Top tips for the classroom comeback from Bullybusters
SUMMER days have drifted away so it’s time to get back to the classroom and hit the books.
And whether you’re going up a year or starting at a whole new school, there’s going to be lots of new stuff going on and plenty to be aware of.
Which is why Liverpool-based Bullybusters is offering some handy hints and top tips to make the most of the new school year.
The organisation, run by the charity Local Solutions and supported by Liverpool City Council, says its advice is aimed at children and parents who are looking for the best way to support them.
Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for Education, Cllr Barbara Murray says: “The start of each new school year is a really important time in a young person’s life. It’s a chance for them to learn lots of exciting new things and meet new challenges. We want all of our children and young people feel comfortable so they can thrive in the classroom and feel supported to do their very best, which is why the right advice about what to do and who to turn to for help is really important.”
Here are Bullybusters’ top tips:
Get to know the staff at your school
It’s important to know who your learning mentor, pastoral support and head of year is when returning to school. Getting to know the staff will make things much easier if you ever need to speak to them for help and guidance throughout the year.
Remember your ‘Safe Hands’
Bullybusters are very passionate about the idea of ‘Safe Hands’. These are the five people you can count on one hand that you can trust and speak to when you’re in need of help. Ideally, at least three of them should be adults over 18. For example, you could have three teachers at school, so there is always someone to speak to.
The other two could be a friend, a brother or sister or even a pet. You can also use your Safe Hands at home when considering who to go to for help.
Don’t be a bystander
The Bullybusters team often hears how no-one wants to be a ‘snitch’. However, there’s a difference between being a ‘snitch’ and telling an adult what you have seen so someone can be helped. Even if you feel as though you can’t tell a teacher, go and ask that person if they are ok and see if there’s anything you can do. Encourage them to ask for help.
Use the 4 W’s
If you witness bullying in the classroom or the playground, use the 4 w’s to tell an adult about it:
Who was it? What happened? Where did it happen? When did it happen?
Don’t blame yourself, it’s never your fault
Always look for help if you are being bullied or feel upset for whatever reason. Talking to someone about what is happening is the best way to resolve the issue.
Use the Bullybusters’ website and helpline
The Bullybusters’ website tells you what support is available and gives you loads more helpful and practical tips – www.bullybusters.org.uk
The helpline is open from 3pm until 6pm Monday to Friday for children and young people, parents and teachers – 0800 1696 928.
Frances Goldsmith from Bullybusters says: “We know that Liverpool’s schools take bullying extremely seriously and are really proactive at spotting the signs and taking action to stop it. However, your teachers can only do this if they know what’s going on. There are so many people who are willing to help and the message from us is you don’t have to suffer in silence. Tell a teacher, tell a parent, tell a friend or tell us and become a Bullybuster.”