What is bullying?
Bullying is complex social issue. It resists simplistic ideas and solutions.
Knowing exactly what bullying is and understanding why it happens are critical to finding positive and evidence-informed solutions for everyone involved.
national definition of bullying for Australian schools (transcript) says:
Bullying is an
deliberate misuse of power in relationships through
repeated verbal, physical and/or social behaviour that intends to cause physical, social and/or psychological harm. It can involve an
individual or a group misusing their power, or perceived power, over one or more persons who feel unable to stop it from happening. Bullying can happen
in person or online, via various digital platforms and devices and it can be
obvious (overt) or
hidden (covert). Bullying behaviour is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time (for example, through sharing of digital records). Bullying of any form or for any reason can have
immediate, medium and long-term effects on those involved, including
bystanders. Single incidents and conflict or fights between equals, whether in person or online, are not defined as bullying.