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    Stevensville Middle School uses the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program to promote safe schools and communities.  Students participate in the program during their Health classes.
     
    What is Bullying?
     
    "A person is bullied when he or she is exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more persons, and he or she has difficulty defending himself or herself."  - Dan Olweus, creator of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in his book Bullying at School:  What We Know and What We Can Do
     
    This definition includes three important components:
     
    1.  Bullying is aggressive behavior that involves unwanted, negative actions.
    2.  Bullying involves a pattern of behavior repeated over time.
    3.  Bullying involves an imbalance of power or strength.
     
    Types of Bullying
     
    1.  Verbal bullying including derogatory comments and bad names
    2.  Bullying through social exclusion or isolation
    3.  Physical bullying such as hitting, kicking, shoving, and spitting
    4.  Bullying through lies and false rumors
    5.  Having money or other things taken or damaged by students who bully
    6.  Being threatened or being forced to do things by students who bully
    7.  Racial bullying
    8.  Sexual bullying
    9.  Cyber bullying (via cell phone or Internet)
     
    Bullying is Not Teasing
     
    It might be hard to tell the difference between playful teasing and bullying. Teasing usually involves two or more friends who act together in a way that seems fun to all the people involved. Often they tease each other equally, but it never involves physical or emotional abuse.
     
    Why Students Bully
     
    1.  Students who bully have strong needs for power and (negative) dominance.
    2.  Students who bully find satisfaction in causing injury and suffering to other students.
    3.  Students who bully are often rewarded in some way for their behavior with material or psychological rewards.
     
    How Bullying Affects Children
     
    Students who are bullied can experience depression, low self-esteem, health problems, poor grades, and suicidal thoughts.
    Students who observe bullying can feel fearful, powerless to act, guilty for not acting, and tempted to participate.
    Students who bully others are more likely to get into frequent fights, steal and vandalize property, drink alcohol and smoke, report poor grades, perceive a negative climate at school, and carry a weapon.