After seeing the documentary Bully last week, Luke Schuler, a sophomore who is majoring in psychology and minoring in education, said the movie truly hit home.
“I thought it was a great movie, and I think everyone should see it,” Schuler said.
Schuler was one of about 20 students in Palm Beach Atlantic University’s School of Education and Behavioral Studies who were invited to be part of a preview screening of the film last week at Muvico Parisian 20 in CityPlace.
|Dr. Chelly Templeton (standing, second from right) joins some of the PBA students who attended an advance screening of the documentary Bully last week in CityPlace.|
Dr. Chelly Templeton, associate professor of education, said several of the students presently are studying a unit on bullying as part of their coursework. “It was a like a Godsend,” Dr. Templeton said. “It just fit right in.”
Schuler said he is aware of the controversy surrounding the film’s use of strong language, which led to an initial R rating from the Motion Picture Association of America. Some of the curse words have been removed, and the rating was changed to PG-13 prior to its expansion into markets nationwide last Friday.
“I felt like was very real,” especially in a public school setting, Schuler said.
Sophomore Kaylyn Durrance, an elementary education major who is minoring in exceptional student education, said the movie made her think back to her own high school days. Back then, she always made it a point to smile and be kind to everyone because she knew that sometimes that could make a huge difference in someone’s day, she said.
For sophomore Jackie Stuckert, who is majoring in Christian social ministry and minoring in education, the movie brought back very different memories. She said that both she and her brother were victims of bullying on the school bus, which is something that is depicted in the movie. “That’s where we were affected the most,” she said.
Stuckert, who hopes someday to teach overseas as part of mission work, said the film moved her to take action. “As a future educator, I want to be aware of what’s going on, and I don’t want to turn a blind eye to students who are suffering.”
The screening was organized by Pepe Fanjul Jr., senior vice president of Florida Crystals Corp. and a supporter of the Do the Write Thing Challenge, an effort to fight bullying by encouraging middle school students to write about their experiences.
Along with the education students, a number of teens also were invited to attend the April 11 screening.