Feeling unsafe at school may hamper your child’s learning potential and also contribute to more emotional problems, warns new research.
“We found that students who felt safer were more attentive and efficient in the classroom. These students also reported fewer symptoms of depression, such as feeling unhappy and having difficulty enjoying themselves,” said one of the researchers Caroline Fitzpatrick, Professor of Psychology at Sainte-Anne’s University in Nova Scotia, Canada.
“Making sure that students are engaged and attentive in the classroom can contribute to long-term success above and beyond intellectual capacities such as reading or math skills,” Fitzpatrick noted.
The researchers used data from the Quebec Longitudinal Study of Child Development—an ongoing study that began in 1998 with a cohort of 2,120 five-month-old infants—to investigate whether feeling unsafe at school interferes with classroom engagement.
They also considered whether this association is expressed through reduced student well being, including symptoms of depression and aggressive behaviour.