The prevalence of
bullying and related behaviors reported by nearly 250,000 students in Maryland schools declined significantly between 2005-2014, according to a study to be published in the June 2017 issue of
The study, "Ten-Year Trends in Bullying and Related Attitudes Among 4th-12th Graders," (published online May 1), found that
cyberbullying had decreased, along with physical, verbal and relational bullying experiences, as self-reported by students who were surveyed in 109 Maryland schools.
Johns Hopkins Center for the Prevention of Youth Violence developed the online survey system in collaboration with school-based partners, and included a definition of bullying that was consistent with the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The authors conclude that bullying has remained a prevalent, though declining experience for school-aged youth, with 13.4% to 28.8% of 246,306 students reporting an experience with bullying in the past month. School climate and a reduction in bullying were cited as the greatest improvements. The authors encourage the use of evidence-based programming aimed at reducing school-based bullying to further reduce the problem.
Editor's Note: A related commentary, "Tackling Bullying: Grounds for Encouragement and Sustained Focus," also is being published in the June 2017 Pediatrics (online May 1).