In the wake of the suicide of 13-year-old Lucas, the issue of school bullying is back in the spotlight. Students and parents testify about this spiral and the warning signs.
In the vicinity of a middle school in the Paris region, the word harassment leaves no young person indifferent. Almost everyone has a story to tell. A third-grader was harassed by her classmates. Six years later, she still talks about it with emotion. “They would find any excuse they could, because I was reserved, that’s all. I had both my teeth knocked out, I got hit. It went on for two years,” she says.
According to the teenagers interviewed, the slightest difference is a pretext for harassment. This mechanism, schoolboys of Marseille (Bouches-du-Rhône) analyze it perfectly. “Basically, they already target you, they invent rumors. If you’re not happy, they make threats,” says one student. “They’re never going to act alone,” adds a young boy. Nora Fraisse, whose daughter committed suicide 23 years ago as a result of harassment at school, warns of the warning signs: a drop in school performance, a change in activity, mutism, somatization, or “a child who is no longer invited to birthday parties.”