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School bullying


Vodcast Three: Interventions in cases of bullying School Bullying Dr Ken Rigby Consultant Developed for Proactive and Reactive Approaches The proactive or universal ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: School bullying

Vodcast Three Interventions in cases of bullying
School Bullying
Dr Ken RigbyConsultant
Developed for
Proactive and Reactive Approaches
  • The proactive or universal approach targets
    everyone in the school community in an attempt to
    stop bullying ever happening
  • The reactive or interventive approach targets
    those individuals or groups who are actually
    involved in bully/victim problems

Developed for
Why the proactive approach is never entirely
  • Some individuals are highly predisposed to act
  • Negative or inadequate parenting and family
    influence leads some children to become involved
    in bully/victim problems at school
  • Some neighbourhoods instil prejudiced attitudes
    and promote aggressive behaviour
  • Exposure to violence through the media can induce
    some children to act aggressively

Developed for
Two stages of intervening by school staff
  • 1. When a teacher observes a student or group of
    students bullying someone and decides to
    intervene on the spot
  • 2. When it is decided that further action at a
    later stage needs to be taken to deal with the
    issue which has come to the schools attention

Developed for
What is a case of bullying?
  • A student is being seriously harmed physically
    and/or psychologically by a more powerful person
    or group
  • What is happening is unfair and is expected to
    continue unless it is stopped
  • The target evidently does not appear to have the
    skills or resources to handle the situation
  • It is decided that time and resources must be
    allocated to addressing what is happening.

Developed for
How successful are interventions with actual
cases of bullying?
  • To answer this question approx 38,000 Australian
    students aged 8 to 16 years were asked
  • Whether they had ever been bullied at school
  • Whether they had told anyone
  • Whether they had told a teacher
  • After telling a teacher whether things improved,
    stayed the same or got worse (Rigby, 2008)

Developed for
What happens when teachers are told?
  • According to students, in about 50 of cases
    reported by students to a teacher the situation
    does not improve
  • In 10 of cases the situation gets worse
  • Interventions are less successful with older
  • There is a great need for intervention in cases
    to be improved.

Developed for
Six major methods of intervening
  • The Traditional Disciplinary Method
  • Strengthening the Victim to Resist
  • Mediation
  • Restorative Practice
  • The Support Group Method
  • The Method of Shared Concern

Developed for
Traditional Disciplinary Method
  • The Traditional Disciplinary Method is commonly
    seen as
  • justified when
  • A perpetrator is found to be responsible for the
  • He or she is deemed to deserve to be punished

Developed for
The rationale
  • The imposition of the penalty and commonly the
    threat of further punishment will deter the
    perpetrator from continuing to bully
  • The punishment will send a message to other
    students and deter them from bullying
  • In general, students will not dare bully
  • It should be recognised that there are some
    clearly undesirable ways of carrying out this
    method for instance when the penalties are
    arbitrary and seemingly vindictive

Developed for
How the Traditional Disciplinary Method can be
used more acceptably
  • The sanctions are consistent with school rules
    governing behaviour - especially if the rules
    have been publicised and endorsed by the school
  • The sanctions are administered in such a way as
    to respect the person of the bully - and focus on
    the unacceptable behaviour
  • Pains are subsequently taken to reinforce
    behaviour that is positive - and incompatible
    with a bullying style of behaving

Developed for
Limitations of the Traditional Disciplinary
  • At best it produces compliance and not a
    self-sustaining change of heart
  • The bullying commonly does not stop - those
    punished often engage in less conspicuous but
    equally hurtful forms of bullying
  • It is difficult - if not impossible - to provide
    the necessary surveillance to ensure the victims
  • The positive reinforcement of the bullys
    supporters may be more powerful than any negative
    reinforcement the school can provide

Developed for
When the disciplinary approach appears more
  • The bullying is extreme or actually criminal and
    a disciplinary response is required
  • There appears to be no alternative way of
    proceeding as for example when non-punitive
    methods have been ineffective.

Developed for
Questions to discuss and an exercise
  • At your school do you think students who are
    being bullied usually approach staff members for
  • When staff are told, how much help do you think
    they are to students?
  • How would you handle a case of low to medium
    severity bullying, for example the one described
    in the Handling Bullying Questionnaire?
  • Exercise
  • Complete the Handling Bullying Questionnaire
  • Compare your results with those obtained by most
    Australian respondents
  • Where you differ from most of the Australian
    respondents, ask yourself why

Developed for