A graduation day photo.

Norfolk Home Learning

        From small beginnings to great success

Beating the Bullies

Cartoon showing bullying

Bullying is a scourge, ruining or even ending school for some of its victims.

The following cases show the harm and misery it can cause:

I felt unhappy and tormented in every part of my life. I tried to ignore the name-calling but it just got worse. A 12-y​ear-old.

At break, they pushed Joanne over and kicked her. The worst part was what they threatened to do to her after school. The parent of a 10-year-old.

Unfortunately, my 'rough kid' background attracted the bullies at my posh little school. Then after school my 'posh kid' uniform attracted all the estate bullies, too. An adult's memory (my own, in fact).

Some schools bang the 'no bullying' drum but then act weakly or clumsily when cases occur.

A measured response like the following often brings better results:

A trusted teacher

  • gently probes the victim's feelings ("being so lonely kills me" etc.)
  • gathers a group of pupils including the bullies but not the victim
  • explains the victim’s suffering, possibly using a picture or piece of writing they've done
  • emphasizes their need to feel happy and safe
  • welcomes ideas like ‘I’ll walk to school with him’
  • meets everyone (including the victim) individually after about a week to check on progress.
This approach
  • confronts the bullies with the full extent of the victim's suffering
  • sets an example of caring (rather than using force like a bully)
  • brings out the best in the other pupils, which lowers the bullies' status
  • frees victims from the fear of reprisals, since no one is punished.
Cartoon artwork showing bullying behaviour by a teacher

Sadly, teachers can be bullies, too

A bullied youngster may well be prone to anxiety and depression, and for help with these problems please click here.

To give victims a chance to describe their torments (and possibly get some relief in the process) please click here.

To get in touch about bullying please use this form.

My postbag is currently swelling as winter blues set in.

I always reply but prioritise families in Norwich, Yarmouth and north Norfolk.

Tony D Triggs

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Thank you for contacting me. I'll get back to you as soon as I can.
Tony D Triggs, education counsellor