Govt readies anti-bullying action plan for schools

28 Jan 2021, 00:14

  DF Report

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The Ministry of Education and Culture has prepared a comprehensive action plan to prevent bullying, teasing, violence and harassment in schools and educational institutions, said an official press release.

The Ministry of the Interior, the Ministry of Justice, and the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health formulated the measures for the action plan.

The programme is based on the entries in the Government Programme on non-discrimination, on the right of every child and young person to physical integrity, and on zero tolerance for bullying at school. All measures under the action plan will be implemented during this government’s term.

“We also need to clarify the law to fight against bullying and harassment so that we can tackle bullying in a timely manner and ensure a safe learning environment for all schoolchildren. We will amend the regulations related to banning students from attending instruction so that the safety of students and people working in the educational space are better guaranteed,” said Minister of Education Jussi Saramo. 

Equally, the provisions on bullying and harassment in the Act on General Upper Secondary Education and in the Act on Vocational Education and Training should be made more specific.

The measures to prevent bullying and teasing must also tie in with municipal youth services.

It is proposed that the action to tackle bullying be started already in early childhood education and care.

According to the action plan, a separate programme will be needed to strengthen emotional intelligence and interpersonal skills in early childhood education and care. The programme would focus on strengthening these skills in children as a means of preventing bullying and teasing in early childhood education care and in pre-primary education.