Survey shows twenty-four percent of GHS students have been bullied

ERIN TETTONI, Staff Writer

Bullying, the use of power or strength to intimidate others, has affected many people at some point in their lives. A recent student health survey reported that 24 percent of students at GHS have been bullied in the past year.

This number surprised some students and teachers, and some people question the survey and do not feel that the surveys conducted are precise.

“They’re not completely accurate,” said GHS adjustment counselor Amy Kamm. “While there are people who scan the anonymous tests for dishonest answers, I definitely think there are better ways to assess teen behavior.”

Senior Gage Lavery thinks the reported number is too high.  “I feel like compared to other schools there is less bullying here,” said Lavery.

Other students feel like the reported number is low.

“It’s a low number,” said senior Abigail Francis. “I feel like if you’ve been bullied you won’t want to admit it, only the brave ones do.”

Kamm has an idea of why there are different responses to the survey.

“Everyone’s definition of bullying is different, and not all are accurate,” said Kamm. “Calling someone a name one time is not bullying.”

Kamm has an acronym to help students decipher true bullying; R.I.P. “R.I.P. stands for Repetitive Intentional Power (Differential),” said Kamm, “Real bullying occurs more than once and there is a difference in power or social status.”

In recent years bullying has shifted from being physical or verbal to online or cyber bullying. Much of the bullying that occurs now is through social media and is being brought in by a third party.

When asked what could be done to prevent bullying,  students and faculty alike had some ideas.

“The best prevention is education,” said Kamm. “We need to teach kids not to be bystanders.”

“There’s always going to be jerks in the world,” said junior Karissa Murray. “But at least if there is a support group it will make it easier.”