Child Bullying in Educational Institutes: Understanding and Addressing the Issue
Bullying is a rampant and commonly prevalent crisis in Pakistan, and incidents pertaining to it
are increasing in educational institutes everyday. It is a long existing issue, but its factors have
hardly been dissected and addressed properly. If we begin by defining bullying, it refers to an
aggressive display of behaviors by an individual who is usually a perpetrator, and the
aggressiveness is directed towards the victim. This behavior manifests in the form of screaming,
shouting, name-calling, verbal and physical abuse, breaking objects, spreading rumors,
exclusion from social groups and having prolonged episodes of tantrums.
Recently, Ayesha Nasir, a socialite, influencer and CEO of the mothering community
ScaryAmmi, faced one similar incident regarding her daughter Ranya.
Ranya got involved in an argument with a classfellow, and the argument led to verbal abuse being hurled at Ranya.
These behaviors are generally more common among school going adolescents, and they often go unaddressed.
There are several factors behind bullying.
1) Peer pressure
2) Domestic conflicts
3) Lack of parental attention
4) Social isolation and rejection
5) Cultural attitudes that condone aggression and violence
6) Low self-esteem
7) Poor social skills
Mostly, one or more of these factors contribute to children becoming bullies. A lack of proper communication and how to navigate one’s emotions among children is also a leading factor behind this, which often leaves them with no way to express themselves other than aggression.
The Impacts of Bullying
The effects of bullying can be long-lasting and can have a negative impact on a child’s mental health, academic performance, and social development. It does so by creating a negative impact on the child’s self-esteem, their confidence, and their perception of themselves and
oftentimes others. In the majority of cases, the victims of bullying tend to isolate themselves and do not feel ready for any social interaction due to fear of the incident being repeated, or due to fear of being judged or rejected on the basis of being victims of bullying.
Addressing the Issue
➢ Creating a Safe and Inclusive Learning Environment
Creating a safe and inclusive learning environment is critical in preventing and
addressing bullying in educational institutes. Here are some strategies to create such an
● Establish clear rules and expectations for behavior that promote respect, kindness, and
● Foster a culture of empathy and compassion by teaching children to understand and
appreciate differences among their peers.
● Provide opportunities for positive social interaction through group activities and projects
that promote teamwork and collaboration for bullying prevention.
● Encourage parent involvement and communication to create a supportive network for
children and make anti-bullying resources such as bullying support groups accessible for
both the perpetrators and victims.
➢ Identifying and Reporting Bullying
Educators and parents must be able to identify and report bullying behaviors to prevent
them from continuing. Some strategies that can help with this include:
● Educate teachers, staff, and students on how to identify and report child bullying
● Encourage open communication between students and teachers to ensure that school
bullying behaviors are reported promptly.
● Take all reports of bullying seriously and investigate them thoroughly.
➢ Developing Anti-Bullying Policies
Creating comprehensive anti-bullying policies and procedures is an essential step in
addressing bullying in educational institutes. Some principles that should be included in
such policies are:
● A clear definition of bullying and unacceptable behavior
● Procedures for reporting and investigating incidents of bullying
● Consequences for perpetrators of bullying behavior
● Resources and support for victims of bullying.
➢ Intervention Strategies
Effective intervention strategies are essential in addressing bullying behaviors and
supporting both victims and bullies. Some strategies that can be used in this regard
● Provide counseling and support for victims of bullying to help them cope with the
emotional impact of bullying.
● Offer counseling and support for bullies to help them understand the harm their behavior
causes and learn more positive ways to interact with others.
● Encourage the use of restorative justice approaches to help victims and bullies work
together to address the harm caused by bullying behavior.
➢ Empowering Students
Empowering students to stand up against bullying is an essential step in preventing and
addressing the problem. Strategies to empower students include but are not limited to:
● Providing children with proper training about how to stand up for themselves.
● Encouraging them to fight for themselves, and to always stand up for what they believe
to be right.
● Teaching children to never back down in the face of injustice, and always speak up for
themselves and defend themselves.
Bullying affects both the perpetrator and the victim, and addressing this issue requires focusing on both sides of the spectrum. While the victim requires consolation and support, the perpetrator also requires guidance and proper counseling to navigate through their behavior.
Additionally, for bullying to be eliminated from educational institutions it is absolutely necessary for the administration to take strict action against perpetrators, show zero tolerance for bullying and also join hands with families and the community to effectively implement anti-bullying strategies.