Primary and secondary schools will be able to access advice and support to help prevent deaf children from being bullied from Monday 21 July, as the UK’s leading deaf children’s charity launches a new resource.
Bullying and deaf children: a guide for primary and secondary schools has been developed by The National Deaf Children’s Society to help schools tackle any bullying issues that deaf children in their school might be experiencing. A survey run by the charity found that almost two thirds1 of deaf young people have been bullied because of their deafness.
Supported by the Anti-Bullying Alliance, the resource highlights the signs to look out for to identify if bullying is taking place, and tips on creating a safer school environment to help tackle and prevent bullying. It covers all forms of bullying including verbal, emotional, such as deliberately ignoring someone, physical and cyber-bullying.
Ian Noon, Head of Policy and Research at the National Deaf Children’s Society, said: “Any child can experience bullying but we know deaf children and young people can be particularly vulnerable. Difficulties with language, communication and social skills, such as simply not understanding a joke that everyone else is laughing at, can contribute to a deaf child feeling isolated and at risk of being bullied by their peers.
“Whatever the reason, bullying is unacceptable. There are 45,000 deaf children and young people in the UK and this guide aims to help mainstream teachers and special educational needs co-ordinators spot, handle and prevent bullying from happening in the first place.”
The National Deaf Children’s Society has also produced a guide for parents and resources for deaf children and young people. The guide for parents provides tips on how to spot if bullying is taking place and how to tackle it. The resources for deaf children show them help is available and includes postcards with individual tips such as, what is bullying, how to deal with cyberbullying and what to do if you are being bullied.
Martha Evans, Acting National Coordinator at the Anti-Bullying Alliance, hosted by leading children's charity the National Children's Bureau said: “All of the guides will support young people, parents and carers and schools to tackle bullying and help support deaf children and young people. It is important we all work together to prevent bullying and ensure we respond appropriately when it does occur. These guides support our theme this year for Anti-Bullying Week in November – Let’s Stop Bullying for All”.
Tips on how to create a safe school environment for deaf children
Promote deaf awareness and positive attitudes to deafness
Ensure deaf pupils can access safe or quiet zones
Check that deaf pupils understand what cyberbullying is and how to protect themselves
Check systems are in place for reporting and monitoring
Consider the needs of deaf pupils in all staff training on bullying
Support deaf pupils in extra-curricular activities
For more information go to www.ndcs.org.uk