​​​​Involving the community

Bullying is an issue that exists throughout communities. It is not just an issue for schools. Workable and lasting solutions to bullying therefore involve the whole community.

Content on this pages is based directly on the Australian Student Wellbeing Framework (PDF, 2.7MB).

Inclusion

Inclusion is one of the five elements of the Australian Student Wellbeing Framework (PDF, 2.7MB).  The principle being that 'all members of the school community are active participants in building a welcoming school culture that values diversity, and fosters positive, respectful relationships'.

Effective practices:

  • Recognise and value the role and contribution of staff, students and families in building and sustaining school connectedness
  • Respect the diversity of the school community and implement proactive strategies in order to build a cohesive and culturally safe school
  • Teach, model and promote values and behaviour in order to create and maintain supportive and safe learning environments
  • Foster and maintain positive, caring and respectful student–peer, student–teacher, teacher–parent and teacher–teacher relationships
  • Engage in professional learning to build capacity for enhancing the social, emotional and learning outcomes of all students and in order to promote staff wellbeing.

Partnerships

The Partnerships key element of the Australian Student Wellbeing Framework also provides effective practices for the collaborating with the community to support student learning, safety and wellbeing, with the principle being that ‘families and communities collaborate as partners to support student learning, safety and wellbeing’.

Effective practices:

  • Proactively build collaborative relationships with families and communities to create a shared understanding of how to support student learning, safety and wellbeing
  • Develop strategies to sustain culturally respectful partnerships with families and communities that are welcoming and inclusive
  • Build partnerships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and community organisations to ensure a culturally safe environment and a two-way reciprocal exchange of knowledge on wellbeing issues
  • Build links with community organisations, services and agencies to assist schools in the early identification of need and to collaboratively plan targeted support for all students and families, including those from vulnerable groups
  • Regularly monitor and review school capacity to respond to specific instances of student and family need to protect their safety and wellbeing within the context of the school's urban, regional, rural or remote location.

Community groups

Specific groups in the school community may have distinctive needs. It is important to work collaboratively with relevant groups and representatives to identify and address factors that contribute to a safe and supportive learning environment. This may include establishing links with external community organisations to ensure alternative strategies are implemented to meet the distinctive needs of a diverse school community as required. 

Support for families in need

In some instances, schools may need to advise families about additional support for students and their families. This may include:

  • counselling (this may be either school based or through a community agency)
  • the use of inclusion strategies to help build students' positive relationships with peers and teacher(s)
  • helping families connect with to community agencies and organisations
  • reviewing ways the school can provide continuing support after intervention
  • continuing to monitor situations and students to ensure bullying/cyberbullying has not become covert after appearing to be resolved

Seek feedback from student and their families on the best way to support them.