The CEO of Samak Property Development Company Limited, ESV Sam Akanbi has said that parents should take precautions on bully in school which can be frustrating to children and can lead to hatred for school even thought for suicide.
Akanbi made this known while addressing children welfare in school to our correspondent in his office in Abuja on Thursday.
According to him “we are Africans and some issues are expected to be totally strange to us as people because of our cultural and societal values but present realities which are as a result of globalization has really eroded such values of communal brotherliness and respect for family values.
“Bullying is an act of assault against a weaker or defenceless person(s) by another stronger or superior person. It could be Physical and Verbal. Presently, there is Cyber-bullying (internet based bullying)”, he said.
He addressed the parents about the most common one, which is physical or verbal bullying. “Have you noticed some of these in your child? Sudden hatred for School. He or she wants a change of class? Change of mood whenever the class teacher or some students are mentioned. Loss of concentration, loss of appetite, Withdrawn Syndrome, complain of headaches, low self-esteem, insomnia, depression, and thought of Suicide ?
“Fellow Parents, when you noticed these in any of your child, please “put your nose to the ground”. Draw the child closer and quietly investigation.
Please take the following steps, create a conversation point. Then Listen to what your child have to say. Dont shout him/her down. Don’t sound agitated” he said.
He added that parents should ask about their children classmates, which of them is friendly, playfull, troublesome. “Don’t be too busy to ask them what happened in school on daily basis.
“Study them, sometimes if they are still very young, you need to bath and dress them. Through this you might discover some wound or lacerations. And these could lead to some probing. You don’t leave that to househelp. These kids are your future”, he said.
He urged parents to visit their wards in school during the Open-Day since it is once in a term. “Both the teachers and your wards look forward to that visit. It’s help the parents, not only to assess their academic performance, it’s equally help parents to study the school learning environment.
“Your observations can help the school to improve their Safety, Security and Hygienic Policy. Many students do follow the school bus while some are brought to school with family vehicles. Whichever one the family adopt, the parents should seize the opportunity to bond with their wards. Follow them to board the school bus. If you are at home when they close from school be at the gate to receive them”, he said.
He said he drives the kids to school daily except when he is out of town. “It’s one moment I cherish daily. We pray, sometimes sing, gist. Whenever they sight their classmates parents vehicle they draw my attention and that leads into discuss like; that’s Chika’s Dad, He is my friend and we play together at break, Daddy, that’s chidara. she is in my class and very playfrul, Daddy buy Spiderman box my friend has a new one” he said.
He mentioned factors that can lead to bullying which include differences in appearance, social status, race, violent background, abusive and quarrelsome parents, poverty, complex, bad sexual orientation.
“Some students who bully others have low self-esteem; however, there are others that have much higher self-confidence. Those with high self-confidence tend to lack compassion and empathy and can respond aggressively whenever they feel threatened.
“I suggest that parents should leverage the on PTA meeting to demand for closed circuit cameras be installed in classrooms, Halls, Offices except in Toilets”, he said. He concluded that parents should befriend their children. “Make them gist partners, then they won’t be afraid or ashamed to tell you if someone is bullying or harassing them.
“Finally, parenting is not the ability to impregnate a woman or conceive pregnancy. Any adults can do that. But, It is a big responsibility and sacrifice”, he said.