Bullying is a pattern of behaviour rather than an isolated event. The most common form of bullying is verbal, which can lead to physical violence, if left unchecked (Pinheiro, Paulo Seìrgio, UN Study on Violence against Children, p. 121). Despite the efforts in national and European level, bullying appears to be an escalating challenge.
Despite the current efforts in national and European level, bullying appears to be an escalating challenge. According to Beat Bullying, recent studies have shown that:
- 70% of young people have experienced some form of bullying.
- One million children are bullied every week, inside and outside of school.
- Bullying is the biggest concern for children as they grow up.
- At least 20 children every year commit suicide because they are being – or have been – bullied.
The effects of school bullying on children’s stress levels, depressive tendencies, and self-concept are a barrier to their learning and development, as well as their active integration and participation in the school environment. There remains a need for a comprehensive ‘whole-school’ framework which explores the origins of bullying, its effects in and beyond the school-life of the child, and subsequent policies and procedures for its detection and eradication.
Thus, CARDET from Cyprus, as a partner to a consortium of seven organizations from Spain, Romania, Greece, Italy and Ireland, is launching the project “Combat Bullying: A Whole School Program” (ComBuS). This project aims to develop a whole school program that will empower students, teachers, school staff, school leaders, and parents to combat bullying and create healthy and safe school communities, using blended (face-to-face, online and mobile) methodologies, tools, and activities.
ComBuS will develop and implement activities and a comprehensive anti-bullying policy and programs targeting all stakeholders in schools and their local communities. The project will involve students, parents, teachers, school leaders, and staff in a participatory and empowering manner. Our project proposal envisions a blended approach to fighting bullying in face-to-face, online and mobile encounters including experiential workshops, online learning platforms, networking sites and mobile applications.
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