What Do You Do When A Child Doesn't Feel Safe at School? How Alternative School Options Can Help Bullied Children Succeed.
Bullying is being taken more seriously than ever before -- and as well it should be. But one aspect of bullying that we feel doesn't get enough attention is one of the long-term consequences of being bullied: decreased academic achievement.
Along with the many other (and significant) issues that stem from being bullied, kids who are bullied are more likely to miss, skip, or drop out of school. (1)
Missing school leads to decreased participation, which in turn leads to decreased test scores and poorer outcomes.
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the median weekly earnings of full-time workers 25 and older was $909 in mid-2017. For those without a high-school diploma, the median weekly earnings were just $515. That drop in earning potential, measured over a lifetime is huge. Which means we need to support bullied kids in a way that helps them complete their education.
So, the big question is this: when kids don't feel safe at school, what can we do to get them back on track for a successful future?
We've found success with moving kids who are at risk of dropping out of high school into our alternative hybrid online/in-person program.
At Success VLC, all students are supplied with a laptop and mobile hotspot so they can complete their coursework at home. We also welcome students into our drop-in centers where they work with certified teachers in a welcoming, positive environment.
On average, at any given time, only 10 students are in our drop-in centers. That means teachers can connect with students on a personal level to work through academic issues. We don't tolerate bullying and we focus on providing a safe, welcoming environment.
We also offer extracurricular activities, like clubs and field trips, along with career development opportunities, like internships and mentorships provided in partnership with local businesses.
Our approach is working. And that's reflected in SAT scores, in our graduation rate, but most importantly in the feedback we get from our students. Here are some of the highlights:
94% of students say the teachers at Success VLC care about how I am doing (up from 36% at prior school).
93% of students say the teachers at Success VLC work hard to make sure I stay in school (up from 44% at prior school).
So if you, your child, or someone you know is struggling to complete high school as a result of bullying, share with them a message of hope. You can feel safe. You can complete high school.
If you're interested in learning more about Success VLC and the areas we serve, click here.
If you or someone you know is in immediate danger from bullying, there are ways to get help. Click here to find out how to get help now.