Bullying prevention expert trains VISD counselors, teachers

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  • To learn more about the Radkids progam, visit their website: radkids.org.

If someone hits you, you have the right to defend yourself but not necessarily the right to hurt that person, said Steve Daley, a former police officer and physical resistance to violence advocate.

Daley conducted a 40-hour training session, underwritten by the DeTar Healthcare System, with Victoria school district elementary counselors and teachers. He is the founder of radKIDS, a national children's safety organization based in Massachusetts.

"We're going to teach the children not only to recognize and not accept being bullied but how to stop it - not how to fight or hurt anybody else," Daley said. "RadKIDS will bring the kids together."

VISD is the ninth district in the state to receive radKIDS training, Daley said.

"We need to let students know they're important by showing them their self-value and self-worth," Daley said. "They need to know nobody has the right to hurt them."

During his presentation on bullying prevention, Daley explained the difference between how males and females bully others.

"Boys bully from the outside in," Daley said. "Girls bully from the inside out."

For students heading back to school, Daley said, they should remember it's not their fault if they are bullied.

"They try to make you feel that it's their fault, but it's not your fault; it's theirs; they're the ones trying to hurt you. Our rule is they don't get to, " Daley said. "By giving them that power, we're the ones that suffer. We shouldn't do that, and we're going to change that here in Victoria."

Daley will also be providing his safety training to employees of the DeTar Healthcare System.

Judith Barefield, DeTar Healthcare System spokeswoman, said they learned about the radKIDS program through Elizabeth Smart, an American activist who recently visited Victoria.

"Her big focus is child safety," Barefield said. "We felt that as part of a follow-up to our program about empowering women, we needed to do something that would empower the children in our community."

Daley said he hopes to see the culture in the schools change with an improved sense of safety.

"There's been a strong commitment here to take a proactive response to this," Daley said.