Schools required to follow up on bullying after 20 days

In the first of five reports published on Wednesday by the Department of Education on the issue of bullying in schools, a new requirement has been put in place for schools to review cases of bullying with students and their parents after 20 days to see if the bullying has stopped.

Turn2Me, a national mental health charity has welcomed the new plans, in particular its focus on involving and supporting the parents of children who are experiencing bullying.

‘Parents often worry about how to intervene, if they should intervene, and what this intervention should look like’ said Fiona O’Malley, CEO of the charity, which last year launched a support group for parents of children who were experiencing bullying. The charity said that the most common presenting issues among parents was a feeling of helplessness, anxiety over intervention, and frustration with the school.


The new rules form part of the Bí Cinéalta campaign aimed at stamping out bullying in schools and aim to develop a culture of openness around the issue.

Among the new rules, schools will also be obliged to record all incidents of bullying, which will be included in an anonymised national database and will form part of an annual report.

Speaking at the launch of the new strategy on Wednesday, Minister for Education Norma Foley said: “I want to acknowledge that for too long, I feel, we have not been open enough about this issue within schools’.

Ms O’Malley from Turn2Me said ‘We need to be data-driven in our decisions because data-driven decisions are informed decisions. Examining data will show us the most common presenting issues and when we have this knowledge, we can create tailored approaches to tackling these issues.”

Turn2Me said that parents who feel anxious or depressed can avail of their free mental health services. The charity offers up to six free counselling services to adults, available on

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