There were 271 reported cases of delinquency in public schools and 18 reported cases of bullying in the 2017-2018 school year, Education Ministry figures show.
The figures are based on requests received by the Immediate Intervention Team (OAP) of the Ministry during the school year.
In 2017-2018, OAP was called to respond to 131 cases of delinquency in secondary education and 140 in primary education.
Of the 140 reported cases in primary education, 35 were in Nicosia schools, 40 in Limassol, 38 in Larnaca, 8 in Famagusta and 19 in Paphos.
During the school year 2016-2017, OAP was called to respond to 259 cases of delinquency. Of them, 119 were in secondary education institutions and 140 in primary education.
In 2016-2017, OAP cooperated with 57% of schools in Nicosia, 67% of schools in Limassol, 52% of schools in Larnaca, 33% of schools in Famagusta and 41% of schools in Paphos.
OAP said that in 2017-2018 the number of public schools in Cyprus that cooperated with the service increased by 4%.
During the past school year, 18 cases of bullying in schools were reported to OAP. Of them, 16 were in secondary education institutions and two in primary education. Eight were reported in Nicosia, nine in Limassol and one in Famagusta.
Compared to 2016-2017, there was a considerable decrease of reported cases of bullying, when 46 cases were reported, OAP figures show.
Again, the majority were in secondary education institutions (37), four were in technical education institutions and five were in primary education.
Of them, 19 were reported in Nicosia, 18 in Limassol, eight in Larnaca and one in Paphos.
However, according to Phileleftheros the distinction between cases of delinquency and bullying is not clear.
OAP is a Ministry of Education unit comprised by psychologists, educators and other counsellors, which intervenes in cases of delinquency and bullying on the request by the school.
They work with child offenders, victims of bullying and schools in order to manage delinquency phenomena in education.
National strategy against violence in schools
The cabinet has approved a National Strategy for the Prevention and Management of Violence in Schools.
The strategy was implemented in 2019 and will conclude in 2022.
It includes provisions for creating a system for collecting, coding and analysing data, as well as the types and extent of school violence.
According to the strategy, the data will be collected by the schools themselves and then will be registered in a Ministry of Education database.