Wodonga and Hume schools stand up against bullying

​Students are learning powerful messages about bullying through school-wide bullying prevention activities.

On the National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence, schools are teaching students about how to respond to bullying as well as encouraging positive student relationships.

Call it out

Wodonga Primary School produced a school Anti-Bullying Guide to promote bullying prevention to their school community, and regularly participate in the National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence.

Wodonga Primary School
Wodonga Primary School comes together for the National Day of Action against Bullying

The Anti-Bullying guide builds students' understanding around what bullying might look like, strategies to avoid or limit bullying, and a clear process to follow when they are a target of bullying.

Wodonga Primary School Assistant Principal Jye Williams says this guide has been great in making the school's processes very transparent to students, teachers, parents and wider community. 'There is a great benefit to taking whole school action, for all students to be using the same language,' Jye says.

The school also teaches the High Five Strategies - Ignore, Talk Friendly, Walk Away, Speak Firmly, Report.

'Walking away is now recognised as a powerful strategy rather than something ridiculously impossible that adults tell students to do,' Jye says.

On the last National Day of Action, the school led the students through videos, worksheets and learning to sing a song together.

Year Six student Eve says the worksheets helped her understand how she can help. 'I thought if I saw someone being bullied, that's what I could do,' Eve says.

Year Five student Nathan says the school has been doing bullying prevention activities every year. 'I thought it was good, because every year we do it the bullying gets a little less,' Nathan says.

The anti-bullying posters resonated with Year Four student James.

'If I ever see someone being bullied, I could walk up and say "stop that, it's not okay,"' James says.

Inclusion and diversity helping student relationships

At Hume Central Secondary School, the focus is on inclusion and diversity. Leading teacher Naomi Maes says the school uses the Resilience, Rights and Respectful Relationships teaching materials which includes Healthy Relationships in their PE and Pastoral Care programs. The Student Leadership Team also runs multicultural activities during the year.

'Because our school is highly culturally diverse, we have found this to be a really effective way of engaging student inclusion through the celebration of their own culture,' Naomi says.

Naomi says the National Day of Action is in the same week as Harmony Day, so the school brings students together through bullying prevention activities while celebrating cultural diversity. She says that these activities have a positive impact on their school's culture. 'Our focus on these is very much on inclusivity, and recognising that others are often just like you,' Naomi says.​

Hume Central Secondary School student Julie says the NDA volleyball competition was particularly popular. Although sometimes the students clashed over rules, Julie says that student leaders were there to help and ensure all the students got along.

'We need to do more activities about it,' she says. '[The National Day of Action] is a fun day for that.'

National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence

This year's National Day of Action Against Bullying and Violence will be on Friday 15 March. The theme is 'Bullying. No Way! Take action every day', and invites schools to turn their ideas into action. Find out how your school community can get involved at National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence.

We're helping schools address bullying by supporting them in building a culture of respect and understanding, and empowering students to call out bullying when they see it. See what we're doing at the Victorian Anti Bullying and Mental Health Initiative.