TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Bullying is a growing issue in schools not just in the northwest Ohio area, but the entire country as well. That's why St. Francis de Sales in west Toledo is partnering with ProMedica to promote a positive school environment.
"It's an effort that hopes to help teens think before they act, promoting positive decision making and a healthy behaviors," said Father Geoff Rose of St. Francis de Sales School.
Bullying, cyber bullying and sexting are big issues facing our teens today. Engaging in these behaviors can alter their lives.
People's sense of worth, including suicide, were part of the topics covered in Wednesday's lecture class. Danielle Cisterino from ProMedica led the session.
"We're trying to really host and facilitate some really meaningful conversations with the young men," said Cisterino.
She says the teens have a tendency to act impulsively, and she's hoping the conversations that have taken place will help stop destructive behavior before it starts.
"Thinking before they act, before they speak and before they press send on a computer," said Cisterino.
Behaviors like bullying and sexting aren't just dangerous to those students being victimized, they can also lead to serious repercussions for the perpetrators, including expulsion from school and even jail time.
"These are things that will have a permanent impact on your record," said Father Geoff Rose.
The state of Ohio has strict laws against bullying behaviors. For example, sexting, even minors could be considered a felony. A person found guilty could face eight years in jail and could be forced to register as a sex offender.
St. Francis will hold more bullying lectures throughout the school year.