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Organization: Anti-Bullying Centre, Trinity College Dublin
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PROGRESS: Has your organization seen progress toward a culture of peace and nonviolence in your domain of action and in your constituency during the first half of the Decade?

As regards tackling bullying, violence and harassment in schools, our Centre has been very active during 2000 – 2004. As well as our continued efforts around pre- and in-service training of teachers, a successful whole-school programme for schools has been piloted in one county of the country. We have made attempts to implement this programme on a nationwide basis (see ‘Actions’ section below). Our Centre has been active in various research partnerships and networks (see relevant section below), and continues with its day-to-day function as a research and resource centre for all those interested within this field.

Research has been carried out and published in the area of violence and aggression in the workplace, and expertise brought to Ministerial level working parties as a result.  In addition workshops to train organisations in good working practice with regards to bullying and other negative behaviours is ongoing

OBSTACLES: What are the most important obstacles that have prevented progress?

In terms of the anti-bullying intervention programmes, particularly that implemented on a nationwide basis, the main obstacle to progress has been the lack of support forthcoming from the relevant central government body (the Department of Education and Science). Funding, too, is a perennial issue. In Norway, where similar institutions to our own have implemented similar programmes, and have both governmental support and adequate finance, great progress has been made.

In terms of adult situations, it has been notable that both the Employers and Workers Unions show a marked reluctance to back that which 99% of all adults surveyed (both affected and non) requested, namely the making of bullying/aggression in the workplace answerable to under the law.

ACTIONS: What actions have been undertaken by your organization to promote a culture of peace and nonviolence during the first half of the Decade?

I established the Anti-Bullying Research and Resource Centre in the Department of Education, Trinity College, Dublin in January, 1996. The Centre provides training, investigatory and advisory services to those concerned with the issues of schools-based and workplace bullying.

As far as work on schools issues goes between 2000 and 2005, we have done much to build upon a nationwide survey of bullying behaviour in schools I undertook in 1993 – 1997, in which it was found that 31.3 % of primary children and 15.6% of post-primary children reported being bullied, and that bullying behaviour existed in every county in the Republic of Ireland. The year 2000 saw the completion of the Donegal Primary Schools Anti-Bullying Programme, which utilised the following framework:
(i) the training of a network of professionals;
(ii) the production of a teachers’ resource pack, and staff training by the                                                                                                        
professional network;
(iii) the production of a parents’ information leaflet, and parents information
evenings;
(iv) a consultancy role for professional network members throughout the
duration of the programme.

The staff and pupils of forty-two schools were involved. A network of professionals (eleven teachers) was trained to co-ordinate the anti-bullying programme in the schools, their subsequent activities involving training teachers (a total of 197) and parents in three to five schools each. Significant reductions were found in pupils’ reports of having been victimised after the implementation of the programme (19.6 per cent fewer were victimised within the last school term; 43.0 per cent fewer were victimised within the last five school days; 50.0 per cent fewer were frequently victimised within the last school term). Significant reductions were also found in pupils’ reports of having bullied others after the implementation of the programme (17.3 per cent fewer had taken part in bullying others within the last school term; 51.8 per cent fewer had taken part in bullying others within the last five school days; 69.2 per cent fewer had frequently bullied others within the last school term).

It was decided to implement the same model that had been successfully piloted in one region of the country (Donegal) on a nationwide basis. In the current Nationwide Intervention Programme, where possible, each of the twenty full-time Education Centre regions in Ireland has a primary and post-primary representative within the professional network. Trinity College Dublin has developed a Postgraduate Diploma in Education (Aggression Studies), thus providing a means of accreditation for the professionals who have successfully completed the training.

Between October 2003 and March 2004, data packages and training materials were developed, and the professional network was trained between April and October 2004. During the past school year (September 2004 – June 2005, the intervention programme has been implemented by the professional network, and its success is to be evaluated over autumn / winter 2005 / 2006. Some of the materials that were prepared for the training of the professional network were re-edited, and published as a training manual by the UK publisher, Paul Chapman Publishing, entitled ‘Dealing with Bullying in Schools: A Training Manual for Teachers, Parents and Other Professionals’. Our chief problem is that we have not received even the minimal level of expected support from our government’s Department of Education and Science, and the implementation of the programme has thereby been quite considerably compromised.

ADVICE: What advice would you like to give to the Secretary-General and the General Assembly to promote a culture of peace and nonviolence during the second half of the Decade?


PARTNERSHIPS: What partnerships and networks does your organization participate in, thus strengthening the global movement for a culture of peace?

Schools: From 1998 – 2002, the EU implemented a series of ‘CONNECT’ initiatives, six of which were designed to research the routes the reduction of violent behaviour in schools. I was a partner in three of these: the UK Initiative (‘Tackling Violence in Schools on a European wide basis’); the Portugal Initiative (‘Developing a new culture in Europe of Negotiation and Consensus in the face of violence in the school, the family and the community’); the Italy Initiative (‘Creating a European Partnership to pursue the investigation and prevention of violence in schools’), and contributed to a fourth – the Finland Initiative (‘Comprehensive Mental Health Promotion Approach’). I am presently a partner within the VISTA (‘Violence in Schools Training and Action’) project, a Comenius 2.1 initiative which developed from the CONNECT projects, with colleagues in Belgium, Bulgaria, Norway, Spain and the United Kingdom.

PLANS: What new engagements are planned by your organization to promote a culture of peace and nonviolence in the second half of the Decade (2005-2010)?

To be entered

Postal address of organization

Anti-Bullying Centre, TCD
Room 3133,
Education Department
Arts Building
Trinity College Dublin

E-mail address of organization

lmcguire@tcd.ie
momoore@tcd.ie

Website address of organization

www.abc.tcd.ie

Highest priority action domain of a culture of peace

Education for a culture of peace

Second priority action domain of a culture of peace

Understanding, tolerance, solidarity

Highest priority country of action (or international)

Ireland

Second priority country of action (or international)

Europe
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Organization: Anti-Bullying Centre, Trinity College Dublin

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