Gov. Haley takes anti-bullying campaign to Hartsville Middle School

HARTSVILLE, SC (WMBF) - Governor Nikki Haley will visit Hartsville Middle School Monday, January 27, as a stop on her Anti-Bullying Tour. During the program, Governor Haley will talk to the students about bullying, share an anti-bullying video, and participate in a Q&A with the students.

The visit will take place from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. in the school auditorium.

Haley, the state's first female and first Indian-American governor, has stated that she was bullied as young child. "I grew up in a small town where we were the only Indian family, and I was bullied because they didn't know if I was black or if I was white," she said. "All I knew was I was Indian. I was brown; and I was bullied because I wouldn't take a side… so I told my parents and my parents talked to the teachers, and we ended up educating the class. Today, we're all good friends. But what I learned was to be strong and to speak up."

Her anti-bullying campaign, called "Cool Kids Don't Bully," is part of the governor's promotion of safe, positive schools. The campaign also seeks to raise awareness of bullying's negative effects on a child's health and learning.

According to Stop Bullying Now 2013, about 160,000 children miss school every day because of fear. One out of seven students in grades K-12 is either a bully or a victim of bullying.

The new campaign aims to stop the bullying plague, across South Carolina. Governor Haley's personal message to the students is "cool kids don't bully," a signature theme that has become an area of emphasis. Her passion for putting a stop to bullying in and out of school is apparent as she encourages students to do their part.

Copyright 2014 WMBF News. All rights reserved. Island Packet and The Times and Democrat contributed to this article.