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Program in Wausau discusses bullying Monday


WAUSAU, WI (WSAU) -  Kids and parents are getting insight and advice to prevent bullying in Wausau today. It’s a program called “I Am Somebody.” The program is meant to raise awareness about the effects of bullying, and to give kids and parents the tools to minimize it.

Sarah Murphy is a 6th grade teacher at John Muir Middle School. She received grant funding to bring the “I Am Somebody” project to Wausau. Part of that is a presentation by John Halligan. Halligan’s 13-year-old son Ryan committed suicide, and his parents only learned about the cyber-bullying when they logged onto his computer after he died.

Murphy says technology has made it easier to bully people and harder to avoid it.  She says if your kids have social media accounts, you must be the parent and help kids manage those accounts.  That includes knowing their passwords so you can check when you suspect trouble.

Murphy advises against letting your children have their own private computer. She says these kids are the most vulnerable to online bullying.

John Halligan will speak to John Muir and Horace Mann middle schools during the day. There will be a public presentation open to everyone at Wausau East High School starting at 7:00 p.m.

Halligan has told Ryan’s story to over 700 schools across the nation, and has also been seen on Oprah and ABC’s Prime Time programs.

For More Information, Contact SARAH MURPHY at 715-261-0100.