Bullying in schools across the country and even the world affects nearly everyone that goes through public or private schooling. “Bullying in school is generally defined as repeated, intentional acts of aggression directed toward a student who has less status or power.” Bullying can also occur between two or more students or it can be between students and teachers. Bullying can vary from verbal abuse, physical abuse, emotional abuse, to even cyberbullying. The type of bullying makes no difference because there are serious consequences for every level of bullying.
Bullying is a problem that schools are working on solving today. Teachers and schools use different methods and programs during their time at school to try to prevent bullying in their classrooms. There is not a perfect answer to every situation and every child because they all vary. That is why teachers have to be prepared to use a combination of different techniques or work to come up for one to help the situation they are facing.
Bullying is a major issue because it is yet to be solved, and it affects so many children and their futures.
In some cases, the teacher is the bully. Although this seems unusual, it is often pretty common. Teacher bullying a student can include things like the use of sarcasm, putting down, terrorizing, ignoring, or isolating a child or children. Datta, Cornell, & Huang found that 45% of elementary school teachers admitted to bullying at least one child during their time teaching.
That is nearly half the elementary school teachers guilty of this, and these are just the ones that were reported. Teacher bullying can affect how a student perceives school and how they behave to future teachers and how they respond to overall authority in their day-to-day lives. This is a major problem because if students lose their respect for authority, they are sure to have problems when they graduate and have to participate in everyday society. Student-teacher relationships have an effect on the student’s overall psychological development as well. According to Fromuth, Davis, Kelly, and Wakefield, students who were bullied by teachers are more likely to suffer from low self-esteem, a negative mood, and social functioning problems. These are just some of the many negative effects that teacher bullying can have on school children.
Bullying affects not only the victim but the bully his or herself. Williford, Boulton, Forrest-Bank, Bender, Dieterich, and Jenson wrote that bullying victims are more at risk for mental health problems. These health problems include depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and bullying can even affect their grades. The bully can become violent, are more likely to participate in substance abuse, and they also are at risk for the same mental health problems as the victim. If the bully is also a victim, research by Williford, Boulton, Forrest-Bank, Bender, Dieterich, and Jenson have found that they are likely to “have higher levels of adverse social, emotional, and behavioral outcomes than other students”. Bullying affects almost everyone involved and even the people who witness it. Teachers have an important job when it comes to preventing bullying.
Teachers can do many things. Hornby states that they can encourage healthy relationships between their students, and they can be a role models for their students to follow in their footsteps. Teachers can also try different programs or methods in their classrooms to prevent bullying. Hornby (2016) claimed that there were six different methods to prevent bullying: “direct sanctions, strengthening the victim, mediation, restorative practice, the support group approach, and the method of shared concern”. These methods proved to be useful to have in place for when a child was bullied. One example that could help prevent bullying would be to encourage the students to work together and encourage each other. Another way would be to explain what bullying is, what it entails, and show them the significance of why they shouldn’t do it.
Awareness for bullying and motivating children to tell an adult, when they see bullying occur, can help stop bullying because it shows the children that they are not in danger of scrutiny for speaking up. For a child, telling an adult about a serious matter is frightening. This is why schools have to make children feel comfortable around their teachers and make sure they know they will not get in trouble for someone else’s actions. According to Kevorkian, for a child’s psychological welfare to stay intact they need a support system in every area of their life. This includes parents making sure their child knows how dangerous bullying is, to tell children that if necessary, they can fight back.
It is a known fact that no person is like another. This being said, this means that everyone is different in their own way, whether it be gender, race, religion, sexual origin, ethnicity, disabilities, financial situations and their families. All of these things are reasons that children are bullied, and some are not able to be changed or altered. Due to this, every situation that a teacher encounters is sure to have its own individual character that the last did not entail. This is one reason why teachers and school faculty need to be on their feet and prepared for different situations. They should even be prepared to do research if necessary. Each child deserves an equal chance to succeed in the “real” world. Teachers need to do everything they can possibly do to take down bullying in schools because it is a major issue that will affect the future of society as a whole and the entire world.