News and Notices

Wellbeing: Understanding bullying and conflict

18 August 2021

Much has been discussed and dissected around the topic of bullying in recent years. While a lot of work has been done to understand how to address it and how to respond to it, it is still often confused with social conflict or friendship fires.

It is important for us all to keep this conversation going, so that parents, students and teachers can all recognise the difference in these scenarios and respond appropriately and efficiently.

Both bullying and conflict can cause harm. Regardless of which scenario your child may find themselves in, staff and Leaders of Wellbeing at La Salle College are committed to dealing with these issues in an apt and timely manner, as neither have any place in our College community.

How to recognise the difference between bullying and conflict?

  • Bullying will always involve an imbalance of power
  • Actions will be ongoing and deliberate
  • Harm may be caused through physical, verbal or social interactions that intentionally hurt a person, whether physically, socially or psychologically.

Conflict is often an isolated incident, fights or arguments that occur between equals – no power imbalance, not ongoing.

  • It is important to distinguish between both so that responses can be appropriate and healing.
  • It is also important to continue to educate our students on the difference so they too can recognise the behaviours and deal with them effectively.

We also understand that for parents and guardians, cases of both conflict and bullying can elicit emotional reactions.

Take some time to ask the questions below to understand the matter and support your child by speaking to the relevant Leader of Wellbeing at the College.


Bullying Conflict
Is it ongoing? Is it a mutual argument between two equals?
Is there an imbalance of power? Is it an isolated incidence of meanness or aggression?
Does it cause harm? Does it cause harm?

“…Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:31

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