This article by Catrone (2017) explains how a Levittown, Long Island seventh-grade class rallied behind a classmate who had been bullied, collectively offering support and sharing their own experiences with bullying following a two-day group chat with one another.
Most of the articles I came across were short pieces about local do-gooding by teens (i.e. community service projects, scholarship awards, athletic championships, etc.). This article from our local newspaper, The Levittown Tribune, caught my eye because it relates to two hot button issues: bullying and social media. I appreciate that teens in this news piece are shown in a balanced manner. There are those unknown students who did the bullying, as well as the supportive teens who did the right thing and took a stand. It’s important for society to recognize this spectrum of behavior. This article shows that teens are not always as quick to judge and use social media like a weapon as we may believe, nor are they all angels who spend every waking minute volunteering for a cause.
Bullying can be done subtly, and library staff should try to understand how to gauge situations and be prepared to intervene effectively if needed. Moreover, although the anonymous teacher in this article maintained that the school district has been “proactive” (para.8) in preventing bullying via social media, clearly bullying is still going on within the schools. As such, the local library should make sure they have a strong anti-bullying collection, while also developing programs that foster cooperation and seek to bring together teens from different social circles. The library can also take a cue from the students in the article and run workshops on how teens can use social media to spread positivity in their communities and beyond.
Catrone, J. (2017, January 16). Salk students RISE to the occasion. The Levittown Tribune.