The other day I found out that one of my students has been the victim of bullying. Pissed me off to no end. She's one of my best students who dances to the beat of her own drum. I remember when I first met her last year and she told me that she wanted to be a UN Interpreter or a Fashion model. She thinks she could both but the stress from both jobs would ultimately be too much so she has to choose between the two.
She's a bit awkward but in an endearing way. I've always been envious of the people who seem to just KNOW who they are and don't give a fig newton what other people think.
To find out that she is being bullied because she dares to be different makes me see red. When I found out about it I wanted to hunt the girl down and demand names, class numbers, and home addresses. Sadly, there is a communication barrier so even if I did find the girls who messed with her I wouldn't be able to say anything that they'd understand.
Thankfully the school is handling it. They are having a meeting today where the bullies are told to join so they can be punished (not physically) by the entire staff. Their parents have been invited as well. Apparently there had been death threats made and it scared her enough to tell her parents.
Her entire middle school life so far has been filled with situations like this. I remember a time last year when her friends decided to make fun of her and call her nasty names. She came to me crying and it took everything in me not to want to step up and find the girls who made her cry. I get possessive and it saddens me that I felt the need to protect her from my students.
I love all of my students dearly and I just wish that they would get along and just be friendly with each other. Kids are cruel though (as are adults) so I'm not sure how this meeting will actually help my girl. In fact, it might hurt her in the long run. I just wish that uniqueness could be celebrated instead of damned. That intelligence could be awarded instead of criticized.
I guess that's asking for too damn much.