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TWO HARBORS - A campaign rolled out in Two Harbors this week so students will not be afraid to go to school. It’s a community wide anti-bullying imitative that teaches parents, teachers and students about preventing bullying.
Students packed Two Harbors High School auditorium Tuesday to get a lesson on one of the most common forms of violence -- bullying.
"What takes courage is to get to know somebody before you judge them, so it's ok to be different," Creative Education Services owner Jim Jelinske said.
The presentation, by Jelinske, who is a preventative bullying speaker, is the kick-off for the high school's "See it, Say it, Stop it" anti-bullying campaign.
"I thinking it's really gonna fire people up and make them excited and stand up," Two Harbors High School student Hanna Johnson said.
The campaign highlights and looks to end the harassment and abuse that happens on playgrounds, in hallways and busses.
"77 percent of kids in schools are bullied,” Two Harbors High School Student Dan O’Neil said. “So I do believe it's a pretty big issue in our school and I've seen it around the school."
"We wanna help make a change and be a difference in our schools and make a difference in people's lives," said Johnson.
Jelinske’s message like the campaign teaches bullies, victims and bystanders what bullying is and empowers witnesses to speak out against it.
"Find a friend, have a friend and then to report bullying," said Jelinske.
Officials say bullying is preventable and boils down to support and communication.
"A whole school approach where everybody's speaking the same language everyone's defining the same behaviors of what constitutes bullying, we can begin to see bullying incidents decrease," said Jelinske.
“Rather than a teacher just saying oh, don't do that it's not good thing to do, people will listen more if it's coming from their friends," said Johnson.
Students say they plan to roll out the campaign across the region, ending bullying one school at a time. The campaign will also use billboards and social media to take a stand against bullying.