Experiences show that in a lot of cases committed teachers started the implementation of the NBA at their school. After participating in an NBA workshop several steps were initiated to inform the school community.
The headmaster and other teachers will be informed in detail about the steps of the concept, the philosophy of the approach and organizational conditions. The fact that this is a non-punitive tool will certainly provoke discussions amongst the teachers. Often the approach is accepted but not applied by all teachers. If this is the case it is important to ensure a general support of the application even if not every teacher agrees that he/she will work with the NBA. The application can also be delegated to a convinced colleague who knows the class. It should be agreed on that open dissent should not be expressed. However, the support of the headmaster is crucial for a successful implementation.
Sometimes the whole teaching team is interested in participating in the NBA workshop which is an opportunity to fully understand the program.
Many schools have developed their own profile, the “school program”. It might be considered to officially include the NBA and other possible tools of constructive conflict resolution into the school program.
In several countries there are regular meetings of the class teacher and the parents. A meeting is a good opportunity to inform the parents about the introduction of the NBA in case of bullying at school. Sometimes parents are also interested in attending a NBA workshop if possible.
If a meeting is not scheduled for the near future parents should be informed in written form to explain the approach. It is advised to inform the parents of an affected student in a concrete case.
Annalena Scholz, teacher at the Aloisiuskolleg in Bonn: “Before the introduction of the NBA it was important to inform all colleagues and the principal to gain their support. And the concept works. We are able to stop difficult bullying situations. It was also important to explain the approach in detail to the parents of bullied children.”8
What is required: a room where the meeting with the affected student and the support group can take place without interruptions, a flip chart or blackboard, a circle of chairs, duration: Approx. 20 minutes meeting with the affected student, 30 – 40 minutes meeting with the support group.
The NBA is a tool which does not need a lot of preparation. What is essential is a room for the meetings with the affected student and the support group where no interruptions are allowed during the meetings, a corner somewhere in another room is not acceptable. If possible there should be a flipchart or a blackboard where the teacher can collect the ideas of the support group. Everybody should be able to look at each other, so a circle (with or without tables) is a good solution.
There should be close communication between the teacher who will apply the NBA and the teacher who is teaching in class. He/she has to be informed that 6 – 8 students will participate in the support group meeting.
At the end of the chapter interested teachers can find guidelines for the three steps of the concept.