Leading schools that make a difference to bullying behaviour

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Journal of Educational Leadership, Policy and Practice

New Zealand Educational Administration and Leadership Society

Subject: Education

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ISSN: 1178-8690

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VOLUME 33 , ISSUE 2 (December 2018) > List of articles

Leading schools that make a difference to bullying behaviour

Sally Boyd / Elliot Lawes

Keywords :  Bullying behaviour; wellbeing; school systems; collaborative leadership; behaviour management

Citation Information : Journal of Educational Leadership, Policy and Practice. Volume 33, Issue 2, Pages 90-103, DOI: https://doi.org/10.21307/jelpp-2018-015

License : (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

Published Online: 02-April-2019

ARTICLE

ABSTRACT

Student bullying behaviour is a long-standing concern in New Zealand schools. International studies consistently show high rates of student reports of this behaviour. Research suggests that bullying behaviour is a socioecological and systemic phenomenon that is best addressed via systems-based and multifaceted approaches implemented using collaborative processes. Less is known about the most effective components of these multifaceted approaches. This article analyses New Zealand Wellbeing@School survey data to suggest ways forward for schools. A multilevel model was used to associate two student and two teacher measures from the same schools. The findings indicate that a mix of school-wide actions were associated with lower levels of student aggressive and bullying behaviour. Five sub-groups of actions are discussed in the light of recent New Zealand and international research. The article concludes with a call to locate anti-bullying approaches within a multifaceted and holistic framework which has the overall aim of promoting wellbeing and healthy social relationships. A holistic approach enables schools to foster protective factors such as belonging, and address risk factors that influence bullying behaviour, as well as a range of desirable education and health outcomes for young people.

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