Opinion
Education Letter to the Editor

Conflict-Resolving Game Is Wrong About Tattling

May 12, 2008 1 min read

To the Editor:

It’s time to edit the new computer game “Cool Schools: Where Peace Rules,” put out by the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service and described in your April 30, 2008, Federal File column (“Federal Game Aims to Curb Youth Conflicts”). In the highlighted game scenario, involving a child who punches another child, who then tells a teacher, the teacher’s “correct” response—punishing both children, one for hitting and the other for tattling—is not the best response.

In the current school environment, we seek to discourage bullying, so telling a teacher is encouraged in situations like the one described. Telling gets help for the bullied or hurt child, and reinforces important school rules such as keeping your hands to yourself. We encourage telling at all ages so that staff members can hear about dangerous situations and threats, and so that we can become aware of inappropriate behavior.

Isabel Burk

Director

Health Network

New York, N.Y.

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