ALMOST a quarter of British children aged ten to 15 rated their
life satisfaction as below moderate, according to figures published
last week by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
A similar number reported that they estimated the things that
they they did in their lives as only moderately worth while, and
just over a quarter said that they were only moderately happy.
The ONS findings are based on surveys undertaken since 2011, and
the ONS is now in the process of drawing up a set of 31 measures of
children's well-being. An initial version was produced last year,
and an updated set will be published next year. The areas will
include: personal well-being, relationships, health, personal
finance, and education and skills.
Last week's report makes the point that nearly a fifth of the UK
population - an estimated 12 million people - are children aged
from birth to 15, which makes them an important part of the
It highlights recent research from the Children's Society, which
suggested that a significant minority of children in the UK
suffered` from low well-being, whichaffected their childhood and
life chances, and their families and communities.
The report suggested that while eight out of ten boys reported
being relatively happy with their appearance, fewer than seven out
of ten girls reported the same. About one in eight children
reported frequent bullying, and about 12 per cent had been a victim
of crime - half of which involved violence.
Nearly all children (98 per cent) used a computer at home, but
girls were more likely to use one for homework, and boys mostly
used one to play games.
The director of strategy at the Children's Society, Lily
Caprani, said: "The fact that millions of children in the UK are
not enjoying a good childhood should be a wake-up call to adults.
This report shows that too many children are suffering from being
victims of crime as well as bullying and low self-esteem. Very
often . . . we treat teenagers as people to be feared, but we need
to change our attitudes and recognise they are often vulnerable