33 SES 12, Gender Violence and Education
The aim of this paper is to present the results obtained through the implementation of Bystander Intervention evidence based actions in diverse primary schools in Spain, in order to prevent and overcome gender violence.
United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child on its Article 19 establishes the right to live free of violence, as well in educational contexts. However, the UNICEF report Ocultos a plena luz[i] (Full light hidden) shows that among adolescents and youngsters in Europe and North America, 31% of the school's classmates acknowledged harassing or intimidating others. This study also reveals data on the reports of violence incidents concluding that most victims neither tell it nor ask for help. In this line, the World Report on Violence against Children[ii] highlights schools as unsafe spaces where violence is part of everyday life. Scientific international community emphasises there are more vulnerable groups in this type of situation, including women, lesbians, gays, bisexuals, etc. It is proved that working to overcome Gender-based violence (GBV) can avoid those early experiences that mark school life concerning self-esteem, stereotypes and educational trajectories (Kosciw, et al., 2008; McGuire et al., 2010).
The study on teacher leadership in schools to prevent and overcome GBV warns about the need for a change in training. Despite they are the professionals who spend more time with children, they identify and report this kind of violence less than other agents, and they state to feel confused about which procedures to apply (Goldman, 2007). It is identified the need for training teacher and other educational agents, based on scientific evidence to achieve successful educational transformations in the prevention of GBV (Puigvert, 2016, Roca et al., 2015, Toom et al., 2010). It has been studied that a permissive environment in the face of violence contributes to create a hostile context, which leads some victims to blame and isolation (Thornberg, 2012). Scientific literature contributions stress the importance of the intervention with the whole community to overcome the GBV and the creation of educational spaces that are increasingly safe, supportive and attractive (Mayes & Cohen, 2003; Thapa et al., 2013).
Bystander Intervention is an effective measure to reduce violence and sexual harassment, which has been developed especially at universities. Students are trained to detect and intervene possible violent situations or behaviours. This strategy promotes the active participation of the community in the face of violence and, in particular, the active positioning of the "witnesses" of an aggression, in support of the victims, regardless of whether the victim is a friend, known or unknown (Coker et al., 2016; Banyard, 2014; McMahon & Banyard, 2012). Bystander Intervention are the professionals, family members and students who act jointly in any case of physical or verbal violence and who do not collaborate actively or passively with sexual harassment, neither first nor second order. This strategy promotes that all the people of the community behave as "allies" who provide support and solidarity to victims of any aggression occurring inside and outside the school (Flecha, 2017). It is included in most successful programs for the improvement of coexistence, such as Bullying no way in Australia’s schools, Green Dot in US universities or Youth4Youth in Europe.
CREA[iii] research community has been working for more than 20 years on research on Preventive Socialization of Gender Violence (Gómez, 2015, Valls, Puigvert, & Duque, 2008). From this perspective, Bystander Intervention is analysed in the framework of Dialogic Model for School Violence Prevention. This model in general and Bystander intervention actions in particular promote schools as safe environments, contributing to create free of violence spaces from an early age.
The results presented above were obtained through the Dialogic Recreation Knowledge (DRK) (Oliver, 2014) in the framework of communicative methodology, internationally recognized in many impact publications (Flecha & Soler, 2014) and at European level, in the development of projects within the framework program as Workaló (2001-2004), INCLUDE-ED (2006-2011) and IMPACT-EV (2014-2017). ‘The main characteristic of the dialogic recreation of knowledge (DRK) is the equal basis on which the dialogue between researchers and participants takes place. This involves the identification of the most adequate ways to implement the research results in specific and concrete social contexts on the basis of the validity of the arguments that researchers and participants contribute regardless of status differences between them’ (Oliver, 2014). In this case, it implies that researchers and social agents from educational communities establish a dialogue on successful educational actions in the prevention of GBV, such as the Bystander Intervention, and on the scientific contributions of the research in Preventive Socialization of the Gender violence. The data has been obtained from 8 educational centres in Spain, which are diverse in terms of educational levels and socio-economic environments. These schools have in common the fact they carry out educational actions based on scientific evidence to prevent GBV from the Bystander intervention perspective. All of them participate in the DRK and contribute to the creation of collaborative networks that transfer successful actions to more and more educational communities. Actions implementation and the collection of the information, through observations and training discussion groups with a dialogical orientation, have been carried out in two levels: − A first level, where schools have opened spaces for dialogue and training in evidence-based actions. They promote the involvement of the entire community to detect and intervene with the GBV and foster cultures where breaking the silence is socially valued. These spaces have been developed in collaboration with the researchers and mainly through the participation of teachers and other community agents in (1) Dialogical Pedagogical Gatherings, (2) dialogical guidance training workshops and (3) mixed meetings of training and debate among the diversity of agents of the educational community. − A second level, in which educational centers have implemented those actions that foster creating Bystander Intervention environments in light of GBV as (4) the mixed commission of coexistence, (5) the development of normative principles through egalitarian dialogue with the whole community, (6) the classroom assemblies, (7) the Dialogical Literary Gatherings.
On the one hand, dialogical research spaces have allowed educational centres to reconsider their practices and the normalized and permissive attitudes toward GBV. On the other hand, they have aid to identify contributions that facilitate the transferability of successful actions to diverse European and international educational contexts. Contributions are presented identifying (1) those exclusionary elements which act as barriers to active stance in the face of violence, (2) the transforming elements for the creation of bystander intervention contexts and (3) impact results in educational communities. The exclusionary elements underscored in all schools are both the trivialization of violence and the lack of an explicit dialogue about breaking the law of silence. As transforming elements that allow empowering the community and educating for "upstanders", schools emphasize mainly the creation of assembly contexts where bestow on attractiveness the fact of breaking the silence, the active positioning before any GBV aggression, and a way of school organization that opens spaces for dialogue to recognize the existence of GBV and to commit itself to an active stance to surpass it. The most outstanding of the impact results that have been detected at present are those referring to the empowerment of the peer group and the educational community as agents of change for the prevention and eradication of GBV. This fact has especially contributed to (1) the awareness, visibility and reduction of bullying attacks for GBV reasons, (2) a decrease in the feeling of loneliness in the victims and the people who defend them, (3) and an increase in the coherence between the values transmitted in the school and those conveyed by the community and families.
Banyard, V. L. (2014). Improving college campus–based prevention of violence against women: A strategic plan for research built on multipronged practices and policies. Trauma, Violence, & Abuse, 15(4), 339-351. Coker, A. L., Bush, H. M., Fisher, B. S., Swan, S. C., Williams, C. M., Clear, E. R., & DeGue, S. (2016). Multi-college bystander intervention evaluation for violence prevention. American journal of preventive medicine, 50(3), 295-302. Flecha, R., & Soler, M. (2014). Communicative Methodology: Successful actions and dialogic democracy. Current Sociology, 62(2), 232–242. Flecha, (2017, september 22). Innovación y reacción ante el acoso sexual de segundo orden. Revista Innovamos. Retrieved from http://revistainnovamos.com/2017/09/22/innovacion-y-reaccion-ante-el-acoso-sexual-de-segundo-orden/ Goldman, J. (2007). Primary school student-teachers knowledge and understandings of child sexual abuse and its mandatory reporting. International Journal of Educational Research, 46, 368–381. Gómez, J. (2015). Radical love: A revolution for the 21st century. Peter Lang. Kosciw, J. G., Diaz, E. M., & Greytak, E. A. (2008). 2007 National School Climate Survey: The experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth in our nation’s schools. New York, NY: GLSEN Mayes, L. C., & Cohen, D. J. (2003). The Yale Study Center Guide To Understanding Your Child: Un desarrollo sano desde el nacimiento a la adolescencia. Alianza Editorial Sa. McGuire, J. K., Anderson, C. R., Toomey, R. B., & Russell, S. T. (2010). School climate for transgender youth. A mixed method investigation of student experiences and school responses. Journal of Youth Adolescence, 39, 1125–1188. McMahon, S., & Banyard, V. L. (2012). When can I help? A conceptual framework for the prevention of sexual violence through bystander intervention. Trauma, Violence, & Abuse, 13(1), 3-14. Puigvert, L. (2016). Female University Students Respond to Gender Violence through Dialogic Feminist Gatherings. International and Multidisciplinary Journal of Social Sciences, 5(2), 183-203. Oliver, E. (2014). Zero violence since early childhood: The dialogic recreation of knowledge. Qualitative Inquiry, 20(7), 902-908. Roca, E., Go ́mez, A., & Burgue ́s, A. (2015). Luisa, transforming personal visions to ensure better education for all children. Qualitative Inquiry, 21, 843-850. Valls, R., Puigvert, L., & Duque, E. (2008). Gender Violence Amongst Teenagers: Socialization and Prevention. Violence Against Women, 14(7), 759–785. Thapa, A., Cohen, J., Guffey, S., & Higgins-D’Alessandro, A. (2013). A review of school climate research. Review of educational research, 83(3), 357-385. Thornberg, R. (2012) «Bystander Motivation in Bullying Incidents: To Intervene or Not to Intervene?». Western Journal of Emergency Medicine, 13, 3
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