Schoolgirl Pleads for an End to School Bullying

Article excerpt

IN an emotional interview last night, an 11-year-old Ulster schoolgirl opened up to the News Letter about the bullying torture which is going on among children in the Province.

The girl, who comes from a mixed area, did not wish to be named but outlined the sectarian verbal hell she had encountered.

''I'm the only Catholic in my class at school,'' she said. ''I keep getting called names like 'fenian' and they've threatened to beat me up. They say their dads are in the UVF.

''I've always lived in a mixed area and I don't care what religion they have, but I'm scared about what they're going to do.''

Terrified children who are the victims of bullies are flooding Childline's freephone telephone service.

Around one in six of the calls from Northern Ireland to the charity's headquarters is made on the issue of bullying and these are often related to sectarian matters.

Now an initiative aimed at eliminating bullying in schools has been launched, with schools are being urged to think of new ways of stamping out the cancer of bullying in the playground.

The scheme will award innovative ideas with cash.

Save The Children Northern Ireland launched the pounds 20,000 initiative at a conference - Bullying: A Management Issue For Schools - in Stranmillis College yesterday.

Programme co-ordinator Mairead McArdle outlined how the awards scheme would help schools address what is a growing worry. …