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Young carers 'bullied at school'

Sunday 23 May 2010

The UK's BBC NewsBBC News reports:

Young carers 'bullied at school'

By Elaine Okyere
BBC News

Two-thirds of young carers are bullied at school, according to a new study.

A quarter of young people, who care for a sick or disabled family member, also admitted that they suffered from stress.

The Princess Royal Trust for Carers, which provides support for carers, questioned 700 young people between the ages of six and 18.

Danni Manzi, from the charity, said that young carers "didn't have the support they needed".

'Unrecognised problems'

The 2001 census suggests there are about 175,000 carers under the age of 18 in the UK, but experts believe the number could be higher.

In answer to the charity's questionaire, 39% of young carers admitted that they had not told any teachers at their school of their responsibilities, while others said they suffered from depression and tiredness.

The majority of those young carers who did tell their teachers said they did not feel supported.

Ms Manzi said the results of the survey were unsurprising.

"We knew anecdotally that young carers were suffering in regard to education and schools and didn't have the support that they needed," she said.

Resource pack

The charity hopes more schools will take notice of vulnerable pupils.

"Some teachers focus on the kids that are causing them the most problems, and the ones that are managing are going unrecognised," she added.

"By the time a teacher picks up the fact there is a problem it can be too late."

She revealed that some young people were scared of the stigma attached to being a young carer, and as a result they feared telling their teachers about their role.

An online resource pack is being launched by The Princess Royal Trust for Carers and The Children's Society to provide advice on how teachers can support young carers.

Suggestions include being more flexible with deadlines and also providing access to a phone so they can contact home.

The full article can be found here.



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