WEATHER IN LINCOLN COUNTY


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Bullying: Not part of a healthy childhood…


Jeanne St. John (L) and Majalise Tolan (R)

Lincoln County’s Bully Prevention Project and PFLAG (Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians & Gays) want to help buy your ticket to see this important documentary about the effects of bullying on children, families, and communities. Showing for one week only (May 11-17) at the Bijou Theatre in Lincoln City, this film will help raise awareness and commitment by students, staff, families, and community leaders. The film is rated PG-13 and will be shown daily this weekend at 2, 4:30, and 7:30 PM. Beginning Monday, May 14th, the show will run at 4:30 and 7:30.

Coupons for $1 off will be widely distributed by PFLAG Oregon Central Coast, or you may make your own coupon reading, “PFLAG SENT ME TO SEE BULLY”. The first 250 coupons will be honored.

Coupons for $1 off at the concession stand will be sent home with all students at Newport Intermediate and Isaac Newton Middle Schools who can name the four anti-bullying rules as part of the school’s Bully Prevention Program. NIS family involvement money will also be used to charter a bus for the 11:00 am showing on May 11th and the 7:30 p.m. showing on May 17th. Call the school for more details.

Anyone who has ever been the target of a bully’s abuse knows the pain it causes. Students who are singled out for taunts –perhaps because of their race, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, disabilities, or just because they may be “different”– are more susceptible to dropping out of school or attempting suicide.

According to PFLAG Chair Jeanne St. John the local chapter obtained an Equity Foundation grant to help provide schools with a bullying prevention program. LCSD teachers and staff have been going through the training, led by Majalise Tolan, principal of Isaac Newton Magnet and Newport Intermediate Schools. Tolan was certified as a trainer by the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, internationally recognized as effective in changing the school culture to prevent bullying.

All staff at NIS and INMS have been trained and began using the program when school started this year. An important feature of the program is the engagement of bystanders, and improving the level of support for students most at risk for bullying. St. John is a Community Representative on the district’s Bully Prevention Leadership Team. This first year’s results are very encouraging with a remarkable drop in bully reports and dramatic improvements in attitudes about student safety and satisfaction. Students are becoming “upstanders” not “bystanders”. Other schools in Lincoln County are currently exploring adoption of this program.

For more information on community support for Bully Prevention, you may contact St. John at 541-265-7194 or by email at pflagocc@gmail.com. For information on LCSD’s Olweus Bully Prevention Program, contact Tolan at 541-265-6601.

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