A Bully Blueprint

Solutions for kids

By Cherrye S. Vasquez, PH. D.

In addition to the many widely-acclaimed children’s books on bullying and Multi-Culture Diversity, author Cherrye S. Vasquez has written a new book with hope of reaching children and teaching them, on their own turf, how to handle these issues which have been blown out of proportion in the past decades. In her own words author Vasquez has ” written A Bully Blueprint: Solutions for Kids, using health giving titles to provide parents and educators with familiar, health-centered but relatable terminology in an attempt to assist with therapeutic ideas for dismantling an appropriate bullying behaviors.” In short, a handbook for all involved in this pandemic of bullying undermining our society — including the bully.

This book leaves no stone unturned and is set up as a manual, addressing every possible aspect of bullying, the reasons for and a myriad of working solutions. Beginning with the basic definition of bullying, the author creates a list from the typical name-calling and fighting to the more horrific form of cyber bullying which has caused suicides among its victims.

She writes to parents and caretakers, because they are the only ones that can get the ball rolling to protect their children, going up against all barriers stopping them. And she educates them regarding their rights concerning laws and policies in their children’s schools. She also addresses the bully, who may have problems at home causing acting out and lashing at victims. This section of the book strongly stresses in detail the importance of documenting each bullying event as it happens, to be presented to school officials; plus the benefits of not being aggressive or hostile to school leaders. The author has had an experience with the bullying of her own child in fourth grade and learned ‘hands-on’ the best and worst ways of dealing with the situation.

As an educator, author and mother, Cherrye Vasquez is well-qualified to address the theme of this book. Having earned a Dr. of Philosophy in Curriculum and Instruction; a Master of Education In Special Education; and A Bachelor of Arts Degree in Speech, Pathology/Audiology; she specializes In Multicultural Education, Early Childhood Handicapped, Mid-management and Educational Diagnostics.

According to author Dr. Vasquez,” approximately 48 states do have anti-bullying programs but not all implant them. When all else fails one may need to hire a lawyer, especially with sexual harassment. She also, as do I, disagrees with some schools’ ‘zero tolerance policy in which the victim is penalized for fighting back when attacked. I was bullied in fourth grade in the 50s and my only recourse was to fight back, which was successful and we became friends. Vasquez states firmly that it is imperative to know your children, both bully and victim. I have seen within my own family that a bullied child often grows up to become a bully, so the time to stamp out the problem is at a young age. Children who bully are more likely to join groups of bullies as teens. This book gives step-by-step recommendations and directions to prevent that.

There is a section on checking children’s physical and emotional behavior, which can trigger bullying through frustrations. The book covers both the subjects well and parental/teacher emotional interaction with both the bully and the victim. ‘A Bully Blueprint ‘is packed with information on all causes and aspects of bullying that is loaded with counter actions to steer children toward becoming loving, responsible, diverse adults. Author Vasquez believes this can be done with positive affirmation which leads to giving children a sense of positive self empowerment and interactions with their peers, teachers, parents and society.

This extraordinarily well-written book is a must for parents, educators, bullies and victims—a book to be read and referred to as needs arise. I have yet to read such clear comprehensive writing on the ongoing serious, worldwide problem of bullying and diversity. I highly recommend this book for libraries, school personnel and parents, and suggest those learning from this extensive book to also check out Dr. Cherrye Vasquez’s selection of children’s books on this subject, such as, ‘The Bully Band, Parents in Rhythm.’

Micki Peluso; author of . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang

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