Children spend the majority of their day in school where they are continuously interacting with their peers. We must provide children with a learning environment where they will not be distracted by the damaging effects of bullying. Students, teachers, administrators, staff and parents must work together to create safe, bully-free schools. Occurrences of bullying are unacceptable and it is imperative that schools adopt a zero tolerance policy against it. A child cannot be expected to stop the bullying alone- they need our help.

Schools with serious bullying problems should consider implementing a bullying prevention program. Programs such as the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program and The Blueprints for Violence Prevention Program, use a whole school approach to eradicate bullying through awareness and intervention

What Schools Can Do:

  • Develop curriculums that discourage bullying and promote positive peer interactions- books, lessons and discussions used in the classroom should incorporate an anti-bullying message to raise awareness of the harm caused to victims of bullying.

  • Provide staff with appropriate training from a bullying prevention program on how to deal with bullying in classrooms, playgrounds and cafeterias.
  • Designate specific teachers and/or administrators that students can speak with and encourage students to seek counsel if they are victims or know of others who have been targets of bullying.
  • Establish clear sanctions and a plan of action to deal with bullying situations.
  • Promote peer support encouraging students to stand up for those being victimized.
  • Keep parents involved with the school to reinforce the anti-bullying message in the home as well as in the classroom- encourage parents to contact teachers with concerns, provide materials to parents on how to talk to their children about bullying, and keep parents aware of any problem situations in school.

The above information was compiled from "Bullying and Harassment in Schools and the Rights of Children" a journal article in Children and Society, volume 14, 2000.