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February 26, 2008. Bullying Prevention: What’s Working In Iowa Schools. Facilitated by: Penny Bisignano, IDE Dawn Jaeger, AEA 267 Kathy Lockard, AEA 14 Jaymie Randel, AEA 267 Karolyn Zeller, AEA 11. Featuring….

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bullying prevention what s working in iowa schools

February 26, 2008

Bullying Prevention:What’s Working In Iowa Schools

Facilitated by:

Penny Bisignano, IDE

Dawn Jaeger, AEA 267

Kathy Lockard, AEA 14

Jaymie Randel, AEA 267

Karolyn Zeller, AEA 11


Sarah Pinion, Superintendent, Brian Pottebaum, Principal, Toni Powell, Social Worker Jesup Schools

Barb VanErsvelde, Music, Davis Elementary, Grinnell

Barb Sims, Principal, Red Oak Middle School, Red Oak

Mike Shipley, Prevention Specialist, Linn-Mar Schools

Ellen Reilly, Davenport Schools

Barb Herter, Lourdes Elementary, Bettendorf

Dave Paulek, and Derek Philips, Van Buren Schools


The Law

Iowa is committed to providing all students with a safe and civil school environment in which all members of the school community are treated with dignity and respect.

big ideas
Getting started with needs assessment and administrator support

Coordinating committee

Train all staff

Kick-off event for students

Family and community involvement

Big Ideas
big ideas1
Establish and enforce school rules

Focus classroom time on bullying prevention

Increase adult supervision

Intervene consistently and appropriately (including follow-up)

Continue efforts over time

Big Ideas
program goal is to

Program goal is to…

Change the norms around bullying behavior and to restructure the school setting itself so that bullying is less likely to occur or be rewarded.

Taken from Olweus Bullying Prevention Program Schoolwide Guide


Bullying Defined

“A student is being bullied when he or she is exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more students. Bullying implies an imbalance in power or strength. The student who is bullied has difficulty defending himself/herself.”

Dan Olweus (1993)


Key Questions

Getting started

  • What lead to your school’s decision to implement a bullying prevention program?
  • What have you, as an administrator, done to support the implementation of your bullying prevention program?
  • What else do you think is important for other administrators to know about your efforts?

Getting started… Summary

  • Conduct a needs assessment using multiple data sources.
  • Gain active administrator involvement and staff agreement.
  • Select a comprehensive school-wide program or a set of core components that are backed by research.
  • Allow adequate time for committee planning and staff training.
key questions

Establish and enforce school rules

Key Questions
  • How have you integrated the law into your school policy and then used that policy to establish school-wide expectations?
  • What was your process to adopt, promote, and enforce your expectations/rules?
  • Are school rules against bullying known and visible to all students and staff?
  • Do you have a consistent “consequence” system - both positive and negative?

Establish and enforce school rules… Summary

  • Make sure school policies are consistent between state law, board policy, student handbook, school-wide expectations, and enforcement/consequences.
  • Students and staff should be able to state the rules against bullying. Rules should be visible as you walk through the building.
  • Expectations/rules should be actively promoted through instructional activities. Involve students in developing and promoting the rules as much as possible.

Key Questions

Increase adult supervision

  • How did you identify areas that need increased adult supervision? Did you use the Olweus BVQ or other survey data?
  • Where are your “hot spots”?
  • Did you write a supervision plan based on your findings? How did you creatively free staff to cover these hot spots?
  • How is it working? Have your hot spots changed?

Increase adult supervision… Summary

  • Consider using student surveys as a data source for supervision planning.
  • Think creatively to cover hot spots.
  • Consider schedule or structural changes (i.e., dismissal patterns, “traffic flow” changes, etc.).

Key Questions

Coordinating Group

  • Who are the members of your group? How were they selected? What roles do the members have?
  • Does the membership change over time?
  • How often does the group meet?
  • Do you have a specific agenda for committee meetings? What issues are discussed?
  • How do you convey important information to other members of your school community?

Coordinating group… Summary

  • Recommended members include: Administrator, teacher from each grade level, school counselor, school social worker or psychologist, non-teaching staff member, parent, community member, nurse students (middle school).
  • Meetings are usually held twice monthly for the first 3 months, then monthly.
  • Consider the sample agenda from the Olweus School Wide Guide.
  • Don’t forget to look at data!

Train all staff

Key Questions

  • What training did your core committee receive?
  • What training did your teaching staff receive? Who provided the training? What was the content?
  • What training did non-teaching staff receive?
  • How are new staff trained?

Train all staff… Summary

  • Consider following the Iowa Professional Development Model.
  • Commit a minimum of one-half to one day of training for all staff.
  • See “Timeline for Training” handout.

Family and Community

Key Questions

  • Why is involving families and community members important?
  • How have community members or organizations supported your efforts?

Family and Community… Summary

  • Bullying doesn’t stop at the school doors. Convey a consistent anti-bullying message at home and in the community.
  • Community organizations can offer financial, material, volunteer, and public relations support.
  • Formal and informal community leaders can provide momentum for the program.

Kick-off events

Key Questions

  • What is a kick-off event?
  • How did it contribute to the success or momentum of the program?
  • What did you do for a kick-off event?

Kick-off events… Summary

  • A special event is a good way to introduce the bullying prevention program to all of your students at one time. Schools approach the event in many different ways and with various themes.
  • This event will introduce your school’s anti-bullying rules and explain how bullying will be addressed throughout the school year.

Intervene Consistently

Key Questions

  • How do your teachers and school staff intervene when they see bullying occur?
  • How do they report incidents for follow-up?
  • Do all staff have the information and skills to intervene appropriately?
  • How were they trained?

Intervene Consistently… Summary

  • An “on-the-spot” intervention should include stopping the bullying, supporting the student who was bullied, and responding to the student(s) who bullied, supported the bullying, or were bystanders (see attached materials).
  • Train all staff to intervene effectively and efficiently when they see bullying.
  • Develop a consistent procedure for reporting incidents that may require follow-up and/or documentation

Key Questions

Follow-up intervention

  • Who is responsible for follow-up when incidents or situations are reported?
  • How do you respond to parent concerns and reports? How do you inform parents when incidents have occurred ?
  • What do you say to students who have bullied to hold them accountable? How do you work towards change insight, or empathy? How do you assign consequences?
  • How do you protect students who have been targeted?

Follow-up intervention… Summary

  • Develop consistent procedures and clear definitions for how incidents are addressed and documented. Consider the use of a consequence matrix (see Stan Davis materials).
  • Consider counseling and/or skill-building for students who have bullied others.
  • Make sure you address the safety needs of students who have been bullied.
  • Do not use conflict-resolution in bullying situations.

Focus classroom time

Key Questions

  • What do class meetings look like and sound like?
  • What topics are covered during initial class meetings?
  • Where are you making connections across the curriculum?
  • What do students have to say about class meetings?

Focus classroom time… Summary

  • Class meetings are a key program component and should be held regularly.
  • The teacher’s role is more of a facilitator than a teacher. Class meetings are an opportunity for students to share their feelings and opinions, and to suggest solutions as they learn to follow the rules and handle bullying situations appropriately.
  • Although class meetings will initially focus on bullying, the meetings should be viewed as a forum to discuss any issues that come up at school, to build cohesiveness and community, and to recognize achievements of the class as a whole.
why is it important to address bullying in schools
Why is it important to address bullying in schools?
  • Students and their futures
  • A healthy student climate
  • The well-being of the larger community
  • To improve student achievement
  • Risk management for schools

Adapted from The Olweus Bullying Prevention Group 2007

linn mar community school district
Linn-Mar Community School District

Olweus Bullying Prevention Program

Excelsior / Oak Ridge Middle School Statistics

School years

(pre) 2004-2005, (yr. 1) 2005-2006, (yr. 2) 2006-2007

Mike Shipley

At-risk Intervention Specialist, Certified Olweus Trainer

number of students taking the bvq survey
Number of students taking the BVQ survey

Excelsior Middle School

2005: 770

2006: 788

2007: 766

Oak Ridge Middle School

2005: 342

2006: 360

2007: 400


#4: How often have you been bullied?

Number that answered “2-3 times” or more in past two months

Number of students

CHRONICALLY BULLIED: U.S. schools average about 15-17% (of student body) for students bullied 2-3 times or more. Olweus program promotes schools should see 30-50% reduction in 3-7 years.

Excelsior (2005): 132 (17.1%) of students

Excelsior (2007): 79 (10.3%) of students = 40.1% reduction

Oak Ridge (2005): 72 (21.0%) of students

Oak Ridge (2007): 46 (11.5%) of students = 36.1% reduction

#18: Where have you been bullied? Computational basis: those bullied “once or twice” or more according to question 4

Excelsior Middle School 2005 2006 2007

Hallways / Stairwells 67.5% (1) 62.1% (1) 54.1% (1)

Classroom (teacher absent) 54.3% (2) 42.5% (2) 43.4% (2)

Lunch room 47.7% (3) 38.5% (5) 34.8% (5)

Classroom (teacher present) 44.4% (4) 39.6% (3) 37.1% (4)

School bus 36.2% (5) 38.8% (4) 39.8% (3)

Playground / Athletic field 34.0% (6) 19.5% (8) 19.3% (8)

Gym class / locker room 31.9% (7) 24.3% (7) 21.2% (7)

On the way to and from school 24.8% (8) 27.4% (6) 25.2% (6)

Somewhere else in school 23.2% (9) 13.7% (9) 17.5% (9)

School bus stop 11.4% (10) 12.8% (10) 7.6% (10)

In the bathroom 7.3% (11) 6.3% (11) 5.3% (11)

#18: Where have you been bullied? Computational basis: those bullied “once or twice” or more according to question 4

Oak Ridge Middle School 2005 2006 2007

Hallways / Stairwells 70.7% (1) 63.4% (1) 58.0% (1)

Lunch room 54.9% (2) 50.8% (2) 56.3% (2)

School bus 51.3% (3) 44.1% (3) 48.0% (3)

Classroom (teacher absent) 48.8% (4) 38.3% (5) 42.4% (4)

Classroom (teacher present) 44.4% (5) 35.8% (6) 37.8% (5)

Gym class / locker room 35.6% (6) 33.3% (8) 32.0% (7)

On the way to and from school 33.1% (7) 33.9% (7) 34.9% (6)

Playground / athletic field 27.1% (8) 39.8% (4) 21.1% (8)

Somewhere else in school 21.3% (9) 21.9% (9) 11.3% (9)

In the bathroom 14.6% (10) 11.3% (10) 6.5% (10)

School bus stop 10.9% (11) 10.3% (11) 5.6% (11)


#20: How often do teachers or other adults try and stop bullying when they see it?

Number that answered “often” or “almost always”

Number of students


Excelsior (2005): 377 students

Excelsior (2007): 365 students = 3.1% reduction

Oak Ridge (2005): 149 students

Oak Ridge (2007): 152 students = 2.0% increase


#21: How often do other students try and stop bullying when they see it?

Number that answered “often” or “almost always”

Number of students

Bystander Responses, Climate

Excelsior (2005): 87 students

Excelsior (2007): 93 students = 6.8% increase

Oak Ridge (2005): 26 students

Oak Ridge (2007): 43 students = 65.3% increase


#38: How often are you afraid of being bullied by other students at school?

Number of students that answered “fairly often”, “often” or “very often”

Number of students


Excelsior (2005): 89 students

Excelsior (2007): 69 students = 22.4% reduction

Oak Ridge (2005): 54 students

Oak Ridge (2007): 41 students = 24.0% reduction

consider readiness and commitment
ConsiderReadiness and Commitment
  • Do you have staff agreement?
  • Do you have administrator commitment?
  • Will you provide the time to implement with fidelity?
  • Will you provide the needed resources?
  • Are you willing to collect needs assessment data and ongoing data for decision-making?
  • Are you willing to implement over time, not just a one-year commitment?
next steps
Next steps
  • Anti-Bullying ICN Session III- Tuesday May 6, 2-4 p.m.

Your needs….let us know by responding to this session at IPTV

For further information and questions

Penny Bisignano, Olweus State Contact