​​​Being ready to respond

Please note the National Safe Schools Framework (NSSF) has now been superseded by the Australian Student Wellbeing Framework (PDF, 2.7MB).

The NSSF  provided guidelines for schools to assist them to be ready to respond appropriately to bullying.

Establish processes for reporting and responding
Establish process for early identification and providing targeted support
Provide ongoing staff skilling and support

Establish processes for reporting and responding

The NSSF Element 3: Policy and procedures details two characteristics (3.2 and 3.3) related to the establishment of reporting and responding processes:

  • Clear procedures that enable staff, parents, carers and students to confidentially report any incidents or situations of child maltreatment, harassment, aggression, violence or bullying. (Characteristic 3.2)
  • Clearly communicated procedures for staff to follow when responding to incidents of student harm from child maltreatment, harassment, aggression, violence, bullying or misuse of technology. (Characteristic 3.3)

Establish processes for early identification and providing targeted support

The NSSF Element 8: Early intervention and targeted support outlines three characteristics (8.1, 8.2 and 8.3) related to processes for early identification and targeted support:

  • Effective processes for the early identification of students and families who need, or could benefit from additional support. (Characteristic 8.1)
  • Appropriate early intervention with students requiring support and/or skill development (e.g. students who exhibit anti-social behaviour or experience peer difficulties). (Characteristic 8.2)
  • Ongoing and follow-up support to individual students and families in times of need. (Characteristic 8.3)

'Early intervention' in this context refers to intervening early in any potential or emerging issues, rather than the more common meaning of intervening early in life.

Provide ongoing staff skilling and support

Training for teachers is a significant factor in teachers' ability to respond to bullying effectively.

Staff can discuss and learn about what bullying is, perspectives on bullying,​ ways to respond, and effective ways to strengthen prevention through everyday activities and through the curriculum.

Teachers' perception that they would be supported by their principal should they intervene is strongly related to their sense of self-efficacy in responding to students involved in bullying.

Read more about the types of professional learning that ensure schools are ready to respond to bullying.​​