Education Week, January 29, 2011
Ashley Craig recalls a turning point in her life.
She was an 8th grader at Sussex Middle School when a classmate sat her down at a desk. “I’m going to end it,” she recalls him saying. “I don’t have any friends. People make fun of me. I’m going to end my life.”
She promised to keep his secret but immediately told a guidance counselor. The boy went into therapy, and later thanked her for saving his life.
Craig, a victim of taunting herself, decided to take a stand against bullying. After eight months of research, the now-14-year-old presented an anti-bullying campaign to the High Point Board of Education, and the board unanimously approved her initiative, “Students Against Being Bullied,” as a student group.
Craig, with assistance from school officials, is now implementing her three-tiered plan, which relies largely on teen favorite for communication: text messaging.
“It was my bullying experience, my friends, and, overall, just seeing the enormity of the issue (that motivated me),” she said. “It’s being called an epidemic now.