This proposal shall seek to address the various ways that I will incorporate in order to reduce incidences of bullying in Alharawy School. Bullying involves threatening a particular individual or some individuals by a person, group of persons or a gang by using verbal communication, physical assaults or other methods. The victim of the bullying undergoes tremendous psychological pressure and mental stress that can have a serious impact on the life of that victim. The practice of bullying is considered as one of the techniques to frighten people from carrying out something that are unacceptable for a person or a gang or group.
The issue of bullying has been rampant in schools as well as the cyber space and the public agora at large. This proposal is aimed at addressing the principal of Alharawy School. It is imperative to discuss about bullying in the presence of the children, as a parent-teacher forum will be able to unite the teachers, parents and. The problem of bullying has many dimensions to address and it involves the children, parents and teachers altogether. We will try to find some important and helpful ways that can be applied to utilize a particular collaborative platform.
Bullying is an occurrence of an event, wherein either the students of the schools or colleges or teenagers are involved in teasing or harassing another students or group of students. The ways of bullying can occur through any means, such as hitting, teasing, threatening, pushing, spreading rumors, abusing, through spreading of fake news on social networking sites, or even through social exclusions. However, it has been found that, the victims of such events of bullying undergo depression. There is a feeling of fear amongst such victims, since they are not able to bear the mental pain of such events. In some of the worst cases, it has been even noted that the bullying incidents turn into violence, since the victims want to seek revenge against the culprits (Hertz S1-S54).
Today, it has been found that, several students all round the world are becoming the victims of bullying. The culprits try to threat or insult the students or other groups of students and thus, indulge them into an indirect form of aggressive behavior against them. Such incidents will try to spread false propaganda of the victims, or false news about the targeted students in a given school environment. The culprits try to make rude comments in an illegitimate way with a view to harm the impression of the students.
Bullying, thus, can be considered as a violent activity that occurs, especially between the students, either in the schools or in the colleges. It could happen through both mental and physical form. However, we are going to focus upon the bullying incidents that are taking place in the Saudi Arabia schools and other learning environment.
The thesis of this paper shall focus upon the bullying activities taking place in the Alharawy School and many other such schools in Saudi Arabia. We would thereby, like to find out the causes and the impacts of such bullying incidents. It is important for the school counselors, management authorities, teaching staff, and finally, the parents to take necessary steps in order to curb the bullying activities.
Bullying as discussed seems to be posing great challenges for the school environment and even for the society. It has been noted that, the bullying incidents will be taking place where the bullies will find lonely places or a place where they can dominate over others. Hence, inside the school premises it might not be possible for them to carry out bullying activities. They will instead look out for the school playgrounds or the parking areas or even in the city areas, wherein they can catch hold of the targeted students and then indulge into bullying activities. Hence, it is more important for the school authorities, the teachers, and the parents to take care of such children and implement strategies to solve the challenges of bullying.
Once a given school is successful in overcoming the bullying issues, several other schools can implement the same model and the same set of strategies to overcome bullying in their respective schools. In Alharawy School, the school authorities consider bullying as a virus that can destroy the life of any student. Hence, it is important for all the concerned stakeholders to solve the issues of bullying on a joint basis.
Bullying is something that needs to be stopped at every level as it can affect the lives of people in negative manner. The subject of bullying needs to explore with all the possible situations that can be evolved as a result of occurrence of this practice. Several researchers have tried to define bullying in their terms. Some of them considered as a form of abusive behavior or an aggressive behavior, while others consider it as a set of actions taken to intentionally harm the reputation of the student or to harm the student physically, with a view to take some revenge (Seigle 50).
One of the research studies has mentioned that, bulling incidents includes harassment of the students, which could directly spread the poison in a given learning environment (Masiello & Schroeder 31-47). However, in some of the cases, it has been observed that, bullying incidents will either extend to violent activities or could even extend up to sexual harassment. The harassment can be done either by the senior students or by the teachers itself. There are different statistics available to justify the increasing rate of bullying incidents taking place in Saudi Arabia.
The students are indulging into bullying either for raging purpose or for some similar entertainment purpose. Their purpose is not harm, but just to play jokes around. Hence, it is important to find out the thin line between the bullying and the actual violent activities that are taking place in the Alharawy School. One of the researchers has mentioned that, bullying can be distinguished from violent activities in terms of three elements. These include - repetitively taking steps to harm the reputation of the victim or targeted student, the cheap or the bad intentions to cause harm, and the power imbalance between the bullied and the bully.
As per the governmental reports of 2011, in Saudi Arabia, about 33 per cent of the high school students were found to be indulging into bullying. Around 20 per cent became the victims of such bullying incidents. After the incidents of bullying, about 6 per cent of the victims denied going to school since they were afraid of the bullying atmosphere. In addition, the reports also mentioned that, around 7 per cent of the bullying students were studying in 9th to 12th grades.
The researchers, therefore, tried to find out the causes of such bullying incidents, and they found that, there could be several causes, due to which, bullying incidents might be taking place. The possible causes will include - competition, rivalry, and admiration from the teaching staff, school popularity, and parental pressures to perform better. However, in some of the worst cases, it was even found that, the senior students were associated with the violent histories, drugs and alcohol usage, poor grades, and troublesome family life, due to which, they were indulge into bullying (MacLean & Gunion 20-31).
The research department of the government of Saudi Arabia mentioned that, around 7 per cent of the teachers also received threats of bullying due to one or the other reasons. Hence, it is important for the school authorities, the government, the medical organizations, and the parents to take steps in this direction. They need to find out solutions that will help in preventing the bullying activities from the Alharawy School.
As per the Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution (BIP), it was found that, there were about 120,000 crimes committed with respect to bullying. As per the reports from the Shura Council, it was further found that, around 95 per cent of juvenile crimes were spread in the entire nation. Bullying seems to be increasing, and hence, might pose a great challenge in front of several authorities.
Hence, it is the responsibility of the school management and the teaching staff to improve the teacher-student relationships and create a friendly environment in a given school. They need to make them learn about the positive values of life and thus, need to create a positive mindset amongst the students. I would like to create a plan that will help the school authorities to take steps in curbing the bullying activities.
Outcomes of Bullying
The social impact and seriousness associated with the problems caused due to bullying can be understood by three possible outcomes as a result of such an unfortunate incident. The first outcome may be that the victim of bullying undergoes under severe mental and psychological stress. This mental stress sometimes leads the victim to commit an extreme act of suicide.
The second possible outcome of the bullying may be the involvement of the victim in criminal activities because of the hatred developed in the heart. And, the third possible outcome may be the sense of development and learning the ways that can be helpful for the victim to deal with the situations of bullying in the future. It is usually achieved by exploration of the faults and mistakes done at the individual personality level. The victim would work efficiently on the removal and rectification of the mistakes made at the personal level by improving the personality (Marks 4-8).
Hypothetical Case: Understanding the Severity of Risk associated with Bullying
I would like to discuss one hypothetical case, which resembles to several cases of bullying, wherein they have turned fatal. The case is about a girl named Lucia, who was studying in XI standard. She was little bit overweight, but still she was proud of her personality and of her life. She was the only child of her parents, and hence, even her parents took great care of protecting her against the evil elements of the society. She had a group of friends, who used to support and assist her during many points in time. But, in today's technological world, people like to connect more through Facebook and other such social networking sites. She received a friend request from a stranger, who in actual fact was a classmate of her school. But, Lucia was unaware about this; she accepted the friend request, and slowly, the conversations increased a lot. It reached to such a stage that, Lucia fell in love with this person, and even that person committed to be in love with her.
But, the case took a sudden turn, when that person exposed the chats and other comments and photos of Lucia in public. Lucia was hit by a mental stroke, and she underwent depression. After some time, when her parents were not at home, she committed suicide. This was the tragic end of the story. Today, we find several bullying issues more related to Cyber bullying, and this is how they turn fatal at the end. Hence, we need to look out for the solutions that will help Lucia and other such students against the evil incidences of bullying.
The Menace of Bullying in Saudi Arabian schools
As mentioned earlier, it has been noted that, the incidents of bullying are commonly happening in the Alharawy School. Even, the school administrations are usually worried about the ways to deal with the situations. Sometimes, the offenders cause a lot of serious natured problems for the victims and their families.
It has been even noted from the local government reports in 2013 that, the incidents of bullying also take place at certain work places. These may sometimes lead to the cases of sexual abuses and other incidents related to the moral misconduct.
However, it is surprising to know that, the parents of the culprit children are completely unaware of such situations. The parents are informed or get to know about the actual situation and seriousness of the matter when the problem has aroused to maximum level. The sad side of the story is that most of the times the victims of bullying remain silent over the incident and, this provides a good way for the offenders to get away at the first time they do such a job. The situation becomes serious when the offenders get a message, that, it is easy to get away with the usual practice of bullying and pressurizing others in order to make up their things in the desired manner.
The lifestyle of the parents and their busy working schedules keeps them away from their children and, specifically, with the problems that arouse at their schools. This will become a psychological problem for the children most of the times, as on one side they are facing with the threats received from the offenders and, on the other side they feel alone in such tough situations (Saarento, Boulton, & Salmivalli 1-16).
It is, thereby, extremely important for the parents to work as per the schedule that can allow them to at least sit once in a day or two days, to discuss their children’s life and their learning at the school. It will facilitate the children to develop a positive mindset and they will be able to respond to the tough circumstances and problems in a better manner. It is important to note that, the confidence level of the children during facing of any negative circumstances such as bullying should be high. Their parents could help them in learning how to tackle with such incidents. The parents should take all the necessary steps that are needed to help their children in the development of better behavior and attitudes.
The Negative Role of the causes that result into Bullying in the Alharawy School
Today, we often found children watching movies and playing games that have excessive violence in it. They often see mass killings, mass robberies, and many such other criminal incidents, due to which, even their minds get corrupt. In some other cases, a child or a student will have observed a verbal or physical fight between his mother and father. Hence, under all these different circumstances, it is the responsibility of everyone to take care of these children. The manufacturer of games should develop games that are friendly in nature, and that will not have too much of violence in it. Secondly, the parents should help and assist their children in their school homework and assignments. They should try every other method and approach to keep their children happy. At the same time, the parents should educate and teach their children to speak of the bullying incidents, so that they can take steps at the right moment.
Finding the issues and then implementing the Combat Plan
Before implementing any particular solution, we need to find out the places of occurrences of bulling, deterring the causes of such bullying, and then implement the solutions in such a way that, it would not happen again. It has been observed that, the parents are often unaware of such issues, and hence, they are unable to take any precautionary actions in the cases of bullying. In addition, even teachers will not be able to find out any clue or evidence of bullying. Hence, it is very much important for both the parents and the teachers to first of all get aware of the bullying incidents, and then take steps to prevent them.
Problems that will be addressed
The issues that will be addressed in the combating plan are:
- The legal consequences of bullying
- The excuses that offenders of bullying make to someone else
- The personality factors that contribute to bullying
- The reasons why the bullies select their targets
- The various types of bullying
- The extent of bullying given the recent instances of school shooting,
- The lasting effects of bullying as well as if the bullies can outgrow their behaviors
These questions will seek to understand more about bullying not only within the Alharawy School, but also in the online mode, where Cyberbullying has increased dramatically. In addition, the issue of other Arabic schools legality or liability regarding their failure to protect students from bullying will be highlighted.
While designing and implementing the plan, we need to carry out a cost-benefit analysis so that the budget for the plan can be prepared accordingly. First, let us note down the costs associated with the implementation of this plan. There will be costs involved in organizing the meetings and gathering all the concerned stakeholders for the meeting. Secondly, it will take time to implement the entire action plan at all the schools of Saudi Arabia. In addition, we might require carrying out research, gathering of the data and then analyzing it. We shall require a proper research and an investigation team to prepare the plan from the analysis and findings of this research. Finally, there will be opportunity costs associated with the lack of learning in the school. There might be costs involved in conducting trainings for the teaching staff and other concerned authorities. There might be costs associated with the opening of the counselor centers and hiring a psychological counselor at each of the school.
On the other hand, the key benefit will include prevention of the bullying incidents inside the Alharawy School. Secondly, the mindset of the Arabic students will change, and they will focus more upon learning. The behavior patterns of the Arabian students will change, due to increase in the awareness levels of both the students and their parents. Further, the stakeholders will be taking rational decisions, and due to which, we would be able to see improvised relationships between the school teachers and the children. The counselor will help in installing positive mindset and positive values, due to which, the behaviors and attitudes of the culprits will change. Finally, we need to constantly review the performance so that, we can modify our plan accordingly.
The following table can be used as a sample table that each school administration can use to manage the cost specific details and the sources of financing:
I would like to include certain recommendations and solutions in order to curb the bullying activities. First of all, I would like to discuss all the issues of bulling with the concerned management and school authorities. I would even like to invite the Department Head of Education of Saudi Arabia into this meeting, and would like to take inputs from him. Secondly, I would like to prepare the statistical reports in regards with bullying. It will help me identify some of the important facts, which might be unknown of bullying till date. It would include, the total number of bullying incidents taking place in the Saudi Arabian schools on a yearly basis. It would further include details on type of bullying activities and the extent to which it were carried out. It would further include the ratio of the bullied and the bullies. And, finally, it will include the level of injury occurred to the victim students.
Every stakeholder is required to play his or her role in stopping the bullying incidents. And, hence, the bullying prevention strategies should be implemented after establishing collaboration between the school authorities, the parents, and the children. I would like to recommend certain steps that could actually help in stopping bullying in a given school environment. First of all, the school should establish a counseling center, wherein all the students that are facing difficulties from the mental perspective can get the desired treatment. Secondly, the teachers and other concerned authorities need to keep a close watch on each and every student, and thereby, monitor their behavior, approach, and attitude inside the school. Even if, they found a slight change they can come to know about the trace of bullying.
We need to collect all the information of the victims and then try to find out the major culprits of such incidents. We will also look into the matter from the school perspective, and try to find out, whether any actions were taken by the Arabic schools or not. In Saudi Arabia, it has been noted that, there is not much awareness amongst the students regarding bullying, and hence, they it is important to educate them on this alarming issue. We also need to assess on the thoughts and the mental thinking of the students on bullying.
We would like to organize meetings that shall include the teachers, the parents, and other concerned authorities. We will be collecting ideas and opinions of each one of them, and then prepare a robust plan to overcome bullying. It is important for the parents to spend more time with children so as to ensure them, their safety and security. In addition, we need to install a fair, quick, and impartial decision making process in the school so as to take quick actions against the culprits that are involved in bullying.
Develop bonding between the teachers and the students
Further, it is important to develop a strong bonding between the teachers and the students so that they can collectively take actions against all those students who are engaging the most in the bullying activities. It will also help in establishing cordial relations, wherein both the entities can help each other during the time in need. We would be also taking periodic reviews of all the schools of Saudi Arabia, in order to determine the performance of the plan across the schools. At the same time, we will also try to find out the effectiveness of this plan. And, if any modifications are required, we shall be making it on a quick basis.
In today's contemporary world, we can take the help of technological solutions, as well as management practices in order to stop the menace of bullying within a given school environment. The school should encourage those students, who have reported the incidents of bullying to the school authorities. Since, the incidences are taking place due to the changes in the societal norms or due to differences between two students in any form, even the society should take steps to prevent bullying in the external environment.
The school administrators need to provide adequate form of reporting mechanisms for the victims to report the matter immediately. The school administration has to take the matter of bullying as a serious concern that needs to be addressed on an immediate basis. The schools should look into hiring of the dedicated staff that can deal with the matters and cases of bullying. This new staff can be trained psychologists that can serve as counselors, which can play their positive role in dealing with the situations of bullying.
The counselors should be able to deal with the psychological feelings of both the entities, the offenders and the victims. In addition to this measure, the school administration should also look into the installment of the adequate equipment that can facilitate in keeping an eye on the actions of the children. Such measures can consist of installation of security-related CCTV cameras that can be used to keep an eye on the actions and behaviors of the children. There are some responsible children that can remain present during the classroom activities as well as other mutual activities. The school administrators and counselors need to take their help in knowing the actual situation on ground in a secret manner and keep watching the prospects that are more likely to be the offenders.
Role of Teachers and other Schooling staff
The role of teachers is also equally important as most of the times it is seen that the teachers do not take notice of such incidents of bullying. The teachers usually do not consider it important or part of their duty to deal with the matters that are related to the bullying. It is extremely important to deliver to the teachers that the development of moral values based upon the honestly is also responsibility of the school.
The school provides the children with a place to socialize with other children and learn the concept of living within a society. Naturally all the children are not of similar nature and some of the children may come with aggressive nature who cannot deliver their thoughts and ideas in a proper way. As a result, they start using their aggressive nature and approach toward the resolution of problems that becomes problematic for the entire school.
When these kinds of children are ignored by the teachers, it provides the offenders with an opportunity to proceed as they see no barriers coming in their way. The teachers can thus play an important role by involving them in all the matters of the children in a given school environment. They should consider it as their duty to find some time in order to discuss with the children on an individual level to know how things are going on with them at a given school. If there is lack of time and the teachers cannot reach out individually to every child, he or she can look around, and try to find out the children that are suffering from a psychological problem or problem related to bullying. There could be certain evidences obtained such as physical bruises on hands or any other parts of their body, improper concentration on the studies, degradation of the overall grades, and failing to listen to normal instructions (Maher, Zins, & Elias 61-63). The list is endless, but the teachers and other concerned staff of the Saudi Arabian schools should make out that, the child or the student has suffered from a bullying incident. They can thereby, take the necessary steps to overcome bullying.
Bullying is commonly seen in the schools and colleges of Saudi Arabia, where some of the students use this form of negative way to pressurize others. It is a fact, that, this practice is followed by a small segment of the children but it is important to note and consider it as it can become a big challenge and larger problem later on. The child never forgets the behavior and attitude it develops in the childhood and if that particular child grows up with the ideas of bullying specific practices it would become a serious problem for that child in the later stage of life.
The issue of bullying thereby needs to be addressed at various levels by adapting adequate mechanisms and approach. The entire practice needs to be done with the consultation of all the stakeholders and concerned authorities. It will include the parents, teachers, school management, school administration, and other concerned authorities. These stakeholders need to implement policies within a given school environment that will curb the bullying activities. They need to first of all spread the awareness and then focus upon the techniques through which bullying can be stopped.
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MacLean, K., and M., Gunion. “Learning with care: The education of children looked after away from home by local authorities in Scotland.” Adoption & Fostering 27.2 (2003): 20-31.
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