Friday, April 18, 2014

Latest trends show decrease in school-aged bullying and fighting

New research from the American Journal of Public Health finds a decrease in bullying and physical fighting among middle and high school students. However, the prevalence of carrying weapons increased among white students.

Using survey data from the Health Behavior in School-Aged Children study, researchers analyzed trends in bullying, physical fighting and carrying of weapons among sixth- through 10th-grade students between 1998 and 2010. 

Results indicated that bullying declined significantly along with physical fighting, which had a less dramatic decrease. While collectively there was no decline in weapon carrying, there was an increase in carrying weapons among white students.

“This trend is surprising when one considers that white students had the largest declines in bullying and physical fighting over the same time period,” the authors expound.

“The overall decrease in bullying and victimization may be attributed to two related factors, an increasing recognition of the need for bullying prevention programs, and the increased number of evidence-based bullying prevention programs,” the researchers suggest.

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