Bullying is an act of aggression with three specific characteristics:
- Unwarranted and intentional act to do harm to an individual.
- Repetitive (or likely to be repeated) action involving the same or a different targeted person.
- Involves an imbalance of power, where the person engaging in bullying behavior perceives her/himself to be superior to the person targeted.
All three characteristics must be present in order for an aggressive behavior to be bullying.
Types of Bullying:
Physical bullying involves hitting, shoving, pushing, tripping, and other kinds of force.
Verbal bullying involves hurtful comments, name-calling, teasing, and making threats.
Social bullying involves using relationships to hurt someone, including embarrassing someone in public, excluding someone from participation, and spreading rumors.
Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media sites, text messages, chat, and websites.
Involvement: Roles Involved with Bullying
- Those who are bullied
- Those who bully
- Those who bully and are bullied
- Those who witness: support, reinforce, stand by, defend
One of every five American teens and one of every four Michigan teens are bullied.
Incidents of verbal, social and cyberbullying become more frequent as children age, while physical bullying decreases. Furthermore, girls engage in social (relational) bullying behaviors earlier than boys.
What You Should Know – Bullying Prevention Laws, Policies, Expectations
Federal website that gives the state of bullying prevention laws across the nation and provides useful resources for educators and for parents.
The Center for Disease Control site for youth violence, specifically bullying. Bullying is defined, and research surrounding it is used as the foundation for many programs in the nation.
Federal explanation of Michigan’s anti-bullying legislation and its scope within the schools.
Michigan’s anti-bullying law, including recent language added on cyberbullying and mandatory annual training in schools. (Also referred to as “The Matt Epling Safe School Law” or “Matt’s Law”
Michigan’s Model Anti-Bullying Policy, used by schools throughout the state. Includes explicit definitions that enhance the CDC and federal definition and mandates prompt investigation, annual training and other important issues.
Research for Video 1:
Research done by OfCom that cites the use of the Internet by children.
This is the research on children’s use of social media.
Confronting Cyber-Bullying: What Schools Need to Know to Control Misconduct and Avoid Legal Consequences by Shaheen Shariff examines the legal consequences of cyberbullying.
What You Can Do – Bullying Prevention Implementation and Strategies
The stopbullying.gov website is maintained by the US Department of Health and Human Services. This page goes specifically to the definition of bullying that was developed by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. It also contains the most recent statistics from the National Center on Education Statistics and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Statistics on cyberbullying are difficult to track as new software is a constant and difficult to track.
This is an effort from the National School Climate Center and includes a variety of resources for students, educators and parents. The parent component gives tips to respond to their young people when bullying behavior is suspected. The school/home partnership makes it most compelling.
Sometimes well-intended actions in response to bullying have very negative consequences. The Anti-Defamation League lists here misdirection in addressing bullying.
This a wonderful site filled with information about talking to young people about bullying and prevention. Also found here are training modules that can be used and are aimed toward specific ages. Resources are also tailored to parents, students, and to educators. The website was recently updated and includes ways to building positive and safe learning environments, as well as how to engage the greater community around bullying prevention.
This site was developed by the National Bullying Prevention Center and is aimed toward younger students. It contains videos and activities that can be tailored to your needs.
Research for Video 2:
Michigan State University’s research about relationship between higher MEAP scores and a sense of belonging.For additional discussion on road rage, crowd control, see Understanding Human Motivation: What Makes People Tick by Donald Laming (2008)
Where Do We Start? And How We Can Help
Bully-Free Schools (BFS) is a research-based program that is used in K-12 schools across Michigan. Schools that have implemented the BFS strategies report a reduction in bullying, harassment and other peer-to-peer aggression up to 83%. BFS is a model program for complying with Matt’s Safe School Law and for fulfilling the State Board of Education Sample Policy for bullying prevention.
Oakland Schools offers a foundational 2-day training 2 times per year. It includes the following:
- Strategies to impact the behavior of students who engage in bullying and other forms of peer-to-peer aggression
- Elements of effective limits and consequences that ensure school-wide consistency
- Strategies to support the “targets” of bullying
- Techniques to empower “bystanders” and to change cultural norms
- Tips for implementation and integration with existing school initiatives, such as PBiS and MiBLSi
Because of the time involved, many districts have chosen instead to have Julie McDaniel visit their districts to do training for whatever time they have, from 45-minute staff meetings to all-day professional development days. She is also available for sustained efforts throughout the school year. Please call her at 248-209-2346 for additional information.
Kognito is filled with resources on how to have difficult conversations about mental health issues, substance abuse, and thoughts of suicide with young people. Personal licenses for these interactive lessons are less than $30 and are available at various developmental levels. They are also geared to both parents and educators.
NetSmartzKids is a project of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Much of their work is for younger children and internet safety. They do have videos for secondary students that are short and powerful about sexting, cyberbullying and Internet safety.
The NoBLE program out of Beaumont Hospital has prepared a list of evidence-based bullying prevention program for schools that can be accessed here. Most are fee-based programs, but have been shown to reduce bullying behaviors in schools.
The Oakland Mediation Center offers Olweus Bullying Prevention Training. Olweus has 40 years of evidence of the power of this international prevention program and is considered the gold standard.
Another great collection of resources from the National Bullying Prevention Center and is geared directly to parents.
Research for Video 3:
Upcoming Professional Learning
Bully-Free Schools: A Circle of Support for Learning
November 29, 2018 and February 13, 2019
Online registration and more information coming soon
February 6, 2019
Online registration and more information coming soon