Cowie, H. & Jennifer, D. (Co-ordinating team, UK), Chankova, D. & Poshtova, T. (Bulgaria), Deklerck, J. & Deboutte, G. (Belgium), Ertesvåg, S. K. & Samuelsen, A. S. (Norway), O'Moore, M. & Minton, S. J. (Ireland) and Ortega, R. & Sanchez, V. (Spain) © (2006)
The VISTA training recommends carrying out a needs analysis in order to gain a full understanding of the problem of bullying and violence in your school. A needs analysis can provide a structured and reasonably objective approach to identifying the requirements of a particular school, assessing the resources available to meet those needs, planning an appropriate set of interventions and evaluating their effectiveness.
In Unit D1, we offer practical guidance for a school preparing to address change. We describe what a needs analysis is, focus on what is going to take place during the needs analysis process, and provide exercises that will enable all members of the school community to prepare to carry out a needs analysis. In preparation for the needs analysis, the Unit offers ideas for how to go about generating issues, topics and questions that need further exploration, how to set priorities for the initial consultation and how to develop a working group to direct and guide the needs analysis. We illustrate the whole process with exercises and activities.
The aim of Unit D2 is to provide participants with some ideas and tools for actually carrying out a needs analysis. The different methods (e.g., questionnaires, focus groups, interviews, task-based activities) that can be used to carry out the needs analysis are reviewed and participants are encouraged to think critically about the suitability of the methods available for collecting information from the different groups within their school community.
In Unit D3, we consider the trends in public policy that influence schools' approach to the management of change, and explore its impact on practice in violence reduction within schools. We focus on developing a WSA for reviewing existing policies and practice, and highlight the contrasting perceptions of different stakeholders in the management of change within the organisation. The Unit is illustrated with exercises and activities.