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Sep 4, 2012 9:07 PM by Andy Koen

Taekwondo school teaches words rather than kicks to confront bullying

The marquee outside of the US Taekwondo Center near Lehman and Academy encourages parents to "bully proof their kids" as they head back to school. But the program they teach emphasizes words rather thank kicks to get a bully to back down.

"The Verbal Taekwondo program that we teach our kids is basically a way for kids to use their words rather than kicks and punches to de-escalate situations with bullying in school," explains Master Sammy Pejo.

For example, the students are taught how to make a joke of an insult and then how to leave to tell a teacher about the bully's behavior. Master Pejo says Taekwondo teaches students to never act out of anger or any other emotion.

"We call it the verbal martial arts and the reason is because schools have a a zero tolerance policy for bullying and they also they also have a zero tolerance policy for violence."

Tonight at 10:00 on News 5 we'll visit one of Master Pejo's classes and hear hear how a local school district is confronting bullying.

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