Saturday 3/6/21
EDUCATION

Finland to implement a new action plan to prevent bullying

It is proposed that action to combat bullying begins already in early childhood education and care.

Desperate-woman-girl-victim by Pixabay
Photo: Pixabay

The Ministry of Education and Culture has prepared a comprehensive action plan to prevent bullying, teasing, violence and harassment in schools and educational institutions.

The Ministry of the Interior, the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health formulated the measures for the action plan, which will be implemented during this government term.

Promoting wellbeing, fostering a peaceful working environment, and endorsing pedagogical competence related to preventing loneliness and bullying are the priorities in the action plan over the next three years for further training of staff and management in early childhood education and care and in schools.

“We also need to clarify the law to fight against bullying and harassment, so that we can tackle bullying in a timely manner and ensure a safe learning environment for all schoolchildren. We will amend the regulations related to banning students from attending instruction so that the safety of students and people working in the educational space are better guaranteed,” says Minister of Education Jussi Saramo.

"Equally, the provisions on bullying and harassment in the Act on General Upper Secondary Education and in the Act on Vocational Education and Training should be made more specific." the Ministry of Education and Culture said in a press release.

Bullying outside school

According to the ministry, "the measures to prevent bullying and teasing must also tie in with municipal youth services." The core competence of youth work involves encountering young people. Bullying and teasing takes place outside school time, too (leisure time, recreational activities, etc.).

Youth workers meet students and young people outside of school, so the government considers it important to introduce the methods and practices used by youth workers in schools and educational institutions.

It is proposed that action to combat bullying begins already in early childhood education and care.

According to the action plan, a separate programme will be needed to strengthen emotional intelligence and interpersonal skills in early childhood education and care as a means of preventing bullying and teasing.

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