It is unfortunate that in every town, and in every school, there is a Yaqui Delgado. There is always a bully. (I feel Meg Medina fully understands this.) Worse than having a bully is knowing that society continues to nearly ignore the problem of bullying. In my short time as an educator, I have seen bullying occur in every corner of the educational system. I have seen Kindergartners use physical dominance to establish a social hierarchy. I have seen students fight other students. I have seen students belittle and attempt to physically harm teachers. And, astonishingly, despite all of these things being recorded and reported very little repercussion occurs to the bully and the victim is left with nothing but mounting fear.
Why do we allow this to happen? Are we not supposed to protect all of our students? Sure we must protect people from false accusations but should that trump protecting those that need aid? It almost seems that it is better to be the bad guy at times.
Anyhow, this book covers a great deal that students can connect to. There are students in my Jr. High that hold down jobs, participate in sports, and earn straight A’s. Many others can relate because they come from single family homes.
I hope that none of my students never experience an attack like Piddy suffered from Yaqui, but I hope even more that this book can help them recognize all of the things that could have been done that were not to help Piddy. Her neighbor did nothing but watch. Piddy refused to let her family friend tell her mother. Ma did not challenge the story about Piddy falling down the stairs. Yaqui’s friends could have stopped Yaqui from hurting Piddy and ultimately, herself. They could have refused to support her actions by encouraging her and recording the fight. Everyone that saw the video could have done something to help Piddy.
In the end, it only takes the courage of one person to change the life of another. I hope that my students can take on life like responsible person. A person that would have helped Piddy.