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TITLE OF THE CASE STUDIES:

“Leave me alone - i’m different, that’s all!”

SCENARIOS OF BULLYING EVENT::
  • Cyberbullying
CAUSES OF BULLYING EVENT::
  • Homophobic
FACTUAL DESCRIPTION OF THE BULLYING EVENT:

Antonio is a 16 year old boy. He always wears unusual, conspicuous clothes and has pretty “strange” haircuts, like for example half of his head shaved and the other half with long hair. His classmates say he is a “metrosexual”. A few months ago one of his classmates created a page on a social networking site and posted photos and ill-intentioned comments about his appearance and his sexual orientation, calling him names like “sleazy” and “queer” and writing that this type of person should be gotten rid of. The worst thing is that within only a week the page had 300 fans. When Antonio found out he called Fran, the boy who had made the page, to ask him to close it. Antonio knew that it was Fran because the creator’s name appeared on the event page. But Fran only insulted him and told him that what he was going to do was kill him. A few days later Antonio called Fran’s parents, but they too insulted him. It was then that Antonio told his own parents. They went to Antonio’s school to talk about the harassment their son was suffering, but there they were told that as it was a situation outside school it was hard for the school to offer any kind of solution. Antonio went with his parents to the police station to report what was happening, but while the Juvenile Court was processing the complaint the number of visitors to the page had risen to 1000.

RESPONSE IMPLEMENTED:

Regarding the strategies adopted by the different people involved to deal with this case of peer abuse: the students think the best solution would be for them to talk to their parents. The teachers tried to avoid their responsibilities in this type of situation, although no details are given in the text. When a teacher finds out about a situation like this they should inform the school management so that antibullying procedures can be set in motion. The principal did nothing, even though current legislation obliged him to intervene. The parents say Antonio's parents did the right thing: report what had happened, first in the place where it had been happening and then at the police station. Fran’s parents supported their son’s conduct by acting in the same way: insulting. Fran was probably only repeating the ideas he had heard at home from his own (badly brought up) parents.

IMPACT OF THE BULLYING ACTION:

The students, parents, teachers, principal and school counselor believe that this situation influenced the learning and teaching process in the classroom. They also agreed on the consequences. One student in the group thinks the situation does not influence the learning process because he is able to work in class without anyone bothering him. The teachers think that there are always accepted, unwritten rules, which should not include any of these forms of conduct, because they reinforce negative values (the law of the jungle, intolerance, inequality, freedom of expression...). The teachers tried to avoid their responsibilities in this type of situation. The principal thinks that situation is effectively rewarding the lack of values. The parents say there is a negative influence on the person being harassed, especially considering that these are adolescents in a phase of physical and psychological development. At this age it is very important for a boy to feel included and accepted by the group. It also affects the rest of the group negatively because it creates an atmosphere of discrimination, excluding people who are “different”, and a sense of impunity because there is a perception that whatever is said on internet is unimportant, and has no real consequences. If this behavior is challenged in a positive way, if the school staff and the parents involved are able to reflect with the affected group and if some type of penalty is introduced for those who persist in this attitude, this will generate a concept of tolerance and acceptance of what is different which will enrich the group. If the response to the bullying is negative, or there is no response at all, everyone will be more frightened by what they see as different, identifying it as something that brings bad consequences and should be avoided at all costs. Antonio would start to change the way he presents himself to others, in order to be the same as they are; the bully would see that his stance is being reinforced and he would be the one who makes the rules; and the rest of the group would see that it is best to follow the lead of the strongest, regardless of whether he is right or wrong: A bad learning process for everyone. The counselor thinks that we are in the “digital age”, but that teachers and students still do not know how to use social networks for the purpose of learning. Also, we still fail to realize that it is necessary to integrate values education in school syllabuses.
Regarding whether or not the situation affects the students’ motivation (interest, effort, etc.): Those questioned think that it does affect motivation, and their answers coincide: Because the students might be frightened or it might make them nervous to think that a classmate can make fun of someone just because in some way they attract attention. If they realize they are allowing an injustice to take place, it certainly will. If someone is being bullied, the influence is inherent, and not just at the motivation level. The victim’s motivation will clearly be influenced. In the bully, it’s not so clear. In the bystanders, possibly, because it adds an element of tension to the classroom atmosphere and creates a sense of helplessness. A person who suffers harassment in their immediate environment, where they have to spend many hours each day, cannot be very motivated. They will feel that the others do not accept them, do not share their tastes and will not allow them to express themselves as they really are. Students who are not being bullied might support the bullies so as not to become their next victims, or just not get involved at all. The influence depends to a greater or lesser degree on the student, the family...
Possible effects on the students’ results. The students think they pay no attention whatsoever to the problem because it happens almost every year at school. Others fail more subjects. Some will feel uneasy and uncomfortable, and therefore will get worse. The teachers think grades will be lower because the working atmosphere in class is contaminated by a situation of harassment in which everyone plays a role. Others think students usually act as passive onlookers. We must raise our awareness of this type of inequality. The principal is not totally convinced that the situation exerts an influence. The parents think it exerts a negative influence on the general atmosphere in the class. The bystanders know what is going on and generally side with the bully to go along with the group and feel that they too are included in the group. This generates aggressiveness and violence which negatively affect the progress of the lessons and the students’ results. The counselor thinks that it is difficult to answer that question because no specific mention of it appears in the case description. Academic results? Consequences of what has happened? Presumably the attitudes adopted by the bystander students, and above all the consequences of those attitudes, will affect academic results because of the uncertainty of not knowing what will happen once the situation has been reported. But it may be that there is no influence at all because the students involved in the bullying are not aware of its consequences.
Regarding potential problems of integration at school: All those questioned believe that there will be problems of school integration. Because it may lead to cliques of students who are intolerant of other classmates, and this may seriously affect convivencia (harmonious interaction) at the school. Integration will be affected above all if the school takes a passive attitude in the face of this conduct.
With regard to the possible impact of the bullying in adult life, as manifest in forms of social behavior, everyone thinks that bullying does impact adult life. The students think people who are different will be ignored or fall by the wayside. The teachers say it will make people feel less free. A very direct impact. They are shaping their personalities, assimilating values which they will put into practice when their schooling comes to an end. Whatever they learn to be, they will continue to be as citizens. Turning them into inhuman people or citizens who react to unjust situations with indifference. The school principal thinks the victim: will experience helplessness, depression and lack of self-esteem; the bully: social rejection, a lack of resources with which to overcome problems; the bystanders: violence will increasingly be seen as the only form of conflict resolution. The parents say that everything experienced by children during their education is decisive in shaping their personality, and will influence their conduct for the rest of their lives. The counselor says that cyberbullying is a form of harassing or intimidating those who in some way differ, or appear to differ, from established social models. It is an attitude that reveals a lack of respect for diversity.
Regarding whether or not the situation affects the atmosphere at school: The students believe it does. The teachers say the tension of the situation is bound to be continuous and ever present, and will affect teachers and classmates as well as those directly involved. The principal thinks the problem will result in class disruption, absenteeism and legal problems. The parents say that values have to be taught in theory, but above all in practice. The counselor thinks the problem clearly reflects a lack of values.

POINT OF VIEW OF VICTIM:

With regard to the victim’s thoughts about the reasons why he is being bullied, the students think he told his father, his mother or the principal. He must think he is bad. He must be angry.
Regarding the help the victim thinks he would find useful, the students expressed the following opinions: Police help. Telling someone who can help him. Talking to them. Telling the teachers. Telling the tutor.

POINT OF VIEW OF BULLYING STUDENT(S):

Regarding why the bully acts in the way he does, they think it’s to play the tough guy. Because that's how they felt. He likes it.
The students think that the bully chose that specific victim rather than anyone else because of his appearance and personality. Because he is inferior to them. Because he’s strange.
Regarding the bully’s remorse, the students do not think the bully regrets what he has done, but he might.

POINT OF VIEW OF OTHER STUDENTS:

The bystander students knew what was happening, because they were in the social network and everyone at school was talking about it.
Regarding what bystanders thought about the causes of the bullying and what they did. They think it was because he wore strange clothes. They didn’t do anything to help. They saw him and just laughed at the guy.

POINT OF VIEW OF TEACHERS:

Regarding the teachers’ awareness of what was going on: They think that under normal circumstances they would not have known anything. It seems that the school management was informed and answered that nothing could be done. This type of situation is usually detected, either directly or indirectly through other students telling someone about it.
Regarding what they did to find out and understand what was happening. The teachers say nothing was done. They would ask among the students to find out about possible problems. The text gives no details about what they did. They would try to intervene, or take action through peers or through the school's counseling service. If they saw the bullying taking place, they would take measures such a submitting incident reports with a written record of what had happened. Talk to the tutor or the school management to let them know immediately. Encourage the victim to take action if the harassment continues. Others would try to investigate what was happening, talk to both parties, inform the teaching team and in this case try to set in motion the antibullying procedure.
Regarding the help contributed by other teachers: The teachers think they received no help from other teachers.

POINT OF VIEW OF SCHOOL DIRECTORS:

The principal was not aware of the problem until the family was told about it.
What he should have done in this situation was implement the standard procedure set out in the regulations.
Regarding the principal’s role in this type of situations, the principal of this school thinks that his job is to manage the school’s resources to prevent this kind of situation and, if one arises, be able to take action.

POINT OF VIEW OF THE PARENTS OF THE PUPILS INVOLVED:

Regarding the parent’s awareness of what was happening: They think the parents did not notice anything until their son told them about the problem. Sometimes they think that at 16 years of age they are old enough to look after themselves on Internet without any danger and they are then careless and lower their guard. Another thing is that Internet is something the parents do not know enough about. They think they knew nothing, because they didn’t act until their children asked them to. Fran’s parents attached no importance to it, and Antonio’s parents, once they knew about the situation, followed it up all the way.
Regarding how parents would find out about what was happening and what information they would seek: They think first they would go to the school to find out if they had detected anything there, and would request guidance from the tutor, the principal and the counselors. Normally they talk to their children and try to advise them in cases like this. If they noticed a change of attitude in their children towards the school or their classmates, with pessimism, loss of interest or very negative feelings, and got no explanation from them, they would go and talk to the tutor.
Regarding whether the situation could change: The parents think the school should become actively involved in this type of situation, and both teachers and counselors should be appropriately trained in this area to be able to advise parents and act in collaboration. They think the situation would have been nipped in the bud if it had been detected immediately: if the tutor had noticed the harassment right from the time the group first called Antonio “metrosexual” because of his appearance, he could have used that as an excuse to discuss this form of behavior, both in class with the students involved and perhaps also in a meeting with their parents. That would have shown up those who wanted to keep insulting Antonio, and it would probably have deterred Fran from inventing new ways of sneering at him. He wouldn’t have created the page on the social network and the group would have seen how the correct attitude was reinforced by the advice and attitudes of the teacher and their own parents.

POINT OF VIEW OF THE COUNSELLOR IN THE SCHOOL:

With regard to what the counselor would do: I would have worked with the students on the consequences of harassment, both for the victim and the aggressor. It would have been very important to involve the whole education community in the issue, using tutorials and meetings to carry out action strategies such as group dynamics, conflict mediation strategies, the acceptance of diversity, communications strategies, etc.
To prevent this type of situation: Work on values in tutorials and introduce students to Web 2.0 tools in such a way that they will learn to use them correctly.
Regarding what could be done to improve communication and cooperation among students (and thus prevent school bullying in general). Implement plans for convivencia in schools which will provide channels for cooperative tasking and the building up of values, but which are less regulated than existing plans. It is necessary to educate keeping in mind the value of diversity, and it is therefore important to educate in respect and cooperation.

POINT OF VIEW OF POLICY MAKERS:

Firstable, as implied by the performances, there is a complete ignorance about this phenomenon, its implications and responsabilities of each one of the roles, specially families and school. This is the first obstacle to overcome only by transmitting clear information about who and when to turn to.
-The victim should have looked for support in the school center, but to that effect he/she needed to know that the center undertakes to be involved.
-The school center, of course, acted wrongly avoiding being involved.
-The family of the aggressor (the first one, but not the only one), must know their responsibility.
-The victim and their parents, apart from turning to the school center and the police, they should have taken self-protection basic steps. In this sense no references to the possibilities of intervention of the responsibles for the site are found. Perhaps requesting the withdrawal or reporting the inappropriate content, the exposition could have been hold back, and with it the defamatory remarks.
In summary, and in this order:
-Report of the victim to the school center and his/her family.
-Communication between family and school center (the first receiving the notice from the victim must inform the other).
-Defamatory remarks must be identified and registered and its origin must be investigated.
Protection basic steps must be taken at the same time: delete doubtful contacts, scan the computer with the anti-virus program, changing passwords… Educative inspection must be aware of this so that they have proof that a case is being tackled.
- de ser posible, requerir al site que alberga las ofensas que intervenga por contenidos o comportamiento inadecuado de los usuarios.
- Given that its origin is presumably known, contrasting the version of the facts with the alleged aggressor. If it is admitted, inform him/her of the consequences and invite him/her to lay his/her attitude down, invite other participants to do the same and help to eliminate the echos or the traces of their online actions. In any case, before any contact, observed facts and opinions must be collected from the closer teaching staff.
- Simultaneously, family of the aggressor or aggressors must be informed of the facts and the detailed possible ramifications.
- At the same time in the class, actions towards promotion of convivencia must be reinforced, particularly to prevent cyberbullying.
- If the problem persists, support of the law must be sought , beyond the school disciplinary regime.

CONCLUSIVE DEDUCTIONS:

One thing to note is that the school does not want responsibility for this situation to think that ciberbullying was not within its powers to be done outside of school. However, all agents agree that this phenomenon affects the overall school environment and academic outcomes of students, creating a climate of uncertainty and aggression. On the other hand, parents are in agreement that the aggressor was supported by his parents, who defended him to downplay the situation and responding with insults, so this gives rise to ciberbullying situation intensifies.

Comments about this Case Study


Date: 24.05.2012

Posted by: Isabelle PISTONE
Type of school: Obervatory of violence and school dropping out - Ministry of Education
Country: Belgium

Common-divergent elements:
Concerning the management of cyber bullying, there are many common elements with the interventions proposed in the French Community.

Face to the victims, it is recommended to:
• Communicate the list of professionals able to accompany them: CPMS, School Mediation Service, Victim Support Service...


• Advise the victim to:
- keep all the elements that refer to the author such as electronic mail (e-mail, SMS) in their original equipment (in the memory of the mobile phone or in the application that handles e-mails);
- do not modify received messages and not delete them;
- note the date and time of each fact (to the nearest minute);
- no longer respond to emails or messages of hate;
- unsubscribe websites and discussion groups;
- report abuse to the social networking site (chat, forum, social networks ...);
- report the facts to his/her Internet Service Provider or that of the author;
- in cases of bullying, warn the author that bullying is an act punishable by law, that he must stop these practices immediately and provide a record of this warning. After this message, not to contact him;
- request a change of telephone number or change his/her e-mail.

• If the bully ignores the warning or intervention of the Internet Service Provider, the victim should be informed about the opportunity to file a complaint with the local police or preferably with the Regional Computer Crime Unit (RCCU) of the Federal Judicial Police.

Discrimination: if the behaviour of hate is motivated by the supposed race, skin colour, descent, national or ethnic origin, nationality, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, birth, the age, wealth, religious or philosophical conviction, the state of current or future health, disability, political conviction, physical characteristic or genetic or social origin of the student or staff member victim of cyber violence, he should be informed about the opportunity to file a complaint with the Institute for Equality between women and men through the site http://igvm-iefh.belgium.be (on criterion of gender) or the Centre for Equal opportunities and the Fight against Racism via the website www.diversite.be (for other criteria) or via the free phone number 0800/12 800.


Facing the author(s), it is recommended to:

• Explain to the author(s) that this behaviour is punishable by law and recall possible penal consequences.
• Alert the author's parents if he/she is minor. Inform them about their responsibilities and possible consequences for their child and for them. Work with them to consider how to make the child's behaviour evolve.
• If necessary, refer parents to professionals capable of supporting them: CPMS, School Mediation Service, Youth Help Service...
• Define (with the educational team) the sanctions appropriate to the acts in accordance with the Internal Rules of the school.


Regarding homophobia, although the CPMS is the first player in school, Belgium is provided with two public bodies to fight against discrimination. These are:
• The Institute for Equality between women and men, which has jurisdiction if the discrimination is based on sex and related criteria (pregnancy, childbirth, motherhood, sex change, trans-sexuality).
• The Centre for Equal Opportunities and Fight against Racism, which is responsible for discrimination based on nationality, the supposed race, skin colour, ancestry, national or ethnic origin, sexual orientation, marital status, birth, wealth, age, religious or philosophical conviction, the state of current or future health, disability, political conviction, physical characteristic or genetic or social origin.

These institutions will treat the individual reports independently and confidentially.

Recommendations :

As regards prevention, the issue of cyber bullying can be addressed in a transversal manner in most school subjects:
• It is important that the institution is positioned on this issue by broadcasting, for example, a special charter for the Internet room.
• Adults need to know how to stop cyber-bullying: it is essential to inform all the school staff as well as students on the issue.
• To become aware of the situation within the school, cyber-bullying can be assessed. Various options allow knowing the propensity: create a mailbox for complaints raised regularly, conduct a survey with students using a questionnaire...
• Identify the problem within the school will bring the students to speak more freely.
• Designate a resource person or service (CPMS, teacher, educator, school mediator...) so that young people know where and who to contact if they want to report incidents of cyber-bullying. Students must be assured they will be heard and taken seriously.


• Train young people to protect themselves from dangers in this kind of situation: do not upload documents that can be turned against them, not to remain on sites where they are treated badly, not to retaliate against an aggressor. Students may be made aware of this when the opportunity arises in various existing school activities.
• The school may be assisted by external services specializing in the field:
Non-exhaustive list: school Mediation Service, Help services in open environment, digital public space - some digital public spaces organize information sessions about the dangers of the Internet to public demand. In order to know the coordinates of the nearest space: www.epn-ressources.be
In case of serious problems to report, file a complaint preferably with the Regional Computer Crime Unit of the judicial district or with the local police.


A notification may be made to the provider of website, blog or chat on which the bullying occurs. You can also report disturbing information found on the Internet (racism, child pornography, fraud) via www.ecops.be
As regards prevention of discrimination (in this case based on sexual orientation), the question can be approached in a transversal way in most school subjects. It is essential to make students aware of these phenomena through theoretical presentations as well as practical tools to organize activities within the school where mutual support and solidarity of all is necessary for successful activity (collective sports, solving an enigma in groups ...).

Relevance :

- There are tools made available for teachers to address the topic of bullying in the case of discrimination based on sexual orientation in the classroom.
Examples (not exhaustive list):
 "Discrimination yourself": booklet and posters made by the Directorate for Equal Opportunities of the Ministry of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation in partnership with the Centre for Equal Opportunities and Fight against racism and the Institute for equality of women and men. Illustrated by Catheline and Frederic Jannin, this booklet is intended especially for girls and boys aged 12 to 18 years and addresses in a concrete and ludic way topics such as discrimination, freedom of speech, incitement to hatred , instruction to discriminate, racism, sexism, bullying, homophobia, disability, etc.. Available via www.stop-discrimination.be.
- There are tools made available to teachers to address the topic of cyber bullying in the classroom. Non-exhaustive list:
 www.clicksafe.be offers a space for teachers with various teaching kits to address cyber-bullying, protection of privacy ... for the levels of primary and secondary education.
 Young people and the Internet, educational and entertaining guide for classroom use for students in the first degree, aims to introduce students to a reflective, citizen and responsible use of the Internet while having fun. Available at: http://www.enseignement.be/index.php?page=26149
 "Under Surveillance", comic strip for young adults to protect their personal data on the Net. Project funded by the European Commission. http://www.ldh-france.org/flash/flipbook/ldhfrancais.html
 www.internet-observatory.be: Federal Public Service of Economy website with practical worksheets for teachers on cyber-bullying.
 Practical Guide for the fight against cyber-bullying among students, France Ministry of Education, 2012, http://media.education.gouv.fr/file/09_septembre/58/6/guide-cyberharcelement_190586.pdf
 The ICT Passport aims at educating students of primary and secondary education to a significant set of skills in the field of information and communication technology and certifying their mastery. An assessment is offered each year and ICT Passport is issued to each student having successful. More info on www.enseignement.be/pass
- The appointed and temporary education staff (teachers, educators, CPMS agents, with the exception of administrative staff and other services staff…) in ordinary and specialized education (all combined networks and levels), can receive training during their careers. These are aimed at the maintenance, improvement or adjustment of knowledge and skills in preparation for make them suitable to meet the general and specific objectives of the “Missions Decree” (from the Education Ministry) or of the CPMS missions.
Some training sessions are intended to become familiar with the tools of prevention of violence and incivility. Example:
- establishing and supporting the delegation of students as participatory structure;
- education for citizenship in the school;
- promoting awareness of democratic values and processes in school.
These trainings are divided into mandatory basis (6 half-day) and voluntary basis (by waiver granted by the Minister at the request of the school if these courses are held during school time, otherwise, there is no limitation).

Date: 25.04.2012

Posted by: AUDREY HEINE
Type of school: Obervatory of violence and school dropping out - Ministry of Education
Country: Belgium

CAUSES OF BULLYING EVENT: Homophobic

FACTUAL DESCRIPTION OF THE BULLYING EVENT:
Antonio is a 16 year old boy. He always wears unusual, conspicuous clothes and has pretty “strange” haircuts, like for example half of his head shaved and the other half with long hair. His classmates say he is a “metrosexual”. A few months ago one of his classmates created a page on a social networking site and posted photos and ill-intentioned comments about his appearance and his sexual orientation, calling him names like “sleazy” and “queer” and writing that this type of person should be gotten rid of. The worst thing is that within only a week the page had 300 fans. When Antonio found out he called Fran, the boy who had made the page, to ask him to close it. Antonio knew that it was Fran because the creator’s name appeared on the event page. But Fran only insulted him and told him that what he was going to do was kill him. A few days later Antonio called Fran’s parents, but they too insulted him. It was then that Antonio told his own parents. They went to Antonio’s school to talk about the harassment their son was suffering, but there they were told that as it was a situation outside school it was hard for the school to offer any kind of solution. Antonio went with his parents to the police station to report what was happening, but while the Juvenile Court was processing the complaint the number of visitors to the page had risen to 1000.

RESPONSE IMPLEMENTED:
Regarding the strategies adopted by the different people involved to deal with this case of peer abuse: the students think the best solution would be for them to talk to their parents. The teachers tried to avoid their responsibilities in this type of situation, although no details are given in the text. When a teacher finds out about a situation like this they should inform the school management so that antibullying procedures can be set in motion. The principal did nothing, even though current legislation obliged him to intervene. The parents say Antonio's parents did the right thing: report what had happened, first in the place where it had been happening and then at the police station. Fran’s parents supported their son’s conduct by acting in the same way: insulting. Fran was probably only repeating the ideas he had heard at home from his own (badly brought up) parents.

IMPACT OF THE BULLYING ACTION:
The students, parents, teachers, principal and school counselor believe that this situation influenced the learning and teaching process in the classroom. They also agreed on the consequences. One student in the group thinks the situation does not influence the learning process because he is able to work in class without anyone bothering him. The teachers think that there are always accepted, unwritten rules, which should not include any of these forms of conduct, because they reinforce negative values (the law of the jungle, intolerance, inequality, freedom of expression...). The teachers tried to avoid their responsibilities in this type of situation. The principal thinks that situation is effectively rewarding the lack of values. The parents say there is a negative influence on the person being harassed, especially considering that these are adolescents in a phase of physical and psychological development. At this age it is very important for a boy to feel included and accepted by the group. It also affects the rest of the group negatively because it creates an atmosphere of discrimination, excluding people who are “different”, and a sense of impunity because there is a perception that whatever is said on internet is unimportant, and has no real consequences. If this behavior is challenged in a positive way, if the school staff and the parents involved are able to reflect with the affected group and if some type of penalty is introduced for those who persist in this attitude, this will generate a concept of tolerance and acceptance of what is different which will enrich the group. If the response to the bullying is negative, or there is no response at all, everyone will be more frightened by what they see as different, identifying it as something that brings bad consequences and should be avoided at all costs. Antonio would start to change the way he presents himself to others, in order to be the same as they are; the bully would see that his stance is being reinforced and he would be the one who makes the rules; and the rest of the group would see that it is best to follow the lead of the strongest, regardless of whether he is right or wrong: A bad learning process for everyone. The counselor thinks that we are in the “digital age”, but that teachers and students still do not know how to use social networks for the purpose of learning. Also, we still fail to realize that it is necessary to integrate values education in school syllabuses.
Regarding whether or not the situation affects the students’ motivation (interest, effort, etc.): Those questioned think that it does affect motivation, and their answers coincide: Because the students might be frightened or it might make them nervous to think that a classmate can make fun of someone just because in some way they attract attention. If they realize they are allowing an injustice to take place, it certainly will. If someone is being bullied, the influence is inherent, and not just at the motivation level. The victim’s motivation will clearly be influenced. In the bully, it’s not so clear. In the bystanders, possibly, because it adds an element of tension to the classroom atmosphere and creates a sense of helplessness. A person who suffers harassment in their immediate environment, where they have to spend many hours each day, cannot be very motivated. They will feel that the others do not accept them, do not share their tastes and will not allow them to express themselves as they really are. Students who are not being bullied might support the bullies so as not to become their next victims, or just not get involved at all. The influence depends to a greater or lesser degree on the student, the family...
Possible effects on the students’ results. The students think they pay no attention whatsoever to the problem because it happens almost every year at school. Others fail more subjects. Some will feel uneasy and uncomfortable, and therefore will get worse. The teachers think grades will be lower because the working atmosphere in class is contaminated by a situation of harassment in which everyone plays a role. Others think students usually act as passive onlookers. We must raise our awareness of this type of inequality. The principal is not totally convinced that the situation exerts an influence. The parents think it exerts a negative influence on the general atmosphere in the class. The bystanders know what is going on and generally side with the bully to go along with the group and feel that they too are included in the group. This generates aggressiveness and violence which negatively affect the progress of the lessons and the students’ results. The counselor thinks that it is difficult to answer that question because no specific mention of it appears in the case description. Academic results? Consequences of what has happened? Presumably the attitudes adopted by the bystander students, and above all the consequences of those attitudes, will affect academic results because of the uncertainty of not knowing what will happen once the situation has been reported. But it may be that there is no influence at all because the students involved in the bullying are not aware of its consequences.

Regarding potential problems of integration at school: All those questioned believe that there will be problems of school integration. Because it may lead to cliques of students who are intolerant of other classmates, and this may seriously affect convivencia (harmonious interaction) at the school. Integration will be affected above all if the school takes a passive attitude in the face of this conduct.
With regard to the possible impact of the bullying in adult life, as manifest in forms of social behavior, everyone thinks that bullying does impact adult life. The students think people who are different will be ignored or fall by the wayside. The teachers say it will make people feel less free. A very direct impact. They are shaping their personalities, assimilating values which they will put into practice when their schooling comes to an end. Whatever they learn to be, they will continue to be as citizens. Turning them into inhuman people or citizens who react to unjust situations with indifference. The school principal thinks the victim: will experience helplessness, depression and lack of self-esteem; the bully: social rejection, a lack of resources with which to overcome problems; the bystanders: violence will increasingly be seen as the only form of conflict resolution. The parents say that everything experienced by children during their education is decisive in shaping their personality, and will influence their conduct for the rest of their lives. The counselor says that cyberbullying is a form of harassing or intimidating those who in some way differ, or appear to differ, from established social models. It is an attitude that reveals a lack of respect for diversity.

Regarding whether or not the situation affects the atmosphere at school: The students believe it does. The teachers say the tension of the situation is bound to be continuous and ever present, and will affect teachers and classmates as well as those directly involved. The principal thinks the problem will result in class disruption, absenteeism and legal problems. The parents say that values have to be taught in theory, but above all in practice. The counselor thinks the problem clearly reflects a lack of values.

POINT OF VIEW OF VICTIM:
With regard to the victim’s thoughts about the reasons why he is being bullied, the students think he told his father, his mother or the principal. He must think he is bad. He must be angry.
Regarding the help the victim thinks he would find useful, the students expressed the following opinions: Police help. Telling someone who can help him. Talking to them. Telling the teachers. Telling the tutor.

POINT OF VIEW OF BULLYING STUDENT(S):
Regarding why the bully acts in the way he does, they think it’s to play the tough guy. Because that's how they felt. He likes it.
The students think that the bully chose that specific victim rather than anyone else because of his appearance and personality. Because he is inferior to them. Because he’s strange.
Regarding the bully’s remorse, the students do not think the bully regrets what he has done, but he might.

POINT OF VIEW OF OTHER STUDENTS:
The bystander students knew what was happening, because they were in the social network and everyone at school was talking about it.
Regarding what bystanders thought about the causes of the bullying and what they did. They think it was because he wore strange clothes. They didn’t do anything to help. They saw him and just laughed at the guy.

POINT OF VIEW OF TEACHERS:
Regarding the teachers’ awareness of what was going on: They think that under normal circumstances they would not have known anything. It seems that the school management was informed and answered that nothing could be done. This type of situation is usually detected, either directly or indirectly through other students telling someone about it.
Regarding what they did to find out and understand what was happening. The teachers say nothing was done. They would ask among the students to find out about possible problems. The text gives no details about what they did. They would try to intervene, or take action through peers or through the school's counseling service. If they saw the bullying taking place, they would take measures such a submitting incident reports with a written record of what had happened. Talk to the tutor or the school management to let them know immediately. Encourage the victim to take action if the harassment continues. Others would try to investigate what was happening, talk to both parties, inform the teaching team and in this case try to set in motion the antibullying procedure.
Regarding the help contributed by other teachers: The teachers think they received no help from other teachers.

POINT OF VIEW OF SCHOOL DIRECTORS:
The principal was not aware of the problem until the family was told about it.
What he should have done in this situation was implement the standard procedure set out in the regulations.
Regarding the principal’s role in this type of situations, the principal of this school thinks that his job is to manage the school’s resources to prevent this kind of situation and, if one arises, be able to take action.

POINT OF VIEW OF THE PARENTS OF THE PUPILS INVOLVED:
Regarding the parent’s awareness of what was happening: They think the parents did not notice anything until their son told them about the problem. Sometimes they think that at 16 years of age they are old enough to look after themselves on Internet without any danger and they are then careless and lower their guard. Another thing is that Internet is something the parents do not know enough about. They think they knew nothing, because they didn’t act until their children asked them to. Fran’s parents attached no importance to it, and Antonio’s parents, once they knew about the situation, followed it up all the way.

Regarding how parents would find out about what was happening and what information they would seek: They think first they would go to the school to find out if they had detected anything there, and would request guidance from the tutor, the principal and the counselors. Normally they talk to their children and try to advise them in cases like this. If they noticed a change of attitude in their children towards the school or their classmates, with pessimism, loss of interest or very negative feelings, and got no explanation from them, they would go and talk to the tutor.

Regarding whether the situation could change: The parents think the school should become actively involved in this type of situation, and both teachers and counselors should be appropriately trained in this area to be able to advise parents and act in collaboration. They think the situation would have been nipped in the bud if it had been detected immediately: if the tutor had noticed the harassment right from the time the group first called Antonio “metrosexual” because of his appearance, he could have used that as an excuse to discuss this form of behavior, both in class with the students involved and perhaps also in a meeting with their parents. That would have shown up those who wanted to keep insulting Antonio, and it would probably have deterred Fran from inventing new ways of sneering at him. He wouldn’t have created the page on the social network and the group would have seen how the correct attitude was reinforced by the advice and attitudes of the teacher and their own parents.

POINT OF VIEW OF THE COUNSELLOR IN THE SCHOOL:
With regard to what the counselor would do: I would have worked with the students on the consequences of harassment, both for the victim and the aggressor. It would have been very important to involve the whole education community in the issue, using tutorials and meetings to carry out action strategies such as group dynamics, conflict mediation strategies, the acceptance of diversity, communications strategies, etc.
To prevent this type of situation: Work on values in tutorials and introduce students to Web 2.0 tools in such a way that they will learn to use them correctly.
Regarding what could be done to improve communication and cooperation among students (and thus prevent school bullying in general). Implement plans for convivencia in schools which will provide channels for cooperative tasking and the building up of values, but which are less regulated than existing plans. It is necessary to educate keeping in mind the value of diversity, and it is therefore important to educate in respect and cooperation.

POINT OF VIEW OF POLICY MAKERS:
Firstable, as implied by the performances, there is a complete ignorance about this phenomenon, its implications and responsabilities of each one of the roles, specially families and school. This is the first obstacle to overcome only by transmitting clear information about who and when to turn to.
-The victim should have looked for support in the school center, but to that effect he/she needed to know that the center undertakes to be involved.
-The school center, of course, acted wrongly avoiding being involved.
-The family of the aggressor (the first one, but not the only one), must know their responsibility.
-The victim and their parents, apart from turning to the school center and the police, they should have taken self-protection basic steps. In this sense no references to the possibilities of intervention of the responsibles for the site are found. Perhaps requesting the withdrawal or reporting the inappropriate content, the exposition could have been hold back, and with it the defamatory remarks.
In summary, and in this order:
-Report of the victim to the school center and his/her family.
-Communication between family and school center (the first receiving the notice from the victim must inform the other).
-Defamatory remarks must be identified and registered and its origin must be investigated.
-Protection basic steps must be taken at the same time: delete doubtful contacts, scan the computer with the anti-virus program, changing passwords… Educative inspection must be aware of this so that they have proof that a case is being tackled.
- de ser posible, requerir al site que alberga las ofensas que intervenga por contenidos o comportamiento inadecuado de los usuarios.
- Given that its origin is presumably known, contrasting the version of the facts with the alleged aggressor. If it is admitted, inform him/her of the consequences and invite him/her to lay his/her attitude down, invite other participants to do the same and help to eliminate the echos or the traces of their online actions. In any case, before any contact, observed facts and opinions must be collected from the closer teaching staff.
- Simultaneously, family of the aggressor or aggressors must be informed of the facts and the detailed possible ramifications.
- At the same time in the class, actions towards promotion of convivencia must be reinforced, particularly to prevent cyberbullying.
- If the problem persists, support of the law must be sought , beyond the school disciplinary regime.

CONCLUSIVE DEDUCTIONS:
One thing to note is that the school does not want responsibility for this situation to think that ciberbullying was not within its powers to be done outside of school. However, all agents agree that this phenomenon affects the overall school environment and academic outcomes of students, creating a climate of uncertainty and aggression. On the other hand, parents are in agreement that the aggressor was supported by his parents, who defended him to downplay the situation and responding with insults, so this gives rise to ciberbullying situation intensifies.

Date: 27.03.2012

Posted by: Jésica Ramírez Medina
Type of school: Secundary School
Country: Spain

Regarding this comment made Marametti Pancosta Loretta Barbara, it seems that it is essential to stop harassment cases recorded occurred in a particular school. Especially for the fact that serve as precedents for future cases of harassment, so they are used as tracking models, and they work, thus easing will improve and the actions taken by schools.

Date: 22.03.2012

Posted by: E Spolin
Type of school: 11-18 Comprehensive
Country: UK

Sad case, but it is a police matter. Death threats must be taken seriously and cannot be dealt with effectively within the school environment.

Date: 22.03.2012

Posted by: Mariola Morillo Pareja
Type of school: Concerted
Country: Spain

I agree in part with this comment because sometimes wanting to be different at all costs you away from any homogeneous group that can exist in a class. Sometimes I think that at certain ages the school uniform is very positive in many aspects and to know the person before you take a first impression only by the clothes you are wearing. Work values ​​education is especially important to enhance not only judge people by their physical appearance

Date: 13.03.2012

Posted by: Bogdan Budisteanu
Type of school: Vocational School, Vasile Pavelcu School Group of Iaşi
Country: ROMANIA

First of all, I think that Antonio is a teenager that makes everything just to stand out. I agree that everyone is different in his own way; But when you enjoy being different you should also know that your behavior will not be well received by the others.
Children tend to react in a negative way to actions that they don’t accept or are forbidden by their family.
I also believe that the parents of the children who adopt a different behavior should try to set certain limits, so that their child would not become an outcast.
The school must establish rules of conduct and also reinforce them on the children, in order to make them feel equals; This way, the tension between children would disappear.

Date: 07.03.2012

Posted by: Petia Marcheva
Type of school: Specialized school
Country: Bulgaria

The described situation is similar to the one, which we analyzed together with the vocational school for tourism from our town – a case of cyber bullying, in which two girls published a defamatory material on MySpace. Similar to the extent that a cyber attack waas undertaken towards a specific person. In this case however a boy (the bully) created the defamatory publication (page) on Facebook. This is probably slightly untypical for boys. The attack is quite direct. One victim, one defamator. Still after the publication the number of indirect bullies grows to a massive number.
Such a scenario, again as in other previously commented cases, should be best solved through participation of the entire school team and general inclusion of the children in informational and educational activities. This is mainly connected to the fact that the attack eventually involves a great number of people and should be responded to by a massive education and prevention.
Prevention could be achieved via regular lectures and presentation of specific cases and the outcomes from them (including the harsh consequences and measures taken by the school management for sanctioning the perpetrators of such harassment). Forbidding the use of mobile phones at school or limiting the children's access to controlled educational Internet web-sites within ICT lessons, could have unsubstantial effects and would not influence the potential perpetrators, particularly when they are not on the school territory. On the other hand, understanding the fact that everybody can be identified on the Internet; that every mobile number can be “caught”, that such indirect attacks have extremely serious and lasting negative effects on the victim's psyche could influence the behavior of potential wrong-doers. Due to the specifics and the needs of our students, prevention lectures and situational games are very deeply integrated in our daily work and we are achieving excellent results.
Specific courses for teachers and psychologists on the topic of indirect and cyber bullying and their effects on the victim's psyche would be very useful. Ready lectures, which to be presented before the children, supported by similar thematic case studies.

Date: 05.03.2012

Posted by: Maramotti Loretta - Pancosta Barbara
Type of school: High School
Country: Italia

Active participation by parents, students and teachers. In Spain there is no recourse to the law while in our case and we 'used the rules to take action on the class. In Spain he would have been the main support in law enforcement if a complaint had been exposed by their parents. It is important that children talk to their parents and teachers also matters not related directly to the school environment but who disturb the peace of mind pouring a negative effect on profit. It would be advisable that teachers analyzed individual attitudes to understand what underlies any low returns to action seeking to eliminate the basic problem that is not always' purely academic, but can sometimes be caused by other factors. The teachers when they notice changes in mood from the students must act in consultation with parents to create a network with family and find the problem. The teacher training is crucial to deal with any bullying events. It is important that the Faculty Council is prepared.
Required courses in teacher training would be appropriate to dedicate themselves to the issue of forms of bullying. Important is the presence of experts such as psychologists and sociologists that illustrate the strategies used by teachers to address issues related to bullying that might occur in the classroom.
It would also be appropriate in these meetings there was a confrontation with teachers who have already faced this kind of experience so as to deal with them and allow other strategies.
Important is to create a network among teachers who have experienced and overcome these problems and teachers who are involved in the same issue, so it would be appropriate for the classes that they live such a problem might confront students who managed to overcome this difficulty. Our experience has taught us that the class action at all in law enforcement with the aim of illustrating the rules and the sanctions resulting from behaviors that violate the rules leads to a self-reflection and self-analysis following students on their inappropriate behavior resulting in behavioral improvement.
Therefore it would be good practice to include any case of police intervention, police, army into the classroom to illustrate and clarify the rules on citizenship regardless of whether or not issues related to bullying in the classroom.

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