September 03, 2003
More bullying

From today's Guardian:

Local education authorities are to have their own anti-bullying "tsars" under government plans announced today.

I feel another Micklethwait's Law coming on: Whenever they appoint a "tsar" for anything, it means they don't know what the $%$@!!! to do. And a "tsar" to stop bullying? Listen to yourselves.

Specialist behaviour consultants are to be installed in all 150 LEAs in England and Wales at the cost of £75m.

Consultants. First, it will end up costing far more than that. Second, there'll still be bullying going on after the money has all been spent.

A new national anti-bullying charter will also be sent to all schools in an effort to highlight the problem.

To replace the previous anti-bullying charter?

Schools are already required to have anti-bullying policies, but the deaths over the summer of three children who had all been badly bullied prompted calls for fresh action.

Whatever you did last time that achieved nothing, do more of it.

Police are still investigating the deaths of 16-year-old Karl Peart and 15-year-old Gemma Dimmick, both pupils at Hirst high school in Ashington, Northumberland, who died in June.

Enough. I'm too depressed.

Answer to bullying. First, make it so schools get paid according to how many children go there. Second: let anyone who wants to leave a school leave it. That would make bullying bad for business. Meanwhile: don't know.

If you personally are being bullied at some horrible dump of a school, and they (your parents, teachers, etc.) won't let you even talk about going somewhere else instead, make them an offer. They let you go somewhere else, and in exchange you don't torch the damn place. There was a boy at my posh school who, rumour had it, got to go sports car racing every Wednesday afternoon by this method. In general, the secret is to combine extreme reasonableness with the threat of extreme violence if reason gets no response. Neither sweet reason not violence on their own are sufficient to solve such problems.

When children do this kind of thing to adults, they are called troublemakers. When adults do it to each other they are called diplomats.

Posted by Brian Micklethwait at 10:29 PM
Category: Bullying