The term school bullying by itself clearly signifies the practice of bullying that is done at school by some children. The act of bullying in schools can be of different types: physical, verbal, sexual and even cyberbullying.
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Verbal bullying means any slanderous statements or accusations that cause the victim undue emotional distress. You can take some examples like directing foul language (profanity) at the target, using derogatory terms or deriding the person’s name, commenting negatively on someone’s looks, clothes, body, etc. (personal abuse), harassing etc.
Physical bullying in schools is the physical contact that happens between the bully and the victim. Some examples are fighting, kicking, pinching, punching pushing etc.
Emotional bullying signifies the bullying activity that is done by a person on some other person where the latter suffers the pain of building a disturbed mindset.
There are various kinds of emotional bullying:
- Provoking others
- Spreading wrong and harmful information about an individual/individuals
- Getting certain people to “gang up” on others i.e. it might be even physical bullying
- Verbal bullying such as calling names at a person or uttering words that can really cause pain
- Using funny words or gestures at people
- Ignoring people on purpose through either pretending the victim is non-existent or by silent treatment
Cyberbullying means the form of bullying done where some child is tormented, threatened, harassed, humiliated, embarrassed or otherwise targeted by another child, preteen or teen using the Internet, interactive and digital technologies or mobile phones.”
There is a high risk of this kind of bullying going unnoticed if there is no proper authorized adult or parental supervision. The complexity of this kind of bullying is the anonymity that the bullying person can maintain. Cyberbullying is performed by utilizing websites, instant messaging, sending text messages and abuse through email blogs. Many who are bullied in school are likely to be bullied over the Internet and vice versa.
As most of the students are getting addicted to the internet, the advancement in social media and technology have altered the fear of in-person bullying away from a school but has rather increased cyberbullying.
According to various researches done, males are more likely to be active cyberbullies than females
There are certain parameters to be kept for properly judging that an act of bullying has taken place and they are:
- Deliberate intent of the bullying boy/girl to cause harm to the other classmate
- Imbalance of power which means that bullying is a real or observable power disparity between the bully and the victim
- The bully habituates the act of bullying until some time period
- Provocation by the bully
- Suffering of the victim and its extent (mild to severe physical or psychological pain)
Know More about Bullying Facts
Causes of Bullying
a) Discriminatory rules for both genders
b) The atmosphere of occurrence – In the school setting, boredom infused into the minds of students in school and lack of care by teachers are main reasons.
The students who are not interested in any work will only do bullying in schools while other students who are not cared properly by the teachers and staff could lead the students to think that they are not important forces.
Schools and the education system can also be classed under the context of wider social and structural factors. The reason is that they may reflect and create environments that do not protect children and adolescents from bullying and violence. According to many types of research, it is noted that harassment of girls stands highest in school despite the large happening of other kinds of violence in the society.
Effects that are caused by bullying on a victim
The various short-term impacts on a victim through being bullied might result in:
- Inordinate stress
- Feeling that life is damaged
- Learned helplessness
- A big drop in school performance
- Committing suicide.
In the long term, they may feel insecure, lack trust, exhibit extreme sensitivity (hypervigilant), or developmental illnesses like psychopathy, avoidant personality disorder or PTSD. They may even wreak vengeance on others by indulging in that tit-for-tat behavior in causing harm and pain.
The symptoms of anxiety, depression and psychosomatic can be commonly seen in both the bullies and their victims.
How to Stop Bullying in Schools?
Bullying is a problem that can actually spoil a child’s schooling, social life, and emotional well-being. The modern era has paved the way for the influx of technology and other methods to communicate and harass one other. Internet and cell phones are also spoilers. Bullying is a real problem that is capable of generating miserable outcomes.
Schools can avert the bullying practice within its premises through introducing some good and thoughtful changes such as:
- The topic of bullying should be added to the curriculum and it must result in students getting complete knowledge about bullying. It must be ensured that students definitely learn about the need and ability of positive approach while communicating with others. This skill will result in making the students work for creating an excellent school environment without bullying issues.
- It is mandatory to have a separate system or cell for handling reports of bullying that are reported by an affected child and give the needful solution. The name of the child reporting such bullying incident can even be kept anonymous. The right solution for resolving bullying issues is through arrangement of a meeting of some professionals and a counselor with the victimized children and their parents.
- Conducting effective classroom discussions on the bullying subject will highly enhance the awareness of students about how bullying happens and its impact. It is mandatory for instilling the knowledge amidst children that children involved in bullying have also faced that problem. The behavioral intention of such children is to try on giving back what they had experienced earlier.
The negative traits formed amongst these children are low self-respect and that feeling of powerlessness. They involve in bullying with the intent of building or raising their self-respect and target those children, who display a fearful outlook. The comprehensive knowledge gained by all children on bullying can even make every child work as if like a partner for their school in eradicating the bullying practice.
- It can be dealt by asking students to prepare for staging a play on bullying in the classroom itself and enact related scenes. The roles of bully, bully’s supporter and the victim must be definitely shown in the play for the other students to get that clear and complete knowledge.
- The school management must definitely conduct a counseling session that must definitely include the bullied children, bullying children and children who help the latter. If the situation calls for bringing some therapists from outside for the ongoing problem, it must be done for the stated children.
- Some programs must be continually conducted by the school to definitely create indelible knowledge in the minds of students about bullying. Conducting “Bullying Awareness Wednesdays” continually is an example that can be followed. The other measures like giving the duties for each class, like pasting good slogans on the walls stating that bullying is a wrong practice to do or even help those who indulge in that activity.
- Schools must know that bullying has been added in the list of offenses by countries worldwide and so they must rigidly follow a zero tolerance policy on bullying. The school officials must see to it that the problem gets resolved by going to the root of the problem.
- Schools must convene both the bullied and the bullying children along with their parents for a meeting to arrive at a solution. It is necessary for these stated families to relook into their family relationships and never allow bullying practice to happen at home.
- In case there is no set system in the school to tackle bullying problem, the parents association can recommend or insist the school have one. This is very important for their children.
*Bullying act has been present for a long time even since the emergence of a societal setting where this cannot be completely eliminated but can be reduced considerably. This menace can be curbed through the joint working of schools, parents and children and transform the school as a place that can give delight, ensure safety and a healthy environment.