Being Proactive

Although bullying hasn’t proved to be a huge issue, Anti-Bullying week is a way of remind students to respect the diverse groups of the school.

The week of Oct. 7 was dedicated to the awareness of bullying and to becoming an Anti-Bullying school. Bullying hasn’t been a huge problem here, and Principal Lisa Gruma believes it’s because of the accepting natures of our student body.

According to the district policy on Intimidation and Bullying, Bullying is identified as any “any intentional written, verbal, electronic, or physical act or threat which is severe, persistent and pervasive enough that it may be expected to, harm a student or damage a student’s property, interferes with a student’s education or participation in a school-sponsored activity, create an intimidating or threatening educational environment.” This means that any type of bullying, whether it affects someone or their property, will not be tolerated.

Along with the repercussions that the school sets, lawful punishments can be made as well. The Shawnee Mission School District has a policy that is required by law. This involves any type of bullying, verbal, physical, cyber, etc. there are multiple consequences for bullying depending on the type.

“By law, states that schools have to have a policy that deals with bullying harassment issues,” Student Resource Officer officer Mark Coenen said. “Definitely NW has those policies in place and when bullying issues do come up they address them and they have to, by law do that. And that’s the same for all the Shawnee Mission District.”

Although other schools may have issues with bullying, NW is a safe and friendly place to be according to Mrs. Gruman.

“I really think we have a unique school,” Gruman said. “I think the diversity of the clubs kids kind of find their niche and we respect each other’s groups.”

The posters in the lunch room and the short films that KUGR puts together representing the types and effects of bullying are just a few ways of reminding Northwest to not bully and to be accepting of our peers.

“ proactive I think always helps,” Gruman said. “But, it helps to hear it from other students. They tend to respond better, versus adults saying do or don’t; the messages that come from their peers I think are really effective.”

According to Gruman, maintaining a bully-free environment is what makes Northwest a better place to be for everyone.

“Northwest has such a tradition of academic excellence and of being a place where we do have a lot of diverse students and we like that. It makes a better place to be and I would say that we want to continue in that vein and we want to welcome all students in. let them enjoy their school day just like we do.”

By: Paige Eichkorn and Shelby Smith