How Westminster School Limits Bullying with an Emphasis on Kindness
Academics should not be the sole focus of any school curriculum. A well-rounded education must address every facet of the developing child: academic, emotional, social, and personal. Here’s how a private school education through Westminster School accounts for character development and better safeguards its students against bullying and other forms of intolerance.
4 Ways Westminster School’s Private School Curriculum Successfully Incorporates Character Development
1. Smaller Class Sizes
With the smaller class sizes at Westminster School, the students benefit in several ways:
- A better student-to-teacher ratio means more supervision and fewer opportunities for negative interactions and incidents.
- Issues that do come up aren’t likely to go unnoticed or unresolved.
- Teachers will personally know any students involved in the conflict and can use that knowledge to more effectively navigate the situation.
Because of the limited student body size, Westminster is able to address the root issues that lead to bullying and other undesirable interactions rather than having to implement reactive policies to stop unwanted behavior after the fact.
2. Character Development as a Pillar of the Westminster Curriculum
In addition to developing standout scholars, Westminster School also prioritizes creating kind, conscientious, empathetic citizens. This character development happens at all grade levels.
It’s a natural point of emphasis with the preschool and Westminster lower school (kindergarten to second grade) programs, where students are still learning how to interact and hone those interpersonal skills.
It continues, though, through the Westminster upper school (grades six to eight).
As just one example, the seventh-graders had a whole-day retreat dedicated to sharing their experiences, discussing their feelings, and working through the increasingly complex emotional landscape of adolescence.
“Westminster takes a supportive, hands-on approach to character development and the social and emotional learning of our students,” says Nancy Schuler, head of Westminster School. “It’s ingrained in our curriculum and given the same care and attention as all our academic subjects.”
3. Diverse Student Body
Westminster School takes great pride in its diverse student body. By exposing students to other cultures and ways of life, especially from a young age, they become more tolerant, empathetic, understanding citizens.
When children learn, grow, and play together, those differences that could otherwise spark conflict become causes of celebration and opportunities for learning.
4. Proactive Response to Negative Interactions
Bullying or any other form of intolerance is not permitted at Westminster.
The entire teaching staff is committed to watching for evidence of this kind of behavior. If a problem does come up, teachers, administrators, and staff members deal with it immediately.
“We handle social situations, difficult friendship dynamics, and bullying at Westminster with two main approaches,” says Schuler. “First, we make kindness, understanding, and communication a part of our education process. We proactively head off issues by developing students who are thoughtful and respectful. Second, we immediately deal head-on with any issue that does come up.”
Susan Glazier, the assistant head of school at Westminster, added this.
“Westminster teachers are trained how to handle students consistently from classroom to classroom and grade to grade. This creates an environment that encourages kind and respectful behavior. They are also attentive to student interactions, including in the hallways, on the playground, and in the gym.”
Want to Learn More about How Westminster School Approaches Personal Development?
No school can promise every student interaction will be one of kindness, respect, and understanding.
Westminster School, however, does everything in its power to create a curriculum that prioritizes developing those traits in its students.
Does this sound like a positive school environment for your child? Want to learn more about our program?
Schedule a tour of our campus today.