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Tuesday, 21 April, 1998, 08:37 GMT 09:37 UK
School bullying leaves scars
kids
Bullying is so traumatic for some that they say they want to die
The misery of being bullied as a child often remains with victims throughout their lives, according to research to be presented to a conference on school bullying.

Adults who were bullied at school are up to seven times more likely to attempt suicide than those who were not, according to the three-year survey of 850 adults.

More than 20% of the victims of bullying questioned said they had tried to kill themselves. Bullying by girls was also found to be increasing.

The survey, for the charity Kidscape, was funded by the National Lottery.

The charity, which is hosting a London conference to be addressed by Education Secretary David Blunkett, aims to teach children how to keep themselves safe in a number of situations, including bullying.

Because of the growing problem of bullying, Mr Blunkett has given schools 23m to set up schemes to combat bullying and violence by pupils.

Around 1.5 million school children in Britain are believed to be the victims of bullying.

Last year, bullying was the most frequent reason for calls to ChildLine.

A survey by the charity showed that, of a sample of 1,500 children who had complained of bullying, 62 said they had felt so miserable that they wanted to die.

Last September 13-year-old Kelly Yeomans committed suicide after being bullied at school. Five boys who tormented the Derby teenager were ordered to spend at an attendance centre.

And this month Brian Franklish, 14, died while hitching a lift on a friend's bike as he tried to escape from a gang of bullies in Sheffield.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC News
Director of Kidscape Michelle Elliot says bullying shapes people's lives (1'03'')
BBC News
Child psychologist Professor Wolke says children may differ before bullying starts (1'11'')
See also:

01 Sep 98 | UK
Teenage bullies convicted
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