Teachers say pupils younger than Fortnite’s supposed age limit of 12 are becoming obsessed with the game, affecting their concentration in school. The Daily Mail reports.
The Mail has found schools across the country pleading with parents to stop children spending their days glued to the game.
In an email to parents, head Jemma Garside, who runs a primary school in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, wrote: ‘Unfortunately discussions around this game are being brought … into the classroom which is distracting children from their learning.’
Another school in Bristol said pupils as young as seven were playing. A post on the school’s website said: ‘We’ve heard some of our children, including in Year 3, are playing a game online called Fortnite … if your child is playing this game talk to them and make sure you know what they are doing.’
Last night, Culture Secretary Matt Hancock’s Parliamentary Private Secretary Nigel Huddleston said he was ‘horrified’ to hear stories of children becoming addicted to the game. The MP for Mid Worcestershire admitted friends of his 12-year-old son spoke of ‘nothing else’, although his own child does not play. He said: ‘The Government is going to be making it increasingly difficult for children to see inappropriate content.’ Recent cases highlighted the game’s ‘addictive nature’ and ‘the extent to which it quickly impacts behaviour’, he added.
On Sunday, it emerged a girl, aged just nine, was in rehab after becoming so addicted that she would wet herself rather than leave the screen.
Concerned parents have taken to forums such as Mumsnet to vent their fears. One mother wrote of her primary school age son: ‘Yesterday he saw a poster with a man and child in a swimming pool … and commented that it would be a perfect shot to blow their heads off.’
Another added that her son, aged nine, had become addicted and she had imposed a ban on the game after his ‘behaviour deteriorated massively’. She wrote: ‘It was awful to see how angry he was becoming … I seriously wish I’d never let him on it.”
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