Anti-bullying rules in full effect
Bullying is officially off limits at the Wesley Hall Infants School.
A crisp No Bullying Zone sign made the proclamation yesterday as children performed songs, poems, skits, storytelling and dance routines to share with everyone that they accepted the responsibility, “To be a Buddy, not a Bully”.
It was the launch of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Programme at the school yesterday and there was a light-hearted approach to teaching the children the importance of not bullying each other.
Wesley Hall is the only primary school of the four schools chosen to participate in the one-year pilot project being undertaken by Supreme Counselling for Personal Development and the Maria Holder Memorial Trust.
The students collectively recited the four anti-bullying rules: We will not bully others. We will try to help students who are bullied. We will try to include students who are left out. If we know someone is being bullied, we will tell an adult at school and an adult at home.
Coordinator of the Olweus Bullying Programme, teacher Elene Went, said school is the first experience in a social environment with others and it sets the tone for the child’s perception of school.
It is expected, Went said, to be a safe and caring place that allows them to interact and learn to be free from fear and distraction. However, sometimes they face school with dread rather than excitement. Behaviours such as name calling, teasing, hitting, pushing and shoving had been identified as as problems within schools and Went said they could no longer be dismissed as a harmless part of growing up.
“We need to change this mindset and acknowledge this as a serious problem. These practices are wrong and must be stopped,” Went said.