Why is it important to tackle school aggression systemically?
The issue of violence and aggression in the school environment has been much discussed in recent years, as it is a serious problem in many schools around the world. Aggression and bullying is present at all levels of education, from primary to higher education, and has become a widespread problem over the years. A 2009/2010 survey by the WHO Regional Office for Europe revealed that 13% of 11-year-olds had been bullied at school at least twice in the previous two months; for 13-year-olds, the rate was 12%.
School aggression has a very detrimental impact on the physical, mental and social well-being of young people, putting many children at risk of becoming juvenile offenders and, as a consequence, at risk of being sent to a reform school. A high percentage of school children experience aggressive behaviour and abuse throughout their daily lives, leaving a lasting mark on their development and community life.
What is the Partnership Against School Aggression model programme?
In 2015, NGOs from three countries, Hungary, Bulgaria and Malta, joined forces to launch a pilot project focusing on school conflict, aggression and bullying. The main aim was to look for new ways to tackle aggression and bullying, help children to deal with their feelings and conflicts, create a non-violent culture and support schools and other communities by offering them modern conflict and aggression management methods. Dealing with this problem is not an easy task. It is necessary to identify the causes of its occurrence and to build a comprehensive model that addresses all stakeholders at all levels of the organisation. The programme outlined involves all relevant stakeholders, which is a significant aspect of the intervention.
The model programme developed a whole-school approach, which provides an accessible collection of methods and resources for all involved: students, parents, teachers and non-teaching staff, and ultimately for the whole community. The programme will include a recommended course of implementation that can be adapted to the specific context and to the appropriate stages of the process. One of our main goals is to minimise the gap between "paper - practice" between the school's objectives and the steps to achieve them. It also encourages us to incorporate new practices into formal school policies.
What is the added value of the model programme?
- Credible results for a new school policy;
- A positive change in the school climate;
- Teachers better trained in awareness-raising and social-emotional learning;
- Proper communication of the programme to stakeholders;
- It strengthens the school by mobilising external and internal resources;
- It helps teachers and non-teaching staff to better understand the root of the problem and its consequences;
- It helps to assess and find resources to deal with conflict, aggression and abuse. There are ways to determine how often and where it occurs, how students and adults intervene, and whether the way in which they intervene is working;
- It will help you find good practices for preventing abuse and effective ways of dealing with abuse that has occurred;
- Improve school rules to reduce bullying incidents;
- Creating a safe and welcoming school environment.The programme is part of the European Union's Erasmus+ programme was financed by.