Document Type



Child Health Promotion Research Centre, Edith Cowan University

Place of Publication

Perth, Western Australia


Child Health Promotion Research Centre (CHPRC)


Cross, D., Shaw, T., Hearn, L., Epstein, M., Monks, H., Lester, L., & Thomas, L. (2009). Australian Covert Bullying Prevalence Study. Perth, Australia: Child Health Promotion Research Centre, Edith Cowan University.


The safety of members of the school community is essential to enhance the academic, social development and well being of young people. In line with the United Nations' Convention on the Rights of the Child, the National Safe Schools Framework (NSSF) is regarded as.a highly innovative, collaborative effort on behalf of the Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments to foster the development and implementation of a series of whole-of-school initiatives to produce an integrated national policy for the prevention and early intervention of bullying and other aggressive and violent behaviours.

Yet despite the impact of the NSSF in terms of reducing direct, face-to-face 'overt' bullying, such as hitting, punching, kicking and teasing, evidence suggests that a less direct form of 'covert' bullying is becoming more prevalent and insidious, fuelled in part by the growth of new forms of Information and Communications Technology (ICT). From this perspective, the Australian Covert Bullying Prevalence Study (ACBPS), commissioned by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR), represents a significant first step to understand and tackle this phenomenon.

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