20 pc head teachers in UK being bullied on Facebook: Poll

May 1st, 2011 - 3:02 pm ICT by ANI  

Facebook London, May 01 (ANI): A poll has found that a fifth of head teachers in the UK have been bullied by pupils or parents on Facebook and other social networking sites.

Britain’s biggest head teachers’ union - the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) - warned that schools are increasingly having to call the police to deal with violent threats posted online. Schools now waste hours each week monitoring websites for abusive comments, the union claimed.

One in five heads told the union they had been hounded on social networking sites by pupils, ex-pupils and parents, while two-thirds claimed parents’ behaviour has got worse over the last few years. Some 1,362 heads responded to the poll.

Speaking at the NAHT’s annual conference in Brighton, Russell Hobby, the union’s general secretary, said cyber-abuse would soon be more of a worry for a school’s reputation than Ofsted, the school inspectorate. Hobby said online bullying could be trivial or nasty.

“It can be just a matter of pupils and parents posting that they don’t like what a head teacher wears or it can be a campaign to get rid of a head. There is anonymity for those who post online and they often seem to think that what they are writing isn’t really real because it’s on a website,” the Observer quoted Hobby as saying.

The government is expected to publish the findings of its review into Sats later this year. (ANI)

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