Whole school Anti Bullying Policies are a requirement of most schools these days.
Most Anti Bullying Policies have the following Sections:
- A Belief Statement.
- Definitions of Bullying: verbal, physical, cyber, emotional.
- A List of Roles and Responsibilities.
- A Statement of Procedures
These four elements are vital for a robust bullying policy statement. Check out the guidance and samples below.
23 Examples of Anti Bullying Policy Statements
Here are some great statements from anti-bullying policies that could get your creative juices flowing:
1 – 5
- “Our policy is to teach students to deal with conflict in a positive way, and thereby build confident and capable leaders of tomorrow.”
- “We aim to help our students to identify bullying when it happens and to speak up to trusted adults about it after it occurs.”
- “We must give students the tools to combat bullying, including standing up for themselves, de-escalating situations, and seeking adult support.”
- “We pledge to give support to victims of bullying and give guidance to those who bully.”
- “Our aim is to create a School in which pupils grow up happily, free to pursue their own interests but with consideration for others, and free from fear.”
6 – 10
- “We reject all forms of bullying and will act swiftly and decisively if and when such cases emerge.”
- “Students have the right to expect that they will spend the school day free from the fear of bullying, harassment and intimidation. Bullying de-values isolates, frightens and affects an individual’s ability to achieve.”
- “We are committed to the establishment and maintenance of safe, caring, equitable, and inclusive school environments in order to maximize the learning potential of all students.”
- “As a school we wish to foster an environment in which individuality can flourish and be admired.”
- “We follow up all concerns expressed by children, staff or parents and make sure that we feed back the results of any investigation. Sometimes what is seen as bullying is simply unacceptable behaviour and we address this differently.”
11 – 15
- “We always encourage children to tell, making it clear that we take action when we know.”
- “Our approach to pastoral care actively encourages good behaviour and positive relationships and seeks to minimise the likelihood of bullying.”
- “In all our endeavours we are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of all members of the community.”
- “Bullying is never acceptable. It is not a normal part of growing up and does not build character.”
- “We seek to preserve the innocence of school days and also to nurture its pupils in their formative years.”
15 – 20
- “We take bullying very seriously as a school, across the whole community, and will not tolerate bullying in any form.”
- “We take a whole school approach by including roles for the whole school community.”“We are committed to every person and our ethos is positive and inclusive. It is acceptance rather than tolerance that underpins our way of life and all pupils are encouraged to appreciate and celebrate diversity.”
- “Bullying and harassment are often thought of separately, however, both involve a more powerful person or group oppressing a less powerful person or group, often on the grounds of ‘difference’.”
- “Bullying behaviour undermines and dilutes the quality of education and imposes psychological damage. Bullying must be positively and firmly addressed through a range of measures and strategies.”
- “A positive school ethos is based on the quality of relationships, both the professional relationships between teachers and the ways in which pupils and teachers treat each other.”
21 – 23
- “Children should be safe, healthy, achieving, nurtured, active, respected, responsible and included at school and in the wider community.”
- “We are committed to providing a safe and caring environment and culture which enables positive relationships to be formed amongst all students and staff and which encourages self-esteem, cooperation, personal growth and a positive attitude to learning and teaching.”
- “A whole school approach which places the values of respect and inclusion at the heart of its ethos will help to prevent bullying by creating an environment which fosters positive relationships, better behavior and high expectations for all children and young people.”
- Read Also: 162 Anti-Bullying Slogans & Quotes that Pop!
What to Include in an Anti Bullying Policy
The Belief Statement
The belief statement is usually a paragraph or two that tells the community the values and philosophy that underpin the whole policy.
Ideas of things you might want to include are:
- Affirmation that students are not born bullies.
- Stating that both victims and bullies need support and guidance to become happy health and kind adults.
- A statement that bullying can be prevented with a whole-school approach.
- A commitment to inclusion and respect for all people regardless of gender, race, sexuality or disability.
- Affirmation that all reports of bullying will be investigated and taken seriously.
The definitions section should define all types of bullying, including cyberbullying.
This section may also note examples of bullying vs. ‘rough play’ that can help guide educators on how to identify bullying.
The minimum standard is to define:
- Bullying: A general definition of bullying may include an outline of how it’s Repeated, Intentional, and has a Power Imbalance (The R.I.P definition).
- Verbal Bullying: You will need to outline a definition of verbal bullying. The use of words and language to cause emotional distress to another person, exclude them, or make them feel threatened by others.
- Physical Bullying: A separate definition should be provided for physical bullying. The repeated unwanted violation of another person’s body through hitting, touching, tripping, kicking, threats and other forms of physical harm. It may also extend to targeted theft.
- Indirect Bullying: You can introduce this type of bullying as well in the definitions section. Indirect bullying may include exclusion and spreading of rumors.
- Cyber Bullying: Nowadays, this is a must in the definitions section. Repeated bullying that occurs in an online space.
Roles and Responsibilities
The anti-bullying policy needs to state who is responsible for executing the policy. Usually, this includes creating a hierarchy for escalation of incidents identified at the school.
At a minimum, identify roles and responsibilities for the following groups of people:
- Students: Note the expectation that students hold themselves responsibly for upholding the school values, reporting bullying, and refraining from participating in any bullying at all.
- Staff: You may state that staff are expected to act as role models, take all accusations seriously and enforce policies. Keep an emphasis on training, setting high expectations and standards, and ensuring wellbeing. Staff may be required to create class rules that adhere to and support the whole-school policy.
- Parents: You may state that parents are expected to respect the school rules, support staff, communicate regularly, and encourage their children to speak up.
- Bystanders: You may want to create a responsibility for bystander intervention, such as standing up and reporting all sightings of bullying.
- Leadership: Consider assigning one or more people to form a bullying committee to keep the policy up-to-date. You may need to assign the Principal a role, too, such as acting as the person in charge of all escalated incidents.
Statements of Procedures
A statement of procedures should state what should be done to prevent and respond to bullying when it is reported.
- Compulsory Teaching Strategies: You may require that staff create a class rules list or follow a holistic approach to student wellness.
- Training for Staff and Students: Some policies require that the school hosts one day a year of anti-bullying workshops for staff and students. Others ensure that bullying is discussed at regular intervals at a classroom level throughout the year.
- Escalation of Incidents: You may like to set out rules on escalating incidents. For example, the teacher may be required to report any instances of cyberbullying to the principal directly. Or, you could list appropriate punishments for various different transgressions such as detentions, yard duties, or suspension from school
Real-Life Policy Samples
Here are 5 great school anti-bullying policies worth checking out:
- Canterbury Vale School’s Anti-Bullying Policy
- BuckMountain School’s Anti-Bullying Policy
- Rooty Hill High School’s Anti-Bullying Policy
- Dunamase College’s Anti-Bullying Policy
- Whitby High School’s Anti-Bullying Policy
Don’t forget that your local jurisdiction may also have its own special requirements for your whole-school bullying policy. Don’t forget to adhere to all the requirements set out!
The above examples should get you off to a good start on writing your own policy. If you’re a religious school or follow a particular educational philosophy, keep that ethos of your school in mind when writing your policy statement, too.
Dr. Chris Drew is the founder of the Helpful Professor. He holds a PhD in education and has published over 20 articles in scholarly journals. He is the former editor of the Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education. [Image Descriptor: Photo of Chris]