Tag Archives: Bullying in Schools An Overview

Children with autism and special needs are often targets of bullying

11 May

Moi has posted quite a bit about autism. Studies indicate that the incidence of autism is growing in the population. In order for children with autism to reach their full potential there must be early diagnosis and treatment. Alice Park of Time reported in the article, U.S. Autism Rates Jump 30% From 2012 http://time.com/#40524/u-s-autism-rates-jump-30-from-2012/ In Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine study: Kids with autism more likely to be bullied moi wrote:
Science Daily reported in the article, Study Details Bullying Involvement for Adolescents With Autism Spectrum Disorder:

A study based on information collected from 920 parents suggests an estimated 46.3 percent of adolescents with an autism spectrum disorder were the victims of bullying, according to a report published Online First by Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a JAMA Network publication….http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120903221126.htm

There are signs that a particular child may be vulnerable to bullying.

In School bullying: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency report, moi wrote:
The Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency has issued the report, Bullying in Schools: An Overview by Ken Seeley, Martin L. Tombari, Laurie J. Bennett, and Jason B. Dunkle. Among the study’s findings are:

• Bullying is a complex social and emotional phenomenon that plays out differently on an individual level.
• Bullying does not directly cause truancy.
• School engagement protects victims from truancy and low academic achievement.
• When schools provide a safe learning environment in which adults model positive behavior, they can mitigate the negative effects of bullying.
• Any interventions to address bullying or victimization should be intentional, student-focused engagement strategies that fit the context of the school where they are used.
The report makes the following recommendations:
• Increase student engagement.
• Model caring behavior for students.
• Offer mentoring programs.
• Provide students with opportunities for service learning as a means of improving school engagement.
• Address the difficult transition between elementary and middle school (from a single classroom teacher to teams of teachers with periods and class changes in a large school) (Lohaus et al., 2004).
• Start prevention programs early.
• Resist the temptation to use prefabricated curriculums that are not aligned to local conditions.
Increase Student Engagement
Bullied children who remain engaged in school attend class more frequently and achieve more. Challenging academics, extracurricular activities, understanding teachers and coaches, and a focus on the future help keep victimized children engaged in their education (Bausell, 2011). Schools, administrations, and districts that wish to stave off the negative effects of bullying must redouble their efforts to engage each student in school. Typical school engagement strategies include (Karcher, 2005):
• Providing a caring adult for every student through an advisory program or similar arrangement.
• Carefully monitoring attendance, calling home each time a student is absent, and allowing students the ability to make up missed work with support from a teacher.
• Adopting and implementing the National School Climate Standards from the National School Climate Council (2010).
• Promoting and fostering parent and community engagement, including afterschool and summer programs.
• Providing school-based mentorship options for students. http://www.ojjdp.gov/pubs/234205.pdf

See, School Bullying Report Makes Recommendations To Address Issue, Support Victims http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/17/school-bullying-report-ma_n_1155250.html?ref=email_share https://drwilda.com/2012/09/06/archives-of-pediatrics-and-adolescent-medicine-study-kids-with-autism-more-likely-to-be-bullied/

Christina A. Samuels reported in the Education Week article, Autism Issues Complicate Anti-Bullying Task:

A widely publicized case of two Maryland teenagers charged with assault for bullying a classmate with autism—a classmate who later strongly defended them—illustrates the complexities that schools face with youth whose disabilities are based in social interactions.
Autism spectrum disorder, characterized by social impairment and communication difficulties, leaves some youths less able to recognize teasing or bullying when it occurs, said Ellen F. Murray, a clinical manager at the Center for Autism and Related Disorders in Alexandria, Va.
“They may not even understand teasing if it’s happening right in front of them, much less if it’s behind their back,” said Ms. Murray. “A lot of our kids would definitely not pick up on those social cues and understand the perspective of another student.”
With those challenges in mind, experts say that one way for schools to address bullying of students with autism is to take a step back and examine the entire school environment. And, while social-skills training is commonly a part of the individualized education program, or IEP, for students with autism, such instruction should not be limited just to them, experts say….
Fostering Connections
Schools are using a variety of approaches and individual programs to improve social interactions between students with developmental disabilities such as autism and their typically developing peers.
Peer Adovcacy
The Parent Advocacy Coalition for Educational Rights Center, or PACER, based in Bloomington, Minn., has several bullying-prevention resources for schools, including a toolkit to help start a peer-advocacy program. Such programs use the power of peer influence, and students can often spot problem behavior before adults do.
Positive Behavioral Supports
This schoolwide intervention framework supported by the U.S. Department of Education, offers schools a way to organize and monitor behavioral expectations for students and adults.
Second Step
This program, used in more than 30,000 schools and aimed at students ages 4 to 14, includes in-school lessons on empathy, emotion management, and problem-solving. It also includes lessons for all students in how to recognize, respond to, and report bullying.
Remaking Success
Currently being studied in several schools, this program enlists paraprofessionals who often “shadow” students with disabilities as active coaches on the playground, bringing children together and creating opportunities for joint play. The program has shown some success in expanding the social networks of students.
SOURCES: The National Bullying Prevention Center; StopBullying.gov; Autism Intervention Research Network on Behavioral Health
http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2014/05/07/30autism_ep.h33.html?tkn=SQXF7qgMjGrAX60B0LbyHDeFR8O3wkbWbRkr&intc=es

The American Psychological Association (APA) has information about bullying.

The APA has the following suggestions for teachers and administrators:

Be knowledgeable and observant
Teachers and administrators need to be aware that although bullying generally happens in areas such as the bathroom, playground, crowded hallways, and school buses as well as via cell phones and computers (where supervision is limited or absent), it must be taken seriously. Teachers and administrators should emphasize that telling is not tattling. If a teacher observes bullying in a classroom, he/she needs to immediately intervene to stop it, record the incident and inform the appropriate school administrators so the incident can be investigated. Having a joint meeting with the bullied student and the student who is bullying is not recommended — it is embarrassing and very intimidating for the student that is being bullied.
Involve students and parents
Students and parents need to be a part of the solution and involved in safety teams and antibullying task forces. Students can inform adults about what is really going on and also teach adults about new technologies that kids are using to bully. Parents, teachers, and school administrators can help students engage in positive behavior and teach them skills so that they know how to intervene when bullying occurs. Older students can serve as mentors and inform younger students about safe practices on the Internet.
Set positive expectations about behavior for students and adults
Schools and classrooms must offer students a safe learning environment. Teachers and coaches need to explicitly remind students that bullying is not accepted in school and such behaviors will have consequences. Creating an anti-bullying document and having both the student and the parents/guardians sign and return it to the school office helps students understand the seriousness of bullying. Also, for students who have a hard time adjusting or finding friends, teachers and administrators can facilitate friendships or provide “jobs” for the student to do during lunch and recess so that children do not feel isolated or in danger of becoming targets for bullying. http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/bullying.aspx

Stop Bullying.gov has some great advice about bullying.

According to the Stop Bullying.gov article, What You Can Do:

What to Do If You’re Bullied
There are things you can do if you are being bullied:
• Look at the kid bullying you and tell him or her to stop in a calm, clear voice. You can also try to laugh it off. This works best if joking is easy for you. It could catch the kid bullying you off guard.
• If speaking up seems too hard or not safe, walk away and stay away. Don’t fight back. Find an adult to stop the bullying on the spot.
There are things you can do to stay safe in the future, too.
• Talk to an adult you trust. Don’t keep your feelings inside. Telling someone can help you feel less alone. They can help you make a plan to stop the bullying.
• Stay away from places where bullying happens.
• Stay near adults and other kids. Most bullying happens when adults aren’t around.
http://www.stopbullying.gov/kids/what-you-can-do

Even though children are encouraged to report bullying, they often don’t. We must encourage children to report bullying.

Resources:

For more information on neurological disorders or research programs funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, contact the Institute’s Brain Resources and Information Network (BRAIN) at:
BRAIN
P.O. Box 5801
Bethesda, MD 20824
(800) 352 9424 http://www.ninds.nih.gov

Association for Science in Autism Treatment
P.O. Box 188
Crosswicks, NJ 08515-0188
info@asatonline.orghttp://www.asatonline.org

Autism National Committee (AUTCOM)
P.O. Box 429
Forest Knolls, CA 94933 http://www.autcom.org

Autism Network International (ANI)
P.O. Box 35448
Syracuse, NY 13235-5448
jisincla@syr.eduhttp://www.ani.ac

Autism Research Institute (ARI)
4182 Adams Avenue
San Diego, CA 92116
director@autism.comhttp://www.autismresearchinstitute.com
Tel: 866-366-3361
Fax: 619-563-6840
Autism Science Foundation
419 Lafayette Street
2nd floor
New York, NY 10003
contactus@autismsciencefoundation.orghttp://www.autismsciencefoundation.org/
Tel: 646-723-3978
Fax: 212-228-3557

Autism Society of America
4340 East-West Highway
Suite 350
Bethesda, MD 20814 http://www.autism-society.org
Tel: 301-657-0881 800-3AUTISM (328-8476)
Fax: 301-657-0869

Autism Speaks, Inc.
2 Park Avenue
11th Floor
New York, NY 10016
contactus@autismspeaks.orghttp://www.autismspeaks.org

Tel: 212-252-8584 California: 310-230-3568
Fax: 212-252-8676 Birth Defect Research for Children, Inc.
976 Lake Baldwin Lane
Suite 104
Orlando, FL 32814
betty@birthdefects.org http://www.birthdefects.org
Tel: 407-895-0802

MAAP Services for Autism, Asperger Syndrome, and PDD
P.O. Box 524
Crown Point, IN 46308
info@aspergersyndrome.orghttp://www.aspergersyndrome.org/
Tel: 219-662-1311
Fax: 219-662-1315

National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities
U.S. Dept. of Education, Office of Special Education Programs
1825 Connecticut Avenue NW, Suite 700
Washington, DC 20009
nichcy@aed.orghttp://www.nichcy.org
Tel: 800-695-0285 202-884-8200
Fax: 202-884-8441

National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
National Institutes of Health, DHHS
31 Center Drive, Rm. 2A32 MSC 2425
Bethesda, MD 20892-2425 http://www.nichd.nih.gov
Tel: 301-496-5133
Fax: 301-496-7101 National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Information Clearinghouse
1 Communication Avenue
Bethesda, MD 20892-3456
nidcdinfo@nidcd.nih.govhttp://www.nidcd.nih.gov
Tel: 800-241-1044 800-241-1055 (TTD/TTY)

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
National Institutes of Health, DHHS
111 T.W. Alexander Drive
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709
webcenter@niehs.nih.govhttp://www.niehs.nih.gov
Tel: 919-541-3345

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
National Institutes of Health, DHHS
6001 Executive Blvd. Rm. 8184, MSC 9663
Bethesda, MD 20892-9663
nimhinfo@nih.govhttp://www.nimh.nih.gov
Tel: 301-443-4513/866-415-8051 301-443-8431 (TTY)
Fax: 301-

Related:
Father’s age may be linked to Autism and Schizophrenia
https://drwilda.com/2012/08/26/fathers-age-may-be-linked-to-autism-and-schizophrenia/

Autism and children of color https://drwilda.com/tag/autism-not-diagnosed-as-early-in-minority-children/

Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine study: Kids with autism more likely to be bullied https://drwilda.com/2012/09/06/archives-of-pediatrics-and-adolescent-medicine-study-kids-with-autism-more-likely-to-be-bullied/

Chelation treatment for autism might be harmful
https://drwilda.com/2012/12/02/chelation-treatment-for-autism-might-be-harmful/

University of Connecticut study: Some children with autism may be ‘cured’ with intense early therapy https://drwilda.com/tag/optimal-outcome-in-individuals-with-a-history-of-autism/

Children of older fathers can have genetic issues: Study reports mental illness risk higher https://drwilda.com/2014/02/28/children-of-older-fathers-can-have-genetic-issues-study-reports-mental-illness-risk-higher/

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART© http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews © http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda © https://drwilda.com/

U.S. Supreme Court declines to accept school bullying case, Morrow v. The Blackhawk School District

16 Dec

Moi wrote about bullying in School bullying: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency report:
The Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency has issued the report, Bullying in Schools: An Overview by Ken Seeley, Martin L. Tombari, Laurie J. Bennett, and Jason B. Dunkle. Among the study’s findings are:

o Bullying is a complex social and emotional phenomenon that plays out differently on an individual level.
o Bullying does not directly cause truancy.
o School engagement protects victims from truancy and low academic achievement.
o When schools provide a safe learning environment in which adults model positive behavior, they can mitigate the negative effects of bullying.
o Any interventions to address bullying or victimization should be intentional, student-focused engagement strategies that fit the context of the school where they are used.
The report makes the following recommendations:
o Increase student engagement.
o Model caring behavior for students.
o Offer mentoring programs.
o Provide students with opportunities for service learning as a means of improving school engagement.
o Address the difficult transition between elementary and middle school (from a single classroom teacher to teams of teachers with periods and class changes in a large school) (Lohaus et al., 2004).
o Start prevention programs early.
o Resist the temptation to use prefabricated curriculums that are not aligned to local conditions.
Increase Student Engagement
Bullied children who remain engaged in school attend class more frequently and achieve more. Challenging academics, extracurricular activities, understanding teachers and coaches, and a focus on the future help keep victimized children engaged in their education (Bausell, 2011). Schools, administrations, and districts that wish to stave off the negative effects of bullying must redouble their efforts to engage each student in school. Typical school engagement strategies include (Karcher, 2005):
• Providing a caring adult for every student through an advisory program or similar arrangement.
o Carefully monitoring attendance, calling home each time a student is absent, and allowing students the ability to make up missed work with support from a teacher.
o Adopting and implementing the National School Climate Standardsfrom the National School Climate Council (2010).
o Promoting and fostering parent and community engagement, including afterschool and summer programs.
o Providing school-based mentorship options for students.http://www.ojjdp.gov/pubs/234205.pdf
https://drwilda.com/2011/12/20/school-bullying-office-of-juvenile-justice-and-delinquency-report/

See, School Bullying Report Makes Recommendations To Address Issue, Support Victims http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/17/school-bullying-report-ma_n_1155250.html?ref=email_share

The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear the case of Morrow v. The Blackhawk School District.

Mark Walsh reported in the Education Week article, Supreme Court Declines to Take Up School Bullying Case:

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear an appeal seeking to hold a Pennsylvania school district responsible for repeated bullying of a high school student by one of her peers.
A federal appeals court had taken note of school shooting tragedies at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., and at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo., as symbols of the new dangers in schools. But it nonetheless held that despite compulsory education laws, the Blackhawk school district in Pennsylvania did not have a “special relationship” with its students that would give rise to a duty to protect them from harm from other students….
The case involves Brittany Morrow, who in early 2008 at Blackhawk High School in Beaver County, Pa., began facing bullying from a schoolmate that included “racially motivated” threats and physical assaults, court papers say. In one incident, the perpetrator attacked Brittany in the lunchroom and because Brittany defended herself, she was suspended along with her attacker.
For that and other incidents, the perpetrator was charged in juvenile court with assault, making terroristic threats, and harassment. She was adjudicated delinquent and ordered to have no contact with Brittany. The perpetrator was nevertheless allowed to return to Blackhawk High. In the fall of 2008, she allegedly boarded Brittany’s school bus and threatened her, and later elbowed her in the face at a high school football game…
They lost before a federal district court and the full 3rd Circuit court.
The appeals court ruled 9-5 for the school defendants that there was no “special relationship” between schools and students and 10-4 that legal injuries to the victims were not the result of actions taken by administrators under a “state-created danger” theory of liability.
In their appeal to the Supreme Court in Morrow v. Balaski (Case No. 13-302), the family said school officials “acted to allow the aggressor to return to school following her temporary suspension and despite court orders mandating no contact. They opened the front door of the school to a person they knew would cause harm to the children.”
In a brief opposing high court review, the school district and the assistant principal argued that there was no conflict among the federal appeals courts about the special relationship theory of liability and that no school official acted affirmatively to increase the dangers to Morrow.
The justices declined without comment to take up the appeal.
http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/school_law/2013/12/supreme_court_declines_to_take_1.html

Justia.com summarized the case:

Justia.com Opinion Summary: Brittany and Emily Morrow were subjected to threats and physical assaults by Anderson, a fellow student at Blackhawk High School. After Anderson physically attacked Brittany in the lunch room, the school suspended both girls. Brittany’s mother reported Anderson to the police at the recommendation of administration. Anderson was charged with simple assault, terroristic threats, and harassment. Anderson continued to bully Brittany and Emily. A state court placed Anderson on probation and ordered her to have no contact with Brittany. Five months later, Anderson was adjudicated delinquent and was again given a “no contact” order, which was provided to the school. Anderson subsequently boarded Brittany’s school bus and threatened Brittany, even though that bus did not service Anderson’s home. School officials told the Morrows that they could not guarantee their daughters’ safety and advised the Morrows to consider another school. The Morrows filed suit under 42 U.S.C. 1983, alleging violation of their substantive due process rights. The district court dismissed, reasoning that the school did not have a “special relationship” with students that would create a constitutional duty to protect them from other students and that the Morrows’ injury was not the result of any affirmative action by the defendants, under the “state-created danger” doctrine. The Third Circuit affirmed.
The court issued a Revised version of this opinion on June 14, 2013
PDF Download PDF
http://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/appellate-courts/ca3/11-2000/11-2000-2013-06-05.pdf
http://law.justia.com/cases/federal/appellate-courts/ca3/11-2000/11-2000-2013-06-05.html

The American Psychological Association (APA) has information about bullying.

The APA has the following suggestions for teachers and administrators:

Be knowledgeable and observant
Teachers and administrators need to be aware that although bullying generally happens in areas such as the bathroom, playground, crowded hallways, and school buses as well as via cell phones and computers (where supervision is limited or absent), it must be taken seriously. Teachers and administrators should emphasize that telling is not tattling. If a teacher observes bullying in a classroom, he/she needs to immediately intervene to stop it, record the incident and inform the appropriate school administrators so the incident can be investigated. Having a joint meeting with the bullied student and the student who is bullying is not recommended — it is embarrassing and very intimidating for the student that is being bullied.
Involve students and parents
Students and parents need to be a part of the solution and involved in safety teams and antibullying task forces. Students can inform adults about what is really going on and also teach adults about new technologies that kids are using to bully. Parents, teachers, and school administrators can help students engage in positive behavior and teach them skills so that they know how to intervene when bullying occurs. Older students can serve as mentors and inform younger students about safe practices on the Internet.
Set positive expectations about behavior for students and adults
Schools and classrooms must offer students a safe learning environment. Teachers and coaches need to explicitly remind students that bullying is not accepted in school and such behaviors will have consequences. Creating an anti-bullying document and having both the student and the parents/guardians sign and return it to the school office helps students understand the seriousness of bullying. Also, for students who have a hard time adjusting or finding friends, teachers and administrators can facilitate friendships or provide “jobs” for the student to do during lunch and recess so that children do not feel isolated or in danger of becoming targets for bullying. http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/bullying.aspx

Stop Bullying.gov has some great advice about bullying.

According to the Stop Bullying.gov article, What You Can Do:

What to Do If You’re Bullied
There are things you can do if you are being bullied:
Look at the kid bullying you and tell him or her to stop in a calm, clear voice. You can also try to laugh it off. This works best if joking is easy for you. It could catch the kid bullying you off guard.
If speaking up seems too hard or not safe, walk away and stay away. Don’t fight back. Find an adult to stop the bullying on the spot.
There are things you can do to stay safe in the future, too.
Talk to an adult you trust. Don’t keep your feelings inside. Telling someone can help you feel less alone. They can help you make a plan to stop the bullying.
Stay away from places where bullying happens.
Stay near adults and other kids. Most bullying happens when adults aren’t around.
http://www.stopbullying.gov/kids/what-you-can-do

Even though children are encouraged to report bullying, they often don’t.

The Committee for Children explains Why Don’t Kids Report Bullying?

There is good evidence that young people often do not report bullying to adults. Children are adept at hiding bullying-related behaviors and the unequal “shadow” power dynamics that can exist among them. Because of this secrecy, adults underestimate the seriousness and extent of bullying at their schools.
Schools cannot help if children do not entrust them with information. So why don’t children report bullying?
Research Shows That Adults Rarely Intervene
There is a catch-22: Students don’t tell because they don’t see adults helping, but adults can’t help if students don’t tell them what is going on in their peer groups.
The perception that adults don’t act may lead students to conclude that adults don’t care, or that there are different standards for adults’ behavior than for young people’s. In the workplace, shoving co-workers in the hallway would not be tolerated. Yet many adults believe that young people need to “work out” bullying problems like these on their own. This belief may promote a “code of silence” about abusive behavior. A logical consequence would be the failure of students to report other dangers, such as knowledge about a weapon at school.
Students Fear Retaliation and a Reputation as a “Rat”
Fear of retailiation might be especially the case about reporting popular students who bully. There is evidence that well-liked and successful children can be the most skilled at bullying and at escaping detection.
They Don’t Want to Lose Power
Students may not report that they or their friends bully because they don’t want to lose the power they gain through controlling others.
They Don’t Recognize Subtle Bullying
Students may not report more subtle, indirect, and relational types of bullying (such as deliberately excluding peers or spreading rumors) because they don’t realize that these are also unfair, unequal ways to treat others.
They Feel Ashamed, Afraid, or Powerless
Students may not report being victims of bullying because it makes them feel ashamed, afraid, and powerless. Over time, they may come to feel they deserve to be bullied. This may be particularly true of children in fourth grade and up.
Because adults rarely intervene, young people may come to believe they can bully without any consequences. Many believe that “acting bad” pays off. In fact, it may win them status with others, as children do act more friendly and respectful toward those who bully.
What Can Adults Do?
If we want children to talk to us and ask for help, we need to invite them to report. And effective adult follow-through is critical. This means “walking the talk” of bullying prevention, and addressing the power imbalances that put children who bully, those who are bullied, and bystanders at risk of perpetuating abuse. Bringing children who bully and those they bully into the same room to talk is not advisable. Intervening, making plans for behavior change, and continuing to check in on an individual basis with the students involved is best.
Adults can also give young people tools to help them evaluate when and how to report. Teaching about the distinction between reporting (telling to keep someone safe) and tattling (telling to get someone in trouble), for example, can help students make responsible decisions. This, in turn, can empower everyone in schools to help prevent inequity and suffering. http://www.cfchildren.org/advocacy/bullying-prevention/why-kids-dont-report-bullying.aspx

The Tanenbaum Center which honors the work of the late Rabbi Marc Tanenbaum has a really good definition of the “Golden Rule” https://www.tanenbaum.org/resources/golden-rule which is stated in an interview with Joyce Dubensky entitled, The Golden Rule Around the World At the core of all bullying is a failure to recognize another’s humanity and a basic lack of respect for life. At the core of the demand for personal expression and failure to tolerate opinions which are not like one’s own is a self-centeredness which can destroy the very society it claims to want to protect.

Resources:

Helping Kids Deal With Bullies http://kidshealth.org/parent/emotions/behavior/bullies.html

Teachers Who Bully http://www.webmd.com/parenting/features/teachers-who-bully

Is Your Child Being Bullied? 9 Steps You Can Take as a Parent http://www.empoweringparents.com/Is-Your-Child-Being-Bullied.php#ixzz2PqGTZNdl

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART©
http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews ©
http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda © https://drwilda.com/

Kids need to tell teachers and schools when they are bullied

8 Apr

Moi wrote about bullying in School bullying: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency report:

The Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency has issued the report, Bullying in Schools: An Overview by Ken Seeley, Martin L. Tombari, Laurie J. Bennett, and Jason B. Dunkle. Among the study’s findings are:

  • Bullying is a complex social and emotional phenomenon that plays out differently on an individual level.

  • Bullying does not directly cause truancy.

  • School engagement protects victims from truancy and low academic achievement.

  • When schools provide a safe learning environment in which adults model positive behavior, they can mitigate the negative effects of bullying.

  • Any interventions to address bullying or victimization should be intentional, student-focused engagement strategies that fit the context of the school where they are used.

The report makes the following recommendations:

  • Increase student engagement.

  • Model caring behavior for students.

  • Offer mentoring programs.

  • Provide students with opportunities for service learning as a means of improving school engagement.

  • Address the difficult transition between elementary and middle school (from a single classroom teacher to teams of teachers with periods and class changes in a large school) (Lohaus et al., 2004).

  • Start prevention programs early.

  • Resist the temptation to use prefabricated curriculums that are not aligned to local conditions.

Increase Student Engagement

Bullied children who remain engaged in school attend class more frequently and achieve more. Challenging academics, extracurricular activities, understanding teachers and coaches, and a focus on the future help keep victimized children engaged in their education (Bausell, 2011). Schools, administrations, and districts that wish to stave off the negative effects of bullying must redouble their efforts to engage each student in school. Typical school engagement strategies include (Karcher, 2005):

•            Providing a caring adult for every student through an advisory program or similar arrangement.

See, School Bullying Report Makes Recommendations To Address Issue, Support Victims  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/17/school-bullying-report-ma_n_1155250.html?ref=email_share

The Takepart.com article, When Kids Are Afraid to Tell Teachers About Bullying—That Is a Problem discusses the reluctance of some children to tell teachers about bullying.

Learning when and how to “tattle”—I mean when and how to report incidents—is extremely important to preventing bullying and building a safe and caring learning community in the classroom.

When acts of meanness, small or large, go unchecked, disrespectful and mean behavior becomes the norm. Over time, this creates a culture of meanness that eventually can grow to permeate the entire classroom or school.

Parents and educators should redefine tattling as reporting and teach children why it’s important to report hurtful behavior to an adult in order to help keep someone else safe. Teaching young children how to “report” may have lasting effects, and help prevent some of the awful incidents of violence that have occurred in our high schools. 

As a more experienced, and hopefully wiser, teacher now, I listen carefully first and then determine what to do with the information children share with me. On the first day of school, I tell my students, “My most important job at school is to keep you safe.” I also make sure parents know it’s a message I take very seriously.

I go on to tell my students, “If someone is being mean to you—hurting you on the outside or on the inside—I need you to tell me.” They learn quickly that kindness is valued and meanness is not allowed. As a community, we learn better ways to take care of each other. We spend lots of time strengthening our skills of cooperation and problem-solving.

But, even with all of this proactive work, children will still test limits and experiment with how to treat each other. Because I know this, we model, we practice, and we role-play what to do when someone is unkind to someone else.

We get really good at identifying when we need to tell an adult and what we should say. A dilemma we face is that much of the meanness and bullying goes on when teachers aren’t around—at lunchtime, recess, in the hallways, and just before and after school.

Teachers can’t be everywhere and even if we could, we can’t see everything. We need to prepare our students to get help outside the safety of our classrooms.   

When children tell us about bullying behavior, we adults need to intervene and send the message that we will not let this continue. Children need to know we are going to help them.

As teachers, we need to think carefully about our responses when children come to us and share information.

As teachers, we need to think carefully about our responses when children come to us and share information. When they tell us that something is happening to them or to someone else, they should know that we will help them.

We need to show them that the information they shared with us will not be ignored and that the adults in the school will help them.

When it comes to tattling reporting, we need children to have the skills and courage to tell us about problems they’re noticing. Because we teachers can’t stop what we don’t see or hear—or know about. http://news.yahoo.com/kids-afraid-tell-teachers-bullying-problem-191700642.html

The American Psychological Association (APA) has information about bullying.

The APA has the following suggestions for teachers and administrators:

Be knowledgeable and observant

Teachers and administrators need to be aware that although bullying generally happens in areas such as the bathroom, playground, crowded hallways, and school buses as well as via cell phones and computers (where supervision is limited or absent), it must be taken seriously. Teachers and administrators should emphasize that telling is not tattling. If a teacher observes bullying in a classroom, he/she needs to immediately intervene to stop it, record the incident and inform the appropriate school administrators so the incident can be investigated. Having a joint meeting with the bullied student and the student who is bullying is not recommended — it is embarrassing and very intimidating for the student that is being bullied.

Involve students and parents

Students and parents need to be a part of the solution and involved in safety teams and antibullying task forces. Students can inform adults about what is really going on and also teach adults about new technologies that kids are using to bully. Parents, teachers, and school administrators can help students engage in positive behavior and teach them skills so that they know how to intervene when bullying occurs. Older students can serve as mentors and inform younger students about safe practices on the Internet.

Set positive expectations about behavior for students and adults

Schools and classrooms must offer students a safe learning environment. Teachers and coaches need to explicitly remind students that bullying is not accepted in school and such behaviors will have consequences. Creating an anti-bullying document and having both the student and the parents/guardians sign and return it to the school office helps students understand the seriousness of bullying. Also, for students who have a hard time adjusting or finding friends, teachers and administrators can facilitate friendships or provide “jobs” for the student to do during lunch and recess so that children do not feel isolated or in danger of becoming targets for bullying. http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/bullying.aspx

Stop Bullying.gov has some great advice about bullying.

According to the Stop Bullying.gov article, What You Can Do:

What to Do If You’re Bullied 

There are things you can do if you are being bullied:

  • Look at the kid bullying you and tell him or her to stop in a calm, clear voice. You can also try to laugh it off. This works best if joking is easy for you. It could catch the kid bullying you off guard.
  • If speaking up seems too hard or not safe, walk away and stay away. Don’t fight back. Find an adult to stop the bullying on the spot.

There are things you can do to stay safe in the future, too.

  • Talk to an adult you trust. Don’t keep your feelings inside. Telling someone can help you feel less alone. They can help you make a plan to stop the bullying.
  • Stay away from places where bullying happens.
  • Stay near adults and other kids. Most bullying happens when adults aren’t around.

http://www.stopbullying.gov/kids/what-you-can-do

Even though children are encouraged to report bullying, they often don’t.

The Committee for Children explains Why Don’t Kids Report Bullying?

There is good evidence that young people often do not report bullying to adults. Children are adept at hiding bullying-related behaviors and the unequal “shadow” power dynamics that can exist among them. Because of this secrecy, adults underestimate the seriousness and extent of bullying at their schools.

Schools cannot help if children do not entrust them with information. So why don’t children report bullying?

Research Shows That Adults Rarely Intervene

There is a catch-22: Students don’t tell because they don’t see adults helping, but adults can’t help if students don’t tell them what is going on in their peer groups.

The perception that adults don’t act may lead students to conclude that adults don’t care, or that there are different standards for adults’ behavior than for young people’s. In the workplace, shoving co-workers in the hallway would not be tolerated. Yet many adults believe that young people need to “work out” bullying problems like these on their own. This belief may promote a “code of silence” about abusive behavior. A logical consequence would be the failure of students to report other dangers, such as knowledge about a weapon at school.

Students Fear Retaliation and a Reputation as a “Rat”

Fear of retailiation might be especially the case about reporting popular students who bully. There is evidence that well-liked and successful children can be the most skilled at bullying and at escaping detection.

They Don’t Want to Lose Power

Students may not report that they or their friends bully because they don’t want to lose the power they gain through controlling others.

They Don’t Recognize Subtle Bullying

Students may not report more subtle, indirect, and relational types of bullying (such as deliberately excluding peers or spreading rumors) because they don’t realize that these are also unfair, unequal ways to treat others.

They Feel Ashamed, Afraid, or Powerless

Students may not report being victims of bullying because it makes them feel ashamed, afraid, and powerless. Over time, they may come to feel they deserve to be bullied. This may be particularly true of children in fourth grade and up.

Because adults rarely intervene, young people may come to believe they can bully without any consequences. Many believe that “acting bad” pays off. In fact, it may win them status with others, as children do act more friendly and respectful toward those who bully.

What Can Adults Do?

If we want children to talk to us and ask for help, we need to invite them to report. And effective adult follow-through is critical. This means “walking the talk” of bullying prevention, and addressing the power imbalances that put children who bully, those who are bullied, and bystanders at risk of perpetuating abuse. Bringing children who bully and those they bully into the same room to talk is not advisable. Intervening, making plans for behavior change, and continuing to check in on an individual basis with the students involved is best.

Adults can also give young people tools to help them evaluate when and how to report. Teaching about the distinction between reporting (telling to keep someone safe) and tattling (telling to get someone in trouble), for example, can help students make responsible decisions. This, in turn, can empower everyone in schools to help prevent inequity and suffering. http://www.cfchildren.org/advocacy/bullying-prevention/why-kids-dont-report-bullying.aspx

The Tanenbaum Center which honors the work of the late Rabbi Marc Tanenbaum has a really good definition of the “Golden Rule” which is stated in an interview with Joyce Dubensky entitled, The Golden Rule Around the World At the core of all bullying is a failure to recognize another’s humanity and a basic lack of respect for life. At the core of the demand for personal expression and failure to tolerate opinions which are not like one’s own is a self-centeredness which can destroy the very society it claims to want to protect.

Resources:

Helping Kids Deal With Bullies                                                 http://kidshealth.org/parent/emotions/behavior/bullies.html

Teachers Who Bully                                                    http://www.webmd.com/parenting/features/teachers-who-bully

Is Your Child Being Bullied? 9 Steps You Can Take as a Parent http://www.empoweringparents.com/Is-Your-Child-Being-Bullied.php#ixzz2PqGTZNdl

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Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine study: Kids with autism more likely to be bullied

6 Sep

In Autism and children of color, moi said:

The number of children with autism appears to be growing. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides statistics on the number of children with autism in the section Data and Statistics:

Prevalence

  • It is estimated that between 1 in 80 and 1 in 240 with an average of 1 in 110 children in the United States have an ASD. [Read article

  • ASDs are reported to occur in all racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups, yet are on average 4 to 5 times more likely to occur in boys than in girls.  However, we need more information on some less studied populations and regions around the world. [Read article]

  • Studies in Asia, Europe, and North America have identified individuals with an ASD with an approximate prevalence of 0.6% to over 1%. A recent study in South Korea reported a prevalence of 2.6%. [Data table Adobe PDF file]

  • Approximately 13% of children have a developmental disability, ranging from mild disabilities such as speech and language impairments to serious developmental disabilities, such as intellectual disabilities, cerebral palsy, and autism.  [Read articleExternal Web Site Icon]

Learn more about prevalence of ASDs »

Learn more about the ADDM Project »

Learn more about the MADDSP Project »

On this Page

http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/data.html

In order for children with autism to reach their full potential there must be early diagnosis and treatment. https://drwilda.com/2012/03/27/autism-and-children-of-color/

Science Daily is reporting in the article, Study Details Bullying Involvement for Adolescents With Autism Spectrum Disorder:

A study based on information collected from 920 parents suggests an estimated 46.3 percent of adolescents with an autism spectrum disorder were the victims of bullying, according to a report published Online First by Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, a JAMA Network publication….

The prevalence of bullying involvement for adolescents with an ASD was 46.3 percent for victimization and was “substantially higher” than the national prevalence estimates for the general adolescent population (10.6 percent). The rates of perpetration of bullying (14.8 percent) and victimization/perpetration (8.9 percent, i.e. those who perpetrate and are victimized), were about equivalent to national estimates found among typically developing adolescents, according to the study results.

Victimization was related to having a non-Hispanic ethnicity, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, lower social skills, some form of conversational ability, and more classes in general education. Perpetration was correlated with being white, having attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, and getting together with friends at least once a week. Victimization/perpetration was associated with being white non-Hispanic, having attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and getting together with friends at least once a week, the results indicate.

“Future interventions should incorporate content that addresses the core deficits of adolescents with an ASD, which limits their verbal ability to report bullying incidents,” the authors comment. “Schools should incorporate strategies that address conversational difficulties and the unique challenges of those with comorbid conditions.”

The authors also concluded: “Inclusive classrooms need to increase the social integration of adolescents with an ASD into protective peer groups while also enhancing the empathy and social skills of typically developing students toward their peers with an ASD and other developmental disabilities.” http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120903221126.htm

Citation:

Bullying Involvement and Autism Spectrum Disorders Prevalence and Correlates of Bullying Involvement Among Adolescents With an Autism Spectrum Disorder ONLINE FIRST

Paul R. Sterzing, PhD, MSSW; Paul T. Shattuck, PhD; Sarah C. Narendorf, PhD, MSW; Mary Wagner, PhD; Benjamin P. Cooper, MPH

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. Published online September 03, 2012. doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2012.790

Text Size: A A A

Published online September 2012

Article

Tables

References

Comments

Objectives  To produce nationally representative estimates for rates of bullying involvement among adolescents with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), to compare population estimates with adolescents who have other developmental disabilities, and to identify social ecological correlates of bullying involvement.

Design  Nationally representative surveys from 2001.

Setting  United States.

Participants  Parents of adolescents with an ASD, principals of the schools they attended, and staff members most familiar with their school programs.

Main Exposure  Autism spectrum disorders.

Main Outcome Measures  Parent report of victimization, perpetration, and victimization/perpetration within the past school year.

Results  The prevalence rates of bullying involvement for adolescents with an ASD were 46.3% for victimization, 14.8% for perpetration, and 8.9% for victimization/perpetration. Victimization was related to having a non-Hispanic ethnicity, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, lower social skills, some form of conversational ability, and more classes in general education. Correlates of perpetration included being white, having attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and getting together with friends at least once a week. Victimization/perpetration was associated with being white non-Hispanic, having attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and getting together with friends at least once a week.

Conclusions  School-based bullying interventions need to target the core deficits of ASD (conversational ability and social skills) and comorbid conditions (eg, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder). Future bullying interventions also need to address the higher rates of victimization that occur in general education settings by increasing social integration into protective peer groups and increasing the empathy and social skills of typically developing students toward their peers with an ASD.

Journal Reference:

Sterzing PR, Shattuck PT, Narendorf SC, Wagner M, Cooper BP. Bullying Involvement and Autism Spectrum Disorders: Prevalence and Correlates of Bullying Involvement Among Adolescents With an Autism Spectrum Disorder. Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 2012; DOI: 10.1001/archpediatrics.2012.790

There are signs that a particular child may be vulnerable to bullying.

In School bullying: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency report, moi wrote:

The Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency has issued the report, Bullying in Schools: An Overview by Ken Seeley, Martin L. Tombari, Laurie J. Bennett, and Jason B. Dunkle. Among the study’s findings are:

  • Bullying is a complex social and emotional phenomenon that plays out differently on an individual level.
  • Bullying does not directly cause truancy.
  • School engagement protects victims from truancy and low academic achievement.
  • When schools provide a safe learning environment in which adults model positive behavior, they can mitigate the negative effects of bullying.
  • Any interventions to address bullying or victimization should be intentional, student-focused engagement strategies that fit the context of the school where they are used.

The report makes the following recommendations:

  • Increase student engagement.
  • Model caring behavior for students.
  • Offer mentoring programs.
  • Provide students with opportunities for service learning as a means of improving school engagement.
  • Address the difficult transition between elementary and middle school (from a single classroom teacher to teams of teachers with periods and class changes in a large school) (Lohaus et al., 2004).
  • Start prevention programs early.
  • Resist the temptation to use prefabricated curriculums that are not aligned to local conditions.

Increase Student Engagement

Bullied children who remain engaged in school attend class more frequently and achieve more. Challenging academics, extracurricular activities, understanding teachers and coaches, and a focus on the future help keep victimized children engaged in their education (Bausell, 2011). Schools, administrations, and districts that wish to stave off the negative effects of bullying must redouble their efforts to engage each student in school. Typical school engagement strategies include (Karcher, 2005):

•            Providing a caring adult for every student through an advisory program or similar arrangement.

  • Carefully monitoring attendance, calling home each time a student is absent, and allowing students the ability to make up missed work with support from a teacher.
  • Adopting and implementing the National School Climate Standards from the National School Climate Council (2010).
  • Promoting and fostering parent and community engagement, including afterschool and summer programs.
  • Providing school-based mentorship options for students. http://www.ojjdp.gov/pubs/234205.pdf

See, School Bullying Report Makes Recommendations To Address Issue, Support Victims  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/17/school-bullying-report-ma_n_1155250.html?ref=email_share

Hurting people often hurt other people.

Joyce Meyer

https://drwilda.com/2011/12/20/school-bullying-office-of-juvenile-justice-and-delinquency-report/

Related:

Father’s age may be linked to Autism and Schizophrenia https://drwilda.com/2012/08/26/fathers-age-may-be-linked-to-autism-and-schizophrenia/

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