“WHY ARE THEY PICKING ON ME?” Understanding & Responding to Social Cruelty

Counseling & Special Ed

Are kids at your school mean to each other? Of course they are. When kids are cruel to other kids not only does it do direct harm to the victims, it also affects the learning environment for everyone. Over the years schools have responded with strong, no bullying polices and these are important because they show solidarity with the victims. Dr. Carl Pickhardt suggests in his book, Why Good Kids Act Cruel, that it’s time for a more effective approach.

He believes that while we do need to deal decisively with acts of social cruelty, that most of these acts, especially in the teen and early adolescent years, are caused by deeper issues that should be addressed. This course aims to provide educators with a more complete understanding of social cruelty and encourages a proactive approach for addressing it.

This course is appropriate for Pre-K through grade 12 teachers, administrators, support staff and parents. 

Note: The book was written mainly for educators and parents of middle-schoolers. However, regardless of the age group you work with this information is crucial so we can be part of the solution.


We advise you to review and download a summary of the course syllabus before registering. Summary

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