Authors: Agnieszka Milczarek and Joanna Węgrzynowska


  The programme has been performed as a contract with the following units:
The Social Care and Prophylactics Department of the National Education Ministry (in the provinces: Dolnośląskie, Wielkopolskie i Podlaskie), Warszawa-Włochy Community Council, Warszawa-Ursynów District Council, Warszawa-Wawer Community Council.

The "Programme of Violence Prevention - STOP" is the response of the Association "Stand by the Child" to the increasing level of aggression and violence among children and teenagers.

Employing the experiences of our own work at schools as well as research findings and the achievements of many European countries and the USA, we have designed a system of violence prevention at school which helps teachers and parents cope with the problem of violence and aggression independently.

Goals of the program:    

For pupils:  
  • reduction of anti-social attitudes among children;
  • teaching children how to protect themselves against physical violence or isolation;
  • developing attitudes of empathy, responsiveness to acts of violence and how to use adults' help;
  • guiding children in the basics of positive contacts and the development of relationships.
For teachers:  
  • raising knowledge on the phenomenon of children's violence;
  • developing systemic thinking about violence prevention;
  • instruction how to diagnose and recognise violence in the class room;
  • training skills on constructing class room and school educational programs which help decrease aggression among children;
  • preparing teachers for effective reactions and helping children in violent situations (intervening, talking to perpetrators and victims, mutual co-operation, collaboration with parents, learning about legal rules);
  • creating an inner system of intervention for the school.

For parents:  
  • increasing awareness of the violence problem;
  • showing how parents can participate in the programme of violence prevention either in the class room or school;
  • emphasising the function of the family and home environment in adapting roles in a group of children: violence perpetrators, victims and passive witnesses.

The "STOP" programme consists of two stages of prevention:    

Stage I Prevention:  
    This is a system of early prevention, which is brought into operation before the problem appears. It stresses the education of parents, teachers and pupils on the violence phenomenon and methods of preventing it as well as on partnership with representatives of local government and specific procedures of dealing with violence.

    Stage I Prevention consists of:
  • code of school and system of consequences
  • prophylactic - educational training courses for parents
  • prophylactic - educational training courses for pupils
  • prophylactic - educational training courses for teachers
  • diagnosis of a problem of violence in the school community - questionnaire survey
  • general school activities against violence
  • co-operation with the local community

Stage II Prevention (system of inner-school intervention)  
  This is a system of intervention aimed at establishing who exhibits the most dysfunctional behavioural patterns (both perpetrators and victims), helping them to change them into positive patterns and resolving immediate problems. The system consists of elaborated procedures for acting and reacting when violence appears.

    Stage II Prevention consists of:
  • systems of talking and acting in relation to the violence perpetrators (rules of conversation, establishing contact, monitoring, consequences);
  • system of talking with the victims of violence;
  • principles for conducting joint sessions for victims and perpetrators;
  • long-term educational strategies of dealing with perpetrators;
  • long-term educational strategies of dealing with victims;
  • educational groups for victims and perpetrators;
  • standards and procedures of communication with parents of victims and parents of perpetrators;
  • collaboration with the police, City Guard, etc.;
  • collaboration with the Psychological - Educational Advisory Councils;
  • data bank with a help option.

Why the programme is genuine and innovative    

The unique element of the programme is prevention of the II stage - the system  
  of intra-school intervention. Other programmes are usually confined to prevention of stage I. Our programme is more far reaching and due to this contributes a lot to reducing anxiety and helplessness among teachers as well as increasing their competence in counteracting violence.  

The programme's key jis its systemic quality. Bringing together all the groups of people  
  who participate in school life (pupils, parents, teachers, local community) into the programme is very important but nothing new, while designing an intra-school system, which helps prevent aggression and violence over the longer-term is new. Working within the programme a school works out its own standards and procedures for acting and educating, which allow it deal with the problem independently (with no support of external specialists, non-governmental organisations etc).  

The programme has its own tools:  
  • actual scenarios for workshops with pupils;
  • questionnaires for surveying the level and extent of violence at school along with the computer programmes for calculating results;
  • an elaborate system of training courses for teachers;
  • a full set of instruction materials for teachers (scripts).
Training courses    
The "Stand by the Child" Association organises and runs training courses for teachers (teaching staff committees or school representative teams), educationalists, psychologists and local government representatives on the independent implementation of the "Programme of Violence Prevention - STOP" in their local communities.
If you want to find out more about our training courses go to >>>training courses
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