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TITLE OF DOCUMENT:

Schools without experts to handle the issue

NAME OF AUTHOR(S):

Haris Asimopoulos

NAME OF PUBLISHER:

“Kathimerini”, daily political newspaper

LANGUAGE OF DOCUMENT:

Greek

LANGUAGE OF THE REVIEW:

English

KEYWORDS:

Bullying, Prevention, Diagnosis, Lack of Specialists

DOCUMENT TYPOLOGY:

Newspaper / Magazine article

TARGET GROUP OF PUBLICATION:

Teachers, Young People.

SIZE OF THE PUBLICATION:

Not relevant

DESCRIPTION OF CONTENTS:

In this article is indicated that determinant factor concerning to bullying incidents,is the timely diagnosis in conjunction with prevention programs. Dr Haris Asimopoylos, social worker in Child Psychiatry Clinic “Agia Sofia” ' Martyr ' and program coordinator of Association for the Psychosocial Health of Children and Adolescents (A.P.H.C.A.) stresses that “the earlier, the better”.
The signs to identify cases of children who are victims of bullying vary and can range from ' concrete ', such as infection, bruises, torn or damaged clothing that child avoids justify to their parents, until the abrupt deterioration in school performance, truancy, headache of psychosomatic origin, abdomen pain, sleep disorders and depression.
However, according to Mr Asimopoylos, educators are not ...educated appropriately in order to discern and to act accordingly. ' There is a gap in this area since the vast majority do not have the required knowledge to handle such matters, " he explains. At the same time that abroad schools are staffed with experts, in Greece the debate for psychologists in schools shake only when occuring extreme incidents (murder, Alex Meschisbili in Veria in early 2006, rape of a schoolgirl from Bulgaria in Gymnasium in Amarynthos in autumn 2006, fatal self-injury of a student of OAED in Renti (Athens) after opened fire against his classmates and professors in April 2009).
Encouraging is the implementation of the transnational program "Daphne-combating violence against children and women” which runs from 2006, in the last two classes of four primary schools in Athens and in Thessaloniki. In the program are also involved Cyprus, Germany and Lithuania. This program is financed by 80% by the European Union and 20% by the Ministry of Health. It is interesting that before the program, the percentage of pupils who resorted to the Director of the school for reporting a bullying incident was 5.5% and came in 15.79% afterwards, while decreased by 28% to 5,26% the percentage of pupils who do not disclose it to anyone that they are victims of bullying.

REVIEWER’S COMMENTS ON THE DOCUMENT:

This article highlights the importance of prevention and early detection of bullying incidents. While this is a phenomenon with a growing presence in the Greek reality, with serious implications for the smooth functioning of the school, there have not adopted concerted and widespread management strategies.
Mr. Asimopoylos stresses the lack of training of Greek teachers, so that they can discern the signs of school bullying and act accordingly. This is a very serious matter indeed, if we take into account that most researches in the field have shown that students who have been victims of bullying refuse most of them to share their experience with their teachers and to request their assistance. Even educators themselves designate themselves as non-qualified and helpless to handle such incidents.
It is worth noting that the majority of teachers who graduate from Schools like Mathematics, Literature, Chemistry etc., have not effective pedagogical skills and their knowledge is limited to the mere knowledge of their subject. In addition, the seminars that new teachers attend are short in duration and do not cover the whole range of pedagogical training.
On the other hand, the presence of specialists in schools (for example, psychologists or social workers) is lacking and confined to the emergence of extreme events. However, these institutions are the continuous demand of educational organisations and associations of teachers.
In conclusion, this article demonstrates in concise and simple manner the need to tackle the phenomenon of school bullying by experts, in order to ensure the smooth functioning of the school.

NAME OF THE REVIEWING ORGANISATION:

ASPETE

I Am Not Scared Project
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