OREGON, OH (WTOL) - Children are back in school which means the bullies are back too. And one local school district is ramping up their fight against bullying this year.
Most schools only have a counselor, but Oregon City Schools leaders say their approach goes beyond one person. They fight bullying with many people inside and outside the school - at a level that only a few areas of the country have done.
Oregon police officer Sara Shaw isn't cracking down on criminals. Instead, her days are spent in the halls of an elementary school, building relationships.
"Our working relationship between Oregon schools and police is amazing, top notch," said Shaw, Oregon School Resource Officer. "We work hand-in-hand, side-by-side on so many different things. We consult them; they consult us. Its a daily working relationship that we do have."
The Oregon Police Department provides a school resource officer in each school. The officers get to know the children, the conflicts, their families and teachers.
But that's just the beginning.
"I think we have a more systematic approach to the problem which is helpful," said Lori Beverage, Oregon Schools Mental Health Services. "We try to use research-based practices, which is very helpful."
The approach also involves school counselors, counseling with Harbor Behavioral Health, leadership programs for students and monthly meetings for staff to catch up on what's going on.
"Bringing in the professionals that really know what they're doing, and talking, and communicating about what we can do to help kids get through the situations they're going through is vital," Hal Gregory, Oregon Schools Superintendent.
The superintendent says this year, they'll also implement a new program targeting athletics called Positive Coaching Alliance. It will help deliver the message to parents, athletes and coaches that athletics is about developing leadership and teamwork.
If you live outside of Oregon, you can also find support if your kid is being bullied - or is a bully - on our website. Just look for the #2Strong4Bullies section under our news tab. You can also find it in the Back-to-School HQ section of our news app.
The campaign is a commitment we've made to help stop bullying in our communities with the help of our friends at Gallon, Takacs, Boissoneault and Schaffer.