Drogheda Independent - - NEWS -

A new in­ter­na­tional ev­i­dence-based an­tipro­gramme was launched by the Ge­n­e­sis Pro­gramme who are sup­port­ing its im­ple­men­ta­tion in eight schools across Louth and Mon­aghan.

The pro­gramme is in re­sponse to what par­ents see as the biggest con­cern they have for their chil­dren.

The KiVa Anti-Bul­ly­ing Pro­gramme is an in­no­va­tive school-based anti-bul­ly­ing pro­gramme, tar­geted at chil­dren from 1st to 6th Class in Pri­mary Schools, which has been de­vel­oped at the Univer­sity of Turku in Fin­land us­ing cut­ting-edge re­search on bul­ly­ing and its mech­a­nisms.

New re­search from the eight schools showed that 23% of stu­dents have re­ported be­ing bul­lied 2 or 3 times a month or more of­ten.

The launch took place at the Crowne Plaza in Dun­dalk where chil­dren were very much to the fore as part of the cel­e­bra­tions to mark Univer­sal Chil­dren’s Day.

Also at the event there were con­tri­bu­tions from Pro­fes­sor James O’Hig­gins Nor­man, Di­rec­tor of the Na­tional Anti-Bul­ly­ing Cen­tre at DCU & the UNESCO Chair on Tack­ling Bul­ly­ing in Schools and Cy­berspace, Mari Kon­tio from the pro­gramme de­vel­op­ers at the Univer­sity of Turku in Fin­land as well as staff and chil­dren from the par­tic­i­pat­ing schools.

To mark Univer­sal Chil­dren’s Day there was mu­sic, song and dance from the stu­dents of a num­ber of the par­tic­i­pat­ing schools.

The ini­tial im­ple­men­ta­tion of the KiVa Anti-Bul­ly­ing Pro­gramme is tak­ing place in eight schools but will be ex­panded to more schools in the aca­demic year 2019/2020.

As part of the in­tro­duc­tion of the pro­gramme 1,674 stu­dents com­pleted an on­line sur­vey in May and June 2018 from the eight schools to gen­er­ate in­for­ma­tion on the schools’ cur­rent en­vi­ron­ment – to record the amount of bul­ly­ing tak­ing place, how the stu­dents per­ceive the school and how it is deal­ing with bul­ly­ing.

These sur­veys were com­pleted by stu­dents from 1st to 6th Class in­clu­sive in each school, and re­vealed that 23% of stu­dents re­ported they had been bul­lied two or three times a month or more of­ten; 9% of stu­dents re­ported they had bul­lied other stu­dents two or three times a month or more of­ten; and 6% of stu­dents in 4th to 6th Class re­ported that they had been bul­lied through the in­ter­net (cy­ber­bul­ly­ing) two or three times a month or more of­ten

The sur­vey also in­di­cated that stu­dents’ per­cep­tion of their teacher’s at­ti­tudes to­wards bul­ly­ing was very good with stu­dents’ on av­er­age scor­ing their teach­ers 3.5 out of 4.

How­ever, stu­dents’ ex­pe­ri­ence of how much their teacher has done to de­crease bul­ly­ing was lower with stu­dents’ scor­ing their teach­ers on av­er­age only 2.3 out of 4

Again, stu­dents’ per­cep­tion of their par­ent’s at­ti­tudes to­wards bul­ly­ing was very good with stu­dents’ on av­er­age scor­ing their par­ents 3.6 out of 4

Stu­dents’ per­cep­tion of be­ing ac­cepted in their class/school was high with stu­dents’ on av­er­age scor­ing 3.4 out of four.

At the launch were school chil­dren from across Louth and Mon­aghan. Toni Olamiju (Mary­mount Drogheda), Tiar­nan O’Brien Con­nolly (St. Joseph’s Dun­dalk), Eimear McMa­hon (St. Tiar­nach’s Clones), Katie Ger­aghty (St. Daigh’s In­niskeen), Aoife McAr­dle (St. Daigh’s In­niskeen), Han­nah Tiernan (Mary­mount Drogheda), Jamie Dunne (Redeemer Boys NS, Dun­dalk), Dar­ren Mc­Quil­lan (Redeemer Boys, Dun­dalk), Layla Tormey (St. John’s Drogheda).

At the launch were Marie Torpey from Mary­mount, Dympna MacKenna from St. Johns and Edel Vic­tory from Car­town NS.

At the launch were Ciaran Reid and Frank O’Brien of Louth Leader Part­ner­ship.

At the launch were Madonna Lam­bert of Kilk­erly NS and Joanne Mo­ran of St. Brigid’s NS, Dun­leer.

Emer Collins and Nora Molly of Pre­sen­ta­tion NS.

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