A Young Person led research project: Online Bullying & Images St Sampson High School
Delivered by Funded by @youthforgsyald @youthcommgsyald
The Group The group from St Sampsons High School was a small group of 7 young people that were identified as being in need of additional support from The Youth Commission for Guernsey and Alderney. These young people were at risk of exclusion from school through disengaging with their education for either self esteem or behavioural reasons. The group had 5 males and 2 females all between the ages of 12 –14 years old.
The Project Project Participation revolves around taking the idea of research as more commonly seen by young people through their education and challenging their understanding of this, allowing them the freedom to shape their learning as they take ownership of a complete research process. Young people who chose to be a part of this project were presented with a unique opportunity to lead their own research/consultation work in the community, focussing on their issues and gathering the views of the community in their own way before presenting their findings to a range of decision makers in the community. A research project follows basic research principles with young people adding in their own detail and direction as they progress through the steps of the project, these steps are as follows;
Analysing the positives of their local community
Identifying negatives or developmental issues in their community
Chosen issue/topic in their local community/Douzain that they would like to change or improve
Gather others views and opinions on the issue
Make recommendations for change
Share these recommendations for change with decision makers (Ministers, Deputies, States & 3rd Sector stakeholders, press, community organisations and corporates)
Getting to know the group/My Island Paradise
The aim of this session was to get young people to develop a quick understanding and relationship with the Forum worker associated with the Project. The group took part in the ice breaker game â€œBalloon Chairâ€? which was designed to test their communication skills and also to give the staff team a chance to see how they responded to tasks and goals set to them as a team The first stage of the project began by young people trying to create their ultimate Island to live. Tasked with an island outline on flipchart and a some pens the group had the opportunity to create a functional and sustainable community for themselves and their future families. The aim of this was to get young people thinking about what their ideal community looks like, but also to begin thinking about infrastructure. This community, although with some distractions was an eventful session which forced the young people to look beyond what they felt was important and this also allowed staff to challenge some of the behavioural issues in the group around risk behaviours. The groups Island was an interesting experience in relation to learning, for example despite their own disengagement with education, they recognised the importance of needing a format for people to learn. They proposed a voluntary centre for education. This was an optional commitment and learners had control over when and how they learned. They began adding things in that they were reluctant to include at first and that they did not believe were essential to their community, despite their own negative perceptions of places such as the army, police and people making decisions, they agreed that although it was not their first choice it was necessary in order for the community to function and be safe for there future families. There was certainly a theme of their island being based around unhealthy lifestyle choices and they began to combat some of these by ensuring there were areas for sport and active lifestyles. They did not relate much of this to Guernsey and created somewhere to live that was not sustainable, although this created a good discussion about how different the groups island was compared to the one they lived in.
The Good and the Bad
The group revisited their Island and began to apply some of the logic that was applied to their new Island with their views on their own community. The group at first struggled to name anything good in the Bailiwick so the session was halted to have discussions around their lives here in Guernsey. We decided to look first at what the Island offers to people who are visiting or moving for work. Conversation began to become more positive as the group began to realise that in comparison to other areas Guernsey did have things to offer the people living here. Cheap bus travel for cruise ship passengers was mentioned and realising that they use that themselves, they liked the Pizza restaurants and the fact that items were cheaper to buy here than in the UK
The negatives came a lot easier to the group and they quickly filled more post it notes than they could fit on their diamond ranking system sheet. The group had an original list which featured the lack of fast food, everyone knowing each other and their business, their schooling and a lack of things to do. The group were challenged to come up with a top 3 before deciding which of the topics they wanted to choose as their final piece of work. They believed they could have a positive impact one area which was inappropriate image sending and including online bullying @youthforgsyald @youthcommgsyald
Creating research The group decided in order to capture the views of their peers they wanted to use a survey of their friends and class mates. The group also requested the help of young people that attend youth commission centres to get their survey completed.
The group compiled a total of 10 questions for their survey before narrowing them down .
A total of 31 young people took part in each of the surveys, the gender breakdown was 17 females and 14 males. They ranged between 12-25.
What our results showed by age 12-14: (2 questionnaires by 2 males)
The 2 people are still in education.
The 2 people are frequent users of social media.
They both feel online bullying is a problem in Guernsey.
They both have never or know anyone who has been a victim of cyber bullying.
They both believe sexting can be a form of bullying.
They both believe teenagers should be taught about the dangers of being online.
14-16: (11 questionnaires by 6 females and 5 males)
10 people are still in education 1 female is not.
All 11 people are frequent users of social media.
8 people believe online bullying is a problem in Guernsey 2 males and 1 female do not.
5 females have or know someone who has been a victim of cyber bullying. 5 males and 1 female do not.
8 people believe sexting can be a form of bullying 2 males and 1 female do not.
10 people believe teenagers should be taught about the dangers of being online 1 male does not.
16-18: (12 questionnaires 6 females and 6 males)
9 people are still in education 2 females and 1 male are not.
All 12 people are frequent users of social media.
All 12 people believe online bullying is a problem in Guernsey.
8 people have or know someone who has been a victim of cyber bullying 3 females and 1 male did not.
9 people believe sexting can be a form of bullying, 1 males and 2 female were unsure.
All 12 people believe teenagers should be taught about the dangers of being online.
18+: (6 questionnaires 5 females and 1 male)
3 females are still in education 2 females and 1 male are not.
5 people are frequent users of social media 1 female is not.
All 6 people believe online bullying is a problem in Guernsey.
5 people have or know someone who has been a victim of cyber bullying,1 female did not.
5 people believe sexting can be a form of bullying, 1 female was unsure .
All 6 people believe teenagers should be taught about the dangers of being online @youthforgsyald @youthcommgsyald
The Recommendations After gathering their research over the course of the day the young people of St Sampson High School decided that the following suggestions could be adopted to see an improvement to tackling the issues of online bullying and sending inappropriate pictures.
A dedicated school lesson once a year- The young people have heard of the Hubs programme IHub and although they think that is a great idea they would like to see it built in the curriculum in PHSE although they would want to make sure that it is a fun lesson and not just told not to mess about online.
A poster campaign - The group also believed that a poster campaign could also benefit this situation, they don’t feel the ones currently used are taken notice of as they are not very good to look at.
Website – The group feel there should be a website where you can go to get help, information or even to report anything that’s happened confidentially, they then thought that all school / youth club computers could have this as their homepage so young people can use it in the day or evening.
The Youth Forum and The Youth Commission would like to thank the young people of St Sampson High School for their hard work in creating and delivering this piece of research