"I Am Not Scared" Project
Silence regarding school violence
Vogiatzakis S., Karagiorgos D.
Scholl bullying, violence
Newspaper / Magazine article
1 - 20 pages
This article describes the school bullying phenomenon as it is presented in Greece and compares it with the same phenomenon in other countries. Although one in six students has been subjected to physical or verbal violence, it is still accepted as a subject that someone can not talk openly about. Research on school bullying, is at an early stage but the first set of evidence shows that the victim percentage is as high as 14.7 percent of the student population, while 6 percent is self-defined as a bully. Percentages are higher in Great Britain and even higher in the USA, while they are lower in Ireland and Norway, compared to Greece. Dealing with school bullying proves to be extremely difficult, mainly because of the fact that most of the victims are not willing to share their experience. The educational staff is not trained to handle such problems, nor is the government ready to deal with it. Student intervention is very important for the solution of the problem. Programs that have been carried out abroad show that when students are encouraged to sort out their differences in terms of dialogue and other non violent actions, the phenomenon is greatly diminished. Similar projects are carried out in some schools in Greece, but can be only found on an experimental level. The profile of the victims is also described. Victims are mostly shy and easy going children with not many friends outside the school environment and no close friends inside school, making them isolated. On the other hand the bullies appear to have a lack of parental love, or are victims of in-house violence themselves. Parents can watch out for the following symptoms: Intense anxiety, insecurity, fear, school denial, poor grades and learning deficiencies.
This article was chosen because it was one of the few that were featured in a mainstream Greek newspaper. It is very important, as these publications reach a great number of the population, when scientific publications do not. The fact that it is short in length and presents statistics for Greece and other countries makes it an easy and interesting read. Theoretical explanations are kept to a minimum, and interesting data is presented to lure the readers. Some of the above are comparisons with other countries, profiles on victims and bullies, behavioral signs etc. One more important aspect is that a telephone number is provided for the support of victims of school bullying. Moreover, it is interesting enough the fact that student intervention is very important for the solution of the problem. Programs that have been carried out abroad show that when students are encouraged to sort out their differences in terms of dialogue and other non violent actions, the phenomenon is greatly diminished. Similar projects are carried out in some schools in Greece, but can be only found on an experimental level.
I Am Not Scared Project
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