School bullying question

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Sorry if this is the wrong forum (move as required)

 

Does anyone have any experience or advice about bullying in German schools. My oldest is at Grundschule in the second year. Pretty much a couple of times a week he is bullied by another child. Often it results in my child in tears. The school seem to think that as long as the bully says sorry, there is no problem. The sorry as far as I am concerned this is now worthless and is just a quick word to get so that the bully gets himself as fast as possible back out in the playground. The bully, typically is a child with "a difficult home life" as I have been told several times and well known to all relevant parties. I have now lost my sense of humour. Yesterday my son took it upon himself to leave school and go to his grandparents who live just down the road. The reaction from the school, a phone call to me about my son's behaviour!!! So back to the original question, does anyone have any experience or ideas please. I am getting to the point of being German and going to school with a lawyer in tow, maybe under Article 5 of the Human Rights Act, Recht auf Freiheit und Sicherheit, but in all honesty, I have no idea. Especially tragic as my wife is a teacher and has to deal with this in her own school. She knows herself just how powerless parents of bullied children are.

 

Help!

Thank you

 

Matt

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We have tried that one. Unfortunately the bully is a good head above my son. I have told him he is going to get hurt no matter what happens, so give him a good swing. It is not in his nature to be nasty to anyone. I will be having another "chat" with the school this afternoon. Not very optimistic...

 

Matt

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We have tried that one. Unfortunately the bully is a good head above my son.

My kid is real small and my thinking was similar to yours (you're going to get hurt anyway, you might as well get a shot or two in there), but in my experience the bully stops as soon as he realises that there will be any retaliation at all, no matter how futile.

 

It appears that that isn't the case here.

 

I'm not sure the parents getting involved directly won't make the situation worse, though, as the bully or bullies will see him as someone too weak to handle the situation himself, rather relying on mommy and daddy...

 

I wish you luck.

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This is a topic I never want to have to deal with but I suspect will have to (daughter is nearly 2).

 

As such I cannot give you any advise on what to do based on experience. Maybe you should go to the school with a list of the complaints you have made and the schools responses and tell them how unhappy you are with your child basically being assaulted on their grounds while they do nothing.

 

Regarding your kid leaving school, go to the school with him, get him to say sorry and say you expect, due to how things are handled in the school, you expect that will be and end to the matter.

 

Does this kid bully other kids?

 

If yes, ask about the possibly of meeting with the other kids being bullied.

If no, you may have to hint that you have thought about the differences between your child and the other not being bullied - what springs to mind?

 

Do you have legal insurance and if so, what are you covered for?

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Legal insurance, we are covered for anything (even a tsunami and level 9 earth quake, my wife is her mothers daughter!!).

 

As I said, the bully is a child from a difficult home life. His father is residing in a one room B&B that has a fitted stainless steel toilet in the corner all expenses paid. He is a general bully, but my son seems to be his main target at the moment. The school seem to think that as long as sorry is said each time, everything is hunky dory. I cannot accept that and neither do I see why a bullied child should have to say sorry. If the school was on the ball then he would not need to run away. If he tells a teacher, and the bully is then slapped on the wrist, it is only a matter of time before my lad, "the grass" gets an extra beating. The school are ignoring the problem in the hope it will go away.

 

Matt

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Most problems with bullies are from a neglicted home life, the child is craving attention, invite him and a couple other kids over after school for some play time, once they relize they have friends, they feel better.

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The biggest problems come when bullies have friends and you're picked on by all of them...

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Now I have to say, video's that start with a whooping and clapping American audience as a rule are turned off without hesitation, but as you took the time to find it, link it and post it, I took the time to watch it. Very informative, thank you. I will have my lad watch it....and he won't be grounded for a month, I am thinking maybe going out for an ice-cream after....

 

Matt

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Would it be possible to change your son's school? This would probably be the perfect time, right before the new term starts.

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Is there anybody who hasn't come into contact with bullying in some form? Moving school only moves the problem.

 

And, if and when, a bully in the next environment learns that you got moved because of bullying in the old school that ain't going to be pretty.

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The biggest problems come when bullies have friends and you're picked on by all of them...

 

As a young teenager I was bullied, not too seriously but it wan't fun, and the main bully and his mates would have a go at me when ever they saw me. Until one day I stood up to him in front of his girlfriend. No blows were exchanged but I was prepared to fight. It stopped right after that, he and his mates never bullied me again.

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How would legal insurance help?

 

With any legal matters that could crop up.

 

As you have legal insurance I would take the advise given a lot on here - see a lawyer to find out if there is anythnig legally you can do about this.

 

I would guess you cannot do anything about the kid but there may be legal avenues available with regards to any duty of care the school may have.

 

However I am no legal expect, so go and ask a lawyer.

 

My suggestion regarding saying sorry was to allow you to emphasise just how pointless that is.

 

You could also the school what procedures they have in place to deal with difficult children (and lets be fair, the bully is probably not having a great time of his life at the moment).

 

You could also hint that should your kid sustain any injury that may require medical intervention (immediate or over time) you will take this up legally.

 

As are day mother said to us regarding biting - we come down on that hard. Can cause no end of trouble, girl gets bitten in the face, 15 years down the line it can be operated on, all comes back to the parents of the kid who did the biting...

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As you have legal insurance I would take the advise given a lot on here - see a lawyer to find out if there is anythnig legally you can do about this.

 

By all means contact a lawyer, but don't expect legal insurance to help at this stage. Legal insurance would only provide cover if there was provable physical or psychiatric damage on order to create a claim against a third party.

 

Personally, I think it's a little early to call on the legal profession.

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The school are ignoring the problem in the hope it will go away.

 

Hi,

on the one hand, teachers are quite helpless in this regard, and yes, of course it is also true that if a bullied kid (or his friends) grass on the bully, the problem will only grow. German schools don't have the same support system as the US, with resident counsellors / psychologists etc either, so it really is down to the - helpless - teachers.

 

However, on the other hand, making a bully say sorry and claiming that the issue has hence been dealt with comes down to 'ideology', a certain mindset that seems to be prevalent with kindergarten teachers too, and that I assume they are taught in their training.

 

So there is more to it than helplessness. I can't really see how a lawyer could help - however, a letter to some Schulaufsichtsbehörde, or whoever monitors schools, might be in order. Or rather, getting an appointment with teacher/ Klassenlehrer / Vertrauenslehrer etc, preferably all of them together, discussing the issue, telling them how making the bully say sorry is just glossing over the issue, and, if need be, threatening them with a letter to whoever.

 

Now, admittedly such a threat isn't going to make them cooperate, is it? So I'd see it as a last resort, if they were unwilling to address the problem.

 

Of course the avenue of your kid standing up to the bully needs to be looked into as well. Not my strong point, unfortunately.

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I would give them one more chance by asking them for a conference involving yourself, the school and the parent(s) of the bully and try and see if you can all come to a best way forward solution.

 

In tandem it may well be worth talking to your child and explaining the rigours of life and that sometimes a stand has to be taken even if the initial outcome looks bleak, hard to do i know but necessary on the odd occasion.

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telling them how making the bully say sorry is just glossing over the issue, and, if need be, threatening them with a letter to whoever. Now, admittedly such a threat isn't going to make them cooperate, is it? So I'd see it as a last resort, if they were unwilling to address the problem.

 

Having worked as a teacher, I would only contact a parent about an issue like bullying after I had a good idea of the parent's (or in your son's bully's case, his mother's) parenting methods, i.e. do they hit their child. I had a handful of students who exhibited aggressive and mean behaviors, but rather than call their parents to say, "Listen, Junior was doing this and that today..." I did my best to spend time with my student and figure out how to solve the situation...because I didn't want them to show up the next day at school, black and blue. Obviously, I don't know this kid's mother, but I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that she is highly stressed, has probably been a victim of abuse herself, and is a likely (but not necessarily) candidate to smack her kid. Again, I don't know the woman, this is me making a guess based on my experiences in the classroom.

 

That being said, I am sorry for your son being bullied, and I'm sorry that you are not being supported by the school. I do think that standing up to the bully is a good strategy, and I will say, that as a teacher, if I had a student that had been picked on by another child and finally stood up for himself or herself by hitting the other kid, I'd likely look the other way- one time. However, I do think that the poster who suggested inviting the bully to spend time with you all together (I know, it doesn't sound like something that would be fun for either you or your son) that might be the best strategy. This little boy is still a little boy, no matter how much of a total asshole he is being to your kid, and you spending time with him might just be the "guidance" he needs to see.

 

In a nutshell- I 100% agree that it should be the school who is dealing with this issue, however, it sounds like they aren't going to be doing anything effective here... and it's going to be up to you to. I agree that kids should be encouraged to solve their own problems as much as possible, but in order for your son to do this (and the bully too) that might take you setting up a situation, in which the two boys can spend time together, and hopefully work their problems out.

 

What grade is your son in??

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We have had this issue. Children have a legal right not to be bullied in German schools and if the school is not dealing with a continuing issue, they are at fault. When my (German) husband pointed that out, and discussed whether there should be a report to the Jugendamt, all of a sudden our complaints were taken seriously (although one would have thought 5 children changing to a different class to avoid that child might have been a previous hint- and we changed our child too, to follow her friends).

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