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How bullying is handled at Codington Elementary School

READ MORE: How bullying is handled at Codington Elementary School
A couple of weeks ago, we posted a story on our website, about bullying in a Cumberland County school. The story generated a lot of viewer comments and lead to a heated discussion about an alleged bullying incident at Codington Elementary School in Wilmington. The discussion was so heated we decided to pull some of the comments off of the internet, but we are not ignoring the issue, instead we are reporting on it. Some students at Codington Elementary School have the right idea when it comes to bullying. "At school it shouldn't be a problem because kids shouldn't be treated that way. The teacher should be able to handle it," said 4th grader, Caroline Lemley. Bryston Davis, also a 4th grader said, "I'm trying to stop that, if I see somebody I'll go tell them to quit it." We have all heard the saying “kids will be kids”, but when does the typical childhood teasing cross the line into bullying? New Hanover County behavioral specialist, Hanna Griesbauer said the line gets crossed when a student is a constant target for negative behavior. "The imbalance occurs when you have one student, or a group of students, continually target another student without retaliation." Some consider bullying a right of passage for children, but Griesbauer said bullying is a much deeper issue of power, impacting every age group. Each year, New Hanover County schools report fewer than one hundred bullying incidents. On the high school level, most bullying cases involve social ridicule, like the popular kids versus the not so popular. On the middle and elementary school level, bullying cases involve the bigger kid, picking on the smaller kid. That is when school officials take action. Codington principal, Budd Dingwall said, "If there is a bullying type incident that is starting up, we investigate, we intervene, we prevent and we reeducate." To help, New Hanover County schools have been implementing bullying prevention programs in the classroom; educating students on reporting bullying when it happens and how to solve a dispute, before it goes too far. At the elementary school level, teachers and students talk about bullying at least once a week. Once the kids get older, bullying education takes place on an as-needed basis. If you feel there is a bullying problem at your school, students and parents can fill out an incident report form on their school's website.

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.


How Bullying is handled at Codington Elementary School


"Bullying in School"

Bullying in school is happening all around us, in schools all over the United States, it is happening everyday to many children and the teachers and principals play it off as "children just playing around." I know this because just last year at Shallotte Middle School my grandson was a victim of bulling and this is how the principal at that time described it to me. "Children will be children and they were just playing around." Well I'm sorry but when someone follows someone around pushing them and calling them names and then throws them on the ground and proceeds to stomp them on the legs and feet, I call that "bullying" along with some other things. If you or I had done that we would have been lawed and probably more than likely, prosocuted. But it was considered "just playing around." My grandson has Asperger's Syndrome and isn't as outspoken or as popular as most kids and this,I think "marks" him as a target for "bullying" from the more popular kids. Some schools have signs up about "bullying" and there is one in his school, but as we all know, that must be there for decoration, because it goes on constantly and most times it is ignored, or when it is brought to the attention of the staff and principal, it is played off. I myself have read many books on the subject and have personally given copies of ways to deal with "bullying" to teachers at my child's meetings. Until the schools understand that "bullying" plays a huge part in a child's ability at school to attend on a regular basis, study and succeed, some children will be "left behind", because teaching a child to read and write is not the only thing that a school should be involved in, but also a child's welfare, while they are attending those schools. Parents can not correct what they do not know is happening and if a school does not address "bullying" as bullying and allows it to continue without admitting that to the child and the child's parents, how can it ever be corrected. Bullying is not "playing around", it's not "kids being kids", it is a form of abuse, and no child should have to experience it.

Bullying the disabled in School

At the average age of 30 something, I still have scars from lets put it straight of being verbally abused in school. I went to school with a physical disability that was partially corrected. During the time of correctional phase, I was tormented by name calling and some physical abuse. With drew from my peers to the point if I see them on the street now I will go out of my way to avoid them. If I am forced in to contact with them, I remind them of just what I think. My son now is attending school with a physical birth defect. However, I am greatful for the teachers at RPP and their ability to handle these situations. It seems the inner city schools have a hard time getting a grip on this situation. Parents need to be held accountable for thier children and thier behavior. My kids where taught from the beginning that this is unacceptable behavior, and it has led to my oldest child starting a "NO BULLYING" peer chat group to stop the violence. So I have been in your shoes and it stinks. I wish your son all the best.

Not That Old

Ok, I'm not all the horribly old, but when I was in school I seem to remember something called taking up for yourself and not involving the judicial system. Why don't partents simply teach their children to fight back because there are going to be bullies throughout life and at some point you have to take up for yourself without whining to the law. Now granted I will agree that if it gets to a certain point or degree that any sensible person is going to seek help, but teasing, pushing, shoving is normal childhood behavior.

You are an idiot....sorry, I

You are an idiot....sorry, I don't know any other way to say it. It's okay to teach your children to stand up for themselves, but it's not okay to tell your children it's okay to fight. And while it might work to stand up for yourself in high school (even if you lose the fight, you get respect), it's not so easy to do in middle school and elementary school. Some of these bullies appear to be several ages older than the one they are picking on. It's people and parents like yourself as to the reason why we have such do not take responsibility or accountability for your chilren's actions. Suspend a kid and make a parent have to take time off work and maybe the parents will get it through their thick skulls that what their child is doing is not okay. And before you get the idea that I must have been picked on when I was little, that isn't the case at all. In fact, I have been in way too many fights growing up that I have learned that fighting is not the least it's not the first action that should take place


I'm so sick of parents turning out pansy little children who can't stand up for themselves. Sorry, but if someone pushes, you push back. Not run to your lawyer and blame the teacher. Grow up

Instead of blaming the

Instead of blaming the parents who raise sensitive children, we should blame parents who raise mean, agressive, insensitive children. Bullies are typically maladjusted, and will likely have relationship problems (most likely domestic abuse issues) in adulthood. It is in the bully's best interest as well as the victim's to be stopped and dealt with as early as possible.

idiot indeed!

Some people are just not made to physically fight. So that makes them a "pansy?" I think not. That makes it OK for others to pick on them? No, it does not. I think that the kids who pick on kids who they know don't fight are the real "pansies." You have a lot of gall telling someone else to "grow up."

Grow up??? Telling kids to

Grow up??? Telling kids to fight is a very grown up response!!! Please. YOu have a lot to learn

Not reporting abuse

And I'm sick of sociopaths who want to teach kids from an early age that being abused is ok and they shouldn't follow the intelligent path that even adults are required to follow. Say "No"/"stop". Attacker stops, good. Attacker doesn't stop, report incident to authority figure. Whether a teacher, superviosr, Parent, police officer, or whoever, this follows at ALL age levels and situations. If the situation is physical/sexual, use appropriate self defense tactics to get away and report the abuse. Vengenance/revenge leads to potential for the victim to be punished. Interesting thing is, those children and even adults who take on a submissive or even avoidance attitude tend to be labeled as "anti-social" or "loners" (which tends to be a negative view) but the abuser is the actual anti-social person or sociopath. And as mentioned above, standing up for one's self, whether violently or not, can land the victim of the abuse in trouble. Even standing up for someone else who is being abused can result in rather negative outcomes. The old saying "No good deed goes unpunished" had to have proven to be true to have existed for so long. And many news reports show that to be true. And, yet, if you follow the attitude of "do nothing", you're labeled as "apathetic" or even "desensitized" to other people's pain. It is a complex situation. But outright telling someone to actively "push back" will more than likely result in escalation rather than resolution. Not to mention risk creating a new abuser. Andrew


Half the time the child bullying is another teachers child, or a friend of the teacher's child so nothing is done or the teacher just has a favorite. But what is happening to my child is assualt it is past bullying still I cannot get help. My child is smaller than other kids and weaker because of a disiability. And he ended up with a broken leg from two other children nothig was done(virgina williamson Elementary)in brunswick county. The principle said because my child said so don't make it so. now my child is in south middle 2 different children again are assulting my child and again nothing is being done. I was told they didn't see it they can't do anything. But when my child retaleated with words my child was wrote up. Its pretty bad when the kid being assaulted is the one in trouble..I also have asked for help with testing and i was told thats not there job to get it done its mine. for 3 years now. the state is finally helping me with the testing. The state also told me it is the schools job to do the testing not mine. We are forced to send our kids to school were they are not protected. we should be allowed to press neglect charges on the teachers and principles.

Believe it or not, Brunswick

Believe it or not, Brunswick County has a NO TOLERANCE for bullying rule. NOW, if we could just get Katie McGee to actually work and earn her paycheck, we could actually implement this rule. Unfortunately, I feel that until we make some MAJOR changes at the board of education, nothing will be accomplished. Have you tried to contact juvenile services to have these children arrested for assault, it can be done. I would keep doing it EVERY time they strike your child until the courts are sick of seeing them there and maybe they will do something about it. BTW - you can bet if Katie's child or grandchild was being bullied, something would be done REAL quick.

School Bullying

Unfortunately, school bullying is on the rise across the country, and I thought you might like to know about my book Hot Issues, Cool Choices: Facing Bullies, Peer Pressure, Popularity, and Put-Downs which is a collection of 26 stories depicting various forms of bullying with thought questions following each story. All the stories are based on true experiences related to me by students during my school visits and they facilitate great classroom discussions and opportunities for role-playing.

Bullying = Abuse

First off, we need to eliminate the word "bullying" and call it what it is: Abuse. You don't call what a spouse does to another spouse "bullying". You call it "abuse". You don't call the repeated demeaning verbal attacks of a Parent against a child or the excessive physical beatings of a Parent against a child "bullying". You call it "abuse". We have so many different ways to say "abuse" that it tends to not be seen in the same light. A gang of kids in a neighborhood attack one kid, we either downplay it as "bullying" or we call it "criminal assault" or even "gang violence". Usually, it depends on the age of the attackers. But the attack is still violent. Secondly, abuse leads to one or more five major results. It does not take an expert to know this. Repeated abuse (and this encompasses any one or more forms of abuse: verbal, mental, physical, and/or sexual) can lead to: suicide (or at least physical harm to one's self) becoming long term or premanently submissive and being an abuse victim for the rest of their life Will take the abuse silently but will not be affected by it negatively and will not respond to it. Will stand up to the abuser either verbally or physically as needed, including reporting it or striking back ONLY against the abuser and only in self defense. Stands up to the abuser and takes on the role of abuser themselves, not only against their own abuser but against others, deciding to never be a victim but rather the dominate one themselves. We all would like to believe that after even the earliest abuses in elementary school, children will walk away with the 3rd or 4th option. But that doesn't happen. And only an ignorant person would believe that abusing another person in an effort to "train" them to become like the 3rd or 4th type is a positive treatment of that person. Thirdly, we know there are those who actually believe that abuse, especially against chidlren, is a good, moral, act. We saw that last summer when certain religious groups and individuals wrote about and even openly opposed an Anti-Abuse (Anti-Bullying) law in the NC legislature. That proposed law was blocked because individuals believe that it is their Right under the US Constitutional to verball, mentally, phsyically, and/or sexually abuse even children because of preceived sexuality differences. They believe their religious beliefs of abuse against children are "moral" and, apparently, so do a number of NC lawmakers. We have also seen on this very site where individuals believe that abuse against individuals based on gender is also acceptable. That should a male, child or adult, be abused and fall into the 2nd or even 1st result catagory as mentioned above, then they are, in effect, less male, "pansies" if you will. This, too, is further evidence that abuse is viewed as acceptable in our society. Finally, there is a great deal more to say on thise issue. For example, I'm not talking about "zero tolerance". Friends who, consentually, tease one another are not "abusing" one another. I'm not suggesting that that should be treated as "abuse". My thoughts are along the same line as the acts of sexual harassment and rape. That is to say, if someone says "no" or "stop", that's where it stops. The act then becomes not a consentual act, but one of "abuse". At the earliest ages, adults, the authority figures, tend to tell children who report that someone is doing something they don't like (it doesn't matter if WE view it as trivial, THEY are bothered by it), that they shouldn't "tattle-tale". While we don't want kids to become OVERLY sensitive, we do, very much, want them to have a sense that they can trust the authority figures should they say "no" or "stop" to someone and thair "attacker" doesn't stop. Would you call a rape victim (adult OR child, male OR female, or whatever group segregation you can come up with) a "tattle tale"? Would you call a domestic violence victim (again, no matter WHAT your segregation of groups may be) a "tattle tale"? Teach them young, be consistant, and they will learn it for life. You won't solve EVERY proplem of abuse, no matter where it originates, with a single solution. But you will decrease future abuse by dealing it a major blow at the earliest stages of life. Andrew

Nice Principle

LOL, Nice little man, but we all read what you did to the parents that were attempting to stop this silly little 4th grader without any parental guidance. You know for a fact you did nothing, accused the students and parents of being liars and chose not to address it. Silly little man. Step up to the plate, or step on out. Don't let this school continue to let the junior thugs reign free in your school. The kids deserve better. They are the ones who will be taking care of you after you are retired and too old to wipe your own self of the drivel that comes out of your mouth.

He definitely is in favor of teachers kids

The principal at Codington is definitely in favor of teachers child has even been pushed by this girl that is now and fifth grade and I was told to tell my child that her behavior needs to change by just walking away from the girl... Really my child needs to change...her behavior .... Really... This man is an idiot ... But it's ok this girl will go on to middle school and her mother will not be there and there's are bigger ... Older .... And meaner kids there ... Good luck to this child because she is in for a very rude awakening ... Because her behavior is not the one that was addressed ..... STOP THE BULLYiNG ... Do your job or retire ...... You are a very horrible man that even when confronted with all of the parents that come to you ......still will not take a stand .... My daughter will stand up for herself .... Just like I did when I was young ..... She is just nice than I was so you should be happy he is!!!!

Thanks Guestpbr

I'm one of the parents whose child was and still is being bullied at Codington by this 4th grade GIRL with no parental guidance. Now that the Principal has lied to the Sheriff & WWAY to make them believe the situation was handled, I'm here to tell you it HASN'T BEEN HANDLED. Now the focus is on my child's behavior & how she is to be punished when she doesn't ignore what the other child is doing to her. This principal is more than a JOKE!! I've got my fingers crossed on an open enrollment application being accepted to get her OUT of Codington ASAP!!!! Such a shame as I tried for 3 years to win a spot in Codington by lottery & felt so lucky to finally have gotten in. Talk about RETALIATION! Codington is definitely retaliating against my child. My child now hates this school, trusts none of the administration or shcool counselor & has learned that this behavior is not punished, except when it comes to her misbehavior & literally crys at the thought of going to school on a daily basis. I have now told my child that the very next time this little girl so much as brushes up aagainst her to DEFEND herself. You see my child could knock that little girl out with one punch but has always been taught to never fight. My parenting rules have now changed since Codington doesn't want to take bullying serioulsy or truthfully, the Sheriff dropped the case after the Principal lied to the detective & it is now in the hands of the Juvenile Justice Department. So for all of you who thought this was over - IT ISN'T!!! Another parent already went to the same principal last year with regards to the same child bullying her daughter so this child's bullying behavior is not new to Codington. The Bully will get hers, one way or the other. She can NOT be allowed to continue this. Now let's see what happens the next time my chld comes home complaining about this same bully child.

You seem to have a personal

You seem to have a personal problem with the school or principal?


Anyone who has had a reason to be against this man will have a personal problem. He doesn't like anyone who stands up to him. When I did, I had Social Services at my door all because I wanted my child tested and his teacher disagreed. He sided with the teacher. I took my child to the pediatrician, who helped me get my child tested for Learning Disabilities; which turned out to be true. My child was denied services offered by the school system all because the teacher felt we expected 'too much' out of my child. Is it too much for me to want him to be able to read or write?? NO! I saw through the work he was bringing home his work was not up to par for his age. When I began to raise questions I had social services turned on me!! (thankfully, they believed me, especially after I was able to PROVE he did have a disability!!) This man should not be a principal becuase does not like to be confronted because he doesn't know how to deal with people!

Do you teach your child anything

Most children I see as labeled disbaled are not. It is a doctor/psycho enjoying your money thru all of the tests. The one with the learning disability is the parent who didn't know how to raise the child to begin with. Our biggest problem in the school system is the parents. They can't control and discipline their child. Thank God my parents knew how to bust my rear and make me do. I wasn't given options and verbal ultimatums. I was shown what I would do and it was enforced. Now all of my brothers and sisters as well as my self are college grads with nice jobs and we are none scarred for life. We are productive citizens contributing to society as well as helping pay for most of these unneccesary services.

Most parents are naive

I have been teaching school for eleven years and have seen anything that could possibly happen in the school system. The main problem with children are their parents and the inability to raise a child. First of all, parents believe anything their child says. That is their first mistake. I have witnessed so many children at young ages play their parents like a game system. The parents are so naive to beleive everything the child says. 99% of the bullying is earlier instigated by the opponent. In almost every situation we investigate or witness, the so-called bully was aggrevated in some manner by his/her opponent. Parents need to teach their children how to fend for themselves and also teach their children how to act and not be so attention seeking. Most of the ones that are so called bullied are ones that are either babyfied or are not getting any attention at home because their parents are too busy living their life doing other things. These children do things to aggrevate other students to gain attention and it leads to other problems. Parents raise your children. You had time to make them; find time to raise them with the nourishment they need and in a manly or womanly way, not in a so called "baby sissy way." Also, get the facts from credible sources, not always your child. I witness children tell parents events all the time in a manner that portrays the innocence that the child wants the parent to perceive. Don't be so naive.