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EDITIONS
Wednesday, 3 July, 2002, 12:53 GMT 13:53 UK
Pupils fear big school bullies
Primary classroom
Pupils worry when leaving the safety of primary school
Bullying is the biggest fear of pupils about to step up to secondary school.

A report on the transfer from primary to secondary school, published by the Office for Standards in Education, has highlighted the lack of progress of many pupils in the early years of secondary school.

But the study by inspectors also examined the perceptions of the pupils themselves - and their concerns were more practical than academic.

Bullying was the single most mentioned fear for these pupils, finishing their last year of primary school.

And they took comfort from being "in it together" when they had to move on to new schools.

The study found that these 10 and 11-year olds had very positive feelings about their primary schools - appearing to enjoy both the studying and social side of school life.

Anxieties

Inspectors found them "confident and positive", getting on well with teachers and enjoying the responsibilities that came with being the oldest pupils.

But there were apprehensions about leaving this comfortable and familiar setting - and entering a playground in which they would become the youngest.

The report also tracked the experiences of children who had already made the transfer - and found that most had made the change successfully.

In some cases this transfer had been helped by induction days which introduce the youngsters to their new environment.

But there were anxieties about very specific areas of school life, which pupils said could cause problems for the new arrivals.

These included:

  • Poor supervision at lunchtime

  • Unfriendly older pupils
  • Absence of personal lockers
  • No recreational place for younger pupils
  • Insufficient personal support from teachers.

Inspectors' concerns over transferring schools.

See also:

03 Jul 02 | UK Education
11 Mar 00 | Unions 2000
16 Jan 02 | UK Education
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