Bullying is unwanted aggressive behavior among k-12 school children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. This behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated.
Bullying includes actions such as:
- Attacking Someone Physically
- Making Threats
- Attacking Someone Verbally
- Spreading Rumors
- Excluding Someone from a Group on Purpose
School administrators, principals, superintendents, school board members, and even teachers, play a unique role in bullying prevention. They have a huge influence on k-12 students. Sometimes they’re with students more than their parents!
School administrators create and implement the anti-bullying strategy, ensure they’re abiding by state anti-bullying legislation, enforce school rules, and set an example of what appropriate behavior is.
Here are a few tips to aid in your k-12 school’s bullying prevention efforts:
1. Focus on School Climate
To reduce bullying and create a positive environment where students feel safe, focusing on the social climate of the school is important.
2. Coordinate and Integrate Bullying Prevention Efforts
Recognizing that k-12 schools are working to address not only bullying, but also other social and emotional problems, school administrators can coordinate bullying prevention with other efforts.
3. Provide Training in Bullying Prevention to Staff
Quality training helps staff members understand the nature of bullying, bullying side effects, what policies are in place, and how to stop bullying if it is observed or suspected.
4. Spend Time Speaking with Students About Bullying
These discussions help teachers keep their fingers on the pulse of students’ concerns and allow students time to express themselves.
Bonus Tip! Encourage k-12 students to express themselves by giving them a way to report bullying incidents anonymously.