Barely appointed Minister of National Education, Nicole Belloubet devoted her first trip to the issue of school bullying. On average, more than one student per class reports being a victim, according to the results of a major national survey revealed by the minister on Monday February 12.
The survey, carried out in November 2023 in the wake of an interministerial plan against school bullying, showed that 5% of schoolchildren from upper elementary school (CE2) to upper middle school (CM2), 6% of middle school students and 4% high school students are considered victims of harassment, said the new minister during her first trip to a college in Reims.
“It’s a real scourge that we absolutely must regulate”declared the minister to the press. “A student must not come to his school with fear in his stomach, but on the contrary with a smile on his lips”added Mme Belloubet, who during his visit to Robert-Schuman College, spoke with the team of the establishment’s anti-harassment program.
“In a school environment, harassment is the act, for a student or a group of students, of repeatedly subjecting a classmate to negative, even violent, comments or behavior”explains the national education statistical service, which used a representative sample of 17,000 questionnaires submitted to a total of 7.5 million students from CE2 to final year.
The conclusions of the study reveal that a significant proportion of students must be subject to increased vigilance in the face of the risk of harassment, i.e. 19% of schoolchildren from CE2 to CM2, 6% of middle school students and 5% of high school students. .
This vast survey will now be carried out each year in the form of an “Annual Barometer of Harassment in Schools” intended to monitor the evolution of this phenomenon, announced the new Minister of Education.
If a risky situation emerges through the questionnaire, “a new individual self-assessment during which anonymity will be lifted, with the parents’ agreement” will be decided, said the Ministry of National Education.
At the end of September, the government unveiled an interministerial plan to combat school bullying, promising a “general mobilization” against this “massive phenomenon”. Empathy courses, confiscation of cell phones in serious cases, exclusion of student harassers on social networks: the executive claimed to make the fight against school bullying its “absolute priority” for the start of the 2023 school year after a series of tragedies, such as the suicide of young Lindsay in Pas-de-Calais or of a teenager, Nicolas, in Yvelines.
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The figures revealed on Monday should be put into perspective of a previous figure widely relayed by the press and political leaders showing an average of one student in 10 affected by school bullying.