The Changing Face of Bullying

November 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — According to the latest research, the rate of bullying in America has dropped over the past 10 years, from a high of 32 percent to 21 percent in 2015. However, this still means that more than one in five students will be bullied this year.

Twenty-one year old Aija Mayrock is a performance artist, reciting her own rap or slam poems. She’s already a writer, publishing a book at age 17. It’s hard to imagine that this young woman used to be a child who was bullied.

“On Halloween of my freshman year, a girl I had never met who attended my old school dressed up as me as her costume,” Mayrock told an audience during a performance.

Deborah Temkin, PhD, is the program director for education research at Child Trends and an expert in bullying prevention. She said new research suggests that bullying can have long-term consequences. Kids bullied in childhood are more likely to be depressed or anxious as adults. They may have less earning potential. They may be more likely to be suicidal. Temkin said that, these days, technology plays a role early on.

Temkin told Ivanhoe, “Kids are now walking around addicted to their cell phones.”

Twelve percent of kids ages 12 to 18 report being victims of cyberbullying; 21 percent report being bullied in-person, but many other kids may suffer in silence. Temkin said less than half of those students report the behavior to an adult.

Temkin explained, “They worry often that parents will overreact, for instance. Jump to doing something that they fear makes the bullying worse.”

Temkin said that parents need to look for changes in their children. They also need to involve the school: understand the district’s bullying policy, who to report to, what the investigation procedures are, and how to appeal. Aija Mayrock said that when the bullying got bad, she set goals and focused on her future.

Mayrock told the crowd, “I need you to get up, hold your head up high, raise your hand, and say I will not let another kid feel like someone else’s prey.”

A generation ago, parents would advise kids to ignore school yard bullies and the teasing and taunting would go away. These days, constant, easy access to social media means that some may be taking bullying to a new level.

Contributors to this news report include: Cyndy McGrath, Supervising and Field Producer; Milvionne Chery, Assistant Producer; Roque Correa, Editor; Roque Correa and Kirk Manson, Videographers.

Produced by Child Trends News Service in partnership with Ivanhoe Broadcast News and funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation. 

Spanish Translation

El Rostro Cambiante Del Acoso Escolar

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — El consejo que daban  generaciones anteriores era ignorar al acosador y sus provocaciones, hasta que se terminara  cansando. Hoy día, debido al acceso constante a las redes sociales, algunos matones están llevando el hostigamiento a niveles muy peligrosos. Te contamos que deben de saber los padres sobre el rostro cambiante del acoso escolar.

Aija Mayrock estudia en una prestigiosa Universidad en Nueva York, y a los 17 años ya había publicado un libro. Pero aunque es difícil de imaginarlo, aija fue  víctima de acoso escolar. Deborah Temkin es una experta en cómo prevenir el acoso. Y asegura que el acoso escolar puede tener consecuencias a largo plazo. Nuevos estudios indican que las personas que fueron hostigadas durante la infancia tienden a ser adultos ansiosos o depresivos. Asimismo tienden a ganar menos y a tener más tendencias suicidas.

Según Temkin, el uso de la tecnología juega un papel en el acoso temprano. Un doce por ciento de niños entre los 12 y 18 años han reportado ser víctimas de acoso cibernético. Un 21 por ciento reportan estar siendo hostigados en persona. Pero existen muchas otras víctimas que sufren en silencio. Según Temkin, menos de la mitad acude a un adulto con este problema.

Según Temkin los padres deben de estar pendientes para detectar algún cambio en el comportamiento de sus hijos. Cuando vayan a buscar apoyo del colegio, deben de entender las reglas del distrito escolar, saber a quién hay que informar, cuales son los procesos para investigar el acoso, y como apelar una decisión.

Según estudios recientes, el acoso escolar ha disminuido en los últimos diez años, de un 32 por ciento a un 21 por ciento, en el a٩o 2015. Eso significa, sin embargo, que aun 1 de cada cinco niños será victima de acoso escolar este año.

Los contribuyentes a este reportaje incluyen: Cyndy McGrath, Supervisora y Productora de Campo; Milvionne Chery, Productora Assistente; Roque Correa, Editor; Roque Correa Y Kirk Manson, Camarografo.

Producido por Child Trends News Service en asocio con Ivanhoe Broadcast News y auspiciado por una beca de la National Science Foundation.