Do Some School Anti-Bullying Programs Do More Harm than Good?


Many schools spend countless hours trying to stop bullying, but are they sending the right message? University of Texas at Arlington criminologist Seokjin Jeong analyzed data from 7,000 students from all 50 states, reports CBS Local Media in Dallas-Fort Worth. He thought the results would be predictable and would show that anti-bullying programs curb bullying. Instead, he found the opposite. “Our anti-bullying programs, either intervention or prevention,” do not work, he said.

The study concluded that students at schools with anti-bullying programs might actually be more likely to become a victim of bullying. It also found that students at schools with no bullying programs were less likely to become victims. The student videos used in many campaigns show examples of bullying and how to intervene. Jeong says they may actually teach students different bullying techniques, and even educate them about new ways to bully through social media and texting. Jeong said students with ill intentions “are able to learn, there are new techniques [and gain] new skills.” Students might see examples in videos and then want to try it.

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