KSA moves against bullying in schools

Saudi Arabia has finalized plans to set up a panel to be entrusted with the task to propose and draft a legislation that will require all schools to check bullying and to recognize it as a nationwide issue. The proposed law will spell out policies and procedures to prevent bullying and ensure that all schools will educate students and faculty about bullying and its harmful effects.

This was disclosed by Dr. Maha Al-Muneef, chief of the National Family Safety Program (NFSP), on Tuesday. The plan to set up the panel to legislate on bullying was finalized after the first meeting with international experts who shared their experiences with Saudi planners and decision makers in this regard, said Al-Muneef while voicing her concerns about the growing incidence of bullying in schools.

Asked about the progress made in terms of bullying prevention programs, Al-Muneef pointed out that the first meeting to deal with bullying was conducted at the UNICEF, where a national symposium was held on prevention of bullying in schools. The event, organized by the NFSP in collaboration with the UNICEF and the Saudi National Childhood Commission (NCC), served as a platform for sharing examples of successful bullying prevention programs from the US, Finland, and Australia.

A survey conducted recently resulted in a startling revelation showing that 50 percent of students out of 12,757 were victims of bullying in a one-month sample period in 2013, said Al-Muneef. Another national study that was conducted in 2013 in the Kingdom found that out of 10,927 students, 36.5 percent were bullied at some point of time in their lives, she added. She said that types of bullying include hitting, tripping and kicking as well as verbal bullying.





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