UNESCO - United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

04/07/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 04/07/2021 02:51

NHK World-Japan spotlights UNESCO’s work to end school bullying

Do you really think it's possible to create a society without bullying? This is the question posed at the start of a 50-minute television special on bullying by public broadcasters, NHK World-Japan, shown to an international audience of 160 countries and 320 million households. The program, 'Faces the special: Voices of hope for an inclusive future',(link is external)looks at the millions of children and young people who experience bullying.

Through interviews with young people who have experienced bullying and policy-makers and other activists who are working to end it, the program reveals that more than 30% of the world's students have been victims of bullying, with devastating consequences on academic achievement, school dropout, and physical and mental health.

The programme looks at the work undertaken by UNESCO to highlight bullying as a major global issue and an infringement of the fundamental right to education for all children and young people. It highlights UNESCO's international day against violence and bullying at school including cyberbullying, held on the first Thursday of November each year, and includes footage from the International conference on school bullying, hosted by UNESCO and the French Ministry of National Education, Youth and Sports.

According to UNESCO, a world without bullying is within reach. UNESCO Director-General, Audrey Azoulay, referenced the Behind the Numbers publication on ending school violence and bullying. 'UNESCO published a report after analyzing this situation in 144 countries, and the report includes some of the most efficient ways in which nations have handled the problem,' she said.

Interviewed for the program, UNESCO's Assistant-Director General for Education at UNESCO, Stefania Giannini, said 'too many people think bullying is a normal and harmless rite of passage, and that consequently little can be done to stop it. Instead there is strong evidence that it can be prevented and addressed.'

UNESCO recommends a whole-education approach to prevent and address bullying. This means strong political leadership and robust policy frameworks, curricula and teaching that promotes a caring school climate, and training for teachers. It also involves reporting mechanisms, support for affected students, and routine monitoring and evaluation.