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‘Bully-Proofing’ Kids Focus of Presentation

February 19, 2013
By SARAH HARMON Staff Writer , The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

Wheeling Country Day School will host Jim Bisenius, an award-winning therapist and presenter, who will discuss how to teach children to effectively respond to bullying at 6 p.m. Wednesday in the school's gym.

His program, "Bully-Proofing Youth," will give teachers and caregivers advice on bullying prevention and how children grades K-12 can handle a bully on their own.

The presentation will cover how to respond to verbal, physical and social bullying and group manipulation.

"I think what's unique about Jim Bisenius's presentation is he's studied bullying for 10 years and realized the only solution was to starve the bully of the power high of the situation," Elizabeth Hofreuter-Landini, head of school, said. "As an educator myself, I was blown away by his comment that parents and schools are almost ineffective after third grade, and though it seems the behavior is being mitigated, what he found to be true is that it just went underground."

Hofreuter-Landini learned Bisenius had studied body language and researched the similarities of bullies across genders and ages to find patterns of behavior when she heard his presentation during an independent school conference in November.

"I think he's got it right when he calls it 'bully-proofing' youth. His work is how to help everybody, not just punish the bully," she said. "His work is about changing the behavior of everybody."

Bullying prevention tips will also apply to adults to use in their lives to handle controlling or intimidating adults.

Bisenius has 16 years of experience as a child and adolescent therapist specializing in teaching children how to handle targeted bullying.

The event is free and open to the public.

Free child care will be available with advanced registration for children who are potty-trained and older by calling 304-232-2430.

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