Violent TV blamed for bullying

VIOLENT and aggressive TV has been blamed for boosting bullying.A county council expert has lambasted popular entertainment for teaching children bad behaviour.

VIOLENT and aggressive TV has been blamed for boosting bullying.

A county council expert has lambasted popular entertainment for teaching children bad behaviour.

Suffolk's high school students have been a helpline leaflet to provide a pocket-sized piece of reassurance that they have help on hand.

It is part of a many-pronged attack being mounted by Jan McDonald, county advisor for personal and social development, to tackle a situation she said was being made worse by TV.


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She said: "It's not just a school issue and it's not just a parental issue. Films and TV programmes often have people talking to each other in ways which are unacceptable.

"Children can believe that's the way they are meant to behave. Young children don't always understand it's just about entertainment."

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Mrs McDonald said schools had reacted very well to the new council leaflet and there were plans to introduce a version for younger students.

She highlighted it as just one of the proactive strategies Suffolk County Council is mounting to help reduce bullying.

She said: "It's not possible to eliminate bullying completely, but you can cut it right down.

"We can give children and schools strategies to deal with it."

Mrs McDonald said it was important to start working with younger children to tackle bullying behaviour before it really gets going.

But she warned there is only so much schools can do if they do not have the full support of the community at large.

Ms McDonald said communication between teachers and pupils was vital in tackling bullying.

And she urged schools to discuss things at length to help issues surface.

She said: "Some schools are being much more up-front and the more you discuss things the better.

"School council's can be very useful. If you listen to them it can help – a healthy school is one that discusses things.

"It's impossible to have a school where no child is ever bullied. Personal, social and health education is all about learning skills.

"You need to give children a lot of strategies of things they can use when they are embarrassed or not sure what to do."

N See pages 22 and 23 to read how the battle against bullying is being fought

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