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Bullying in Schools: An Overview

NCJ Number
Date Published
Ken Seeley, Martin L. Tombari, Laurie J. Bennett, and Jason B. Dunkle
This overview of the National Center for School Engagement’s series of studies on the connections between bullying in schools, school attendance and engagement, and academic achievement focuses on the studies’ findings and recommendations for policy and practice.
The study determined that bullying is a common experience for all segments of school populations, not only “high-risk” populations of low-income, disenfranchised groups; however, the researchers also found that bullying is a complex social and emotional phenomenon whose dynamics, effects, and consequences vary among individual victims and circumstances. There was no significant evidence that bullying directly causes truancy. The report indicates that school engagement protects bullying victims from engaging in truancy and having low academic achievement. One conclusion of the study is that when schools provide a safe learning environment in which adults model positive behavior, they can mitigate the negative effects of bullying. The report on the studies recommends that any interventions to address bullying or bullying victimization should be well-planned, student-focused strategies that fit the context of the particular school where they are used. Researchers conducted two qualitative studies designed to identify the factors that cause some bullied students to remain in school and causes others to drop out or become delinquent. This involved a retrospective study that randomly surveyed two groups of youth about their experience with bullying in grade school. Another qualitative study examined what teachers say about bullying in their schools. 16 references
Date Created: September 30, 2019