Some of the schools we work with have a major bullying problem. By getting to know these schools we attempt to find solutions to some of these problems. Besides speaking to the students and empowering the students to step up and help themselves and their classmates, we look for other ways to intervene.
In this school, we were introduced to the math team and hoped to stop the school bullies from picking on these extremely talented and smart students. These students already had tons of self-respect and confidence. They were being teased because of their size and because they were on the math team. So we partnered up and decided that we would do what we could to make the math team a respectable organization. We designed t-shirts in collaboration with the students. These t-shirts not only had “cool” designs and colors but also gave the team members a sense of pride. We made sure that these t-shirts were the highest quality. We used our marketing team to assist the team in promoting themselves. All meetings now had pizza in attendance. And thankfully, besides being smart, the math team had wonderful advisors that knew how to win at competition. The word of the wins from this team got around school and these students eventually were no longer bowing their heads in the hallways. They were proud members of a team, with a new sense of self-worth and confidence, and their abilities in math started expanding to an appreciation for all of their talents. Although bullying may never be abolished, at this school, the math team rocked!