Create a Safe and Supportive Environment

  • Establish a culture of inclusion and respect that welcomes all students. Reward students when they show thoughtfulness and respect for peers, adults, and the school.
  • Make sure students interact safely. Monitor bullying “hot spots” in and around the building.
  • Enlist the help of all school staff. Teachers, bus drivers, cafeteria staff, office staff, librarians, school nurses, and others see and influence students every day. Messages reach kids best when they come from many different adults who talk about and show respect and inclusion. Train school staff to prevent bullying.
  • Set a tone of respect in the classroom.

Managing Classrooms to Prevent Bullying

  • Create ground rules with students using positive terms and that supports school-wide rules.
  • Be a role model and follow the rules yourself.
  • Make expectations clear. Keep your requests simple, direct, and specific.
  • Reward good behavior.
  • Use one-on-one feedback, and do not publicly reprimand.
  • Help students correct their behaviors.

Classroom Meetings

Hold short, regularly scheduled classroom meetings that provide a forum for students to talk about school-related issues beyond academics. They can be held in a student’s main classroom, home room, or advisory period.

Assess Bullying in your school

An assessment is planned, purposeful, and uses research tools. Assess to:

  • Know what’s going on. Adults underestimate the rates of bullying because kids rarely report it and it often happens when adults aren’t around. Assessing bullying through anonymous surveys can provide a clear picture of what is going on.
  • Target efforts to understand trends and types of bullying in your school to help you plan bullying prevention and intervention efforts.
  • Measure results to know if your prevention and intervention efforts are working is to measure them over time.

An assessment can explore specific bullying topics, such as: frequency and types; adult and peer response; locations, including “hot spots”; staff perceptions and attitudes about bullying; student perception of safety; school climate.

Engage parents and youth

Create a school safety committee comprised of key school and community members to plan bullying prevention and intervention program efforts and their effectiveness (i.e. S3 teams), communicate and enforce bullying prevention policies and rules, educate the community about bullying and the role they can play, conduct assessments, advocate for the school’s work in bullying prevention and sustain efforts over time.

Set Policies and Rules

Examples of policies and rules are a school’s mission statement and student expected behaviors. Be sure that policies and rules are well communicated and have a shared responsibility by schools and students.

Educate About Bullying

Provide activities that educate about bullying (i.e. school discussions about bullying, evidence-based programs, staff training on bullying prevention).

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