Making schools safer to prevent bullying and violence

Making schools safer to prevent bullying and violence
Making schools safer to prevent bullying and violence

Adelaide: Forty South Australian government schools will have the chance to share in $200,000 in funding to reduce bullying in schools.

The new funding initiative will provide grants to improve and promote protective physical environments in schools that reduce bullying.

The grants are being announced to mark the 11th year of the National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence (NDA), with a record 500 South Australian public, catholic and independent schools registered to take part this year.

Schools will be provided with a range of ideas to help transform school grounds to protective physical environments including:

Grouped seating to increase social interaction
Signage with positive messaging
Fluorescent vests for teachers on yard duty
Mirrors and sensor lighting to improve visibility and reduce blind spots; and
Landscaping to revamp the school yard and increase nature play.
Government schools have until 9 April to apply, with successful applications notified by 27 April.

The grants follow successful trials last year where schools in the Greater Gawler Partnership were provided funding for protective physical environments as part of the Friendly Schools program.

Trial schools used funding to implement grouped seating, planter boxes, lunchtime activities and equipment for social games. Schools reported these changes improved supervision of students and helped reduce unsafe behaviour.

“Children and young people deserve to undertake their studies and live their lives in a safe and nurturing environment, free from harassment, discrimination and bullying,” said Education Minister John Gardner.

“Bullying and violence in any form is completely unacceptable and we are continuing to take a strong stance on how schools address these issues.

“By providing funding for protective physical environments we hope to see more schools show their commitment to being safe and supportive learning environments for everyone.

“The National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence is a great opportunity for schools to stand united and make a strong public commitment that bullying is unacceptable in their school community.

“Bullying is a complex issue concerning the whole community, therefore effective bullying prevention and intervention requires a comprehensive whole of community approach.

“By schools participating in the NDA they are making a visible statement of their commitment to keeping children and young people safe from bullying.”

March 19, 2021