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Updated 27 November 2013

School bullying a problem in SA

School bullying has become a problem, according to a survey by consumer insights company Pondering Panda.

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A recent survey has shown that schoolyard bullying is becoming more and more of a problem in SA.

"Not only is bullying once more front and centre as the biggest problem facing our schools, even more people are identifying it as a problem now than a year ago," spokeswoman Shirley Wakefield said.

"The bullying problem has been made worse by the proliferation of cellphones and mobile devices, which has led to growth in cyber-bullying. This is something that is less easy to identify, but potentially just as harmful."

The company said 5 314 pupils, teachers, and family members between the ages of 13 and 34 were interviewed across the country. The survey found that 36% of respondents described bullying as one of the biggest problems at school, compared to 28% a year ago.

Both genders affected

Other issues were having too many pupils in a class, parents not getting involved enough, and a lack of decent toilets.

How big a problem bullying was in schools differed according to age.

Forty percent of 13 and 14-year-olds identified bullying as a major problem, compared to 38% of respondents aged between 15 and 17.

The survey found that both genders were equally affected.

The company said 34% of black respondents believed bullying was one of the most significant problems in their schools, compared to 41% of whites and 43% of coloureds.

The provinces that identified bullying as a major concern were the Western Cape (44 %), the North West (41%), and Gauteng (40%).

Image of online bullying from Shutterstock.


 
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