Bullying at school is a cause of considerable concern to young people and their families. The growth of cyber-bullying has caused further worry and unease. The reason for the growing concern is the impact which cyber-bullying has been shown to have on the mental and physical well-being of young people. The strong connection between ‘traditional’ and cyber-bullying which has the majority of young people involved in both forms means that strategies need to be implemented which are effective with the traditional forms of bullying as well as providing clear and consistent guidelines for healthy cyber-behaviour. The Whole School Community Approach has been identified as having the potential to reduce the prevalence of bullying at school. This article, therefore, raises the need to have Guidance Counsellors central to the development and delivery of the Whole School Community Approach which has been endorsed by the Department of Education and Skills’ 2013 Action Plan on Bullying. The Whole School Community Approach is collaborative and systematic and can embrace both ‘traditional’ and cyber-bullying. Its prevention and intervention strategies involve all school staff, parents, young people and the wider community.
Further Recommended Reading
Countering Bully/Victim Problems in Schools: Supporting the Guidance Counsellor by Conor Mc Guckin and Lucie Corcoran should be read in conjunction with this article. It can be found here in "Delivering the guidance programme" section.