Our Watch

Skip to content

A whole-of-school approach

A whole of school approach to respectful relationships education not only provides in-class education, but addresses your school’s culture, policies and procedures, and promotes gender equality among your staff.

Effective respectful relationships education is about recognising that as well as a place of learning, your school is:

  • An important hub in the community, with the opportunity to influence and contribute to healthy community culture.
  • A workplace where all staff deserve to feel respected, safe and valued and be treated equally, regardless of their sex.

Classroom learning will only change attitudes and behaviour when reinforced and when the core concepts of respect, equality, gender, power and consent are modelled across the whole school community. While classroom activities targeted at students is important, respectful relationships education needs to address all six components listed below.

Whole school approach diagram showing the components of the approach as a circle. The diagram is yellow.
Whole of school approach

School communities, including principals, parents, community organisations, teachers and other staff, can help prevent violence by:

  • Teaching students the skills to build respectful relationships, as well as recognise and challenge gender-stereotyping and violence-supportive attitudes.
  • Creating a safe, equal and inclusive school culture for staff and students.
  • Demonstrating appropriate and respectful behaviour to students.

For more information on the evidence behind respectful relationships education, see Our Watch’s evidence paper.

Find the Toolkit, which is a structured guide to this work, at the Respectful relationships education full toolkit resource page.

See more tools and resources to support respectful relationships education in primary and secondary schools

Tools and resources
Teenage students sitting on and around a table in a classroom, talking. They are all facing one girl with a pony tail, who is speaking.