Rahmat Abdul Rahman, a student counsellor at Kolej Poly-Tech MARA’s Ipoh branch campus, said these two elements could be the main reason why students become bullies.
Commenting on the two short video clips of students being harassed at their school hostel, which turned into a web sensation on social media as of late, he said such incidents have brought about nervousness among numerous individuals, particularly parents.
A. Environmental Factor
As indicated by Rahmat, bullying is seldom ascribed to parental upbringing nor are kids born with the sense to subdue others. He said it is from external influences.
“For example, when youngsters watch television programmes depicting violence and gangsterism, they tend to imitate what they watch at their schools because at home they are constantly under the supervision of their parents or family members,” he said.
According to Rahmat youngsters were easily influenced, and always interested to experiences or get involved in something new constantly, they will influence their friends to go along with them too.
The desire to be a part of the group is another element why adolescents are effortlessly drawn into utilizing certain language or aping the conduct and ways of life of certain people.
“They (youths) are more inclined to hang out with their friends who share the same ‘loafer’ mentality. They usually go in search of victims to show off their ‘greatness’,” he said.
B. Difficult to anticipate when the bullies strike next
A few quarters felt that disciplinary issues created by students who behaved in a thuggish way and beat up and tormented their physically weaker classmates were at a stressing level.
Ahmad Fadli Pardon a former disciplinary teacher of a primary school in Tampin, Negeri Sembilan, said it was hard to anticipate the behaviour of students who had a background of disciplinary issues because they seemed to have planned it carefully.
“Usually such students tend to be two-faced. When they are at home with their parents, they are at their best behaviour but at school, they become intimidating and end up bullying or beating up their juniors.
“Maybe back at home these bullies don’t have the freedom to do what they want and feel trapped. And, this is possibly the reason why they unleash their inner desires when they are on their own,” said Ahmad Fadli.
C. Parents Worried
According to a mother-of-five Hazlinda Hamzah, 49, while bullying is a common occurrence, schools intentionally held them under wraps.
Hazlinda, who has three schoolgoing youngsters and two in university, said it was the obligation of the school powers to watch out for their students and inform the parents concerned if their kids involved in harassing others.
“It’s more worrying when senior students fight with the juniors or bully them. Most bullying cases involve the seniors thrashing the juniors.
“And, it also appears that there are more cases of bullying at boys’ hostels than at girls’ hostels,” said Hazlinda, who also agreed that the bad influence of their friends was one of the reasons some students became bullies.
D. Joint responsibility
Who is in charge of stamping out bullying and gangsterism in schools?
Ahmad Fadli said more effective supervision by teachers and continuous monitoring by hostel warden aside, it all returned to the individual state of mind, early childhood background and upbringing.
According to him more and continuous exposure to religious and moral studies was the best approach to shape the character of an individual, and that all parties ought to cooperate to address bullying and disciplinary issues in schools.
Associate Prof Dr Fadlan Mohd Othman, senior lecturer at the Department of al-Quran and al-Sunnah Studies at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia’s Faculty of Islamic Studies, said Islam and different religions hated any type of injustice, including bullying, which can bring about damage to others.
He opined that youth who tormented others needed religious and good direction because they were easily influenced by others.
“They (youths) regard their schooling days as the time to enjoy themselves and do whatever they think is right. They think they are great and macho and can do whatever they want for physical gratification,” he said.
Encouraging youths to become friends with just the individuals who practiced positive ways of life, he said it would help build a healthy friendship and empower them to create respectable attributes and chracteristics.
Rahmat, is certain that hardcore bullies can be made to start over with the assistance of their guardians who, he said, ought to screen their youngsters’ activities and spend more time with them.
“Parents should make it a point to find out who their children’s friends are. And, to ensure that their children are well supervised in school, parents should have good rapport with their school teachers,” he added.
E. Victim must lodge a police reports
A police inspector Siti Fatimah Az Zahrah Sulaiman, who is attached to the Crime Investigations Department at the District Police Headquarters in Keningau, Sabah, said it has turn into a pattern for young people to upload a video clips of students getting harassed on online social media like Facebook.
“They want to be popular and show off to the people around them…so with the help of sophisticated technology they race to be the first to post controversial stuff in the social media sphere,” she said.
This has made it easier for the police to catch the individuals who uploaded the video clips, in this facilitating police investigation process and catching the offenders concerned, said Siti Fatimah.
She advised victims not to be anxious about making police reports as whatever action taken would be based on the law. Hopefully this article on why students become bullies will help many parents out there to ensure their children do not involved in this issue.