Minister Connor attends Oranje School Anti-bullying session

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PHILIPSBURG – Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunications (Ministry TEATT) Hon. Claret Connor attended an anti-bullying session at the Oranje School on behalf of Minister of Education Hon. Rita Bourne-Gumbs.

The theme for the session was: “Bullying is mean and should not be seen,” drafted by Michelle Vicioso.

During the session an original song was performed by three students, namely Chenieu Quailey, Marva Granger, Smijdin Penthiere.

The song was: “Bullying is Wrong. Bullying is Wrong.  It’s like a bad song. And if you’re a bully. Then you’re a dummy.  Keep it in mind. To always be kind.”

Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behaviour among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance.  The behaviour is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time.

In order to be considered bullying, the behaviour must be aggressive and include: an imbalance of power; kids who bully use their power – such as physical strength, access to embarrassing information, or popularity – to control or harm others.  Power imbalances can change over time and in different situations, even if they involve the same people.

Repetition: bullying behaviors happen more than once or have the potential to happen more than one.

“Government is committed to supporting students to feel safe and accepted in their schools and communities.  Everybody has a role to play in stopping bullying, however since bullying-related incidents often originate at school or impact other students, educators, counsellors and Government saw the need to have these types of sessions as a first response.  I was very impressed with the presentations by the students,” Minister of TEATT Hon. Claret Connor said on Tuesday.

There are three types of bullying, verbal bullying, social bullying, and physical bullying.  Verbal bullying is saying or writing mean things and includes teasing, name-calling, inappropriate sexual comments, taunting, and threatening to cause harm.

Social bullying, involves hurting someone’s reputation or relationships, and includes leaving someone out on purpose; telling other children not to be friends with someone; spreading rumors about someone; embarrassing someone in public.

Physical bullying involves hurting a person’s body or possessions and includes hitting/kicking/pinching, spitting, tripping/pushing, taking or breaking someone’s things, and making mean or rude hand gestures.

Also attending the Monday morning bullying session was Sonia Parotte, Principal Oranje School; Glenderlin Davis Holiday, Division Head of Public Schools; Steven Carty, Community Police Officer for Philipsburg; and Patricia Pantophlet, Secretary in the Cabinet of Minister TEATT.

PHOTO CUTLINE: Minister Hon. Claret Connor (3rd from left) standing with pupils, educators, school, law enforcement and cabinet officials. (DCOMM Photo)