Saturday, February 4, 2023

The key to the success of the Nordic method against bullying: Addressing the whole school ecosystem


  • Swedish-Norwegian psychologist Dan Olvius Olves’s bullying prevention program is one of the most proven


  • It is based on the idea that individual instances of bullying are the product of a larger culture that tolerates bullying.


  • A growing body of research shows that bullying has a big impact on children’s future health

Anyone who has been bullied as a child knows The pain these experiences create lasts a lifetime. It’s not something you can easily turn the page on. There have been several investigations in recent years that suggest The effects of bullying on children can last for decades With lasting changes, these adults who were bullied in their childhood are more vulnerable to mental and physical illness.

there is no doubt that Bullying is a serious short-term mental health risk for childrenThe most notable results are increased anxiety, depression, and paranoid thinking. While some of these symptoms may disappear on their own when the bullying stopsMany victims still suffer from an increased risk of mental illness years later.

A woman who has been bullied as a child is 27 times more likely to develop panic disorder as a young adult. In men, childhood bullying increased the risk of suicidal thoughts and actions by 18 times. These are some of the data in an article published by Revista Harvard Psychiatry Review, British science journalist David Robson, This information is collected in a BBC article.

Bullying will also have long-lasting consequences for people’s social lives, says Day, professor of developmental psychology at King’s College London. Louise Arsenault In Robson’s article: Many sufferers find it difficult to make friends as adults and are less likely to stay with a long-term partner., One possibility is that they have difficulty trusting those around them. “Children who have been bullied may interpret social interactions in a more threatening way,” says the psychologist. Finally, there are educational and economic costs., Bullying hurts people’s grades, which in turn lowers their job prospects.Which means they are more likely to experience financial instability and unemployment in early adulthood and midlife.

research suggests that The resulting stress can affect the body for decades after the event., An analysis of data from a 50-year longitudinal study found that frequent bullying between the ages of seven and 11 was associated with higher levels of inflammation at age 45. Importantly, the link held even after controlling for a host of other factors, including diet, physical activity and smoking. This is important, as high inflammation can inhibit the immune system and contribute to the wear and tear on our organs that leads to conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.

Change in the way bullying is viewed

all these conclusions are leading A growing number of teachers are calling for a change in their attitudes about bullying: From seeing it as an inevitable part of growing up to violating the human rights of children. “People used to think that bullying was normal behavior and that in some cases, it could even be a good thing, because it builds character,” Arsenault explains. “It took a long time for researchers to start looking at bullying as something that could actually be harmful.”

Robson explains that this change in mindset is driving Several experts to test new anti-harassment methods With some new strategies aimed at creating a better environment in schools.

Overall, these findings suggest that efforts to eliminate bullying are not only a moral imperative to reduce the immediate suffering of children, but that Long-term benefits for the health of the population.

Between the late 1990s and the early 2000s, there was no systematic campaign in British schools to tackle bullying. The teachers limited themselves to punishing certain behaviors if they were observed. It was always the student’s responsibility to report the problem, so many cases were hidden, Furthermore, some teachers tacitly support bullying by turning a blind eye to obvious problems. Others (a rare but toxic minority) also actively put up with the bullying.

Above all, some forms of bullying were tolerated because they reflected widespread social prejudices. For exampleOne longitudinal study found that a significant proportion of children of lesbian mothers reported being teased or intimidated because of the type of family they had., although parental support moderated the effect. LGBTQ youth are also more likely to experience bullying and other attacks at school. However, schools in the past have shown a tendency to turn a blind eye to homophobic bullying.

Olvius Bullying Prevention Program

Fortunately, Robson points out, ongoing research offers some proven anti-bullying strategies that are known to help.

The Olvius Bullying Prevention Program is one of the most proven programs out there. It was developed by the late Swedish-Norwegian psychologist and Olviuswho led a lot Early Academic Research on Child Abuse, The program is based on this idea Individual instances of bullying are often the product of a wider culture that tolerates harassment., As a result, he tries to address the entire school ecosystem so that the bad behavior doesn’t continue.

like many interventionsThe Olvius program begins with recognition of the problem., For this reason, schools should set up a survey to ask students about their experiences. “Knowing what’s happening at your school is really important and can guide your bullying prevention efforts,” he says. Susan Limber is a professor of developmental psychology at Clemson University in South Carolina. BBC article.

Olweus program encourages school Set very clear expectations for acceptable behavior and consequences for breaking those rules., “The restrictions shouldn’t come as a surprise to the child,” says Limber. Adults should act as positive role models, reinforce good behavior and show zero tolerance for harassment of any kind. They should also learn to identify places within the school where bullying is most likely to occur and monitor them regularly. “Basic bullying training is required of all adults at school: the people who work the cafeteria, the bus drivers, the janitors,” explains Limber.

at the class level, Children themselves organize meetings to discuss the nature of bullying and ways to help students who are victims of ill-treatment. The aim is to ensure that the message of anti-bullying remains in the culture of the organisation.

Olvius program works

Robson explains that by working with OlviusLimber tested the scheme in various environments, Large-scale implementation includes over 200 schools in Pennsylvania. Their analysis shows that the program resulted in 2,000 fewer cases of bullying in two years, It is important to note that researchers also observed a change in the general attitude of the school population towards bullyingIncluding more empathy for the victims.

The Limber results are not the only ones showing that systematic anti-bullying campaigns can bring about positive change. A recent meta-analysis, which examined the results of 69 trials, concluded Anti-bullying campaigns not only reduce victimization, but also improve overall mental health of students,

despite the scientific evidenceThese interventions are not yet widely included in national education programs,

involvement of families

Of course, bullying isn’t just a matter of schools. In fact, Limber argues that Parents and caregivers should be on the lookout for signs of possible bullying. “You have to be proactive in talking about it, don’t wait for it to come,” he says.

Limber insists that The adult should take the child’s concerns very seriously, even if they seem insignificant. “Listen carefully and try to control your emotions while listening to them.” The caregiver should avoid making hasty suggestions about how the child can handle the problem, as this can sometimes lead to the feeling that the sufferer is to blame for the experience.

if required Parents should start a dialogue with the school, which should immediately put in place a plan to make the child feel safe, “The first thing is to pay attention to that child and their experiences.”

Robeson concludes that growing up is rarely easy. Children and teenagers are learning to manage social relationships and this will always bring unhappiness and discomfort. As adults, we can help children by teaching them that certain types of behavior are never acceptable And the blame is always on the attackers. Like this Lessons can have a huge impact on the health and happiness of many generations to comeAs the latest research shows.

Nation World News Desk
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