Just Keep Peace
The Bullying Prevention Program for the Paulding County School District is a multitiered approach which is designed from a proactive stance and provides a safe learning environment for all students. The overall framework of the program is based on the research-based Olweus Model. The name of this valuable program is Just Keep Peace.
The focus of the district program and all local school programs has at the center core the understanding that bullying is:
• a behavior that is repeated over and over by the same person
• intentional and causes distress, fear, and/or harm to the victim: takes into account how the victim perceives the bully’s intent
• power-based whereby the victim cannot defend himself/herself with the power imbalance being from physical strength, social status and/or emotional intimidation.
The district program believes in these best practices:
• The focus is on the social climate of the school so that the learning environment is positive and norms are developed regarding bullying.
• Data is used to assess bullying at each school as well as at the district level to estimate the nature and prevalence of bullying.
• Through training sessions and workshops, information is shared so that both staff and parents buy-in to support bullying prevention.
• A representative group is developed to support each school’s bullying prevention activities and program plan and to assess data results.
• Training for administrators, faculty, and staff and classroom guidance activities for students include the definition of bullying, the effects of bullying, how to respond when bullying is observed, how to support others to prevent bullying, and when/how to report bullying.
The Bullying Circle is taught at all grade levels, so that roles and reactions are understood. The circle has at the center the social and learning climate of the school with the students understanding the following roles:
2. Follower-may not be as ready to act
3. Disengaged Onlooker
4. Passive Defender
5. Possible Defender
6. Defender’s Supporter
7. Defender Who Helps the Victim
Bullying prevention takes active participation of administrators, counselors, teachers, other district personnel, parents and students along with the community. It takes all stakeholders to eliminate bullying and promote a positive learning environment. Every elementary, middle, and high school has a local school plan that has been written and submitted to the Director of Counseling Services. The categories utilized on each local school plan and the district plan are based on the Olweus Model.
In addition to bullying prevention, the district program addresses and supports the aftermath and consequences of a student who has bullied another student.