Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Tuesday, 1 June 2021

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Education and Skills

School Bullying and the Impact on Mental Health: Discussion (Resumed)

Mr. Damian White:

As Mr. Irwin mentioned earlier, it would be good if a school had a psychologist and some of the resources when it is apparent that there is a need. I am not so sure that the collection of more data would improve anything other than just something else that could be hacked into. To be honest, that would be a fear of mine. Where it emerges that there has been a serious level of cyberbullying say, over a weekend or a couple of children have reported, a psychologist and supports can be brought in. The Garda are terrific because they will come in and talk, particularly at primary level, about the dangers of cyberbullying and what it can do. There are companies that provide training and schools fund this themselves plus bring in experts on cyberbullying and so on. Rather than something as black and white as data being assembled in that way, the power and the finance to be able to bring in the supports when they are needed would be more significant.