Dr. Elizabeth Englander of Bridgewater State University’s Massachusetts Aggression Reduction Center (MARC) visited Everett for the second time in less than a year, to address Everett parent teacher organizations in a joint, city-wide meeting that was focused on reducing the threat from technology-based bullying among Everett students.
According to its website, MARC is an academic center at Bridgewater State that conducts research, hosts conferences and teaches anti-bullying and anti-cyber bullying programs to faculty, staff, administration, parents and communities across Massachusetts and the United States.
Dr. Englander, a highly regarded professor of psychology at BSU is also the founder and director of the center since 2003 and is widely published on the issue. She has also written two books on the subject, as well as a syndicated column and several professional and popular columns as well.
“In terms of providing general advice to parents who are concerned (about bullying), I guess the main thing is that there really isn’t a one-size fits all solution,” said Dr. Englander. “The best thing for parents to do is to really talk with their child and get the specifics of what is going on, and then work with the school to make sure they have that specific information.”
Englander said that the biggest issue in bullying cases, whether they have a technological component or are simply based in interactions between kids, is that school administrators and teachers don’t usually have the right information about what is going on.
“The more specific information you can get, the better,” added Englander. “Get as much specific information you can get and encourage your child to communicate with you about what’s going on.”