Why is Local Heroes important?

Personal wellbeing makes a significant contribution to young people’s development and character. As well as this, the personal development of young people is integral to the Key Stage 4 curriculum.

Bullying remains a serious issue for children and young people, with some groups being particularly vulnerable (such as those who identify as homosexual or have disabilities). Bullying has significant short and long term effects on children’s lives. Approximately 16,000 children aged 11-15 are absent from school at any one time due to bullying. 25% of children worry about bullying and at the far end of the spectrum, around half of 12 year olds who harm themselves are bullied. There are many research papers and studies relating to bullying. Here are some key statistics:

  • 46% of children and young people said they had been bullied at some point whilst at school. (Ofsted)
  • 56% of children with a learning disability said they cried because of bullying, and 33% hid away in their bedroom.
  • Nearly half of children with a learning disability had been bullied for over a year, and many were bullied for even longer. (MENCAP)
  • Over 90% of parents of children with Asperger Syndrome reported that their child had been bullied in the previous 12 months. (L. Little, ‘Middle-Class Mothers’)
  • In a survey carried out by the Department of Children & Family Services (DCSF) of 34,428 pupils across four different age groups, virtually every single pupil of minority ethnic heritage had been verbally abused on the ground of their ethnicity. (DCSF, Bullying around Racism, Religion and Culture)
  • In a survey of 1,154 secondary school pupils, almost two thirds of young lesbian, gay and bisexual children had experienced homophobic bullying at school. Almost all survey respondents had heard derogatory homophobic comments. (Stonewall)

Youth unemployment is rising with the current youth unemployment rate in Britain more than double that of the rest of the country. (Department for Work and Pensions)

Young people are more likely to be the victims of crime than offenders and are more likely to be victimised than adults. (Home Office)