Bullying means a lot of things, but the one thing it does mean for the individual being bullied is that it causes pain.
Children with additional learning difficulties may be more likely to be bullied because of their problems. As a parent it is important to be aware that the child may be more readily the target of bullying, and how to suspect a potential problem. The child might not want to bother the parents with their problems and would rather try and cope with it themselves.
Be aware of the child and any change in their behaviour:
They may refuse to go to school, especially on certain days.
They may no longer want to walk to school, when they have previously walked happily.
They may want you to drop them off at the school gates.
Their schoolwork may deteriorate.
Clothes, books or other possessions may be damaged, with a garbled explanation if asked.
They may start avoiding certain routes to school.
Increased behaviour problems at home.
They may be hungry when they come home – someone may be stealing their lunch money, or taking their sandwiches etc.
Their appetite may go up or down.
They may be less chatty about school, and become moody, especially at the end of the weekend.
They may cry themselves to sleep.
They may have “bad” dreams.
They may have unexplained bruises or scratches.
They may take money from your purse – to pay the bullies.
They may become withdrawn, and not want to talk much at all.
They may start soiling or wetting the bed.
They may start complaining of minor ailments to avoid going to school.