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20. My child is being bullied and I don't feel the school has taken enough action to prevent it. What can I do?

Find out what you can do if your child is being bullied at school.

Your child’s school must have a policy that states what it does to stop bullying. Legally, it must do all it reasonably can to protect children from bullying.

If your child is bullied, you should tell the school straight away. Make sure you are as clear as possible about the details of what has happened. Make a note of each bullying incident and the effect on your child. Bullying is generally solved best when everyone works together to sort it out.

If your meeting with the school does not stop the bullying, you may need to make a formal complaint. You should ask for a copy of the school’s complaints procedure. This will usually involve you making a complaint to the governing body if senior school staff have not sorted out the problem. You could also complain to the local authority’s education director, or to your MP.

The school might be judged legally responsible in serious cases if it has not stopped spoken or physical bullying that:

  • has caused a child serious harm; and
  • it could have expected to happen.

If your child has suffered in this way and you think you want to take action against the school or the local authority, you should get expert legal advice - successful legal actions against schools are very rare and legal aid is not usually available for these cases.

You can speak to one of our education advisers on 08001 225 6653 for specialist advice, but there may be little direct help we can provide. Telephone specialist advice is only available if you qualify for legal aid.

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