Recent data indicate that bullying is pervasive in most schools. Take a look at this:
The National Threat Assessment Center, run by the Secret Service, reported last fall that in more than two-thirds of 37 recent school shootings, the attackers felt “persecuted, bullied, threatened, attacked or injured.”
The National School Safety Center estimates that there are more than 525,000 attacks, shakedowns, and robberies per month in public secondary schools in this country.
The NEA estimated that 28 million missed school days per year occur due to fear of attack or intimidation by a bully.
In a survey of 558 students in a mid-western middle school, researchers found that 80 percent of the students had engaged in bullying behaviors in the previous 30 days.
“Whatever form bullying takes,” says Sheriff Garber, “it is destructive and unhealthy behavior.”
Victims of bullying behavior are most likely targeted because of psychological traits more than physical traits. Typical victims tend to be shy, sensitive, and insecure.
How can we recognize bullying behavior? Sheriff Garber cites the following examples of bullying:
- Name-calling, put-downs, cruel teasing
- Saying or writing nasty things about others
- Deliberately excluding the victims from activities
- Not talking to the victim
- Threatening the victim with bodily harm
- Hitting or kicking the victim
- Making the victim do things they don’t want to do