I was recently contacted by a reporter from a major Australian newspaper about the rise in homeschooling due to bullying. The biggest reason parents cite for pulling their children out of school is bullying behaviour.
When I looked at the enrolment statistics of those joining us, I was surprised to find that 70% of those students, who were bullied were girls, and that they were often aged 13-15 years.
This seems to be the age when girls can be particuarly mean. Parents have said to me that their daughter has been told, “You’re fat, you’re ugly, we all hate you.”
Their daughter’s “friends” exclude them from their groups or just completely ignore them. The message is: ‘We dislike you so much that we will not even acknowledge your existence.’
Parents have told me that they have approached the administration in schools and they have been told, “We take this very seriously and we are dealing with the situation.” However the bullying continues.
We have had parents extremely concerned about the health of their child and the possibility that the child will go into clinical depression and start self-harming. Some withdraw completely and rarely come out of their room.
Boys also get bullied and it can be just as bad the experiences that girls go through.
Some people argue that children who are being bullied should develop strategies to deal with the bullies. I am amazed that they would say that. When you think about it, it is not what we expect much older and experienced adults to do.
If you said, “You should learn to deal with it.”, to someone complaining about harassment in the workplace you would be likely to be up for compensation claims down the track.
This French anti-bullying video graphically demonstrates how the type of behaviour, which occurs regularly at school would look like, if it happened in the workplace. How would the boss look in court if he said, “We were addressing the issue and helping the employee to develop strategies to deal with his colleagues.” A multi-million dollar pay out would likely result.
Fortunately there is an alternative. Home education will immediately remove a child from the toxic environment.
The child will often quickly regain their natural confidence and joy in life. You control the social environment and can allow your child to join in with the many events in the home education community.
We have had parents say after only six weeks, “It is like I have my little girl back again”
Do not put up with excuses and inaction from a school. Start homeschooling today!
Click here to see the article in the West Australian newspaper.
Stuart Chapman is the Coordinator of Homeschool Services for Southern Cross Educational Enterprises encompassing Accelerate Christian Home Schooling and other entities in the South Pacific. He is also an international speaker being the Australian Board member of Global Home Education Conferences.