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Community to ‘Box Out Bullying’

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Free child care, meal will be offered March 1

By KEVIN KOELLING, Managing Editor

PERRY COUNTY – A community-wide effort to “Box Out Bullying” will kick off with a gathering for which free food and child care will be offered, according to Sally Wolfe, counselor at William Tell Elementary School.

Parents from Cannelton, Perry Central and Tell City-Troy Township school districts are invited to a presentation beginning at 6 p.m. March 1 at William Tell, she said.

The child care will be available beginning at 5 p.m.

“This nationally acclaimed workshop for parents is comprehensively designed to make sure everyone is on the same page,” according to materials about the program Wolfe provided to the News. “Bullying does not just affect the school, but rather the entire community. Parents will understand how to successfully work with their children and faculty members to continue to foster a community that addresses potential problems, empowers bystanders and creates empathy among students.”

The community assembly will be complemented by others for students Feb. 29 at Perry Central, March 1 at William Tell and March 2 at Tell City Junior-Senior High School.

Box Out Bullying, offered by an Astoria, N.Y. company, is aligned with the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program and is intended to empower students with the knowledge that they have the power to get bullying to stop and that they are responsible for their own actions and the actions of their groups.

Local educators have been working for several years to implement the Olweus program, which has been endorsed by, among others, school-safety and bullying-prevention expert Michael Dorn, executive director of Safe Havens International. He helped kick off the anti-bullying efforts with a presentation here in 2009.

Reservations must be made by Feb. 27 for the dinner program by calling the school or returning forms sent home with students of the Tell City schools.