British government reported in last few years more than 29 thousands schools kids as racists. According to latest news from UK the figures for 2008-09 obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, indicate that in 29.659 situations schools reported as racist incidents in England and Wales. Some of these incidents were also described as homophobic.
According to The Telegraph teachers logged more than 10.000 confrontations involving primary school students making racist insults or derogatory comments about homosexuals in reporting period for 2008-09. Further 20.000 “hate crimes” were recorded against secondary school students for using racist phrases as “white trash” or “gaylord” during playground squabbles.
The government obligates all schools to report all racist incidents since 2002. Blair government prepared special forms for this purpose which are requiring teachers to name the alleged perpetrator and victim, enlist what they did and to inform authorities how they were punished.
Civil groups in Britain are considering these reports as attack on childhood and policies which are misunderstanding children quite profoundly.
“Racist-incidents reporting generates the illusion of a problem with racism in Britain’s schools by trawling the everyday world of playground banter, teasing, childish insults – the sort of things that every teacher knows happens out there in the playground”, said Adrian Hart, from the Manifesto Club, the civil liberties campaign group in an interview.
I’m not quite sure that Mr. Hart understands possible damages which could be done in the future if we allow children to use racisms and homophobic term and words in everyday life. If you allow them to do that in elementary or secondary school they will consider that as “normal” later in life, what could trig much severe actions against others than it is now on school playgrounds.
I would like to see data regarding bullying not only in UK but also North American schools and I’m quite sure that total number will exceed presented numbers on racism and homophobia.