The school counseling department delivered quality core curriculum to our students based on Mindsets and Behaviors directly linked to our program’s vision, mission and every goal. For the purpose of our school counseling core curriculum lesson plans and results report we are presenting some of the lessons based on our goal of students reporting feeling of safety from bullying. We targeted that heavily because we were disturbed that only 77% of our students felt safe from bullying.
While analyzing our process data for the three lessons we note that we did meet our goals in a decrease of informal referrals and an increase is students reporting feelings of safety from bullying. We were realistic with our expectations as the data showed that we decreased informal referrals by 12% (our goal was 10%) and we increased students’ feelings of safety from bullying from 77% to 85%. However, we were disappointed that we didn’t make a greater impact. When we drilled down our perception data we recognize the need for greater character development within our school population. Within the Bystander Power and Recognize, Report, and Refuse lessons we had students who still reported difficulty in feeling empowered against bullying. We regret not having a greater emphasis on self-concept and self-worth alongside the bullying lessons. This year the counselor advisory council wanted to focus our goals on the school feeling safe, next year we plan on taking a more holistic approach where we also focus on individual empowerment.
Recognizing Bullying was provided to 125 third grade students. This was the first time using the Second Step Bullying Prevention Unit. Our perception data came from a pre and post-test that we created based on the learning objectives. Coming into the lesson the students had prior knowledge to the word “bullying” based on school wide interventions and teacher education. However, administration, teachers and counselors have noticed that when students are being redirected for “bullying behaviors” that the behaviors were did not fit the definition of bullying. Although we had anecdotal evidence that students did not know the definition, we did not have tangible proof until this lesson. Our perception data showed a clear trend in students not having knowledge of the specific definition of bullying. There were 62% of students who reported that they can identify bullying behaviors in the pre-test, however only 54% knew what one-sided meant, and 30% felt as though bullying had to happen more than once. This discrepancy showed us that students didn’t know the true definition of bullying. After the lesson we had an increase of knowledge in every question. We had 100% of students with the ability to identify bullying behaviors, 92% with an understanding of one-sided behaviors, 100% of students feeling like they should report bullying, and 90% of students realizing that bullying behaviors are repeated.
Bystander Power was delivered to 123 fourth grade students. This lesson was part of the Second Step Bullying Unit. Our perception data came from a pre and post-test that was self-created based on the learning objectives. Analyzing the data was confusing to us because we went into it thinking that more of our students had retained the Olweus lessons from the previous years. The student’s pre-test showed that they had limited knowledge on what exactly a bystander was by only 58% identifying they knew what one was. The most concerning answer was the last one, only 20% of students felt as though they feel like they could stop bullying, and even after the lesson only 64% answered in the affirmative. We would have like that answer to be higher, but also understand that our students have been taught to seek help from a trusted adult. In the future we will rewrite that question to take away the specificity by asking students if they feel like they could “help stop bullying”. Based on the post-test answers the lesson was definitely a success with at least 20% of students gaining knowledge of each question.
Recognize, Report, Refuse was a Second Step lesson given to 124 5th grade students. The lesson proved to be successful based on the perception data. This lesson had the best feedback from the students who enjoyed the role play of refusing the bullying. Based on the lack of confidence throughout all grade levels in advocating for themselves regarding reporting and refusing we definitely plan on adding more role play practice.