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The Republic Act 10627 or the Anti-Bullying Act of 2013 was signed into law by President Benigno Aquino III on
September 6, 2013. The law requires all elementary and secondary schools in the country to adopt an anti-bullying
policy. According to a study conducted on 2008 by the Britain-based Plan International, 50 percent of school
children in the Philippines experienced bullying either by their teachers or their peers.

Legal scholar Jonathan Turley who said, "bullying is no more a natural part of learning than is parental abuse a
natural part of growing up"

ccording to the Cyberbullying Research Center, about 20 percent of children age 11-18 have been victims of
cyberbullying. Cyberbullying is defined as willful and repeated harm inflicted through the use of computers, cell
phones, and other electronic devices.
Cyberbullying occurs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

MANILA, Philippines - President Aquino signed recently a law that prohibits bullying in elementary and secondary schools
throughout the country.
Aquino signed Republic Act 10627 or the Anti-Bullying Act of 2013 last Sept. 6, requiring all elementary and secondary
schools to adopt policies to prevent and address bullying in their institutions.
The law defines bullying as any severe or repeated use by one or more students of a written, verbal or electronic
expression, or a physical act or gesture, or any combination thereof, directed at another student that has the effect of
actually causing or placing the latter in reasonable fear of physical or emotional harm or damage to his property; creating
a hostile environment at school for the other students.
The act of bullying also involves infringing on the rights of other students at school or materially and substantially
disrupting the education process or the orderly preparation of a school.
The school superintendents should come up with their respective policies to address bullying within six months after the
law becomes effective.
The secretary of education shall prescribe the appropriate administrative sanctions on school administrators who shall fail
to comply with the requirements under the Act, it said
By Helen Flores (The Philippine Star) | Updated September 18, 2013 - 12:00am

What is the Definition of Verbal Bullying
What Is Verbal Bullying and What Are the Effects of Verbal Bullying?
The definition of verbal bullying is when an individual uses verbal language (e.g., insults, teasing, etc)
to gain power over his or her peers.
For example, a less athletically inclined peer may be called nerd or wimp. Unlike physical bullying, by definition
verbal bullying is harder to see and stop. It tends to occur when adults arent around to stop it and the effects
of it are not obvious.
Verbal bullying can be very damaging and may have long term psychological effects on the victim.
What are the Effects of Verbal Bullying?
Words alone do have power. While the effects of physical bullying may be more obvious at first, verbal bullying
is more insidious and over long periods of time works to destroy a childs self image and self esteem. This can
lead to depression, anxiety and other problems. In extreme cases, several well noted instances of teen suicide
have been linked to prolonged verbal bullying of a classmate or peer.
Verbal bullying should not be treated as kids simply being kids and should dealt with seriously by parents,
teachers and school administrators.
How to Deal with Verbal Bullies
The first step is to be aware of whats going on in your childs life so youre aware of the situation. If you
suspect your child is being bullied, asking questions can help although you should be aware that children,
especially older children, may require a bit more talking to before they open up about the situation.
Signs your child might be experiencing (verbal) bullying include an aversion to going to school, drop in grades,
sleeping problems, complaints of stomach aches and more.
Heres how to take control of the situation:
1. Tell school administrators: Its important school administrators are made aware of the situation so they
can intervene and monitor the situation. Follow-up with your child and the school regularly to ensure the
situation is dealt with.
2. Resist suggestions to simply ignore the bully: Ignoring the bully doesnt work. Its the responsibility of
the student exhibiting bullying behaviors not to bully. The victim should not have to hide or endure the
3. Have your child participate in social activities (extracurriculuar activities, community groups and other
supportive environments): It is important the victim not be bullied into isolation. Engaging in social
activities and having close friends can help a child immensely both in helping them develop pro-social
behaviours and in offering some level of protection against the development of depression, anxiety, etc.

Bullying is a Serious Issue
Bullying is aggressive behavior that is intentional and that involves an imbalance of power.
Most often, it is repeated over time.
Recognizing Bullying
Dan Olweus, creator of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, defines bullying in his book, Bullying at School: What We Know and
What We Can Do:
"A person is bullied when he or she is exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of
one or more other persons, and he or she has difficulty defending himself or herself."
This definition includes three important components:
1. Bullying is aggressive behavior that involves unwanted, negative actions.
2. Bullying involves a pattern of behavior repeated over time.
3. Bullying involves an imbalance of power or strength.
In his writings, Dr. Olweus is very clear that bullying is peer abuse that should not be tolerated under any circumstances. Today, more
than thirty states have adopted laws against bullying.
Types of Bullying
Bullying can take on many forms. As part of the Olweus Bullying Questionnaire, students are asked if they have been bullied in any of
these nine ways:
1. Verbal bullying including derogatory comments and bad names
2. Bullying through social exclusion or isolation
3. Physical bullying such as hitting, kicking, shoving, and spitting
4. Bullying through lies and false rumors
5. Having money or other things taken or damaged by students who bully
6. Being threatened or being forced to do things by students who bully
7. Racial bullying
8. Sexual bullying
9. Cyber bullying (via cell phone or Internet)
Bullying is Not Teasing
It might be hard to tell the difference between playful teasing and bullying. Teasing usually involves two or more friends who act
together in a way that seems fun to all the people involved. Often they tease each other equally, but it never involves physical or
emotional abuse.
Why Students Bully
Information about bullying suggests that there are three interrelated reasons why students bully.
1. Students who bully have strong needs for power and (negative) dominance.
2. Students who bully find satisfaction in causing injury and suffering to other students.
3. Students who bully are often rewarded in some way for their behavior with material or psychological rewards.
Warning Signs of Bullying
Students Who are Bullied
Students who are being bullied often
exhibit some warning signs. These
students may:
Have torn, damaged, or missing
pieces of clothing, books, or other
Have unexplained cuts, bruises,
and scratches from fighting
Have few, if any, friends with whom
he or she spends time
Seem afraid of going to school,
walking to and from school, riding
the school bus, or taking part in
organized activities (such as clubs
or sports) with peers
Take a long "illogical" route when
walking to or from school
Lose interest in doing school work,
or suddenly begin to do poorly in
Appear sad, moody, teary, or
Students Who Bully Others
It's important to recognize the characteristics
of students who bully, which may help prevent
bullying and allow for early intervention. These
students may:
Have a positive attitude toward violence
and the use of violent means
Have a strong need to dominate and
subdue other students and get their
own way
Be impulsive, aggressive, or easily
Lack empathy toward students who are
Have defiance and aggression toward
adults, including teachers and parents
Be involved in other anti-social or rule-
breaking activities such as vandalism,
delinquency, and substance abuse
Have greater physical strength than that
of others in general and the students
they bully in particular (especially in
depressed when he or she comes
Complain frequently of headaches,
stomachaches, or other physical
Have frequent bad dreams, or
trouble sleeping
Experience a loss of appetite
Appear anxious and suffer from low
Be more likely to report owning a gun
for risky reasons, such as to gain
respect or to frighten others
How Bullying Affects Children
Nearly one in five students in an average classroom is experiencing bullying in some way. The rest of the students, called bystanders,
are also affected by the bullying.

The Bullying Circle
The Olweus Bullying Prevention Program describes students involved or witnessing a bullying situation as having roles in the Bullying

1 C. Salmivalli, K. Lagerspetz, K. Bjrkqvist, K. Osterman, and A. Kaukiainen, "Bullying as a Group Process: Participant Roles and Their Relations to Social Status
within the Group," Aggressive Behavior 22 (1996): 1-15.
2 Dan Olweus, "Peer Harassment: A Critical Analysis and Some Important Issues," in Peer Harassment in School, ed. J. Juvonen and S. Graham (New York:
Guilford Publications, 2001): 3-20.
The Impact of Bullying
A single student who bullies can have a wide-ranging impact on the students they bully, students who observe bullying, and the overall
climate of the school and community.
Students Who are Bullied
Students deserve to feel safe at school.
But when they experience bullying, these
types of effects can last long into their
Low self-esteem
Health problems
Poor grades
Suicidal thoughts
Observers of Bullying
Students who see bullying happen also may
feel that they are in an unsafe environment.
Effects may include feeling:
Powerless to act
Guilty for not acting
Tempted to participate
Students Who Bully Others
Students who intentionally bully others
should be held accountable for their
actions. Those who bully their peers are
also more likely than those students who
do not bully others to *:
Get into frequent fights
Steal and vandalize property
Drink alcohol and smoke
Report poor grades
Perceive a negative climate at
Carry a weapon
Schools with Bullying Issues
When bullying continues and a school does
not take action, the entire school climate can
be affected in the following ways:
The school develops an environment of
fear and disrespect
Students have difficulty learning
Students feel insecure
Students dislike school
Students perceive that teachers and
staff have little control and don't care
about them
* Not all students who bully others have obvious behavior problems or are engaged in rule-breaking activities, however. Some of them
are highly skilled socially and good at ingratiating themselves with their teacher and other adults. This is true of some boys who bully
but is perhaps even more common among bullying girls. For this reason it is often difficult for adults to discover or even imagine that
these students engage in bullying behavior.

What Causes Bullying?
A number of different factors have been identified which contribute to bullying problems. Family, individual, and school factors all
Family factors: A number of child-rearing styles have been found to predict whether children will grow up to be aggressive bullies. A
lack of attention and warmth toward the child, together with modelling of aggressive behaviour at home, and poor supervision of the
child, provide the perfect opportunity for aggressive and bullying behaviour to occur (Loeber & Stouthamer-Loeber, 1986; Patterson,
DeBaryshe & Ramsey, 1989; and Olweus, 1993). Modelling of aggressive behaviour may include use of physical and verbal aggression
toward the child by parents, or use of physical and verbal aggression by parents toward each other. The connection between
witnessing wife assault by children, particularly male children, and bully behaviour by children toward peers, has not been well studied,
but studies do indicate that aggressive behaviour of all kinds is elevated in children who witness violence by their father toward their
mother (Jaffe, Wolfe & Wilson, 1990).
Individual factors: The best-documented individual child factor in bullying is temperament. Temperament refers to basic tendencies by
children to develop certain personality styles and interpersonal behaviours. Children who are active and impulsive in temperament may
be more inclined to develop into bullies. With boys, physical strength compared to age peers also seems to be a characteristic which is
associated with bullying, although of course there are many strong, physically adept boys who never bully.
School factors: The social context and supervision at school have been shown to play a major part in the frequency and severity of
bullying problems. While teachers and administrators do not have control over individual and family factors which produce children who
are inclined to bully, bullying problems can be greatly reduced in severity by appropriate supervision, intervention and climate in a
Supervision of children has been found to be of prime importance. Just as low levels of supervision in the home are associated with the
development of bully problems in individual children, so too, are low levels of supervision at school, particularly on the playground or
schoolyard and in the hallways. Also, the appropriateness of interventions by adults when they see bullying, or are made aware of it are
very important.
The social climate in the school needs to be one where there is warmth and acceptance of all students, and one where there are high
standards for student and teacher behaviour toward one another. Teacher attitudes toward aggression, and skills with regard to
supervision and intervention, partly determine how teachers will react to bullying situations. Curricula and administrative policies and
support are also very important. These are further outlined in the section on Program that Work.
Who Becomes a Victim?
Children who become repeated victims of aggression, and bullying, tend to be quiet and shy in temperament. They tend not to retaliate
or make any assertive responses to the initial aggression, which is then repeated by the bully. Children who become victims typically
lack friends and social support at school, and they are often not confident in their physical abilities and strength.
While most victims do not do anything to provoke the victimization, there is a subgroup of victims who tend to show irritating and
inappropriate social behaviour. These children tend to be impulsive and have poor social skills. These "provocative victims" may also
try to bully other children, so they are both bully and victim (Olweus, 1993).
What are the Long-term Consequences for Victims,
Bullies, and Bystanders?
Victims of bullying typically are very unhappy children who suffer from fear, anxiety, and low self-esteem as a result of they bullying.
They may try to avoid school, and to avoid social interaction, in an effort to escape the bullying. Some victims of bullying are so
distressed that they commit, or attempt to commit suicide. Several instances of suicide by boys who had been severely bullied occurred
in Norway in the early 1980's. These tragic events mobilized that country to begin a nation-wide anti-bullying program (Olweus, 1993).
Even when bullying does not drive victims to the extremes of suicide, victims experience significant psychological harm which interferes
with their social and academic and emotional development. The sooner the bullying is stopped, the better for the long-term outcome for
victims. If bullying patterns are allowed to continue unchecked, there are long-term consequences for the victim. A follow-up study by
Olweus (1993b) found that by the time former male victims of bullying were in their early twenties, they had generally made a positive
social adjustment, as they had more freedom to choose their social and work milieu. However, they were more likely to be depressed,
and had lower self-esteem than a comparison group who had not been bullied.
The serious long-term outcomes for bullies are also important to recognize. Bullies tend to become aggressive adults who stand a
much higher chance than average of obtaining multiple criminal convictions (Olweus, 1979). These findings by Olweus and his group fit
well with other studies which have found exactly the same outcome for children, especially males, who are aggressive as children (e.g.
Robins, 1978; Loeber & Dishion, 1983).
Another important but often overlooked group of children who are affected by bullying are those children who are neither victims nor
perpetrators of bullying, but who see bullying happen to their peers. There are also children who will not take the intiative to bully
themselves, but will follow a bully's lead in helping to harass or victimize a particular child in their class or school. All children, including
bystanders, are negatively affected when bullying occurs. The bullying may cause anxiety or fear in bystanders. The learning
environment is poisoned by bullying, particularly when there are no effective interventions in the bullying situation. Children who
observe violent behaviour and see that it has no negative consequences for the bully, will be more likely to use aggression in the future.
There are many effective strategies for both teachers and parents who wish to stop bullying. An important starting point is to realize that
much bullying occurs without the knowledge of teachers and parents, and that many victims are very reluctant to tell adults of their
problems with bullying. They may be ashamed to be a victim, and they are afraid that adults cannot or will not help to resolve the
situation. They may have been threatened with retaliation if they tell.
Also, adults must re-examine some of their own beliefs with regard to interpersonal behaviour before they can intervene effectively.
Many teachers and parents tell children not to "tattle," and to resolve their problems themselves. In the bullying situation, though, there
is a power imbalance of some kind which ensures that the victim always gets the worst of the interaction. The victim and bull y both
need intervention in order to stop the pattern.
Some important strategies in stopping bullying are: providing good supervision for children; providing effective consequences to bul lies;
using good communication between teachers and parents; providing all children opportunities to develop good interpersonal skills; and
creating a social context which is supportive and inclusive, in which aggressive, bully behaviour is not tolerated by the majority.
What Can Parents Do if Their Children are Being Bullied?
1. Ask the child directly. Often children do not wish to tell their parents due to shame and embarrassment, or fear that bullies will
retaliate if they tell. Look for signs such as: fear of going to school, lack of friends, missing belongings and torn clothing, and increased
fearfulness and anxiety.
2. Work with the school immediately to make sure your child is safe, that effective consequences are applied toward the bully, and that
monitoring at school is adequate. Advocate for involvement of the bully's parents. If the bullying is happening on the way to and from
school, arrange for the child to get to school with older, supportive children, or take him or her until other interventions can take place.
3. If your child is timid, and lacks friends, try to arrange for your child participate in positive social groups which meet his or her
interests. Developing your child's special skills and confidence in the context of a positive social group can be very helpful.
4. Suggest that the school implement a comprehensive anti-bullying program. A home-and school association meeting to discuss and
support such an initiative can be helpful.
What to do if Your Child is Aggressive or Bullies Others?
Take the problem seriously. Children and youth who bully others often get into serious trouble in later life, and may receive criminal
convictions. They may have continuing trouble in their relationships with others. Here are some things you can do to turn the situation
1. Talk to your child, talk to his or her teachers and administrators. Keep in mind that a bully will try to deny or minimize his or her
2. Make it clear to your child that you will not tolerate this kind of behaviour, and discuss with your child the negative impact bullying has
on the victims. Do not accept explanations that "it was all in fun."
3. Arrange for an effective, non-violent consequence, which is in proportion with the severity of your child's actions, and his or her age
and stage of development. Corporal punishment carries the message that "might is right."
4. Increase your supervision of your child's activities and whereabouts, and who they are associating with. Spend time with your child,
and set reasonable rules for their activities and curfews.
5. Co-operate with the school in modifying your child's aggressive behaviour. Frequent communication with teachers and/or
administrators is important to find out how your child is doing in changing his or her behaviour.
6. Praise the efforts your child makes toward non-violent and responsible behaviour, as well as for following home and school rules.
Keep praising any efforts the child makes.
7. If your child is viewing violent television shows, including cartoons, and is playing violent video games, this will increase violent and
aggressive behaviour. Change family and child's viewing and play patterns to non-violent ones.
8. Make sure that your child is not seeing violence between members of his or her family. Modelling of aggressive behaviour at home
can lead to violence by the child against others at school and in later life.
9. Seek help from a school psychologist, social worker, or children's mental health centre in the community if you would like support in
working with your child.
What Can Schools Do About Bullying?
Schools can intervene effectively to reduce bullying by developing a safe and supportive school climate. A well-implemented program
with parent, teacher, and community support can reduce bullying markedly. Olweus, in his very comprehensive and large-scale school-
based program evaluation in Norway, found a reduction of 50 per cent in direct bullying two years after the start of implementation. In
addition, both teachers and students reported very positive changes in school climate: improved order and discipline, more positive
social relationships, greater satisfaction on the part of students, and reduced vandalism (Olweus, 1991, 1992).
The measures which Olweus (1993) considers to be crucial in the effectiveness of an anti-bullying program are as follows:
o Awareness and involvement on the part of adults, with regard to bully-victim problems.
o A survey of bully/victim problems at the start of the implementation.
o A school conference day devoted to bully/victim problems.
o Better supervision during recess and lunch hour by adults.
o Consistent and immediate consequences for aggressive behaviour.
o Generous praise for pro-social and helpful behaviour by students.
o Specific class rules against bullying.
o Class meetings about bullying.
o Serious individual talks with bullies and with victims.
o Serious talks with parents of bullies and victims.
o A meeting of the school parent-teacher (home and school) organization on the topic of bullying.
Olweus also recommends implementation of some co-operative learning activities in the school, teaching of social skills; and formation
of a council of teachers and administrators to take the lead in implementation.
With regard to the school conference day, Olweus recommends including teachers, administrators, parents, and some students, as well
as staff such as school psychologists, nurses, and other support staff. He suggests that the participants be given readings on bullying in
advance, and that a video on bullying be shown. Discussion on what needs to be done at the school can be held. The purpose of the
meeting is to create awareness of and a collective commitment to reducing bullying at school. While more research is needed,
especially with regard to implementation challenges, these are the most carefully evaluated and effective violence prevention programs
we have encountered.
Additional, helpful suggestions, are provided by Pepler and Craig (1993) who have done considerable research about bullying and
aggression at school. These researchers also evaluated the implementation of an anti-bullying program in four Toronto Board of
Education schools, which was adapted from the Olweus Norwegian model. Pepler and Craig suggest a number of measures including
the following:
o Develop a curriculum which promotes communication, friendship, and assertive skills.
o Improve communication among school administrators, teachers, parents and students
o Listen respectfully to bullying concerns raised by students, parents, and school staff.
o Avoid sex-role stereotyping (e.g. males need to be strong and tough).
o Avoid emphasis on competitiveness at school.
o Enlist classmates to help alleviate the plight of victims and include them in group activities.
In our experience, the above measures are all part of an effective school-wide anti-bullying program. The same measures which work
toward violence prevention are effective in anti-bullying programs. Specific sections of the A.S.A.P manual which are most helpful in
implementing an anti-bullying program include: the sections on elementary and secondary strategies; and the section on professional
development. Specific model documents include the School Board Code of Conduct; and the Parent Newsletter.
Dealing with Bullying Incidents
Each school board or district (or in some cases, individual school) has its own policies and procedures for dealing with discipline and
violent incidents at school. These policies and procedures should be reviewed at the start of an anti-bullying, in order to find out if
adequate measures are in place for dealing with perpetrators of bullying and supporting victims. This should be done in addition to
implementing school-wide prevention measures.
Suggested Steps for Intervening in Bullying Situations
o Intervene immediately: stop the bullying behaviour as soon as you see it or become aware of it.
o Talk to the bully, and talk to the victim, separately. If more than one child is involved in perpetrating the bullying, talk to each of
the perpetrators separately, in quick succession.
o If a peer mediation program is in place, be very careful in referring cases where there is bullying, as the power imbalance will
likely make this a very intimidating situation for the victim. The victim's communication and assertiveness skills may be very
low, and will be further eroded by the fear resulting from past intimidation and fear of future retaliation. Your may wish to
exclude such cases from peer mediation.
o Consult with administrator and other teachers, as well as staff, to get a wider reading on the problem, and to alert them to the
problem. Get advice as to how this situation fits with school and board policies, and/or refer to written guidelines.
o Expect that the perpetrator(s) will minimize and deny his/her/their actions and responsibility. Refer to school and class codes
of conduct in telling the bully why their behaviour was unacceptable. Tell them what behaviour you do expect of them. Inform
the bully(ies) of the sanctions which will be imposed and that their parents will be involved.
o Reassure the victim that all possible steps will be taken to prevent a recurrence.
o Inform the parents of the bully and of the victim as soon as possible. A quick call to the home the same day is preferable,
followed by an appointment at school for the parents, if it is deemed necessary. Better results are obtained when parents are
involved early in a bullying situation, before behaviour patterns are entrenched and extremely serious.
o Involve parents in designing a creative plan of action, whenever possible.
o For victims, involving them in groups and situations where they can make appropriate friends and develop their social skills
and confidence is important. An example of this is a peer support group, new student orientation group, a co-operative
learning group in class, or a special activity group or club. Parents can also arrange for these kinds of opportunities outside of
school. The goals should be to develop the child's peer support network, social and other skills and confidence. Specific
instruction in assertiveness skills may also be helpful.
o For the bully(ies), specific re-education, as to his/her/their behaviour, is important, in addition to sanctions such as removal of
privileges, detention, etc. Some schools have had good success with in-school detention situations where aggressive students
must complete social skill modules designed to reduce aggressive behaviour and develop empathy for others.
o Follow up in communicating with parents and with other teachers and administrators about the situation, until it is clearly
o Monitor the behaviour of the bully and the safety of the victim on a school-wide basis.
o If the bully(ies) will not change their behaviour, despite concerted efforts by school personnel, they, and not the victim, should
be the ones who are removed from the class or school, or transferred to another program. Consequences for the perpetrators
will be of considerable interest to all students, and will set the tone for future situations.
Notes on Implementation of Anti-Bullying Measures
Implementation is a process which usually takes time. Often teachers find that implementing measures such as increased supervision
in the schoolyard and hallway can increase workload at first. More incidents are usually dealt with at first, because many incidents of
aggression and bullying were previously ignored, or not acted on. When the threshold of what will be tolerated is increased, there are
initially more incidents to deal with. However, after a few months of this increased vigilance and intervention, the pay-off for the
increased effort becomes evident. Fewer incidents, especially fewer serious incidents, occur. The school climate becomes more
positive, as everyone can feel safer and more relaxed at school.
Better supervision of students, greater awareness and sensitivity among teachers, administrators, students and parents, and
developing a positive, safe, and pro-social school makes for a better learning and teaching environment. Teachers often find that the
professional development they receive with regard to anti-violence and conflict resolution also has positive effects on their own
interpersonal and family relationships.
Classroom Activities and Resources
Classroom activities on and ongoing basis are important to an anti-bullying program. At least seven measures can be taken in the
o Developing a class code of conduct with regard to treatment of other students, with specific reference to bullying and exclusion
of other students. Both desirable and unacceptable behaviour should be simply and clearly defined and written down, with
student input.
o Following up with immediate, consistent, non-violent consequences for all bullying and aggressive behaviour.
o Recognizing and praising positive, friendly, and supportive behaviours of students toward one another on a frequent basis.
o Teaching of non-violent, non-racist, and non-sexist ideas, values and behaviours, as a core part of the every-day curriculum.
o Teaching social skills, including communication, making friends, accepting feedback from others, conflict resolution,
appropriate assertiveness, and problem-solving.
o Modelling by the teacher of positive, respectful, and supportive behaviour by the teacher, toward students.
o Using co-operative learning groups to include less popular, more timid children in small, positive, and accepting social groups.
Developing a Class Code of Conduct
A class code of conduct could be started by holding several lessons on awareness of both bullying and friendly and co-operative
behaviours. The class could begin by reading an appropriate story for their age level, or having it read to them. For the youngest
(kindergarten and primary) age group, a book in the Berenstain Bears series, called Trouble with the Bully is available in many libraries.
For intermediate age groups, the book Don't Pick on Me is a possibility. For older age groups, Lord of the Flies is one possibility. The
school librarian or resource centre may have other suggestions. See the references section of A.S.A.P. for references and additional
A class discussion of the effects of bullying for the victim, for the bully, and for the class as a whole, could be the next step. Students
can then be asked what rules they would like to see in the class for behaviour. The teacher may want to give examples of what other
classes have done. The language should be simple and clear for all students. For example,
o We don't want any hitting, punching, or kicking.
o We don't want any name-calling or put-downs.
o We want to include everyone when we do group activities.
o We want to have a friendly class, and help other students if they are bullied.
Including violence prevention, anti-racist, and anti-sexist measures in the curriculum is important. Lessons on these topics should be
incorporated in the day to day curriculum, not added on as 'extra' subjects. A helpful resource in this regard is the 65 Friendly
Lessons for Violence Prevention (Board of Education for the City of London, 1994), which is included in the A.S.A.P. package,
or can be ordered separately. These lessons are designed to be included in a number of different subject areas, such as language arts,
health, social studies, physical education, and mathematics, or in a multi-faceted lesson.
Social skills training can be implemented with one of the programs outlined in A.S.A.P., such as the Mr. Turtle program from the Board
of Education for the City of London, the Second Step curriculum, or other social skills modules available in the Resource Section of
An important element of an anti-bullying program in class is teacher attention and praise for positive, pro-social behaviours on the part
of all students. This can be done verbally each day, as well as with special certificates recognizing specific pro-social behaviours which
are given in class. Such awards can also be given at school assemblies, as part of a violence prevention or anti-bullying day or week.
Two examples of such awards for the elementary grades are given in the A.S.A.P. (1996, p. 70). Teachers and schools may wish to
develop their own versions of such awards to fit in with the content of their class code of conduct and their anti -violence program. Older
students can also help develop these in art classes.
At the same time, students should be assisted to develop self-motivation for acting in positive, non-aggressive, helpful ways. This can
be done by arranging opportunities for students to volunteer for different helpful activities with peers and younger students, while
providing attention and support for these actions. Material rewards should generally not be used, as they may undermine self-
motivation and "internal attributions" on the part of students for wanting to help.
This is an excerpt from the second edition of A.S.A.P.: A School-based Anti-Violence Program (1996). For background
reading on bullying, recommended videos, and a list of books for classroom use, see the full A.S.A.P. package.

Did You Know...
The word "bully" used to mean the total opposite of what it means now? Five-hundred years ago, it meant friend, family
member, or sweetheart. The root of the word comes from the Dutch boel, meaning lover or
brother. Big change!

Let's start by looking at the different kinds of bullying:

Physical bullying means:
Hitting, kicking, or pushing someone...or even just threatening to do it
Stealing, hiding or ruining someone's things
Making someone do things he or she don't want to do
Verbal bullying means:

Relationship bullying means:
Refusing to talk to someone
Spreading lies or rumors about someone
Making someone do things he or she doesn't want to do

Build a Safe Environment
A safe and supportive school climate can help prevent bullying. Safety starts in the classroom. Students should also feel and be
safe everywhere on campusin the cafeteria, in the library, in the rest rooms, on the bus, and on the playground. Everyone at
school can work together to create a climate where bullying is not acceptable.
Create a Safe and Supportive Environment
Manage Classrooms to Prevent Bullying
Classroom Meetings
Create a Safe and Supportive Environment
In general, schools can:
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. The Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports Technical Assistance Center
can help.
Make sure students interact safely. Monitor bullying hot spots in and around the building. Students may be at higher risk of
bullying in settings where there is little or no adult monitoring or supervision, such as bathrooms, playgrounds, and the cafeteria.
Enlist the help of all school staff. All staff can keep an eye out for bullying. They also help set the tone at school. 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. This means managing student behavior in the classroom well. Well-managed classrooms
are the least likely to have bullying.
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Manage Classrooms to Prevent Bullying
Teachers can consider these ways to promote the respect, positive relations, and order that helps prevent bullying in the
Create ground rules.
o Develop rules with students so they set their own climate of respect and responsibility.
o Use positive terms, like what to do, rather than what not to do.
o Support school-wide rules.
Reinforce the rules.
o Be a role model and follow the rules yourself. Show students respect and encourage them to be successful.
o Make expectations clear. Keep your requests simple, direct, and specific.
o Reward good behavior. Try to affirm good behavior four to five times for every one criticism of bad behavior.
o Use one-on-one feedback, and do not publicly reprimand.
o Help students correct their behaviors. Help them understand violating the rules results in consequences: I know you can stop
[negative action] and go back to [positive action]. If you choose to continue, then [consequence].
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Classroom Meetings
Classroom meetings provide a forum for students to talk about school-related issues beyond academics. These meetings can
help teachers stay informed about what is going on at school and help students feel safe and supported.
These meetings work best in classrooms where a culture of respect is already established. Classroom meetings are typically
short and held on a regular schedule. They can be held in a students main classroom, home room, or advisory period.
Establish ground rules. Kids should feel free to discuss issues without fear. Classroom meetings are not a time to discuss
individual conflicts or gossip about others. Reinforce existing classroom rules.
Start the conversation. Focus on specific topics, such as bullying or respectful behaviors. Meetings can identify and address
problems affecting the group as a whole. Stories should be broad and lead to solutions that build trust and respect between
students. Use open-ended questions or prompts such as:
o Share an example of a student who helped someone at school this week.
o Without names, share an example of someone who made another student feel bad.
o What did students nearby do? What did you do? Did you want to do something differentwhy or why not?
o If you could describe the perfect response to the situation what would it be? How hard or easy would it be to do? Why?
o How can adults help?
End the meeting with a reminder that it is everyones job to make school a positive place to learn. Encourage kids to talk to
teachers or other trusted adults if they see bullying or are worried about how someone is being treated.
Follow-up when necessary. Monitor student body language and reactions. If a topic seems to be affecting a student, follow-up
with him or her. Know what resources are available to support students affected by bullying.


Schools are a primary place where bullying can happen. Helping to establish a supportive
and safe school climate where all students are accepted and knowing how to respond when bullying happens are key to making
sure all students are able to learn and grow. There are many tools on specific for teachers, administrators, and
other school staff.
Learn what bullying is and what it is not. Many behaviors that look like bullying may be just as serious, but may require different
response strategies. You can also learn about what to look for aswarning signs that some of your students might be involved in
bullying and who might be at more risk for being involved. Know about special considerations for specific groups.
Establish a safe school climate. Often the first step to preventing bullying is making sure the students, teachers, and
administrators alike are educated about bullying. Tools like the School Bus Drivers Training and Classroom Teacher Training
can help. For kids, tools like these webisodes can help them learn about bullying.
Learn how to engage parents and youth in the building a positive school climate. Learning how to talk about bullyingwith youth is
a critical step.
Know about your obligations under your states anti-bullying law. Learn also about federal laws that require schools to address
harassment based on race, color, national origin, sex, and disabilities. Work to establish rules and policiesto help let the entire
school community know the expectations around bullying and procedures to report and investigate when something happens.
Assess bullying in your school and understand how your school compares to national rates of bullying.
Respond when bullying happens. Learn how to stop it on the spot, find out what happened, and support all students involved.
Avoid misdirections in bullying prevention and response strategies.
Utilize free Federal and Non-Federal Resources on bullying.


Facts About Bullying
Bullying is being mean to another kid over and over again. Bullying often includes:
Talking about hurting someone
Spreading rumors
Leaving kids out on purpose
Attacking someone by hitting them or yelling at them
Bullying does not always happen in person. Cyberbullying is a type of bullying that happens online or through text messages or
emails. It includes posting rumors on sites like Facebook, sharing embarrassing pictures or videos, and making fake profiles or
Kids Who are Bullied
Kids Who Bully Others
Kids Who See Bullying
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Kids Who are Bullied
Kids who are bullied can feel like they are:
Kids who are bullied have a hard time standing up for themselves. They think the kid who bullies them is more powerful than
they are. Bullying can make them:
Sad, lonely, or nervous
Feel sick
Have problems at school
Bully other kids
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Kids Who Bully Others
Kids bully others for many reasons, they may:
Want to copy their friends
Think bullying will help them fit in
Think they are better than the kid they are bullying
Bullying is never ok. Those who bully use power to hurt people. Power does not always mean bigger or stronger. Power can
also mean popular or smart. Or, the kid doing the bullying may know a secret about the kid being bullied.
Kids who bully can have other problems, too, even when they get older, like using alcohol and drugs, getting into fights, and
dropping out of school.
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Kids Who See Bullying
When kids see bullying, they may not know what to do. They may feel depressed or worried. They may be absent from school
because they dont feel safe. They may join in or stay silent so they wont get bullied themselves. They may stand up to the
bully. But the best thing to do is get an adult who will stop the bullying on the spot.

Stop Bullying on the Spot
When adults respond quickly and consistently to bullying behavior they send the message
that it is not acceptable. Research shows this can stop bullying behavior over time. There are simple steps adults can take to
stop bullying on the spot and keep kids safe.
Intervene immediately. It is ok to get another adult to help.
Separate the kids involved.
Make sure everyone is safe.
Meet any immediate medical or mental health needs.
Stay calm. Reassure the kids involved, including bystanders.
Model respectful behavior when you intervene.
Avoid these common mistakes:
Dont ignore it. Dont think kids can work it out without adult help.
Dont immediately try to sort out the facts.
Dont force other kids to say publicly what they saw.
Dont question the children involved in front of other kids.
Dont talk to the kids involved together, only separately.
Dont make the kids involved apologize or patch up relations on the spot.
Get police help or medical attention immediately if:
A weapon is involved.
There are threats of serious physical injury.
There are threats of hate-motivated violence, such as racism or homophobia.
There is serious bodily harm.
There is sexual abuse.
Anyone is accused of an illegal act, such as robbery or extortionusing force to get money, property, or services.
Next Steps
Support the kids involved

Such aggressive and hostile acts can occur as a single, severe incident or repeated
incidents, and may manifest in the following forms:

a. Physical Bullying includes pushing, shoving, kicking, poking, and/or
tripping another; assaulting or threating a physical assault; damaging a persons
work area or personal property; and/or damaging or destroying a persons work
b. Verbal/Written Bullying includes ridiculing, insulting or maligning a
person, either verbally or in writing; addressing abusive, threatening, derogatory
or offensive remarks to a person; and/or attempting to exploit an individuals
known intellectual or physical vulnerabilities.

c. Nonverbal Bullying includes directing threatening gestures toward a
person or invading personal space after being asked to move or step away.

d. Cyberbullying is defined as bullying an individual using any electronic
form, including, but not limited to, the Internet, interactive and digital
technologies, or mobile phones.