of middle and high school students surveyed agree or strongly agrees that teachers can stop bullying.  And 2/3 of these students are not confident that they can get help from their teachers.
  • A study conducted in 2005 showed that approximately one out of ten Internet users aged 10-17 had been the victim of cyber bullying and “on-line harassment”.  Half of victims who were bullied off-line and on-line by the same people reported being very distressed by the incidents.

“If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse, and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality.”
― Desmond Tutu

 

For more information about how you can help call us at 866-459-7225 or visit our website at http://simpleacts.org

The Evolution of a Bully | Corona, CA

Bullying is about the abuse of power. Children who bully abuse their power to hurt others, deliberately and repeatedly. They are often hot-tempered, inflexible, overly confident, and don’t like to follow rules. Often they lack empathy and many also like inflicting pain on others. They often seek out to dominate and control others.  They perceive hostile intent where there isn’t one.  Overreact aggressively to ambiguous situations, and hold beliefs that support violence.

In the preschool years, bullies often use direct verbal bullying and physical power to control material objects or territory. They may not have the skills necessary to interact in socially appropriate ways.

In the elementary school years, bullies are more inclined to use threats and physical force.  It is also combined with direct verbal bullying, to make victims do things that they do not want to do. During this time period, some children may begin to use indirect bullying to exclude peers from their social circle and activities.

In the middle and high school years, bullies rely on direct verbal bullying such as name-calling and making threatening remarks.  Quite often this includes physical bullying such as pushing and hitting. Both boys and girls engage in physical bullying.  But unlike boys, girls are more likely to participate in indirect, relational bullying,  that often includes rumor-spreading and social exclusion. Use of the Internet or cell phones to send these hurtful messages takes a lead role. Boys during this time tend to rely on bullying to enhance their physical dominance, girls tend to use it to enhance their social status.

Children also bully in groups. Children may join in because they look up to the bully and want to impress him or her.  Often though it is because they are afraid and do not want to be attacked themselves.

The Effects on The Bully

Besides hurting others, bullies hurt themselves. Each time a bully hurts another child, they become more and more removed emotionally from the suffering and pain of their victims. They begin to justify their actions to themselves by believing their victims deserve to be bullied. They start to believe that the way to get what they want from others is through force. Bullies fail to develop the social skills necessary for sharing, reciprocating, empathizing, and negotiating.  These items form the basis for lasting friendships.

As they mature into adulthood, children who have bullied others often show higher rates of:

  • Aggression
  • Antisocial behavior
  • Carrying weapons to school
  • Dropping out of high school
  • Convictions for crime
  • Difficulty controlling their emotions
  • Traffic violations
  • Convictions for drunk driving
  • Depression
  • Suicides

Some Adults who have been bullied as children may be more likely to allow their own children to bully others, thus raising a new generation of bullies.

If Bullies can change these patterns of behavior before they become habitual and entrenched, will be less likely to suffer with these devastating and long-term effects . when When Bullying prevention strategies are applied early to children who are young or have just begun to bully others it is most effective —the earlier the better. It’s never too late to change a bully’s patterns of behavior.  These habitual patterns are usually much more difficult to change in later years.

Starting in the preschool years, adults can teach children many social skills that are important to bully prevention and help guide children as they practice using these skills. The Social skills that form an important foundation for bullying prevention include:

  • Solving social problems
  • Sharing voluntarily
  • Interacting assertively
  • Showing empathy toward other

For more information about how you can help call us at 866-459-7225 or visit our website at http://simpleacts.org

Bullying by the Numbers | Corona, CA

School bullying statistics in the United States show that about one in four kids in the U.S. are bullied on a regular basis. Between cyber bullying and bullying at school, the school bullying statistics illustrate a huge problem with bullying and the American school system. 

Here are some other statistics to think about:

  1. 56% of students have personally felt some sort of bullying at school. Between 4th and 8th grade in particular, 90% of students are victims of bullying.
  2. The most common reason cited for being harassed is a student’s appearance or body size. 2 out of 5 teens feel that they are bullied because of the way that they look.
  3. 1 in 4 teachers see nothing wrong with bullying and will only intervene 4% percent of the time.
  4. A victim of bullying is twice as likely to take his or her own life compared to someone who is not a victim.
  5. One out of 10 students drop out of school because they are bullied.
  6. Physical bullying peak in middle school and declines in high school. Verbal abuse rates remain constant from elementary to high school.
  7. Researchers feel that bullying should not be treated as part of growing up (with the attitude “kids will be kids”).
  8. 57% of students who experience harassment in school never report the incident to the school. 10% of those who do not report stay quiet because they do not believe that teachers or staff can do anything. As a result, more than a quarter of students feel that school is an unsafe place to be.
  9. Schools with easily understood rules of conduct, smaller class sizes and fair discipline practices report less violence than those without such features.

 These numbers are too high!  Parents, teachers, and those in daily contact with children on school campus’ need to do something to stop it. Children also need to stand together and put an end to bullying. When children see their peers being bullied, the incident needs to be reported or get help. If children band together to address these issues, there will be strength in numbers. By standing together to prevent bullying in every school, the number of bullying incidents can drop along with those incidents of children hurting themselves, and others, because of they fear for their life while attending school.

For more information about how you can help call us at 866-459-7225 or visit our website at http://simpleacts.org

Sources:  NASP   Make Beats, Not Beat Downs