Essay: Prevalence of Bullying
This essay discusses issues related to bullying. Research estimates indicate that the trouble affects far more students than teachers or parents are aware of.
Research estimates indicate that the trouble affects far more students than teachers or parents are aware of. A recent study of 1041 students in four Toronto area schools (Grades K-8) showed that the proportion of children who reported being mistreated more than once or twice over the term was between 12 and 15 percent (Pepler et al. 95). The proportion of students who reported having bullied others more than once or twice over the term ranged from 7 to 9 percent.
There is not a single cause but there several factors that contribute to bullying and violence:
- Authoritarian or Punitive Parenting: Children brought up in a cruel home environment often become angry and aggressive. A number of child-rearing styles have been found to forecast whether children will grow up to be aggressive bullies. A lack of concentration and warmth toward the child, together with modeling of aggressive behavior at home, and deprived supervision of the child, present the perfect opportunity for aggressive and bullying behavior to occur (Loeber et al.; Patterson et al. 235).
- Coercive Parenting: Parents who use power firm techniques, especially physical punishment, yelling, and name calling, often generate fear about punishment in their children. These children also are inclined to identify with and model such aggressive authority figures. Modeling of aggressive behavior may comprise use of physical and verbal aggression toward the child by parents, or use of physical and verbal aggression by parents toward each other. The link between witnessing wife assault by children, mainly male children, and bully behavior by children toward peers, has not been well studied, but studies do point out that aggressive behavior of all kinds is eminent in children who witness violence by their father toward their mother.
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