Basseterre, St. Kitts, October 28, 2021 (SKNIS): School bullying is detrimental to children on both sides of the exchange and causes physical and emotional harm and even triggers mental illness. Glennika Richardson-Govia, a student at the Verchilds High School (VHS) highlighted several ways schools can assist in preventing any form of bullying.
One such approach is to create a positive school climate as a school’s success is highly dependent on the positive energy that teachers and students adapt.
“They can start from the ground up. They can start building a community where they reward them for good behaviour and not just academics and sport-related skills,” said Ms. Richardson-Govia during her appearance on the October 27 edition of Working for You. “They should use the internet in lesson plans to bring the peers together as one and use them in a positive way. It doesn’t even have to be school work-related but show them that there are other things that they could do in the media that are positive because to me it is mostly negative things that trends in the media.”
Tracey Wattley, Guidance Counsellor at the Cayon High School said that a lot is being done from an education standpoint to assist persons who are bullied and those bullying, as well as to prevent further bullying.
“There is policy in terms of dealing with bullying and by extension cyberbullying from the Ministry [of Education], and within each school also they have their own policy as to how they go about dealing with it,” said Ms. Wattley.
Ms. Wattley noted that in the past cyberbullying wasn’t as noticeable but that due to the COVID-19 pandemic and more online learning, it has become more pronounced than before.
“Before this year, what would have happened for us is that we concentrated a lot on the different forms of bullying as opposed to cyberbullying because we weren’t online as much as [we are] now,” she said. “So most of our lives would have been placed online and because of that we have seen that cyberbullying would have increased within the schools, society and on a [whole].”
The guidance counsellor noted that students are required to report any form of bullying to the school counsellor, a teacher or the administration when they recognize it is happening. Once it is reported then the matter will be dealt with accordingly. She said that the cases must be investigated because it is important to know the facts when dealing with bullying.