School Representatives

Bullying  has been endemic in schools for decades and results in daily misery for many children and young people often over prolonged periods of time. Most students are safe and secure, nurtured and encouraged while at school, however the evidence is now overwhelming that for many this is not their experience on a daily basis. No longer can we continue to pretend that children and young people are incapable of managing their own destructive ands abusive behaviours. We must ensure they have the capacity, motivation and skills to do so.

The BULLYWATCH™ program of intervention comprises a wide range of materials and processes to assist children, young people and the broader community to understand the parameters of peer abuse and develop appropriate attitudes and supportive responses. In addition, specific, individualised materials have been designed to assist victims of bullying to develop adequate skills for resistance and for bullies to develop more appropriate interpersonal behaviours. This fulfils the promise of a comprehensive and customised approach which deals with whole school and family commitment as well as the needs of individuals.

A continuum of intervention is embedded within the comprehensive program initiated within the school and community to address the serious –and sometimes deadly serious –matter of bullying. The expectation is that there will be a genuine commitment to an anti-bullying ethos which goes beyond a simple policy or values statement to incorporate effective programs and support.The approach outlined here offers a range of protective interventions to ensure that indeed safety is not just an expectation but an entitlement, guaranteed by moral and social commitment.  Further, the program is grounded in remedial intervention which has as its focus the opportunity for all participants to gain new and valuable social skills and interaction behaviours. The main elements of the BULLYWATCH™ intervention are supportive, protective, remedial and socially viable programs for ensuring transformation towards appropriate social competencies of bullies and victims.

The school may implement a program such as the BULLYWATCH™  Comprehensive and Customised Intervention which will inform the whole school community and personnel about bullying in general, about the results of data collection regarding reported bullying and the range of interventions possible. While it is hoped that such a committed program of information would deter bullying, it is the thoroughness of the application, sustained commitment and reinforcement of appropriate peer interactions which do most to encourage safety and protection.

The BULLYWATCH™ program of Interventions comprises:

• Whole School Comprehensive and Customised Intervention, which incorporates all other elements of the program and which is presented to school personnel and the wider community. The overall program comprises six components, which are described in more detail further. Initially, components one to four are presented and include the whole school community and personnel in the collection of relevant school data and making research-based decisions regarding policy, restructuring and curricula.

• Classroom Curricula which inform and educate all students in important aspects of bullying and the responsibilities of each for the safety and protection of themselves and their peers.

• Peer Advocacy© Training which offers selected or volunteer students the opportunity to develop further advocacy and protection skills to support bullied peers:

* the GUARDIANS © program at the Primary level and

* the DEFENDERS © program at the secondary level

• Individual Intervention for bullies and victims of peer abuse which involves:

*the BULLYWATCH™ SELFGUARD program for victims of peer abuse, teaching resiliency and other critical skills at the secondary or primary level and

*the BULLYWATCH™ SELFWATCH program for bullies teaching responsibility, tolerance and other critical skills at the secondary or primary level

Each of these components is identified in Figure 5 and each contributes specific skills, training, information and intervention to support the overall intention of the BULLYWATCH™  approach which is to comprehensively deal with the most serious educational issue of our time-childhood bullying. Following are descriptions and details of these key components of the approach. Each component has an available manual and/or other materials and resources for application with groups or individuals at home or school to assist with dealing with peer abuse. (

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