ABC: Antibullying strategies for a more inclusive and safe school
Today, 18% of European students declare having been bulled (data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, OECD). OECD surveys about education (PISA program) reveal that bullying doesn’t necessarily mean physical aggression. Bullying can include physical and/or verbal attack too (derision 11% of cases), whereby for instance the minor is excluded by their peer group (7% of cases).
Nowadays, classrooms are increasingly heterogeneous (with pupils of different nationalities, SEN students, LGBT students, etc.). Such heterogeneity is frequently subject to bullying.
We have been a member of the EAN – European Anti-bullying Network since 2014. This European network of organizations aims to develop a common strategy to fight bullying in schools, increasing the level of security in the classroom. As part of the EAN network, we organized the first training of the ABC Antibullying Certification (24-28 September 2018). During the week, 60 students and teachers from 5 European countries met in Palermo to discuss bullying and develop a common methodology to combat the phenomenon. In total, 10 students from Palermo participated in the training. CESIE wishes to express its gratitude to the participating institutions namely Istituto Tecnico Industriale Vittorio Emanuele III, Educandato Statale Maria Adelaide, Liceo scientifico statale Benedetto Croce. The ABC training course will include two more meetings in Liverpool and Brussels. At the end of the training cycle, both teachers and students will receive the ABC anti-bullying certification attesting the acquisition of skills and good practices in counteracting bullying.
Strategic lines for a good school policy
Today, there is a huge difference in the way schools deal with: security, exclusion and violence. Sometimes, punitive didactic actions are used against the bully and for the protection of the victim. On the contrary, school policies should focus on the socio and cultural context to better analyze the spread of bullying and prevent it. During the ABC training in Palermo pupils and teachers had the opportunity to participate in workshops and to discuss about: · bullying and cyberbullying,· classroom security and conflict management,· leadership and school policies,· family-school collaborative relationships, · interculturality and cultural shock. The close collaboration between participating schools (in ABC project) will lead to the elaboration of a toolkit of methods and school practices for antibullying. In the end, each school will receive a quality label for antibullying so to improve school policies. School should ask themselves: “What are the safety standards put in place in my school?”. “Are they efficient or do they need to be reviewed?”.
About the project
ABC Anti-Bullying Certification is cofunded by Erasmus+ programme, Key Action 2, Strategic Partnership.
The project holds together 7 organisations:
- GALE – Stichting The Global Alliance for LGBT education (Coordinator, the Netherlands);
- Fondazione Hallgarten-Franchetti Centro Studi Villa Montesca (Italy);
- CESIE (Italy);
- Merseyside Expanding Horizons Limited (UK);
- Asociación Civica de Comunicación y Educación Sophia (Spain);
- The Smile of the Child (Greece);
- European Antibullying Network.