Supportive and connected school culture

Bullying is less likely in a culture that actively promotes positive, caring relationships among students and staff and between the school and home.

A supportive and connected school culture is respectful of diversity. It helps all members of the school community feel connected, welcomed and valued. These include Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students, students with disabilities and students with language backgrounds other than English. It also includes students from communities with low socio-economic status, students from rural and remote areas, refugees, those at risk of disengaging from school and students who can be disadvantaged by various forms of gender stereotyping.

A strong focus on building a positive school culture that both respects and values difference is an essential feature of effective anti-bullying strategies.

This positive school culture is a key factor in preventing bullying. Bullying is less likely in a climate that actively promotes positive, caring relationships among students and staff and between the school and home. It is also less likely when aggressive or disrespectful behaviour is not tolerated. For example, promoting positive and safe student upstander behaviour.

Positive wellbeing is more likely if schools develop a shared understanding of bullying and understand how to prevent and respond to bullying behaviour.

School staff can assist by developing inclusive whole-school practices, and by modelling and explicitly teaching pro-social values and expectations. Diversity can also be promoted and demonstrated by including student and parent voices in decision-making processes. Read more in the Bias-based bullying for educators fact sheet (PDF 212.69KB).

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