Digital safety & exploitation

Bullying

Do something about it

Sadly, more than half of UK children will experience bullying, either as victim, perpetrator or witness. Most bullying is quickly dealt with and most children bounce back from it. For some children being bullied can have long term damaging consequences. All schools in Sutton have an Anti-bullying policy and take the matter very seriously. The most important thing, if you are worried is to talk to your child about it and tell the school if you think this is happening.

Bullying is not confined to the school gates - it also happens at home, in our wider communities and of course, bullying exists online. Cyber bullying can happen anytime, anywhere including on Social networking sites, messaging apps, gaming sites and chat rooms such as Facebook, XBox Live, or YouTube. Children are often getting involved in social media at too young an age. Facebook for example requires everyone to be at least 13 years old before they can create an account, although it is easy to fib about your age.

Finding out that your child is being bullied can cause very strong emotions in parents. Bullying is an issue that is always best dealt with calmly and in a considered way, so try to stay calm and focused. Being bullied can make a child dread going to school, and they can feel depressed and lonely. They need your support.

Beat bullying

Bullying probably won't stop unless you stand up and do something positive about it:

  • Talk to your child, or ask them to talk to someone else they trust, perhaps a family friend, or their school nurse.

  • Encourage your child to act confidently to send out the message that they are not afraid.

  • Strength in numbers: tell them to stay with others. A child will be more likely to be picked on if they are on their own.

  • Keep a diary and any bullying text messages as evidence - you can use it later to show the school.

Spot the signs

You may be unsure if your child is involved in a bullying incident. If you suspect that your child is involved in bullying then look out for some of these signs:

  • Unexplained injuries or bruises.

  • Possessions missing or broken.

  • Becoming secretive.

  • Complaining of headache or tummy ache.

  • Not wanting to go to school.

  • Bedwetting and not sleeping.

  • Suddenly doing less well at school.

If you are worried, talk to your child and support them to help STOP bullying.

Source: www.bullying.co.uk

What is bullying?

Name-calling, hitting, or stealing someone's things are all types of bullying. Less visible types are things like sending nasty text messages, or spreading false rumours about someone. Cyber bullying is any form of bullying which takes place online or through smartphones and tablets. Parents have a responsibility to monitor youngsters' online activity to help keep them safe. If they have a mobile, limit the contact numbers to close family and friends. Make sure they do not give their number out.

1

You notice injuries with no explanation. Behaviour seems different, they may seem secretive.

2

They may be being bullied. You need to do something about it and find out what is happening.

3

See the Headteacher. Outside school consider contacting the police. Reassure your child.