The Government Strategy Against Bullying and Violence in the Schools
The new government strategy calls upon all Quebeckers, not just students, parents and school staff, to engage in a concerted effort to put an end to bullying and violence in the schools. The strategy revolves around the theme “Bullying is out. It’s time to stand up!” and translates into four components: mobilization, communication, legislation and action.
Young people, parents, school staff, school administrators, elected officials and community leaders are invited to sign the Declaration of support for Quebecers against bullying and violence. In addition, a week against bullying and violence will be organized each year around October 2 to coincide with the International Day of Non-Violence.
The government strategy relies on a three-year provincial information campaign that includes a microsite designed for young people, parents and educators. It contains information about bullying and visitors to the site can sign the Declaration of support for Quebecers against bullying and violence.
To support this site, from the very start of the campaign promotional spots have been broadcast on television, posted on the Web and published in the print media to encourage young people to become “everyday” heroes and heroines by refusing to remain silent in the face of bullying. Moreover, a contest has been organized to provide young people in schools throughout Québec with an opportunity to publicize the positive steps they have taken to fight against bullying and violence. The microsite promotes these best practices, in addition to publicizing the various measures implemented as part of this campaign.
On June 12, 2012, the National Assembly passed Bill 56: An Act to prevent and stop bullying and violence in schools, which involves various amendments to the Education Act and the Act respecting Private education. This Bill sets out the duties and responsibilities of the relevant school stakeholders and their partners.
The Action Plan to Prevent and Deal With Violence in the Schools will be revised and strengthened by the addition of new measures. These will include holding training activities on good citizenship each year in every school and integrating principles of cybercitizenship into courses over the next two years in order to pass on the values that will guide young people in their use of new technologies. In addition, the partnerships established through the agreements made between the school boards, organizations in the health and social services network, and different police forces will continue to develop and grow, focused on the goal of fighting bullying and violence in the schools.