Elementary School Bullying and Harassment
Bullying and related harassment is a large problem in Japanese schools, especially targeting those that do not align with class-based social standards. For example, special needs children, foreigners, and children who are different often face discrimination simply because of what or who they are. Japan has a high rate of youth suicide compared to other countries, and recent cases in the news have shown that continued bullying can result in life-changing consequences for both bullies and the bullied.
The following is a survey of students in an elementary school in Gunma that illustrates the thoughts and actions of students related to bullying. Numbered responses follow a ranking from greatest number of responses (and largest percentage) to least number of responses.
- Twenty percent of the students state that they have been bullied before. Bullying reportedly occurs most often during 1st and 2nd grades.
- At school during recess or break times.
- On the way home.
- Outside of school.
- At school, after school ends.
- During classes or in school.
- At lunch or cleaning times.
What do students do after bullying?
- Talk to a friend.
- Talk to the person being bullied.
- Be cautious of the bully.
- Talk to parents or teachers.
- Pretend nothing happened.
Whose fault is it when bullying occurs?
- The bully’s.
- The bully’s and the victim’s.
- The people who pretend nothing happens.
- The victim’s.
What should we do to prevent bullying?
- Think more about bullying by ourselves.
- Talk about bullying with others.
- Make friends with each other.
- Talk to a school counselor.