Bullying in education
A bully – ‘a person who uses strength or influence to harm or intimidate those who are weaker: he is a ranting, domineering bully’ Oxford Dictionary.
Bullies – ‘Use superior strength or influence to intimidate (someone), typically to force them to do something: a local man was bullied into helping them’ Oxford Dictionary.
What is it that entices someone to bully another?
Jealously is the dominant reason people bully. They act because they are jealous of their targets, looks, talents, abilities, possessions or even circumstances. Bullies don’t act with integrity and they despise people who do display it. Sometimes they act with no reason other than the enjoyment they feel from hurting someone and for the reaction they provoke.
Bullies don’t act with integrity and they despise people who do display it.
Bullies normally have low self-esteem, problems at home, jealousy issues, a need to be centre of attention or a need to impress others and see other people as inferior to them. Many of these are noticed and dealt with by teachers. But it still happens day in and day out. Many children are too afraid to report bullying thus the constant battle.
How is it cool to hurt someone’s feelings and make them feel left out?
‘21% of people say they bully somebody else several times a week’ – this is an unacceptable figure. We know bullying is rife in schools and in the work place but yet the key theme in all the findings is that no one within the school system is doing much to prevent bullying.
Many schools have well-intentioned anti-bullying policies in place to prevent harassment but they don’t actually work. Evidently, there are many reasons for institutional apathy, school officials will stress that the bullying was not witnessed, that there is no physical proof or any written documentation.
69% of young people have witnessed somebody else being bullied
Bullying is still such a taboo subject within education. Schools find it very difficult to accept they may have a bullying problem, although there is clear proof bullying happens everywhere, it doesn’t reflect badly on the schools unless they ignore it and brush it under the carpet. Bullying needs to be dealt with head on. Many schools find once they introduce an anti-bullying system, a storm of incidents are reported. The percentage of bullying reports will increase and once the system has been in place for a couple of months bullying reduces.
43% of young people have been bullied
The facts don’t lie. The Annual Bullying Survey is one of the UK’s most comprehensive reports into the bullying of young people. The statistics are alarming, ‘as a result of bullying, 29% self harmed, 27% skipped class, 14% developed an eating disorder and 12% ran away from home. Those who have bullied were more likely to be in trouble with the Police (36%) vs. witnesses to bullying (23%) and those who have been bullied (22%).’ Anecdotal evidence has suggested self-harming is common among youngsters. Appearance is cited as the number 1 aggressor of bullying, with 51% saying they were bullied because of attitudes towards how they look. 74% of those who have been bullied, have, at some point been physically attacked. 17% have been sexually assaulted. 62% have been cyber bullied.
It is strongly advised that all forms of bullying are reported, so that issues can be dealt with immediately. Teachers and parents should be the first form of contact. It is a good idea to keep a record of all incidents and try to not retaliate. Be strong and be better than them.
A bullying system that works.
Text someone is a bullying reporting system. It encourages people to report incidents of bullying and anti-social behaviour directly to schools. The students can text, go online or call 24/7 to report the incident. A great feature is the option for students to upload evidence along with their description.
The system eliminates that initial communication barrier between students and teachers. The students don’t have to take the dreaded walk to the office and pluck up the courage to explain the situation and witness being seen, they communicate through a medium they are familiar with.
Text Someone really works and it does so by its discretion. Each school is given a unique ID number which the students use to send voice, text and online messages to. The school normally appoints someone in charge of the system, they can log into the Text Someone website and view the messages that have been sent in real time. The school can always choose to reply to this message directly or add notes for other users on the message or online. When a reply is sent, this will be received by the student via their mobile phone or email, this allows a secure dialogue to start between the school and the student in complete confidence.
Instant alerts are set up for whenever a student reports an incident, this automatically appears on the Text Someone Website so the school are alerted and for peace of mind, the student will receive an automatic confirmation of their receipt.
Below are two case studies on Text Someone demonstrating the effects of using an anti-bullying system that works.