International day against violence and bullying at school including cyberbullying

International day against violence and bullying at school including cyberbullying

Each year, the International day against violence and bullying at school will be observed on the first Thursday of November. It calls on all countries, organizations and people to come together with the common purpose of ensuring schools are free from fear and violence.


This International day aims to eliminate violence and bullying at school including  cyberbullying, so that all children and young people can fulfil their right to education,  health and well-being. 


The theme for the International Day in 2020 is Together against bullying in school.  Bullying affects students of all ages, in all countries and regions across the world.  Almost one in three students have been bullied in the past month, making it the most  prevalent form of violence in schools. One in ten students has been cyberbullied, and  this form of bullying is on the rise. 

The consequences are serious: Students who are frequently bullied are nearly three  times more likely to feel like an outsider at school and more than twice as likely to  miss school as those who are not frequently bullied. They have worse educational  outcomes and are also more likely to leave formal education after finishing  secondary school. They are twice as likely to feel lonely, to be unable to sleep at night  and to have contemplated suicide.


Physical appearance is the top reason for bullying, followed by ethnicity, nationality  and skin colour. Students who are seen as ‘different’ in any way are more at risk of  bullying, such as girls perceived to look or act like boys, or boys perceived to look or  act like girls. 


Too many people think bullying at school including cyberbullying is an inevitable rite  of passage to adulthood and that is relatively harmless and that little can be done to  stop it. Instead, there is strong evidence that violence and bullying at school including  cyberbullying can be prevented, and effectively addressed if it happens. No student  should live in fear of going to school.  


School communities and the broader education sector must work together in unison to prevent and address bullying. This is called a whole-education approach, and  includes:  

Strong leadership and robust policy frameworks;  

curricula to promote a caring school climate; 

training for teachers and other school staff; 

a safe psychological and physical school environment  

mechanisms to report bullying and support for affected students;

student empowerment and participation;  

involvement of all stakeholders in the school community including  parents; and  

collaboration between the education sector and other sectors and a  wide range of partners. 


Addressing all forms of school violence including bullying is essential to achieving the  Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular SDG 4, which aims to ensure  inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities  for all, and SDG 16, which aims to promote peaceful and inclusive societies.

How can schools get involved?

There are lots of ways that schools can get involved in International day against violence and bullying at school including cyberbullying.

Webwise have developed a range of resources and training programmes to help schools create a positive environment and promote respectful online communication.


Programmes include:

Primary Resources

HTML Heroes

Explore the topic of respectful online communication using the HTML Heroes aims to highlight the effects of harassment online or by text message on the recipient of the message and to outline the appropriate coping strategies. It aims to foster a sense of care and respect for others online and by mobile phone.




Myselfie and the wider world

This Primary Anti-Cyber Bullying Teachers’ Handbook is an SPHE resource developed to engage 5th and 6th class primary school students on the topic of cyber bullying. A series of short animations are the centrepiece of the resource. These will help students develop the skills and understanding to be responsible, socially conscious and effective internet users, as they explore social networks for the first time.




Post-Primary Resources

Connected Awareness Campaign

Based on real life experiences, Connected is a short film exploring how young people communicate and connect online. The film encourages young people to reflect on their posting, commenting and sharing practices online. Through a series of vignettes the film explores cyberbullying, gender-based harassment online and the impact abusive comments can have on others. The campaign is supported by an advice hub highlighting supports and providing advice on how to deal with cyberbullying and practice respectful communication.




#Up2Us Anti-Bullying Kit

Take the first steps to beating bullying in your community with the #Up2Us Anti-Bullying Kit today. In the kit you’ll find activities for addressing bullying, colourful stickers and supplies for creating interactive poster campaigns. Also included is the #Up2Us Anti-Bullying Teachers’ Handbook with Junior Cycle SPHE lesson ideas.




Lockers is an SPHE resource developed to engage 2nd and 3rd year students on the topic of non-consensual image sharing. The resource includes two short high-quality animations, six lessons and information for school leaders.




Advice for parents

Parents can help promote respectful communication online using the free Webwise Parents resources.  Explore the topic of cyberbullying and how to talk to your child with the help of the Webwise Parent Experts, Explainer guides and talking points.

Available at:

Training Programmes

The Safer Internet Day Ambassador Programme

Our Safer Internet Day Ambassador Programme is a peer to peer youth programme that gives students an opportunity to start an online safety campaign in their own school. Each year 100 Post-Primary students take part with the support of the Webwise Youth Advisory Panel (30 teenagers from across Ireland).

The SID Ambassador Programme empowers students by providing them with opportunities to develop leadership, human relations, team building and communication skills. Students make a commitment to lead by example, demonstrate respect and responsibility and engage in community service.

It’s aims are:

1. To encourage and support young people to address internet safety issues such as cyberbullying, online wellbeing  and image-sharing to create a better internet for all.

2. To do this by training young people to lead effective awareness-raising campaigns in their clubs, schools, and communities.

3. To involve as many people across schools, groups, communities in Ireland to celebrate Safer Internet Day, 9th February 2021.

FUSE Anti-Bullying and Online Safety Programme
These resources aimed at 2nd class primary students and 2nd year secondary schools were developed by the National Anti-Bullying Research and Resources Centre in DCU. Using short animations and videos, they assist students in understanding how to safety respond and report bullying incidents face to face and online. The programme is research based and includes student and teacher evaluation. FUSE aims to support and empower young people to find solutions and initiatives themselves, to tackle bullying and online safety.

Videos addressing cyberbullying and online harassment

Myselfie and the wider world:

Vicky’s Party

The Photo

The Match


HTML Heroes

What is cyberbullying?



Connected short film

Useful Websites

This is a university designated research centre located in DCU Institute of Education. Researchers at ABC were the first in Ireland to undertake research on school bullying, workplace bullying, homophobic bullying and cyberbullying. ABC leads the field of research, resource development and training in bullying in Ireland and is an internationally recognised centre of excellence in bullying research. ABC works in a collaborative environment in which they study the multi-factored causes of the problem of bullying and translate our findings into resources and training to tackle bullying.

Tackle Bullying

Tackle Bullying is a national website to counter bullying and cyberbullying for young people, parents and teachers. It contains a number of different pages of information to learn more about bullying and cyberbullying. What they are, the different types of both and how to effectively prevent and counter bullying.


Talk to someone

Worried about something you have seen online or concerned about your child? Childline and the National Parents Council Primary offer free advice and support service.

Childline is a support service for young people up to the age of 18.There is a 24hr telephone, online and mobile phone texting service.

Get started

The National Parents Council Primary enables and empowers parents to be effective partners in their children’s education.

01 887 4477

Report Illegal Content

Sometimes you might unwittingly stumble across illegal online content like child abuse imagery. Always remember: you can report it and get it removed using

More on illegal content

Make a report exists to combat the distribution and proliferation of illegal content, like child sexual
abuse content, in conjunction with police and Internet Industry