Nine out of ten children on the Isle of Wight are happy with their lives, but a high number of teenage girls are worried about their looks and secondary school students feel less safe than their mainland counterparts.
The survey covered a wide range of aspects of children’s lives and, in two areas, Island children were happier than the national average.
In the first, they were found to be happier with their family relationships, and they also seem more satisfied with their local area and facilities available to them.
But they’re not as happy with issues with their school and their physical appearance.
The Isle of Wight Council, which supported the survey says the findings are very much in line with young people nationally – except that secondary schools pupils said they felt less safe than children elsewhere.
Teenagers’ concerns over appearance
Teenage girls scored significantly lower than their mainland peers on how good they felt about their appearance.
The findings will now be shared with schools and the Children’s and Young People’s Strategic Partnership. They will consider the actions needed to tackle the issues raised, which will form part of the Children and Young People’s Plan published this summer.
Councillor Dawn Cousins, cabinet member for children’s services and education, said:
I am delighted that so many children and young people feel happy with their lives here and am thankful to everyone who took the time to take part in the survey. The results are invaluable to us as it is only when we can understand the problems and challenges that our children face that we can start to address them. We are now able to focus our resources in the areas that will make the biggest difference to our children and young people’s wellbeing.
Jim Davis, good childhood adviser at The Children’s Society, said:
We’ve been conducting research into children’s wellbeing for many years, but the work on the Isle of Wight has been our first opportunity to produce a detailed picture of children’s experiences across an entire local authority.
The response from schools has been fantastic, with so many children taking part and giving us their views and ideas. There is much to celebrate about children’s lives on the Island, and we now have a good idea of what could be improved. We hope that parents, professionals, and children themselves will play their part in making that happen.