"I Am Not Scared" Project
How can schools best support pupils showing bullying behaviours
Techniques to support pupils showing bullying behaviours,
Policy Makers, Teachers, School Directors.
21 - 100 pages
This briefing reviews widely used interventions which can be used by schools to provide support for children and young people who bully others. To do this, the review is divided into two sections; firstly national strategies which include or specifically target supporting children and young people displaying bullying behaviour are reviewed. Secondly, making use of theories from developmental psychology and criminology, the review looks at the use of restorative practices as a form of support and help for bullies is discussed.
Although schools continue to use punishments and sanctions to deal with bullying incidents, the primary role of this is to act as a deterrent for future actions, and to publicly demonstrate that such behaviour is wrong and not to be ignored or condoned. This review does not examine approaches which negatively reinforce bullying or anti social behaviour, instead concentrating on interventions which directly encourage behaviour change and pro sociality.
The briefing paper details and evaluates some tried and tested strategies to deal with school bullying:
1) National behaviour and attendance strategy (including SEAL -
see separate SEAL review)
2) Behavioural Educational Support Teams (BESTS) - multi-agency
teams which aim to promote emotional well-being and positive
3) Pupil Referral Units (PRUs)- centres which temporarily provide
education for children of compulsory school age who, for
varying reasons, including behavioural difficulties, are
unable to attend mainstream schools.
4) Safer Schools Partnerships (SSP) - aimed at addressing issues
related to anti social behaviour and crime, by forming
permanent partnerships between schools and police officers
5) Behaviour Improvement Programme (BIP) - a government
initiative set up to improve schools with poor records in
behaviour and attendance
6) Youth Offending Teams - these are part of the Youth Justice
system and can work with schools to develop programmes to stop
anti-social behaviour, including bullying
These evaluations show the beneficial effects from the various programmes/initiatives which could extend the range of strategies used by schools.
The second section of the briefing examines currently existing, school-based anti-bullying interventions which, with the support of psychological theories regarding the nature of school bullying, could be useful approaches through which pupils displaying bullying behaviours can be supported by their school. Although the primary aim of these programmes is to prevent bullying, underlying theories highlight the potential that the
schemes may have in instigating longer term behavioural improvement on the part of the bullying student.
The most commonly used of these methods are restorative approaches, which focus on the harm caused to the victim rather than on punishing the offender, by making them aware of the harm they have caused and making some agreed reparation. The main prnciples of restorative practices are detailed i.e. Responsibility, Reparation and Resolution along with examples of commonly used practices and strategies such as: Peer Mediation; Circle time; Restorative Conference; Shared Concern; Support Group Method; Peer pressure; Empathy Induction; Shame Management; Reintegrative Shaming etc
Overall this is an interesting and valuable briefing report on some practical and effective strategies.
Readers may also find useful other resources on this topic, on this site such as Restorative Approaches and Practices; Crying for Help - a No Blame Approach
Wilsthorpe Community School
I Am Not Scared Project
Copyright 2017 - This project has been funded with support from the European Commission