Learn more about bullying in school and how this problem can affect the lives of children and adolescents.
We all know that until recently, what we now recognize as bullying was seen as “child bickering”, silly implications, and even normal games such as putting a nickname on a colleague. That is, bullying always existed, but little was systematized and studied. In addition, families had less information to deal with this problem and only the most serious were taken seriously by the family, who sought to intervene in the school somehow.
Bullying is, yes, a chronic problem in school. It did not come up yesterday and it will not be eliminated tomorrow. How, then, to live with this practice and minimize its effects within the school environment?
The good news is that, for some years now, educational institutions, families, and even the government have realized that this is a serious problem in schools and that some measures need to be taken.
Read more about bullying in this post and learn why it is a chronic problem in schools and how to detect it before having more serious consequences.
What is bullying?
The systematic violence or intimidation of an individual or group against another individual (s) or group (s), without a clear reason, in a physical and/or psychological, intentional, and continuous manner constitutes a case of bullying.
For anyone we ask, from the youngest to the oldest, we will have reports about violence and bullying in school, experienced by those same people or colleagues.
Bullying at School:
Although it may occur – it’s true! – In the workplace or between neighbors, for example, the school is the most susceptible place to practice bullying. Children and young people, because they are in the formation phase, also experience the need for self-affirmation and, at times, are not accustomed to living with differences. It may be the source of these unacceptable practices of discrimination and superiority.
In the school environment, it is important to be aware of the ways abusers use to intimidate victims. They are the most diverse, such as:
- give shoves and kicks
- create humiliating rumors
- create vexatious situations
- invent nicknames that hurt the dignity
- capture and disseminate images (including the internet, which constitutes a case of cyberbullying )
- threaten in person and through messages
- exclusion from social or pedagogical activities (such as group work).
According to the Psychologists, the threats may be accompanied by extortion, especially with students in grades 5 and 6. Several are the consequences of bullying in school for the victim. That is why the importance of family and school expands efforts to combat this practice. The more information students have about respect, empathy, tolerance, diversity, and solidarity, the less likely they are to develop discriminatory attitudes.
Types of Bullying:
Involves negative words directed towards someone including curses, insults, name-calling in order to intentionally hurt a person.
Physical bullying in school includes physical attacks on a child such as tripping, hitting, poking, etc.
Involves spreading negative rumors and undermining someone in order to exclude him/her from the rest of the group.
Who gets bullied the most?
While bullying has no one particular group of the target, but statistics and research highlights certain groups that are the most prone to been bullied than others, those are
People with a weight problem:
One-third of the girls and one-fourth of the boys report weight-based teasing from peers, but prevalence rates increase approximately 60% among the heaviest students.
People with disabilities:
Several studies reveal that children with disabilities were two or three times more likely to be bullied than their non-disabled peers.
People who belong to Racial or Religious Minorities:
In the US, more than one-third of adolescents are reported bullying in school because of their race or religion.
People who are LGBTQ or perceived as LGBTQ:
5% of LGBT students felt unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation, and 37.8% because of their gender expression.
Warning Signs of Bullying:
- A child is strangely quiet
- Unexplained injuries
- Trouble sleeping
- A change in eating habits
- Missing things such as toys and personal items
Effects of bullying:
Both victims and perpetrators may suffer psychological consequences from this situation of aggression, be it physical or psychological. Low self-esteem, learning difficulties, difficulty in socializing, anxiety, fear, and even in some cases depression may be associated with bullying in school.
The child who suffers from Bullying can withdraw from social life, abandon school, and want to take revenge on the aggressions. Psychological damage and health problems are likely effects.
Among the small ones, there may be a delay in development, and in some cases, another consequence may be a drop in income and even school dropout.
The witness usually feels guilty for not preventing humiliation and even feels complicit. You may suffer emotionally and start missing classes.
An important but less widespread practice is the need to look at the aggressor. Usually, aggressors are the children with the highest percentage of disapproval. In most cases, destabilized family relationships are part of the lives of those who practice systemized violence.
Rather than accuse and punish him, first, you must assess the conditions of this student, his history, seeking to identify the best way to act and deal with the situation as a whole.
Children and youth who suffer from bullying may exhibit behavioral changes: they become more reclusive, antisocial, and suffer sudden mood changes. They also get sick more often because they get low immunity, and may come home hungry (because they had the snack stolen). At worst, the victim has suicidal thoughts.
If these symptoms are noticed, or if the child changes their behavior in some way. The family should talk and look for school. The sooner bullying is detected, the less damage it will leave in the victim.
Depending on the length of time that practice has spread or on the severity and emotional consequences. Both the aggressor and the assailant may need psychological counseling.
A law created in 2015, the Anti-Bullying Act – 13.185 / 15, came into force in February 2016 and instituted the Program to Combat Systematic Intimidation. Under the terms of this law.
“Any act of physical or psychological, intentional and repetitive violence that occurs without obvious motivation, practiced by an individual or group, against one or more persons, with the purpose of intimidating or assaulting it, causing pain and anguish to the victim, in a relationship of imbalance of power between the parties involved “.
Prevention of Bullying in School:
The text of the law guides the prevention of the practice through practices of the orientation of family, instruction of lectures, promotion of campaigns, and strengthening of citizenship. Bullying Awareness and anti-bullying actions should be taken by educational institutions, clubs, and recreational clubs.
Bullying is not a joke and should be tackled daily by students, teachers, principals, and parents, with information, respect, and communication.
In view of the above, it is essential to combat this practice on a daily basis. Awareness-raising actions that address the need to overthrow prejudice, encourage cooperation and work to create a culture of peace involving family and school can be good solutions to deal with this chronic problem.