Educators and school leaders are being urged to take a more proactive approach to dealing with bullying in schools as more students are being targeted for their opinions on the school board, President Joe Biden said in an address on Tuesday.
“This is a very dangerous place to be in our country,” Biden said, addressing a conference of educators and school board members.
“We can no longer stand by and let this happen.
We must stand up and speak out.”
Biden also called for teachers to be encouraged to speak out about the negative consequences of bullying, including physical violence, threats and harassment.
The U.S. has a higher rate of bullying in our schools than most other countries, Biden said.
“If we don’t stop this trend, we are going to have an epidemic of bullying,” Biden added.
Biden said schools should be places of learning and learning communities, where students feel safe and safe places to be, rather than places of intimidation and bullying.
“That is why I’m urging our educators, principals and other educators to take on a new role: to make schools places where kids feel safe, and where they feel they can make their voices heard,” Biden told the conference.
“Because when kids feel comfortable in schools, they are more likely to be productive, more likely be engaged, more apt to learn and more likely learn in an inclusive, positive, and safe environment.”BIDEN: Bully kids need more respect and support, not more punishmentThe President was referring to the recent spate of school shootings, which has sparked calls for greater resources for schools to deal with such incidents.
The latest incident in San Jose sparked outrage and a wave of criticism for the school district’s decision to remove a teacher from the school after the teacher made inflammatory comments on social media.
The teacher, who is not identified, has since been suspended, but Biden has criticized the district for its response.
The San Jose School Board, Biden’s new education and family agency, has not released the names of the teacher’s former students.
But the President has urged teachers and parents to be aware of how to deal and protect themselves from bullying and said schools must become places of safety.
“The time is now to be more proactive, to be proactive in your classroom,” Biden wrote.
“This is an age when bullying has become the norm, not the exception.”
He also called on parents to encourage their children to take an active role in school.
“You are responsible for your kids’ safety, and we all know that if you don’t protect your children, then your children will be the ones to get hurt,” Biden stated.
The President’s office also issued a statement that said schools can no more afford to tolerate bullying, especially in light of the recent incidents of violence and intimidation.
The statement also included a list of suggestions to improve school environments for students, including more diversity in the classroom, better training and resources, and the inclusion of social and emotional skills training.
The administration has called for schools and communities to “work together to improve safety and well-being in our nation’s schools.”