May 25, 2012
-- NIne Vermont Academy students recently attended an all-day bullying conference at the Hyde School in Woodstock, CT. Vermont Academy was one of four host schools joining Marianapolis Academy, Hyde School-Maine, and Hyde School-CT in welcoming a number of area schools to the Hyde campus for a day of discussion and student-led workshops all focusing on the issue of bullying in today's society.
The day began with a key note address from Tina Meier, whose daughter Megan tragically committed suicide after being cyber bullied by her own neighbor. Tina currently travels the country speaking to high school students about the serious effects that bullying can have on adolescents.
She captivated the room for well over an hour sharing the
personal story or her daughter and suggesting ideas to students on how they can play a role in preventing
tragedies surrounding bullying in their own school communities.
Throughout the afternoon, students led workshops on various topics. The Vermont Academy group presented a program on "Pseudo Bullying" by
highlighting a variety of scenarios that, depending on the context of the situation, might or might not be viewed as bullying. The group did an excellent job providing varying viewpoints and arguments to the role-plays
which then ignited a lot of great dialogue throughout the afternoon. The day ended with a wrap-up session in which student representatives from each school answered questions and shared their impressions of the day with the Hyde-CT underclassmen.
There were certainly many great takeaways from the day for all attendees to bring back to their respective school communities.
The day was such a success that the four host schools hope to make this an annual event for years to come.