Authors: Joanna Węgrzynowska, Agnieszka Milczarek

  Pupil - perpetrators must accept the general rule: there is no place for violence at school and it will not be accepted by adults in any circumstances. All the teaching staff should immediately and in a similar way react to any recognisable symptoms of violence: tell and reprehend the pupils, show their objection, refer to the school rules and norms, show them the consequences or punish them if necessary.

If the reproofs of teachers don't bring effects and the pupil is still performing violence, certain procedures are to be introduced:

Procedures of dealing with the child-perpetrator:    

series of talks  
  A cycle of talks with a perpetrator should be entered aimed at stopping the violence (respecting the school norms) and working out a constructive resolution. The talks should be concluded by a written agreement, in which the pupil undertakes not to act violently towards the victim - schoolmate. For the best results it should be very precise and also include a paragraph on the consequences of breaking the contract.
The series of talks should last until the negative behaviour stops.

Individual responsibility  
  The perpetrator should be personally responsible for his deeds and bear the consequences of his or her behaviour, therefore the talks should be conducted individually with every perpetrator.

Hierarchy of talks  
  There should be a grading order for the talks. The first talk is between the tutor and pupil. If it doesn't bring results the tutor may invite in another teacher. At the next level the following people are included: educationalist, followed by parents, then the school board representative, then if necessary the police. This procedure gradually increases the tension and gives the pupil both the chance and time to improve.

Monitoring the pupil's behaviour  
  During all the interventions the pupil should be carefully observed. Other teachers may contribute a lot to this task. This is to avoid the pupil attempting to use manipulation. If we decide to introduce this principle we should inform the pupil about it.

Praising and punishment  
  For the period of the programme's duration, teachers should praise all the positive behaviour of the perpetrator (acknowledge, appreciate, praise), and negative behaviour should be punished.

Grading of consequences  
  Consequences/ punishment of not obeying the rules should also be introduced in a graded order (from less to more painful) and should be adjusted to the individual. The pupil ought to be informed as to what are the consequences of him using violence again.

The key issue in working with child-perpetrators is to help them substitute positive behaviour for violent behaviour. If this is not achieved violence will not be rooted out. This task needs time, personal engagement, often the work of a whole team of teachers as well as psychological knowledge and inventiveness.

The first step is a careful diagnosis of the motives, which cause the violent  
  behaviour of a particular pupil. The following educational activities should then be adjusted to the diagnosis:

  • recognition and appreciation of the pupil's positive behaviour;
  • arranging special situations and organising educational work which will help him or her understand how his or her needs can be fulfilled in a positive way (e.g. the need to dominate);
  • promoting the pupil's talents and supporting the use of his or her strong points for the benefit of others.

    The teacher should also try to help and support the pupil in resolving his or her  
      personal problems:

  • facilitating contact with a psychologist or therapist;
  • finding a therapeutic / educational / socio-therapeutic group for the pupil.


      Peer group violence has become an alarming problem in many schools. It demands effective resistance, as the occasional activities or uncoordinated work of individuals are not enough to resolve the problem alone.

    What is essential...?
    It is essential for each school community to have it's own effective system of violence prevention and counteraction - a system that approaches the problem as a whole. A system that lets the school promote anti-violence attitudes among children, supports parents in resolving family problems, protects those pupils who are vulnerable and fragile and offers facilities for teachers to create cohesive teams, speaking "the same language" and using the same methods.

    The "Stand by the Child" Association has designed the "Programme of Violence Prevention -STOP", which is an offer for systemic solution in schools. If you want to know more about the program, go to
    >>> Programme of Violence Prevention - STOP.
    | Site map |