Why Conduct a Bully Survey?
Each school needs specific information about itself to tailor a bully prevention/intervention program that addresses its problems and provides the information necessary to design solutions. (See the true story at the bottom of this list for an excellent example.)A Bully Survey data-driven plan has a number of excellent advantages for its users:
- The Bully Survey has separate versions for elementary students, secondary students, school staff, and parents. Each member of the school community participates in the development and implementation of its bully prevention/intervention plan. Each member has an "investment" in the success of the plan.
- The bully prevention/intervention plan is cost-effective. The Bully Survey requires no "outside" assistance. The information needed for school staff to be fully informed is provided by Bully Survey results. Staff can and should make the connections between the data and actions needed to improve the situation.
- Bully Survey data is provided with a feedback process that allows for isolating, comparing, and or studying different aspects of the school program. The default feedback gives all data, but administrators can define a population for isolated studied (ie., grade, gender, locations where bullying occurs, types of bullying, etc.).
- A Bully Survey school is empowered to respond quickly to any unexpected happenings. This is especially true when replying to charges that are not evidenced-based.
- The emphasis of a Bully Survey plan is on anti-bullying strategies that lead directly to higher levels of academic achievement. All members of the school community subscribe to that goal.
- Giving the Bully Surveys annually provides a set of data that encourages evaluation. Users learn to adjust to new data in a process aimed at continuous improvement.
- A data-driven approach creates a positive public image. Schools that administer surveys are commended for taking an open and evidence-based approach. Bully Survey data can be shared with the community at the administrator's discretion.
- Conducting a Bully Survey with parents increases their involvement in all school activities. The buy-in effect of this survey can strengthen all aspects of the school program.
A school surveyed its students each year. One year bullying took place in the hallways 30% of the time, but the next year that percent increased to 70%. The reason for that dramatic difference was not readily apparent, but a member of the faculty recalled that during that year a minute of time was added to the changing periods between classes. That seemingly unrelated happening, caused the school to return to the changing time. The next year bullying in the hallways happened only 25% of the time. Problem solved!This story also shows that problems in a school may be best handled within that school. For that school, the Bully Survey data had great significance for its faculty members because they were thoroughly familiar with the school itself. Each school situation is different. A successful anti-bullying strategy for a particular school needs to be built upon data collected from that school. There are no one-size-fits-all anti-bullying strategies. The Bully survey emphasizes each school's situation as a starting point for any bully prevention/intervention program.