We’re listening!

PUBLISHED: 14:32 25 October 2007 | UPDATED: 15:17 12 May 2010

Pupils at Greneway School have been trained to help their fellow students. Rebecca Thompson, 11, and Gurleen Gawera, 10, are pictured with some of the other active listeners – Pic: 2631DW10

Pupils at Greneway School have been trained to help their fellow students. Rebecca Thompson, 11, and Gurleen Gawera, 10, are pictured with some of the other active listeners – Pic: 2631DW10

PUPILS are doing their bit to help cut down on bullying by becoming active listeners. The active listener programme teaches ­students at Greneway School, Royston, how to counsel their fellow pupils who may have emotional, friendship, or other worries at

PUPILS are doing their bit to help cut down on bullying by becoming active listeners.

The active listener programme teaches ­students at Greneway School, Royston, how to counsel their fellow pupils who may have emotional, friendship, or other worries at school.

This term 39 new students undertook the training.

Clarice Wahlich, active listener co-ordinator, said: "We've been running this programme for several years and it's been very successful.

"The training involves lots of role play, particularly focusing on bullying.

"We mostly train year six pupils, but it is open to the other year groups as well.

"Since the active listening scheme started we've put a stop to several cases of bullying.

"The children are taught their limits, and they know that if they discover anything serious which is going on that they must come straight to me or another member of staff."

The active listeners are identifiable to other children by the red and green badges they wear.

The scheme is based on one devised by the Red Balloon Learning Centre in Cambridge, which provides a safe learning environment for children who have been the victims of severe bullying.

Mrs Wahlich said: "The red part of the badge is in recognition of the Red Balloon centre.

"As well as being available to their fellow pupils when needed, the active listeners take it in turns to run a drop-in centre every Tuesday.

"It gives them responsibility and we hope it makes the school a better place for everybody.

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