Boise author and teacher publishes book to battle bullying

Boise author and teacher publishes book to battle bullying
BOISE, Idaho - Bullying statistics say 160,000 kids stay home from school every day to avoid getting picked on. More than half of students say they've witnessed bullying at school and three out of four say it's an on-going problem.

"Even in the Treasure Valley. Even in small town Idaho. It's everywhere," said Jennie Withers, a Boise resident and the author of a recently published anti-bullying handbook for parents and children called, "Hey, Back Off! Tips for Stopping Teen Harassment."

"In the national cases, you'll find the bully wasn't aware the effects of what they were doing were so severe until it was too late."

Suicide Prevention Action Network of Idaho says suicide is the second leading cause of death among teenagers and Cyberbullying Research Center says half of suicides among 15 to 24-year-olds are related to bullying.

"It's just has to stop."

She taught adolescents for 16 years in the Treasure Valley and says she noticed a need she felt she could meet with her book.

While "cyberbullying" has been a hot topic lately, her book says bullying still comes in many different forms, including anything from gossip to unwanted hugs.

Withers blames the media for part of the problem, saying it often glorifies bullying.

She says the solution is to get everyone aware and involved, not just law enforcement or teachers.