October Anti-Bullying Campaign

October Anti-Bullying Campaign
Posted on 11/14/2019
“Your Reflection Shows Who You Are.”

Staff and students from Branciforte Middle School participated in various activities engaging students in a school wide anti bullying campaign during the month of October.  We kicked off the campaign by informing our students and staff about the statistics across our nation and about how bullying affects individuals.  According to the National Center for Education Statistics and the Bureau of Justice, nationwide, about one in five students ages 12-18 experienced bullying.  Staff and students hosted a table where hundreds of students and staff signed our anti-bullying pledge at break and lunchtime. Staff, students from the Gay Straight Alliance, and students from our 6th grade Art elective class aired public service type messages and videos through our weekly BTV show throughout the month.  Through these messages students were taught to become aware of how they can become an upstander versus a bystander, and how they can recognize, respond and report bullying behaviors if they witness it. We continued to educate and empower our students as to how they can help end bullying while keeping them safe throughout the month. It can be scary and intimidating to report bullying, which is why we have created anonymous ways for students to report this type or behavior, or any type of situations that may feel unsafe, by having locked boxes that students can drop notes in with details but not having to give their names or by calling the WeTip anonymous tip line at 1 800 78-crime. 

Another aspect of the campaign was three public art installations designed and displayed by Ms. Erin Brandon’s art classes.  These art installations were designed to visually represent the themes of anti-bullying. To begin this process, the Art class read articles about bullying statistics in the nation.  With these statistics, they created art pieces for other B40 students to interact with. The first installation was hung along the fence next to the track. It included fifteen B40 PE shirts.  Seven were painted green to show the ratio that more than 45% of students do not feel bullies receive enough punishment for their actions. Another installment depicted the ratio that 1 in 5 students are bullied everyday in the U.S.  To create this visual, students took five pairs of shoes and painted one blue. A poster next to the installation asked students to stop and think about that one kid in a group of five. The poster asked: “How can you be an upstander at B40 and help all kids feel included?”  The final installation compelled students to look at their own reflection. Art students took hundreds of CDs and strung them along the fence in front of the school. With a poster entitled, “Your Reflection Shows Who You Are”, passersby were asked to contemplate their individual actions to stop bullying.  All of these installations were designed to help B40 students be their best selves every day. It was a very creative month for our 6th grade artists!

Even though October has come to an end, that does not mean that our anti-bullying campaign ends here. We will continue to revisit what we can do as a school and a community to make everyone feel safe and comfortable.   Thank you to Counselor Shelli Stepps, PE teacher Kyle Noone, and Art teacher Erin Brandon for this wonderful campaign! *Pictured: Zoe Robinson, Marina Tucker, Ginger Maxfield, Celeste Tunheim, and Josie Mason in front of their art installation titled “Your Reflection Shows Who You Are.”

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