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Greenwood House School launches zero-tolerance anti-bullying campaign

Greenwood House School launches zero-tolerance anti-bullying campaign

Greenwood House School (GHS) an independent and dynamic nursery and primary school in Lagos has launched a weeklong zero-tolerance anti-bullying campaign.

According to a statement from the school, “The campaign which runs through March 7 to 11, 2022 in the school premises at Parkview, Ikoyi-Lagos engages students, parents, and teachers to change the attitudes, behaviour, and culture of bullying by building skills and confidence to address different situations.”

Ekua Abudu, the founder of Greenwood House School commenting on the campaign could not hide her delight and that of the school to see bullying kicked out of the school through such an awareness campaign.

“We are delighted to launch the zero-tolerance anti-bullying campaign. The awareness of the effects of bullying is not an inherent attitude we are born with but an attitude we develop through the observation and actions of those that influence others, especially those that are young. The actions and reactions of others are what fuel or douse the flames of bullying.

“At Greenwood House School, we believe that awareness and knowledge of bullying are crucial amongst the students and teachers. Parents and guardians also need to know what to look out for to identify signs of bullying, whether their children are being bullied or are the bullies and whether they are invertedly encouraging their children to be bullies. Beyond identifying bullying, we also need to equip these stakeholders on how to prevent bullying and what appropriate action to take if they encounter it,” she said.

Experts believe that the prevalence of societal bullying has affected every sphere of society and schools have not escaped these trends.

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Adepoju Tejumaiye, a senior lecturer and head of the mass communication department, at the University of Lagos attributed societal failure and lack of proper parenting as the main factor behind the rise in bullying and truancy among adolescents in schools.

“In the 1980s there was some kind of truancy and bullying among students, but what we have today is outrageous. This is a result of total societal failure.

“There are secret cults at every stratum of the society. Even the pepper sellers have their groups, artisans in every discipline form cults to protect their interests. The adolescents are just mirroring what they learned from the society,” Tejumaiye said.

Lizzy Ohaka, an early childhood specialist and school owner in a similar vein blames society for the new twist in bullying among young ones in schools.

“Bullying is trying to get someone weaker to do what he or she would not ordinarily do. And this is seen mostly among bigger students against smaller ones. The age barrier is the key; it is very rare to see someone bullying his age mate.

“Parents force their children to rush their academic calendar because the society sets unimaginable age standards for employment. So many things are wrong in our society, our value system is compromised for money, and success is now measured on the end justifies the means against the means should justify the end,” Ohaka said.

Abudu in her statement disclosed that a study conducted in Nigerian schools reported that almost 4 in every 5 participants (78percent) reported being bullied and 85percent of the children admitted to bullying others at least once.

She reiterated that Greenwood House School adopted a zero-tolerance policy to promote an anti-bullying culture in order to eradicate the evil syndrome from the school system while building a community of kindness amongst students and staff of the school.

“The campaign takes a holistic approach ensuring buy-in from all stakeholders; the administration, staff, parents and students to eradicate bullying and enhance school culture creating a safe space for every child. A key element of the week-long campaign is to instill upon every member of Greenwood House School community the value of respect, acceptance, and tolerance towards everyone, irrespective of race, colour, creed, religion, or gender,” she said.

The week-long activities will culminate with a parents’ forum and rally on Friday, March 11. Greenwood House School’s commitment to addressing bullying, hate, and fostering inclusion, equality, and kindness are commendable.

Greenwood House School is an institution dedicated to classes from Creche to Primary Six and accepts children between the ages of 3 months to 11 years irrespective of their cultural and religious backgrounds.

It is one of the top primary schools in Nigeria with an impressive record of academic success. GHS pupils are consistently top performers in entrance examinations, gaining admissions and yearly scholarships without fail into competitive secondary schools within and outside Nigeria.