Local Connection: Anti-Bullying - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Local Connection: Anti-Bullying

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By: Rick Blangiardi

The Department of Education should be applauded for beefing up its anti-bullying efforts at all public schools.

But judging from the latest statistics, much more work needs to be done. More than 2,500 incidents of bullying, cyber bullying and harassment were reported last year.

While that number dropped from the year before, when the grand total was more than 3,000, the numbers should be much lower.

On Dec. 6, classes were cancelled for the whole day at a high school on Hawaii island when bullying escalated into dozens of fights on campus between Marshallese and Micronesian students.

We are painfully aware that bullying, whether in person or online, is a serious, serious problem in our nation. Much of it never gets reported so the doe's statistics are probably lower than the reality of the situation.

In fact, a recent survey of high school students in Hawaii showed that 20 percent reported being bullied on school property. That would make the numbers even higher.

We cannot have schools take all the responsibility. Parents should teach their kids at home that bullying is not to be tolerated. aunties, uncles, cousins, community leaders, coaches, let's all be the role models we want our young people to emulate and let's end this terrible harassment of kids in school.

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