photo copyright in Oakland North by Pendarvis Harshaw
By Anthony Beron
Remember September, when your entire school was sent to the Jack London Cinema to watch “Bully”?
Well, over 12,000 fellow students throughout OUSD saw the same movie, recalling it as a “tear-jerking,” “deeply emotional” documentary. But was it legitimate?
What I mean by this is whether if it was effective (or not) to the common school bully. Do you recall your school giving you a follow-up lecture or survey? Did you notice an immediate change in the bullies at your school?
Semi-effective was how Selena Williams, a 17-year-old junior labelled the movie. “It opened people to a new perspective on how it can affect others’ lives,” she said. “On the other hand, some people still don’t care. They go and bully anyway.”
At McClymonds, students and teachers said that the movie did work, based on their personal observations of behavior at school; however, over 37% of people surveyed said that it did not work.
Barbara McClung, coordinator of Behavioral Health Initiatives, said that the cost was covered by a group of anonymous donors through the film’s director Lee Hirsch. That included movie tickets for all of the students and staffers who viewed the film as well as the cost of transportation to the theater and back to their school site.
One major flaw with the movie was that it was not “culturally diverse enough,” and “did not provide an outlet” to bullying, according to Kharyshi Wiginton, an after-school staff member. Another anonymous student stated that it was “not effective,” and that there is still a lot of homophobia and other forms of bullying prevalent in Oakland schools.
|Students who saw the movie||12,016|
|Staff who saw the movie||629|
|Buses hired to transport students and staff||295|
|Students who went missing||0|
|Disciplinary Incidents||1 (9th grader referred for marijuana use)|
|Central Office Volunteer Ushers||108|