Stephen Williams MP - working hard for Bristol West

Stephen Williams MP starts Commons investigation into school bullying

10.47.19am BST (GMT +0100) Thu 11th May 2006

Liberal Democrat MP for Bristol West, Stephen Williams, has arranged for the Education Select Committee to have its first discussion on bullying. As part of the wider discussion they heard evidence specifically on the issue of homophobic bullying. As a result of this discussion , Liberal Democrat Shadow Education Secretary, Sarah Teather MP has introduced an amendment to the Education and Inspections Bill to impose a statutory duty on schools to implement policies to tackle homophobic bullying.

Commenting Sarah Teather MP said, "Homophobic bullying is an issue for the whole school, not just for a victimised minority. This is not a matter of 'political correctness' but about pupil behaviour and the right of parents to feel confident that their child will be safe in school. Improving the situation in schools is down to effective school leadership and getting the entire school community to accept that all pupils should be treated with respect.

"No-one would pretend that we have won the battle with racism in school. However it is normal in the vast majority of schools for every pupil to understand that racism is regarded as unacceptable. We need to urgently work towards a situation where homophobia and homophobic bullying of all kinds are regarded as equally unacceptable."

Stephen Williams MP added, "I have my own painful memories of homophobic abuse at my time in school and it's a subject that has been ignored for too long, even in other debates on bullying. Thousands of pupils are suffering unnecessarily because of the ignorance or indifference of school leaders.

"It is a huge step forward when every pupil is aware of where their school stands on the issue of homophobic bullying. Publicly agreed school policies provide a vital point of reference for gay and lesbian pupils and staff who experience bullying at school."

The Education Select Committee heard evidence from Ofsted, Kidscape - a charity campaigning on all aspects of bullying and EACH - Education Action Challenging Homophobia. EACH is a national charity based in Clifton, Bristol. Two headteachers also gave evidence.

Stephen Williams comments, "It was clear from the hearing that the collection of statistics on bullying is patchy and probably show just the tip of the iceberg. The key to tackling bullying lies in extensive training of teachers and leadership on the issue by heads. There needs to be more guidance for schools on how to give emotional support to the victims of bullying. I'm sure our meeting will lead to improvements and make a real difference to the lives of children."

Bookmark this story at:
Print this news story.
Previous news story: NHS cuts will cost hundreds of lives in South West region (Wed 5th Apr 2006).
Next news story: Stephen Williams MP backs Million Faces campaign (Fri 12th May 2006).

Related News Stories:

Thu 23rd Jul 2009:

Mon 20th Jul 2009:

Wed 17th Jun 2009:

Tue 19th May 2009:

Sat 16th May 2009:

Thu 7th May 2009:

Fri 1st May 2009:

Mon 27th Apr 2009:

Thu 16th Apr 2009:

Thu 26th Mar 2009:

Tue 10th Mar 2009:

Wed 4th Mar 2009:

Sat 7th Feb 2009:

Thu 5th Feb 2009:

Tue 7th Oct 2008:

Mon 16th Jun 2008:

Thu 29th May 2008:

Mon 19th May 2008:

Thu 24th Apr 2008:

Mon 7th Apr 2008:

Tue 1st Apr 2008:

Thu 13th Mar 2008:

Tue 11th Mar 2008:

Mon 10th Mar 2008:

Thu 28th Feb 2008:

Thu 21st Feb 2008:

Mon 4th Feb 2008:

Mon 21st Jan 2008:

Thu 20th Dec 2007:

Mon 17th Dec 2007:

Thu 13th Dec 2007:

Tue 11th Dec 2007:

Tue 27th Nov 2007:

Mon 26th Nov 2007:

Wed 21st Nov 2007:

Mon 12th Nov 2007:

Fri 9th Nov 2007:

Thu 8th Nov 2007:

Tue 30th Oct 2007:

Wed 17th Oct 2007:

Fri 5th Oct 2007:

Thu 4th Oct 2007:

Wed 12th Sep 2007:

Thu 16th Aug 2007:

Tue 7th Aug 2007:

Tue 3rd Jul 2007:

Thu 21st Jun 2007:

Tue 12th Jun 2007:

Tue 22nd May 2007:

Fri 11th May 2007:

Tue 6th Mar 2007:

Thu 1st Mar 2007:

Wed 28th Feb 2007:

Wed 21st Feb 2007:

Fri 16th Feb 2007:

Wed 14th Feb 2007:

Sat 10th Feb 2007:

Fri 9th Feb 2007:

Thu 8th Feb 2007:

Tue 30th Jan 2007:

Mon 29th Jan 2007:

Tue 23rd Jan 2007:

Fri 19th Jan 2007:

Thu 18th Jan 2007:

Fri 12th Jan 2007:

Fri 5th Jan 2007:

Fri 22nd Dec 2006:

Wed 13th Dec 2006:

Thu 7th Dec 2006:

Fri 1st Dec 2006:

Thu 23rd Nov 2006:

Fri 17th Nov 2006:

Wed 15th Nov 2006:

Tue 14th Nov 2006:

Fri 10th Nov 2006:

Thu 9th Nov 2006:

Wed 8th Nov 2006:

Mon 6th Nov 2006:

Mon 30th Oct 2006:

Thu 26th Oct 2006:

Tue 24th Oct 2006:

Thu 19th Oct 2006:

Mon 16th Oct 2006:

Fri 13th Oct 2006:

Wed 11th Oct 2006:

Fri 6th Oct 2006:

Wed 27th Sep 2006:

Mon 25th Sep 2006:

Sat 9th Sep 2006:

Fri 8th Sep 2006:

Thu 7th Sep 2006:

Wed 6th Sep 2006:

Tue 22nd Aug 2006:

Fri 18th Aug 2006:

Fri 11th Aug 2006:

Wed 9th Aug 2006:

Mon 31st Jul 2006:

Wed 26th Jul 2006:

Wed 19th Jul 2006:

Mon 17th Jul 2006:

Fri 14th Jul 2006:

Mon 10th Jul 2006:

Fri 7th Jul 2006:

Tue 4th Jul 2006:

Tue 13th Jun 2006:

Thu 8th Jun 2006:

Fri 2nd Jun 2006:

Fri 26th May 2006:

Wed 24th May 2006:

Mon 22nd May 2006:

Thu 18th May 2006:

Wed 17th May 2006:

Tue 16th May 2006:

Fri 12th May 2006:

Wed 5th Apr 2006:

Tue 4th Apr 2006:

Thu 30th Mar 2006:

Wed 29th Mar 2006:

Fri 24th Mar 2006:

Wed 22nd Mar 2006:

Mon 20th Mar 2006:

Mon 6th Mar 2006:

Wed 1st Mar 2006:

Mon 27th Feb 2006:

Wed 22nd Feb 2006:

Wed 15th Feb 2006:

Fri 10th Feb 2006:

Mon 30th Jan 2006:

Fri 27th Jan 2006:

Thu 26th Jan 2006:

Tue 24th Jan 2006:

Wed 18th Jan 2006:

Thu 12th Jan 2006:

Thu 5th Jan 2006:

Thu 22nd Dec 2005:

Fri 16th Dec 2005:

Wed 14th Dec 2005:

Tue 13th Dec 2005:

Thu 8th Dec 2005:

Tue 6th Dec 2005:

Fri 2nd Dec 2005:

Wed 30th Nov 2005:

Mon 28th Nov 2005:

Thu 24th Nov 2005:

Wed 23rd Nov 2005:

Mon 21st Nov 2005:

Wed 16th Nov 2005:

Tue 15th Nov 2005:

Thu 10th Nov 2005:

Wed 9th Nov 2005:

Tue 8th Nov 2005:

Mon 7th Nov 2005:

Fri 4th Nov 2005:

Wed 2nd Nov 2005:

Mon 31st Oct 2005:

Fri 28th Oct 2005:

Thu 27th Oct 2005:

Wed 26th Oct 2005:

Mon 24th Oct 2005:

Fri 21st Oct 2005:

Thu 20th Oct 2005:

Tue 18th Oct 2005:

Mon 17th Oct 2005:

Thu 13th Oct 2005:

Tue 11th Oct 2005:

Mon 10th Oct 2005:

Tue 28th Jun 2005:

Thu 2nd Jun 2005:

Fri 27th May 2005:

Wed 4th May 2005:

Tue 26th Apr 2005:

Sun 24th Apr 2005:

Tue 15th Mar 2005:

Mon 24th Jun 2002:

Related Press Articles:

Thu 22nd Dec 2005:

Wed 9th Mar 2005:

Printed and hosted by Prater Raines Ltd, 98 Sandgate High Street, Folkestone CT20 3BY.
Published and promoted by Hywel Davies on behalf of Stephen Williams and the Liberal Democrats, both at Unit 6, Fenton Court, Fenton Road, Bishopston, Bristol, BS7 8ND.
The views expressed are those of the party, not of the service provider.