Bullying Assembly

Ana Espinoza, Assistant News Editor

Bullying has plagued generations of teenagers, and has only become more common in the digital age.  On April 8, anti-bullying activist Mr. John Halligan visited Schreiber to give his presentation, entitled “Ryan’s Story.”

In 2003, Halligan lost his thirteen year-old son, Ryan, to suicide as a result of online and in-school bullying.  Since the incident, Halligan has dedicated his time to preventing bullying and raising awareness. In 2004, he advocated the Vermont Bully Prevention Bill, and has since spearheaded the passage of a law pertaining to mandatory suicide prevention education in public schools.

Halligan provided students and teachers with an emotional retelling of his son’s story, beginning his presentation with a slideshow of home videos.

Halligan presented his story twice during school hours, and once to parents on the same day at 7 p.m.  at Weber Middle School.

Athletic director Ms.  Stephanie Joannon and Board of Education president Ms.  Karen Sloan acted as co-chairpersons for the event.

The presentation was powerful and well-received by students, who remained nearly silent throughout the entire presentation.

“It touched our hearts and minds.” said freshman Liliana Martinez.

The assembly differed from others because it featured a personal account.

“The assembly was really different from any other,” said sophomore Tessa Peierls, “I think his presentation was an eye opener to the effects of middle school bullying.”