School environment not safe for kids
Schools criticised for not shielding kids from assault
Schools are no longer a haven for children trying to escape from family violence at home, an Auckland social worker says. Tiana Turner, who works with children aged 8 to 16 for the Tamaki Pathways Trust, told politicians at a pre-election social policy forum yesterday that schools were failing children from families with "inter-generational abuse". "When it comes to inter-generational welfare, often it's inter-generational abuse," she said. "Schools used to be a safe haven. What I have noticed is that school is no longer a safe haven. They [children] go from their homes that are extremely challenging to a school environment that is even worse." She said later that traditional schoolyard bullying had escalated into "ostracising" some children. "The teachers are not in a position to give a safe environment for a lot of the kids, so instead of going to school they truant. Their parents will allow them to stay at home because the kids are genuinely frightened," she said.
It has been an issue that has been ignored for far too long, one in three children are bullied every day at NZ Schools, at some boys schools teachers turn a blind eye in the belief that a bit of fagging will make you a man – we have a massive truancy rate and the solution to that has been to prosecute the parents – unbelievable, we’ve never asked why it is that they aren’t going to school and because we don’t acknowledge the issue of bullying we don’t resource schools properly to combat it (smaller class sizes would help immensely – as well as lift educational standards). For some from dysfunctional families, the stability of school may be the only stability they get in their day, but with some schools increasingly claiming they are there to teach and want no social responsibility for their pupils, trying to find proponents to stand up for students beyond the face value grades is an uphill task.