In the wake of several tragic bullying-related suicides last fall, the President and First Lady hosted the White House Conference on Bullying Prevention. Today’s bullying isn’t like the bullying of yesteryear. Texting, Twitter, and other technologies spread the effects of bullying far beyond the schoolyard. No longer does the end-of-day schoolbell announce the end of the day’s bullying. It can continue any time day or night.
For those of you who aren’t aware of just how bad the effects bullying can be, take a look at this video titled “Bullying FAIL” that’s been circulating on Twitter today.
According to the White House Blog:
Every day, thousands of children, teens, and young adults around the country are bullied. Estimates are that nearly one-third of all school-aged children are bullied each year – upwards of 13 million students. Students involved in bullying are more likely to have challenges in school, to abuse drugs and alcohol, and to have health and mental health issues. If we fail to address bullying we put ourselves at a disadvantage for increasing academic achievement and making sure all of our students are college and career ready.
In their own words:
The First Lady herself kicked off the conference:
- President Obama & the First Lady at the White House Conference on Bullying Prevention
- House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi’s Statement on Bullying Prevention
- President Obama’s Video and Blog Post from October for the anti-bullying It Get’s Better Project
- Special Facebook Live Session: Bullying Prevention Conference – Domestic Policy Advisor Melody Barnes, Facebook Chief Security Officer Joe Sullivan, MTV Vice President for Public Affairs Jason Rzepka and Rosalind Wiseman take questions from the public via Facebook on bullying prevention.
- Transcript: Remarks by the President and First Lady at the White House Conference on Bullying Prevention
- Conference on Bullying Prevention Opening Session
- Press Release: President and First Lady Call For a United Effort to Address Bullying
- Background on White House Conference on Bullying Prevention
- Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius Answers Questions Regarding Bullying
- It Get’s Better Project Videos from President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and other White House Staff and Administration Officials
Conference Participants Included:
- Arne Duncan, Secretary of Education
- Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services
- Joe Sullivan, Facebook Chief Security Officer
- Jason Rzepka, MTV’s Vice President of Public Affairs
- John Gomperts, Director of AmeriCorps
- Rosalind Wiseman, Expert on Children, Teens, Parenting, Bullying, Social Justice, and Ethical Leadership
- Tom Perez, Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, Department of Justice
- Russlynn Ali, Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Department of Education
- Michael Strautmanis, Deputy Assistant to the President & Counselor to the Senior Advisor for Strategic Engagement
- Dr. Mary Wakefield, Administrator of Health Resources and Services Administration, Department of Health and Human Services
- Aneesh Chopra, Associate Director for Technology, Office of Science and Technology Policy
- Howard Schmidt Special Assistant to the President & Cybersecurity Coordinator, National Security Staff
- Eduardo Ochoa, Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education, Department of Education
- Charlie Rose, General Counsel, Department of Education
- Stephanie Cutter, Assistant to the President & Deputy Senior Advisor
- Melody Barnes, White House Domestic Policy Advisor and Director of the Domestic Policy Council