Harmful gender norms and expectations perpetuate and impact patterns of school violence. Therefore, addressing school violence effectively and sustainably requires a gender-transformative approach. This brief demonstrates how gender norms manifest in patterns of school violence, including school-related gender-based violence (SRGBV) in the Asia-Pacific region. It considers how prevention and response efforts can be gender-transformative – actively challenging and changing harmful gender norms, stereotypes and power dynamics. It presents promising initiatives from countries across the region, while making the case for greater attention to and investment in harnessing the transformative nature of education and contribute to safe and respectful schools and societies.
This brief acknowledges that data and research investigating violence in and around schools in the region is limited. The existing evidence presented in the brief shows that violence is still prevalent in schools across the Asia-Pacific region, while policy commitments have not yet translated into meaningful action to reduce it. The brief argues that the lack of evidence should not prevent governments and other education actors from taking action. It calls on governments and education actors to implement holistic and gender-transformative programmes and policies that can improve school safety for all learners and reduce violence in schools, based on best practice and existing research. The brief also advocates for further evidence-gathering to inform policy making and programming in the region.