I had a meeting with a prospective student and their family about the possibility of attending our school. I asked my usual question in this type of situation: “Tell me why you want to attend St. Pat’s?”
The tears instantly welled up and poured down her face. She couldn’t speak. She couldn't find the words. After a few minutes of quiet consolation from her mom, she finally found a few words.
The student was a victim of on-line bullying from some peers at her previous school.
I listened with my own tears welling up. As a teacher, father and fellow human being my heart broke for her. The only words I could find to say were: “I’m sorry”
We talked a little about her attending our school, her interests and passions.
I also explained that, as the principal, I couldn’t promise that she would be 100% immune from this type of reprehensible behavior from other students. But I did promise her that at our school
- All students have a clear understanding of how to treat others, both face to face and on-line. We are intentional in our modeling and teaching of how we, as people should treat other in all mediums.
- She will be coached and mentored on how she should deal with situations that are hurtful.
- She will always have a caring adult who will listen to her and intervene to restore justice and bring healing to the situation. Always.
The student and her mom left my office each with a used tissue in hand.
I grabbed my tissue when they left my office.