Countering Bully/Victim Problems in Schools: Supporting the Guidance Counsellor
The purpose of the current chapter is to equip Guidance Counsellors with the requisite classic and contemporary knowledge to understand and plan to address the many manifestations of bully/victim problems encountered among students and the wider school community (e.g., Mc Guckin & Lewis, 2003). Whilst attention is directed towards an exploration of what we currently know about the nature, incidence, correlates, and management of traditional ‘f2f’ (face-to-face) bullying (Mc Guckin, Cummins, & Lewis, 2010), the chapter also explores a more immediate and contemporary form of bullying, one that demonstrates an overlap with the experience of being involved in f2f forms of bully/victim problems – cyberbullying (Juvonen & Gross, 2008). Drawing upon the research outcomes of recent and ongoing EU commissioned research projects (e.g., COST Action IS0801, CyberTraining, CyberTraining 4 Parents), the chapter dispels some of the myths about cyberbullying and provides timely resources and reference materials for immediate use by Guidance Counsellors in their work with students, parents, and other professionals. Whilst much attention is justifiably directed towards f2f and cyberbullying, the chapter also presents a timely reminder to be vigilant against other forms of bully/victim problems, such as, disablist bullying (Purdy & Mc Guckin, 2011) and alterophobia (Minton, 2012). Finally, due consideration is given to the policy and legal context of such issues, with directions towards appropriate additional resources in order to facilitate readers’ engagement with the current knowledge regarding bully/victim problems. The aspiration is to work towards more harmonious educational environments, ones that see students reach their full potential with protection from harm and deleterious health effects.
Further Recommended Reading
The Four Pillars of Action: The Role of Guidance Counsellors in developing and implementing the Whole School Community Approach in Tackling Bullying, both Traditional and Cyber by Mona O'Moore should be read in conjunction with this article. It can be found here in "Delivering the guidance programme" section.