Parents can feel a whole range of emotions when they discover their child is being bullied. While initial feelings may include isolation, anger, sadness and guilt, it is important to remember there is a way forward.
What is bullying?Bullying is when someone is deliberately hurtful to others over a period of time. The person being bullied usually finds it difficult to defend themselves.There are different forms of bullying, but these are the main ones:
- Physical – hitting, kicking, taking belongings
- Verbal – name calling, insulting, making offensive remarks
- Indirect – spreading nasty stories about someone, not including them in social groups
- Cyber bullying – bullying via the internet, mobile phones or through other communication.
INTRODUCTIONThis guide is aimed at giving you the information you need to know about pupil behaviour and bullying in schools. The vast majority of pupils are well behaved. This is important because all pupils and teachers need to work in a calm, safe environment. We know that bad behaviour and disruption in class can stop teachers teaching and pupils learning. That is why schools and teachers have certain powers to enable them to promote good behaviour, maintain discipline and tackle bullying. It is important that you know what those powers are, and when they can be used, so that you can help to see that the school, and everyone in it, benefits from good behaviour all the time....
Bullying is nothing new. Most of us will have vivid memories of the school bully demanding dinner money, tipping out school bags or threatening to give terrified victims a good roughing up after 'home time'.
Studies show bullying is more prevalent now than ever, but with modern technology, it has become more sophisticated and sinister. Worst of all, many parents have no idea this type of bullying – cyberbullying - even exists.
"Traditional bullying wasn't nice but it always happened face to face," says Richard Piggin, Head of Operations for the charity Beatbullying. "A child could leave school, or wherever the bullying was taking place, and go home to a safe place.
Exploring common reasons behind bullying... There are many reasons children and young people may get involved in bullying, such as:
- Feeling powerless.
- Low self-esteem.
- Trying to get admiration and attention from friends.
- Fear of being left out if they don’t join in.
- Not understanding how someone else is feeling.
- Taking out their angry feelings.
- A culture of aggression and bullying.
- Being bullied themselves.
As a parent you may not be able to control the community or peer group that your son or daughter is part of. But there are important things you can do to reduce the chances of your child getting involved in bullying – whether it...
Sexual bullying is a serious issue that needs to be tackled, read on to learn more... Sexual bullying covers a wide range of behaviour from name calling to physical sexual assault. It is as serious as racism and needs to be treated as such by parents, teachers and society in general.
In extreme cases prejudice-motivated bullying and harassment can also be considered a hate crime. (For the Home Office definition of hate crime see www.homeoffice.gov.uk/crime-victims/reducing-crime/hate-crime/)
Generally, sexual harassment and bullying is experienced by women and girls and...
Homophobic bullying does not only affect lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) young people. Anyone who is perceived as different can become a target of homophobic bullying. Like any other form of bullying, homophobic bullying can be distressing for your child and can affect their confidence and well-being. As a parent or carer you can play an important role in making sure your child - regardless of their sexual orientation – has someone to turn to if they are being bullied and that they feel included and valued – at home and at school.
One of the most important things you can do as a parent or carer to be there to listen. Many young people find it difficult to talk about being homophobically bullied because they are afraid...
This section offers advice for parents of disabled children who are experiencing bullying. This has been written with Contact A Family (CAF) specifically for parents of disabled children. Please click here to download the full version. With thanks to all the parents of disabled children who helped us develop this content.
You may useful information on general tips and how to get support in other sections of this website.
We know that children are more likely to be bullied when they are vulnerable in some way. Research suggests that disabled children are three times more likely than their peers to be bullied. A recent survey by Mencap discovered that eight out of ten children with a learning disability have been bullied....
Children may find it hard to talk about bullying, read on for advice on how to discuss the subject... Because of his or her disability, your child may be bullying, be bullied or react violently to other people’s reactions.
“I got a call from the head. The other parents had complained that my son had threatened their children. The head had tried to explain to them that he was autistic but the parents said that their children were no longer allowed to play with him in case he threatened them again.”
“My child dealt with bullying by swearing at them. The school responded by punishing him – not for standing up to the bullies but for swearing.”
Some children may find it hard to talk...
Signs to watch for if you think your child may be being bullied
You may be unsure if your child is involved in a bullying incident. He or she could be acting as a bully, being bullied or upset because they have seen others behaving badly. If you suspect that your child is involved in bullying then look out for these signs:
- Broken or missing possessions
- Becoming withdrawn – not talking, or spending more time alone
- Changes in eating habits
- Changes in behaviour – becoming aggressive at home
- Complaining of headaches or stomach aches
- Wetting the bed
- Worrying about going to school
- Suddenly doing...
General Parent Tips
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