School Violence and Violence in School: A proposal for a Teacher Train

School Violence and Violence in School: A proposal for a Teacher Training Curriculum

School Violence and Violence in School: A proposal for a

Teacher Training Curriculum

Ana Pedro

Departamento de Educação, Universidade de Aveiro, Aveiro, 3810-193, Portugal

Abstract In the first part of this study we examine the school violence question, be it the violence that happens at school,

consequence of external pressures (cultural, social, familiar) or the violence that happens from the organizational structures

of that same school (institutional violence), and is then reflected in all those that are involved in the school. Nevertheless,

since the frequency of school violence does not tend to disappear in our future, it is imperative that teachers-in-training are

prepared in advance to deal with various levels of violence; in order to achieve this goal, a specific subject was created -

Violence in school: educating to intervene, intervening so as to prevent for teachers-in-training of Infant and Primary School.

This article describes in its second part the creation of a curriculum for preventing school violence developed by some

teachers of the University of Aveiro’s Educational Department (Portugal) in the European Project NOVAS RES ambit. We

believe that this curriculum can also inspire some other institutions to provide teachers-in-training with the necessary tools to

deal with violence in their professional future.

Keywords Violence,School, Intervention/Prevention School Violence, Curriculum, Student Teachers

1. Introduction

As happens in all society, violence, in all its manifesta-
tions[1], is also present in school. Teachers suffer aggres-
sions from their pupils; these in turn suffer aggressions from

their schoolmates, and not often from teachers as well[2].

School members are exposed both to aggressions, although

in different forms, and to coercions from the school institu-
tion. It’s not easy to become a teacher these days[3],[4],[5].

Recently, significant research has been focused on iden-
tifying emerging challenges, recent policy innovation, prac-
tices, and areas for action with an emphasis on the various

forms of violence that children experience in schools such as

bullying, cyberbullying[6], aggression and indiscip-
line[20],[35] in the educational system related with age[7],

gender[8],[9],[53], culture, ethnicity and social class. On the

other hand, a review of literature on this subject point out as

important areas to carry out further research on international

and cross-country comparative research as a way to facilitate

policy creation surrounding school violence in specific

countries, as in Israel[1]. This kind of research, can also give

a substantial contribute to theories of school violence[10]; to

change the scopus from individual characteristics of victims

and bullies to an understanding of how contexts, both within

and outside school, impact on school violence

* Corresponding author:

[email protected] (Ana Pedro)

Published online at

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[10],[11],[12],[13]; to develop a deeper theoretical under-
standing of factors such as minority status, ethnic and cul-
tural affiliation which are correlated within a given society

with poverty, education, deprivation and oppression.

On the other hand, the foundation of the International

Observatory on Violence in Schools enables to share out-
comes of relevant research, to benefit from international

scientific comparison on violence in schools[14].

The prevention and intervention actions for this kind of

violent behaviour required initiatives to reduce violence in

schools[15] which aimed at improving preventative factors

such as promoting a good school climate (e.g. Iceland; the

Netherlands and Norway); security approaches (e.g. Safe

Schools Programme in Portugal); encouraging a sense of

student responsibility (e.g. Austria and the Netherlands);

organising specific teacher training to deal with violence (e.g.

Ireland and Spain).

Alongside these activities, schools worldwide felt the urge

to develop specific anti-violent programmes (e.g. RESOLVE

Project Alberta; Capturing Kids’ Hearts & Teen Leadership;

School Violence Prevention Demonstrating Program; Ef-
fectiveness of Programs to Prevent School Bullying (Swe-
den); as well as guides (UNESCO), manuals (Doorways III:

Teacher Training Manual, On School-Related Gender-Based

Violence) and specific handbooks for teachers (Council of

Europe, Violence Reduction in Schools –how to make a

difference, A Handbook).

Commonly, the focus on this subject is concentrated on

the students’ level as well as teachers’, but it hardly refers to

the type of violence that is produced in that same


Ana Pedro: School Violence and Violence in School: A proposal for a Teacher Training Curriculum 74

However, the violence that the school and the teachers can

exert on students can produce in these