• Friday, June 14, 2024
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Incessant bullying in schools reflects societal failure – Experts

Incessant bullying in schools reflects societal failure – Experts

Experts have attributed the increased rate of bullying and truancy in secondary schools in Nigeria to societal failure among other reasons.

Joseph Tejumaiye, a senior lecturer and head of the mass communication department, the University of Lagos blamed societal failure and lack of proper parenting as the main factor for the rise in truancy among adolescents in secondary 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 forms cults to protect their interests. The adolescents are just mirroring what they learned from the society,” Tejumaiye said.

Elizabeth Ohaka, an early childhood specialist also blames society for the new twist in bullying and truancy among young ones in schools.

Ohaka explained that the reason there is a high rise in this evil act is that society endorses cutting corners to achieve goals.

She reiterated that registering underage students is giving impetus to this ugly trend 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 justifying the end,” Ohaka said.

Read also: Lagos State unveils program to reduce number of out-of-school children

Ohaka maintained that the background and environment where a child grows affects him; hence home which is the foundation of every child’s socialisation plays an important role in inculcating indelible values.

According to her, “A child from a bully home will imbibe bullying and will find a way to transfer such to others. It is a chain-reaction thing.”

Ijeoma Nwabuike, the headteacher of Rona Kings and Queens’ school sees bullying as part of social life but is worried at the negative trend it is taking these days.

“Bullying has been there in schools since inception but the concern is the new negative trend it is taking.

“Children bully one another, and it is our duty to guide and direct them. They will always want to use their body sizes and/or age as an advantage over others,” she stated.

Tejumaiye opined that the way forward is for government to lead the way in setting societal orderliness.

“In Nigeria today, there seems to be no moral authority, the government that is supposed to lead the way is lagging behind. The lawmakers, the judiciary, and executives are the first to break the laws. There should be rules and regulations!

“Those in authority have to be upright and be seen to be doing the right things. Parents need to be up to their roles at home, and stop jettisoning their duty of proper child upbringing for money,” he said.

According to Ohaka bullying should be condemned in all ramifications because it leads to low self-esteem, no confidence, and value loss to its victim.

Besides, she pointed out the fact that victims of bully will always look for a way to transfer their ugly experiences to others.

And this in turn affects the general world outlook of these adolescents, who tend to see the world as a wicked place to live in.

On whether boarding schools should be scrapped off, Ohaka reiterated that there are still good boarding schools in Nigeria and that people should desist from painting all boarding schools bad because of a few mishaps.

“We still have good boarding schools. Taking responsibility is the key thing here. All schools should rise up and take responsibility for the souls in their hands,” Ohaka said.