Teach empathy: Bullying bill aims to define bullying, protect learning environment

As state lawmakers work to refine parameters of what constitutes bullying, school-aged children say it’s also important for them to address consequences for kids who tease, harass or inflict injury to their classmates.

“I think [bullies] really need help from counselors,” says Ella Abney, a sixth-grader at Second Street School, who believes it would teach bullies empathy.

“Then they can understand how the [bullied] kids feel,” added SSS seventh-grader Ethan Stigers.

Both are members of the school’s Student Voice team, which works to identify problems and solutions that have a meaningful impact on their peers. As lawmakers debate bullying at the Capitol, the students hope they realize that bullying has evolved past taunts and teasing in the hallways.