For those of you who have been reading my personal bullying stories, I am at the point where I transitioned from Elementary School (6th Grade) to my new school, Jonas Clarke Junior High School, which is now called Jonas Clarke Middle School,in Lexington, Massachusetts. Unfortunately, bullying issues followed me to my new school and in some ways escalated. I went to Clarke MS from Fall of 1980 to Spring of 1981. We moved away from Lexington in the Summer of ’81, so I was only there for one year.
Jonas Clarke Middle school was a very modern school with a modern teaching program. I enjoyed that aspect of it. But, they did not recognize the issues of bullying and discipline very well. This was a different time, no doubt, but obviously something happened between the time I left and now. In doing some research for upcoming blogs, I visited the Clarke MS website. I looked at their Student Handbook, which has a very interesting statement at the very beginning, right after the table of contents. Check out what they put in their handbook at the very beginning now:
Constitution of Caring
We, the people of the Jonas Clarke Middle School Community, in order to create and sustain a peaceful school, seek to establish a climate where all of us feel safe and wanted.
We agree to treat each other with respect regardless of our differences. We understand that each have different qualities that make us unique and we deserve to be treated with
We agree not to bully, tease, harass or ridicule anyone. We will not spread rumors or
purposefully hurt another person mentally or physically. We will stand up for anyone
who is being mistreated. We will reach out to help someone if we see them in need.
We agree to be caring and thoughtful.
We will encourage others to do the same.
We understand that we are not perfect. We will try our very best to make our school a
humane and respectful place to be.
We share responsibility for a kind and safe Clarke Middle School.
We all have the ability to make this happen!
Well, that certainly wasn’t in the handbook when I went to Clarke MS and they obviously recognize that they had an issue. It seems that after I left Clarke, there most have been many more like me that led them to make sure this statement was made up-front, prior to even information about learning. It’s certainly nice to see that they have come to recognize the issue they had. It’s just a shame that they didn’t recognize it in 1980.