The problem seems to be getting out of hand. When I was in school, up until 1978, in a class of four hundred, there weren’t many bullies and it was private, acted out with girlfriends, or within cliques. It was not blatant bashing of people who had no other part in one’s life other than that they seemed vulnerable, and vulnerability was frightening.
Bullying is part of the world of rape, abuse, fear and anger, on the part of everyone, especially the bully. We all know that. Haven’t the movies and literature taught us? S/he is usually unhappy but has power somehow, because s/he talks a good game where others dare not. S/he’s the mouthpiece for the crowd and has acolytes who want to be safe in the reflected circle.
Most bullies back down when confronted, others may feel forced to act but, make no mistake, these are fearful, anxious, unhappy people, with a cruel streak, who feel they are outside the law, sociopaths.
What to do? Name the bullies, list them just as you would pedophiles in a school neighborhood. Post the list in the town crier, the local paper, the school bulletin. If they are so rough and tough then they can withstand the naming. Might even help their fragile egos to be marked as special, specious.
The targets of these bullies ought to be trained in clever verbiage for tongue lashings or combat to beat the bastards. Or otherwise empower them to stand up to their tormentors, bring friends if they can. A dictum from above will have no power and only make things worse. Don’t coddle the quiet inward ones. Give them a structure of support.