Calvert takes on bullying

Calvert Catholic Schools faculty completed a three-phase bullying prevention program Wednesday presented by Frank DiLallo of the Diocese of Toledo.

The program, “Peace Be With You: Christ-Centered Bullying Solution,” written by DiLallo and co-authored by Thom Powers, began in 2001. DiLallo said after the 1999 Columbine High School massacre in Colorado, he wanted to do something.

“Just thinking about something like that happening in a school was mind boggling to me,” DiLallo said. “I couldn’t imagine what the administrators and faculty were going through.”

DiLallo began to compose an audio CD called the “Peace Project.” From there, he discussed leadership, interpersonal and intrapersonal skills in schools. He came to realize that what he had was the foundation of a program.

“I would constantly get calls about bullying, so I began to field test the program in the schools,” DiLallo said.

The workshop is a two-hour, three-phase program that begins with discussing leadership and how a person see himself or herself as a leader. Phases two and three discuss interpersonal and intrapersonal skills.

The phases include activities and come with a student workbook.

“We want the activities to be thought-provoking and engaging,” DiLallo said. “The interaction then is able to bridge the gap between school and home.”

The program also has a secular version for public schools called “Peace2U Three Phase Bullying Solution,” DiLallo said.

“No school is immune to bullying,” he said.

The program targets grades four through eight. DiLallo said he wants to create a program for kindergarten through third grade.

“Bullying seems to be happening earlier and earlier,” DiLallo said.

Superintendent Gerald Schoen said the program is intended to prevent bullying and ensure a safe and thriving learning environment for Calvert students and staff.

Pat Berman, technology teacher at Calvert who has gone through the program once before, said this program does good and makes a difference.

High School Spanish teacher Dana Culbert said the program makes everyone aware of the unity, that we’re all human.

“The program gives students a chance to see how their actions affect others and allows them to see themselves in another person’s shoes and to see how they feel,” Culbert said.