Anti-Bullying Week (11-15 November)
This Anti-Bullying Week – go online to find support to help children and young people beat bullying
This Anti-Bullying Week (11-15 November), Hampshire County Council is highlighting the advice and support available to parents and carers to assist them in helping children to deal with bullying – including how to spot the signs that a child may be at risk.
Easily accessible online, the guidance for tackling bullying, which can be found on www.hants.gov.uk has been developed by the County Council’s Educational Psychology Team (HIEP; www.hants.gov.uk/educational-psychology). It complements the work the Team does with Hampshire and Isle of Wight schools and young people, across the academic year, to build children’s resilience and teach staff and students how to mitigate against and tackle bullying. Hampshire and the Isle of Wight have very low reported levels of bullying, and pupils report that where this is the case, they feel well supported by their schools.
Parents and carers are encouraged to listen to children and talk to them - to help them recognise their strengths and what they could do when they find themselves or a friend in a difficult situation. Among the suggestions and tips parents and carers are advised to try, are:
Making new/other friends – your child might need help to develop their social interaction skills and social networks through play dates and you demonstrating friendship skills;
Be an ‘Upstander’ – teach your child to be an ‘upstander’ rather than a ‘bystander’ of bullying by telling an adult or being a buddy to the child;
Find a distraction – help your child to ignore unkind or unhelpful comments by having personal mottos and positive affirmations to counteract the negative thoughts they might have about themselves;
Develop other interests – creating social networks outside of school through clubs and activities with people in common protects against bullying as well as giving the child positive and fun experiences;
Pay compliments – practice giving compliments to others. People who bully often feel insecure in some way, therefore offering positive attention could make them feel better;
Self-care – it is important to care for yourself when hard things happen. Help your child to identify which things help them to feel positive and relaxed;
Share concerns – parents and carers should contact the school and ask how the school tackles bullying. Enquire with your child’s school about parent workshops and training.
For the past ten years, the team has held annual conferences for primary school children to develop their understanding of bullying and how to eliminate it through kindness and being inclusive. Using positive psychological principles, the short interactive sessions equip Year 5 and Year 6 pupils (aged 9, 10 and 11 years) with positive skills for eliminating bullying that they can then share with their classmates and other peers.
These sessions are just one strand of the HIEP’s anti-bullying strategy, which includes governor training, intervention training for when bullying occurs in schools, and workshops to train school staff how to support parents.
More information on bullying and how to deal with it, can be found online: https://www.hants.gov.uk/socialcareandhealth/childrenandfamilies/safeguardingchildren/bullying