Bullying Prevention Program
With support from a federal Youth Violence Prevention grant, MAAV launched the Melrose CARES Bullying Prevention Program at the Melrose Veterans Memorial Middle School in 2004. The comprehensive, school-wide approach is modeled after the nationally recognized Olweus Bullying Prevention Program and the work of bullying prevention expert Stan Davis. The program is based on the premise that adults are ultimately responsible for preventing bullying in schools, and that the reactions of bystanders to bullying can have even more impact than the harassment itself. The program includes components for staff, students, parents and the community at large, and is now being continued by middle school teachers, counselors and administrators.
For the past two years, MAAV has been a part of the Melrose Jr. Police Academy sponsored by the Melrose Police. MAAV does one hour long training with the students on bullying prevention, led by three to four high school student facilitators. The program includes fun ice breakers, “Agree/Disagree/Unsure” statements about bullying, and discussing realistic bullying scenarios and coming up with a plan to react to bullying situations. MAAV works to teach students to be empowered bystanders who are able to stand up for themselves and for friends in safe and productive ways.