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Hitting back

(6 Posts)
Toadinthehole Mon 25-Oct-10 04:56:56

Two weeks ago Christine Blower, the general secretary of the NUT was reported as saying the following:-

"Some parents tell children that if they have been hit by another pupil in the playground, they should "hit them back next time", Christine Blower, general secretary of the National Union of Teachers, said."

"Of course that won't be, for the most part, the discipline and behaviour policy that operates in the school."

I have three concerns with such a policy:-

1. Adults are allowed to use violence in self-defence; it is therefore appropriate to allow children to use it in self-defence too.

2a. It deprives the children of being hit of an effective response / deterrant if the school cannot enforce its policy, or:

2b. It teaches children learned helplessness by requiring them to let the school act instead of allowing them to act themselves:

3. it results in a bullies' charter in effect.

My daughter is coming home with bruises on her arms and legs, and stories about another girl. She is only 5, and unable to express very clearly what has been going on. I am going to make an appointment with her teacher quite soon, but it does appear (from what I can tell) that the school cannot prevent the other girl's behaviour.

Assuming she is getting hit, do I tell her to hit back?

BelleDameAvecBroomstick Mon 25-Oct-10 07:27:07

Hmmm... That's a tough one, not least because your DD is so young. My DD isn't five yet so I have no experience of how easy/difficult it is to control a child of this age but I would be worried that the school can't seem to control this. Surely it's just teaching the bully that she can do as she likes if no-one stops her?

To answer your question, though, my mother did advise me to never start a fight but if someone hits you, hit them back (and hit them harder). I'm not sure this is good advice and it can create more trouble but, for me, it did mean that any attempted bullying didn't last long. I'm quite ancient though and I'm sure there are many, many reasons why this is not what we're supposed to do...

Toadinthehole Wed 03-Nov-10 22:41:03

I think that's right. It can also be hard to find out exactly what's going on. Yesterday, there was another hitting incident.

It seems to me that in a situation like this, giving the OK to hit back can make the situation rather messy if you want the school to step in later.

ForMashGetSmash Tue 09-Nov-10 23:42:10

I hae always told them to hit back. It's what I was told and it wprked for me...I know it can backfire...but I also feel that a child who neve hits back or insults back will be seen as an easy target and may suffer repeat atacks.

zoovet Sun 09-Jan-11 08:50:20

My 5 year old DS is not generally bullied. He is very popular. However, a smaller, aggressive boy frequently hits and bites him and tries to exclude him from games with his friends.

We have spoken to his teacher. She says they are dealing with it. However, it appears that the weak punishments dished out these days aren't much of a deterrent.

Another boy hits back at the aggressive kid and has been in trouble as a result.

DS goes to karate classes. It has given him self confidence. He practices on me and I know he can punch extremely hard. I wish he would thump that kid and put an end to it. However, he doesn't want to get into trouble, even though we tell him we would back him up.

The odd thing is that he plays with the aggressive boy. They are friends most of the time.

earwicga Sun 09-Jan-11 08:55:50

I have been known to say 'hit them back' but have been told off by my children (who have no problem hitting each other).

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