Taking a Stand Against Bullying

By: Bonney Bowman Email
By: Bonney Bowman Email

Kirk Smalley's message: Stand for the silent.

Smalley started talking to students around the country after his son, Ty, killed himself.

He says the only way for bullying to end is if students stand together and speak up when they see someone being hurt.

Smalley said, "Administrators, school personnel, teachers, parents, we can't see everything that happens in the hallways but one of them is going to know about it. They're going to see it and they can stand up and say that's not right, that's not how we treat each other, we don't have to be that way."

Many teens took that message to heart.

Lincoln Southeast Sophomore Avary Pansing-Brooks said, "The fact that he enforces and keeps repeating 'stand for the silent' and 'I am somebody' - that has such an impact on everyone and makes them feel like they're worth what he's talking about and they're worth the fight."

Many schools have a zero tolerance policy against bullying, but Smalley says it's not always effective.

The day of his death, Smalley's son was suspended under zero tolerance rules when he retaliated against a bully.

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