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The changing face of bullying


Degree of problem viewed differently among students


March 28, 2010
Editor's Note: Much has been written and reported on the issue of bullying among school children. The Southbridge Evening News went right to the source — local students and school administrators — and asked them how big a problem bullying is and how it is dealt with. The results were as interesting as they were varied.

Bullying.

It's one of the archetypal issues students and school administrators alike have to deal with throughout their careers. However, is the issue as blatant and severe as some make it out to be? Or is it more discrete and drastic than we had imagined?

If you ask the everyday student, the issue is not all that pervasive.

"I don't feel like it's too much of a problem, in our school at least, said Katie Morrissey of Sturbridge, a senior at Tantasqua Regional High School. "The students here seem a bit more tight knit than in other schools, so I feel like if there ever was a problem, someone would be there to back their friends up."

Another senior at the school, Hannah Jette, acknowledged bullying could be a problem, even if it's something she hasn't personally experienced.

"I don't exactly see it every day," she said. "It might just be because I've never really had to face it myself, but I won't deny that it exists somewhere."

In Southbridge, high school student Tyler Fontaine painted a picture of an atmosphere free of the kind of behavior state lawmakers are trying to eradicate by strengthening an anti-bullying bill currently making the rounds on Beacon Hill.

See Tuesday's Southbridge Evening News for complete coverage of community news.

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