BULLYING AT SCHOOL

According to researchers, the school age is considered one of the most difficult in terms of mental health preservation[1]. By the age of 8–9, the child already has a well-established type of higher neural activity. Yet during this period, the child’s social personality is formed, through interactions of teachers, parents, and peers particularly in the school setting. The nature of these relationships, as well as the educational environment, e.g., the content and methods of instruction, goals of education and age-appropriateness of the educational materials all affect healthy psychological growth of children[2] while conversely, unfavorable conditions or experiences in these relationships create risks for the child’s mental health. To insure the former positive outcome, international studies have shown that educators need to be taught basic mental health strategies, including measures to prevent bullying and harassment, as well as effective ways to manage disruptive behaviors[3].
Statistics bear out this vulnerability, given that 75% of mental disorders occur before the end of adolescence[4]. According to research, 1.3 million adolescents died in 2012 for reasons related to, among other things, these illnesses, including suicide and interpersonal violence[5]
Studies show that school bullying is very common in almost all countries: from 8.6% (Sweden) to 45.2% (Lithuania) of schoolchildren are subject to bullying. According to this study, in Russia 30.8% of schoolchildren experience certain types of harassment and bullying from classmates[6].
The Union for Mental Health of Russia has supported production of the video aimed at preventing bullying. The video is recommended for use in the educational settings.
The video is produced by the non-for-profit organization “Zhuravlik”, the winners of the 5th All-Russian Competition for Preventive Programs in the Field of Child and Adolescents Mental Health Care “HEALTHY GENERATION” annually held by the Union for Mental Health of Russia.


[1] Volodina S. Mental Health of Younger Adolescents as a Necessary Condition for their Adaptation to the New Educational Environment / Collection of Research Articles. II Congress on Mental Health: Meeting the Needs of the XXI Century // Union for Mental Health, Moscow, 2016, p. 266

[2] Karabanova O. School Educational Environment: Risks and Resources of Mental and Psychological Health and Development of Children and Adolescents / Collection of Research Articles. II Congress on Mental Health: Meeting the Needs of the XXI Century // Union for Mental Health, Moscow, 2016, p. 51

[3] Tom K.J. Craig. Expert Opinion Statement/ Book about the II Congress on Mental Health: Meeting the Needs of the XXI Century// Union for Mental Health of Russia, Moscow, 2018, p.59

[4] Comprehensive mental health action plan 2013–2020. WHA66.8. – 27 May 2013

[5] Global strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health (2016–2030). https://www.who.int/maternal_child_adolescent/documents/women-deliver-global-strategy/ru/

[6] Volikova S.V. School Bullying as a Factor of Emotional Disadaptation of Children and Adolescents/ Collection of Research Articles. II Congress on Mental Health: Meeting the Needs of the XXI Century // Union for Mental Health, Moscow, 2016, p. 263

 

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