Student: Drama queen or bullied?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Backroads, Jan 15, 2015.

  1. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Jan 15, 2015

    I have a student who is becoming a mystery with her complaints. Earlier in the year, she reported she was being bullied to her parents. She was not able to give a name to who was bullying her. Parents contacted the school, and myself and the rest of the second grade is monitoring her.

    Several times a week we have more reports from this girl she is being bullied. Not a single teacher or aid has seen any or heard anything. In the beginning, she wouldn't name names even if she said it was a student she knew. When she eventually gave names, these would be kids who weren't anywhere near her (literally on the other side of the playground) or kids who were absent. In one case, a kid who had moved a month prior.

    Her older sister came to me this morning to report another student in the class was bullying her. The supposed victim had no clue about this-- when I asked her if the student had indeed bullied her, she just looked surprised and replied no.

    I'm not sure what to think. I hate bullying, I don't want any of my students bullied, but there has yet to be a single scrap of evidence anything is going on. I hate to say it, but I'm beginning to wonder if she is making stuff up for drama and attention.

    I'm at the point where I'm considering having a meeting with the parents and possibly the school counselor.

    Any thoughts?
     
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  3. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Jan 15, 2015

    A lot of times bullies can be slick. Hard to catch. Hard to prove they did it. Will deny they did without the proof.

    But with what you've told (giving names of kids no where in the picture - or even at the school anymore), sounds like she is attention seeking.

    You may have to spy on her during PE for a while to see for yourself who is near here during that period in case she comes in with new tales.
     
  4. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I might kick this one up to admin.
     
  5. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Jan 15, 2015

    I'm afraid she may be fabricating it too. You probably already tried this, but maybe on random days, try your best to be out there the entire time during recess & literally watch her play without her knowing that you're watching of course. Wear sunglasses or something, pretend to read a book. :)

    With all the talk/assemblies, etc. about bullying, she's smart enough to see that victims of bullying get a good share of attention.

    How's her behavior otherwise in the classroom? Is she the tattle-tale type? Attention-starver? Possibly always has to be the boss over her peers or maybe it's the opposite...everyone in the classroom's always picking on her?
     
  6. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    She's a good student with minimal behavior problems. However, she is the boisterous, emotional type. She's one of my high students and, unfortunately, knows how bright she is. There is a bit of superior attitude to her already.
     
  7. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    These kinds of things drive me nuts. You have to watch and basically spy on the girl. It helps to have good witnesses..
     
  8. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    MOst of the time at that age when I ask how the bully is doing it I get. "she said she isnt my friend anymore"
     
  9. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    I hate that. I've made it known you don't have to be anyone's friend, but our first class rule is respecting each other. The phrase "she isn't my friend" is banned from the class. You don't like them? Don't play with them.

    The student in question, however, is complaining of physical attacks.
     
  10. daisycakes

    daisycakes Companion

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    I agree she probably is confused about what bullying is. We had an assembly on this at the beginning of the school year and they were taught bullying is not a disagreement. If she is saying kids who aren't even near her are bullying her, she might mean that she wants to play with those kids, but they aren't playing with her/speaking to her and she feels hurt. She assumes, based on this feeling, that she must be bullied.
     
  11. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Jan 16, 2015

    Check your board policy for their definition of "bullying" and explain it to the child, too.

    This is ours.

     
  12. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    Jan 16, 2015

    Does this drama queen have any friends in class? Maybe if she does you can ask one of them to be a "buddy" and maybe watch out to see if any bullying occurs. It would be good to have an actual witness.
     
  13. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Thanks for the tips. She does have friends in the class, so I'll call on them to watch her. I also love the idea of making sure we're all on the same page as far as the definition of bullying.

    Now, this is a bit off-topic but it popped into my head as I was typing up there...

    How do your schools handle bullying on the child level? My school's policy is to immediately get a faculty member, yet my mother's school has a more nuanced policy that relies more on student-led tactics and resiliency (yes, there is certainly times when it teaches to get an adult, but it is complex).
     
  14. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Jan 27, 2015

    Ok, after today I'm really worried. At conference I talked with the girl's parents about bullying, what it was, etc. Things seemed good.

    Girl's older sister comes in this morning in despair over what seemed a legitimate bullying incident. Threats were made, swearing, hitting, etc. Her poor little sister.

    2 minutes later the teacher who watched and intervened comes in.

    The kid threatening, swearing, and hitting was Girl.

    The thing is, she really does seem.to think she is being bullied.

    The principal wound up handling the situation, but this is getting out of control.
     
  15. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    Jan 27, 2015

    Sister would be in trouble in my school for being in little sister's hallway. She seems to be in the middle of the drama. What does older sister's say? Does she complain also of being bullied?
     
  16. BioAngel

    BioAngel Science Teacher - Grades 3-6

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    Jan 28, 2015

    Big sister needs to let the little sister speak up for herself first of all. That way you're getting the information from the person the bullying (if it is that) is happening to.

    It seems like the bullies are students in your class? You might want to look into doing some anti-bullying lessons/activities/discussions with the students.

    At my school, a special report has to be filed and handled within 2-3 school days. That means the P and guidance counselor will step in to talk to the students invovled. If it is truly bullying- not just "we're having a fight and we aren't friends today" kind of stuff- parents are contacted as well. We are a smaller school, but even we have 2-3 incidents that lead to a report having to be filed.

    I would keep up with what is going on with this child, but I would make sure admin is aware of what is what in case they feel the need to step in and start contacting parents officially.

    You should also check out to see what your state has in place for what it expects schools to do when handling bullying reports.
     
  17. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Maybe I'm misreading, but it sounds like the bully is the one complaining of being bullied.

    Anti-bullying lessons would be a good idea, but I think that the bigger issue is that this student is struggling with interpreting her own behaviors and the behaviors of those around here.

    I'd still recommend letting admin handle this issue. Hopefully the school counselor can get involved to help this student address her issues.
     
  18. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    This seems to be exactly what is happening, my girl who is complaining of being bullied is being nasty to other kids. We still have yet to see any evidence of anyone bullying her.

    She returned from the admin's office yesterday much more humble, and I've been checking in with her.

    We just started a new anti-bullying campaign and I have our school counselor coming in to go over it.
     
  19. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Jan 29, 2015

    Truthfully, as soon as she named a current bully who had moved a month ago, I would have shut things down immediately. Either so many kids are picking on her that she literally can't remember everybody doing it, or she's flat-out lying. Based on everything I'm reading, the second seems far more likely. This young lady needs to know that false accusations of bullying will end up costing her friends (if it hasn't already). Nobody wants to be near somebody if they have to be afraid of being falsely accused of something as serious as bullying.
     
  20. LisaLisa

    LisaLisa Companion

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    Jan 29, 2015

    I just read the entire thread and it is pretty similar to a situation I had in my room a couple of years ago. A student was consistently reporting events that could not have happened. We all watched closely and it turned out that either nothing happened or she had gotten into another student's space and provoked them. She had gotten hit or pushed. It was all attention seeking and pretty dangerous. Fortunately the kids she accused didn't fully understand what she was doing. I would imagine in general ed it might be a different story and dangerous for an entirely different reason.
    For some kids it is almost a game. They win attention from their parents, siblings, and adults in school.
    I'd work on social skills, her ability to make friends with her peers
     
  21. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Talked to the admin. He flat-out told Older Sister to stay out of Girl's social life at school for the next couple of weeks. We're going to see if that calms things down.
     

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