UK & World News
Cyberbullying 'A Daily Problem' For Children
More than half of children and young people in England accept cyberbullying as a part of everyday life - but parents and teachers say they do not feel they are equipped to deal with the increasing problem, a major survey has found.
The report, which was commissioned by the Anti-Bullying Alliance, underlines the struggles many families face trying to protect their children on the internet.
More than half of children polled (55%) said cyberbullying had become a part of life for children and young people, while 60.5% of parents also said it had.
Keeping their children safe online is a major worry for parents, with 49% complaining that the amount of access their child has to the internet leaves them struggling to monitor their behaviour online.
And 51% said this makes them scared for the safety of their child.
However, the poll suggests that many families would struggle to respond if their child did fall victim to internet abuse.
Some 40% of parents said they would not know how to respond if their child fell victim to cyberbullies or how to set up filters on computers, tablets and mobile phones that could protect their children.
There were growing calls for online safety to be taught in more schools, with 69% of teachers and 40% of young people calling for it to be included in the national curriculum.
Luke Roberts, national co-ordinator of the Anti-Bullying Alliance, said cyberbullying is one of the biggest issues facing young people today and called for the Government to ensure it is taught in all schools.
He said: "Our research shows that cyberbullying is an everyday problem for today's children, but teachers and parents are not always able to provide the advice and support young people need.
"The solution is better education, not only in the classroom but better training for teachers and support for parents. We need a collaborative approach to tackling cyber-bullying, so children themselves can take responsibility for their own safety online and know where to turn for help when things go wrong.
"If we get this right, and make cyber-bullying a thing of the past, our children will be able to enjoy a digital future that is safe, fun and connected."
He warned online bullying posed such a big threat to young people because it can spread quickly and easily and leave a permanent imprint in cyberspace.
"Cyberbullying can move from online to offline and back online, that is why this conversation is so important," he said.
"Verbal abuse may be the thing most young people encounter in terms of bullying, but cyberbullying can be an extension of that abuse."
:: The survey questioned 2,200 parents, children and teachers across England to launch anti-bullying week, which takes place from November 18-22.