The increase in cyber bullying among young people will be the focus of an event at the University of Wolverhampton.
Incidents of bullying in schools using email, social networking sites and mobile phones have increased, with research by the Department for Children, Schools and Families indicating one in three pupils has been victimised in this way.
Now a conference aimed at providing support and advice to primary, secondary and college teachers in the West Midlands is to be held at Wolverhampton Science Park on Thursday, 7 February.
The event is a joint venture between the University’s School of Legal Studies and School of Applied Sciences. The conference will include presentations from psychology experts including Dr Wendy Woodhouse, a counselling psychologist working for the Child and Family Service of Wolverhampton Primary Care Trust, and Dr Chris Fullwood, a psychologist with a particular interest in cyber bullying.
There will also be information from a legal perspective with Melanie McDonald, a barrister from No5 Chambers, looking at the legal rights and liabilities for schools, and Margaret Walsh, the Head of Criminal Justice and Human Rights at the School of Legal Studies, delivering a presentation on bullying courts in schools as a way of handling bullying.
One of the event organisers, Joan Whieldon, from the School of Legal Studies, said: “There is an increasing incidence of suicide among children as a result of the increase in all forms of bullying, including the new cyber bullying. The difficulty is when schools either have a paper policy, but lack effective implementation through the on-going pressure of work, or they have no policy at all. Potentially therefore, there is a risk that some schools are simply unaware that some children are being bullied and we aim to support them in implementing new policies.”
“The event aims to provide teachers with useful information from practice barristers, academic experts and psychologist to help tackle this growing problem,” she added.