Tuesday, 13 November 2007

I was reminded again recently that we need to continue to work to find more effective strategies for keeping our children and young people safe and for dealing with bullying…

Bullying is not an inevitable part of school life or the workplace and if we are serious about tackling this endemic and corrosive problem which blights the lives of so many of our children and young people we must look again at the bigger picture and develop strategies that recognise the problems are systemic and involve the whole school community including parents. We must work closely with our schools to help them develop strong and effective positive behaviour and anti-bullying schemes and work with whole school populations to take a strong grip on the root causes of bullying. It can only be stopped if governors, headteachers, teachers, support staff, lunchtime supervisers and the whole school community supported by parents and carers are totally committed to developing and implementing positive behaviour and anti-bullying strategies.

We know that children and young people are more comfortable talking to another child or young person when they have a problem. All the evidence suggests that peer support, buddying and mentoring are key elements at the heart of our most inclusive practice and at the core of the best behaviour strategies and anti-bullying schemes. We need to listen to our children and young people more; in classrooms, through circle time, through school councils, through Youth on Health and the Youth Parliament. We must also reach out to hard to reach groups to listen to their stories and learn how we can do better. All our schools must work hard to engage and involve children and young people in developing and implementing strategies to develop positive behaviour and resilience, to build more inclusive provision, to protect our most vulnerable and special children and to tackle bullying.

What are you doing about this?

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