10 pages at least

timer Asked: Apr 8th, 2018
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Question description

I need to write a research about bullying in Americans schools and how it effects on students you need to use those two articles, use them only to support the ideas of the thesis statement.

First page Abstract stand alone

in the introduction please include your thesis statement and make too easy example, ( Sleep deprivation has a devastatingly profound effect on the daily lives of students, it lessens academic performance and achievement, affects behavior and socialization with other, and contributes to numerous harmful health effects.)

background information

Definition of bullying from two sources and mention the resource for example, Homework as defined by the Oxford English dictionary states that it is " School homework assigned to a pupil to be done outside lesson time" (2014). if there is no date in the site write (n.d)

three bodies paragraphs


Please when you finished writing the definition and the thesis statement send them to me as soon as possible and make it too simple words and structure,

B u l l y in g I s s u e s I m p a c t in g S t u d e n t s w it h D is a b il it ie s : H ig h l ig h t s o f S e c t io n 1 9 8 3 , T it l e IX, S e c t io n 5 0 4 , ADA, a n d IDEA Ca ses Cynthia A. Dieterich*, Nicole DiRado Snyderf & Christine Villanit I. Introduction As student-on-student bullying in K -12 schools receives in ­ creasing national attention, there has been a corresponding in ­ crease in litigation based on bullying and h arassm en t claim s.*1 Students w ith and w ithout disabilities experience bullying th a t can resu lt in “significant negative emotional, educational and physical results . . ., [however] students w ith disabilities are both uniquely vulnerable and disproportionately im pacted by the bullying phenom ena.”2 Specifically, some stu d en ts w ith a disability m ay “look or act different th a n th eir peers as a resu lt of th e ir physical, intellectual, or em otional im pairm ents and these characteristics m ake them n a tu ra l targ ets for harass* Cynthia A. Dieterich is a visiting faculty member at the College of Education at Cleveland State University. She teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in Special Education. She is also an education consultant, providing research and educational support to individuals and organizations. She received her Ph.D. in Special Education and Psychometrics from Kent State University and a M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction: Learning Disabilities and Behavior Disorders from Cleveland State University. t Nicole DiRado Snyder is an associate at Latsha, Davis, Yohe & McKenna, P.C. She practices in charter school law, education law, special education law, litigation, and insurance defense and has defended clients in a variety of matters including IDEA and Section 504. She received her J.D. from Villanova University School of Law. t Christine Villani is a Professor of Elementary Education at Southern Connecticut State University. She teaches graduate and postgraduate level courses in education and educational foundations. She received her Ed.D. from Fordham University, and also holds Masters degrees in Psychology and Speech and Language Pathology. 1 See Seamus Boyce, Anne Littlefield & James D. Long, Zeno, OCR & the State: Recent Developments in Bullying & Harassment Regulation, NSBA COUNCIL OF S c h o o l A t t o r n e y s , l, 2 (2013). 2 Jonathan Young, Ari Ne’eman & Sara Gesler, Bullying and Students with Disabilities: A Briefing Paper from the National Council on Disability, NATIONAL C o u n c il On D is a b il it y , Mar. 9, 2011, at http://www.ncd.gov/publications/2011/March92011. 107 108 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 m ent .” 3 Findings of recent research in th e social sciences indi­ cate th a t students w ith disabilities are more likely to be bu l­ lied, and a t greater risk of being the p erp etrato r of harassing behavior .4 In social science research, bullying is typically m eas­ ured and defined based on data collected from standardized m easures of behavior, office referrals, and self-reporting of bu l­ lying behavior . 5 However, defining “bullying” for an em pirical study can be dram atically different th a n a legal in terpretation of bullying. Bullying is not defined w ith specificity by federal law , 6 and states have used the trad itio n al states’ right approach to enact anti-bullying legislation . 7 According to a report released by the U nited S tates D epartm ent of Education, states have enacted bullying law s th a t range from comprehensive and explicit to lean and open for broad in terp retatio n .8 A lthough no federal 3 David Ellis Ferster, Deliberately Different: Bullying as Denial of a Free Appropriate Public Education Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 43 GA. L. Rev. 191, 199 (2008). 4 See generally Susan M. Swearer, Cixin Wang, John W. Maag, Amanda B. Siebecker & Lynae J. Frerichs, Understanding the Bullying Dynamic Among Students in Special and General Education, 50 J. OF SCH. PSYCHOL. 503 (2012) (results from a study indicated that students with behavioral disorders and those with observable disabilities reported bullying others more than being victimized more than their general education counterparts); Christopher B. Forrest, Katherine B. Bevans, Anne W. Riley, Richard Crespo, & Thomas A. Louis, School Outcomes of Children With Special Health Care Needs, PEDIATRICS, (July 25, 2011), http://pediatrics.aappublications.Org/content/128/2/303.full (A study showed that children with special health care needs had lower motivation to do well in school, more disruptive behaviors, and more frequent experiences as a bully victim); Connie Anderson, IAN Research Report: Bullying and Children with ASD, INTERACTIVE Au t is m N etw ork, (Mar. 26, 2012), http://www.iancommunity.org/cs/ian_research_reports/ian_research_report_bullying; (Children with ASD are often bully victims, children who had been bullied and had also bullied others); Chad A. Rose, Dorothy L. Espelage, Steven R. Aragon & John Elliott, Bullying and Victimization Among Students in Special Education and General Education Curricula, 21 EXCEPTIONALITY EDUC. INT’L 2 (2011) (Data from a study suggested that students with disabilities engaged in higher rates of bullying and fighting perpetration, and were victimized more than their general education peers) 5 See generally Rose et al., supra note 4 at 7 (Data for bullying research was collected in collaboration with school adminsitrators, teachers, and community representatives and consent forms were mailed to parents); Swearer et al., supra note 4 at 504 (Data on students’ involvement in bullying, office referrals, and prosocial behavior was collected for bullying study). 6 See Samantha Neiman, Brandon Robers & Simone Robers, Bullying: A State of Affairs, 41 J.L. & EDUC. 603, 603-04 (2012). 7 See U.S. DEPT. HEALTH HUM. SERV., Policies & Lau;s,(Mar. 31, 1014), http://www.stopbullying.gov/laws/index.html (presently forty-nine states have bullying laws). 8 Analysis of State Bullying Laws and Policies, U.S. Dept. EDUC., (2011). 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 109 law directly prohibits bullying, states m ust be careful not to juxtapose or directly conflict their bullying laws w ith other fed­ eral laws th a t a plaintiff m ight use to take action in a bullying case. Claims against schools failing to protect stu d en ts w ith disabilities against bullying have typically been made under Title IX of the Education Am endm ents of 1972,9 Section 1983 of th e Civil Rights Act,10 Section 504 of the R ehabilitation Act,*11 the Am ericans w ith Disabilities Act,12 and/or the Individuals w ith D isabilities Education Im provem ent Act.13 Hence, states need to recognize the m inim al criteria a state law can set so as to not contradict these “cousin”14 laws a t the federal level. U n­ derstanding the legal precedent th a t states need to consider w hen determ ining state legislation will afford school districts a stan d a rd to establish local and school-specific policies th a t best address the issue of bullying and children w ith disabilities. II. Overview of F ederal Laws P rotecting Students With Disabilities A. Section 1983 of the Civil Rights Act Section 1983 provides individuals the right to sue governm ent actors who have violated one’s civil rig h ts.15 Specifically, “[ejvery person who . . . subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the U nited S tates or other person w ithin the jurisdiction . . . to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or im m unities secured by the C onstitution and laws, http://www2.ed.gov/rschstat/evai/bullying/state-bullying-iaws/state-buii3dng-laws.pdf (last visited on November 1, 2014). 9 Title IX of the Education Amendments, 20 U.S.C. § 1681(1972) [hereinafter Title IX], 10 42 U.S.C. § 1983 (2006) [hereinafter Section 1983]. 11 Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, 29 U.S.C. § 794 (1973) [hereinafter 504], 12 42 U.S.C.A. § 12132 (1990) [hereinafter ADA, which is used as the common term although it was amended in 2008 as the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADA AA)]. 13 Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act, 20 U.S.C. § 1400 (2004) [hereafter IDEA]. 14 Using the term “cousin” to suggest that Section 1983, Title IX, 504, and IDEA are related legislation that plaintiffs can use to bring suit in response to the misconduct of students toward their child with a disability in lieu of a specific federal bullying law. 15 See 42 U.S.C. § 1983. 110 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 shall be liable to th e p arty injured . . ”16 Claims are often raised in actions against school officials for deprivation of constitutional rights under th e Due Process or Equal Protection clauses of the 14th A m endm ent or of a rig h t created by federal sta tu te .17 U nder Section 1983, victims of peer h arassm en t have a civil cause of action to rem edy federal constitutional or statu to ry right violations.18 However, there are “several major hurdles to a finding of liability under § 1983 th a t greatly reduce its utility as an avenue of redress for bullying victim s.”19 Claims of im m unity by individuals or school entities; exclusive avenue and statu to ry preclusion issues; exhaustion of other remedies, including adm inistrative remedies; and protracted litigation are all potential im pedim ents to successful recovery for claims under Section 1983.20 B. Title IX Title IX prohibits discrim ination on the basis of gender by providing th a t “no person shall be . . . denied benefits for . . . any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”21 A lthough Title IX imposes liability for peer h arassm ent, districts are not liable for th e conduct of school bullies unless they officially chose to ignore the known h arassm en t.22 In Davis v. Monroe, the U.S. Suprem e Court held th a t Title IX could provide a rem edy against a school for creating a hostile environm ent by failing to take disciplinary action against offending students.23 However, in order to establish th a t a hostile environm ent for which a school could be liable exists, as set forth in Davis a plaintiff m ust show th a t (1) th e school board has adequate notice of liability for the harassm ent; (2) the school board was aw are of harassm en t and is id. 17 Neiman et al., supra note 6 at 625. is 42 U.S.C. § 1983. 19 See Neiman supra note 6 at 625. 20 Id. at 625-26. 21 20 U.S.C. § 1681(a). 22 Id. 23 Davis ex rel. LaShonda D. v. Monroe County Bd. of Ed., 526 U.S. 629 (1999). See Annette Thacker, Helping Students Who Can’t Help Themselves: Special Education and the Deliberate Indifference Standard for Title IX Peer Sexual Harassment, 2011 BYU Educ . & L.J. 701,701 (2011) (discussing Title IX, sexual harassment, and special education). 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 111 acted deliberately indifferent; (3) the h arassm en t is so severe, pervasive, and offensive th a t the victim ’s access to an educational benefit or activity is denied; and (4) th e school board dem onstrates control of the h a ra sser and the context of the h arassm en t.24 Hence, the bar for recovery is high. T hat said, schools should ensure th a t appropriate action is ta k en to create a safe, nurturing, harassm ent-free environm ent for all of th e ir students. C. Section 504 and the ADA Section 504 of the R ehabilitation Act (“Section 504”) and th e A m ericans w ith D isabilities Act (“ADA”) prohibit schools th a t receive federal funds from discrim ination against individuals w ith qualifying disabilities.25 A plaintiff seeking to state a claim under Section 504 m ust show th a t solely by reason of his or h er disability, he or she m ust not be excluded from the participation in, or be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to any discrim ination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.26 F urther, a plaintiff seeking to state a claim under the ADA against a school receiving federal financial assistance m ust show th a t he or she is: (1) disabled under the statute, (2) otherw ise qualified for participation in the program, and (3) being excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or subjected to discrim ination under the program by reason of his or her disability.27 If disabled under Section 504, the school district needs to determ ine if the child’s educational needs are being m et as adequately as the needs of nondisabled peers w ith a program specifically designed to m eet those needs.28 A part from Section 504’s lim itation to denials of benefits solely by reason of disability and its reach of only federally funded as opposed to public entities, th e “reach and requirem ents of both Section 504 and ADA are precisely the 24 Davis ex rel. LaShonda D. v. Monroe County Bd. of Ed., 526 U.S. at 629. 25 See Perry Zirkel, A Comprehensive Comparison of the IDEA and Section 504/ADA, 282 Ed . Law REP. 767 (2012) (overview of similarities and differences among these laws). See also Mark A. Paige and Perry Zirkel, Teaching Termination Based on Performance Evaluations: Age and Disability Discrimination! 300 Ed . Law Rep . 1 (2014) (discussing treating ADA and 504 “as a pair” because of “their close relationship”). 26 29 U.S.C.A. § 794. 27 42 U.S.C.A. § 12132. 28 29 U.S.C.A. § 794. 112 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 sam e .” 29 Thus, th e statu tes are often analyzed together because th e sta tu te s provide the sam e remedies, procedures and rights. However, “claim ing intentional discrim ination under either sta tu te requires a plaintiff to show th a t a defendant acted in either ‘bad faith ’ or w ith ‘gross m isjudgm ent .” ’30 D. IDEA U nder th e Individuals w ith D isabilities Education Act (“IDEA”), states th a t receive federal education funding are required to provide disabled children w ith a free appropriate public education (FAPE ) 31 th a t is provided in the least restrictive environm ent (LRE ) 32 in conformity w ith an Individualized Education Program (IEP). 33 If a stu d en t’s rights are violated under IDEA, a p aren t may request a formal due process hearing and seek relief in th e form of com pensatory education or tuitio n reim bursem ent, bu t generally not com pensatory dam ages .34 Upon exhaustion of adm inistrative rem edies, a party has th e right to judicial review in state or federal court . 35 Courts interpreting IDEA have held th a t school districts m ust p u t into place academic and educational safeguards th a t assure th a t each IE P confers a FA PE . 36 Any IE P should, w here needed, be accompanied by a plan for th e stu d en t th a t outlines positive behavior supports and interventions .37 An IEP may be effectively used to address a special education stu d en t’s needs where th a t stu d en t is being bullied and/or is the alleged perpetrato r of bullying. Failure to provide FAPE, however, may subject a school entity to liability even if th e school has complied w ith other federal laws 29 See Weixel v. Bd. of Educ. of the City of New York, 287 F.3d 138,146 (2d Cir. 2002 ). 30 Julie Sacks & Robert S. Salem, Victims without Legal Remedies: Why Kids Need Schools to Develop Comprehensive Anti-Bullying Policies, 72 ALB. L. REV. 147, 170 (2009). 31 20 U.S.C. § 1412 (2005). 32 Id. 33 20 U.S.C. § 1414 (2005). « 20 U.S.C. § 1415 (2005). 36 Id. 36 See Bd. of Educ. of Hendrick Hudson Cent. Sch. Dist., Westchester Cnty. v. Rowley, 458 U.S. 176 (1982). 37 Id. 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 113 discussed in the prior section.38 Below is a discussion of bullying cases related to special education and the “cousin” laws, a case summary chart, 39 and a conclusion with recommendations for practice. 38 20 U.S.C. § 1415 (2005). 39 Table 1 provides a chronological summary of all cases presented in this discussion. Note that earlier cases brought claims under IDEA and often excluded all other cousin laws. Compared to more recent cases where claims are more often made under 504 and ADA with a few including 1983 and Title IX claims. Cases were selected based on the following criteria: (1) plaintiffs were students who qualified as having a disability; (2) claims were made because they had the disability (3) students were either the victim and/or a perpetrator in bullying; and (4) final decisions were between 2014 and 1996. A box is checked as “filed” if the parents used that law to make a claim against the school. In the “held” column a check indicates that the parents were successful in their claim for that law. Conversely, an “X” indicates that they were not successful in their claim. Comments include a brief description of the child’s disability. An asterisk indicates a case was remanded. B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL 114 [2015 B U L L Y IN G A N D S P E C IA L E D U C A T IO N C A S E L A W C ase 1983 F ile d T itle IX H e ld F ile d H e ld 504 F ile d ADA H e ld F ile d ID E A H eld F ile d COM M ENTS H e ld Estate o f L ance v. S p e e c h impairment, A D H D , and Lewisville Indep. Sch. Dist. (5th Cir. 2014) ✓ X ✓ X eventually em otional disliffbance. ✓ X ✓ X ✓ X ✓ X ✓ X ✓ X ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ M oore el al v. Chilton C ounty Board o f Education (M.D. Ala.2014) Blounts d isease, eating d isorder. ✓ X Long v. M urray County A sperger's. Inability to m ake friends did School District (1 1th Cir. 2013) not limit m ajor life activity. Joseph Galloway v. A sp erger's, A D H D , seizure disorder, Chesapeake Union Exem pt. VilL Sch. Bd. o f ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ specific learning disability. M.S. by Shihadeh v. Marple Anxiety d isorder, post-traum atic stress N ew tow n Sch. Dist.fE.D. Pa. Sept. 4. 2012) disorder. Preston v. Hilton C entral School District (W.D.N.Y. July, 2012) A sperger's ✓ X ✓ X ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ X ✓ X ✓ X / X ✓ X ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ H offm an v. Saginaw Pub. E xostoses. D istrict lo o k com prehensive Schs. (E.D. Mich. June 2 7, 2012) m easures to respond to bullying. Weidow v. Scranton Sch. Bipolar d isorder Dist. (3d Cir. 2012) Braden v. Mountain Home Sch. Dist (W.D. A rk. 2012) ADHD ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ J.E. v. Boyertown Area A sp erg er's, learning disability. F A P E School District (3rd Cir. not require a d istrict to pro v e a child N ov. 17, 2011) ✓ X T.K. & S.K.. v. N ew York C ity Dept, o f Educ. (E.D.N.Y. Apr. 25, 2011) ✓ ✓ ✓ X I B . v. Waynesboro Area learning disabiltty A sperger's S yndrom e that w as later School Dist. (M.D. Pa, 2011) would n ot face future bullying. Austistic and later reclassified a s a ✓ X ✓ X changed to sp eech lanugage impairments 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 115 BULLYING A N I) S PE C IA L ED U CA TIO N C A SE LAW <■»■•....... ............... _____W 5 2 ____ F ile d K.R. v. Sch. Dist. o f Philadelphia (3rd Circ. 2010) S.S v. Eastern K entucky U niversity (6th Cir. 2008) Em ily D. v. Ml. I^ebanon Sch. Dist. (W.D. Pa., 2007) Werth B d .o f Dirs. O f the Pub.Scho. O f M ilwaukee (E.D. Wis.2007) Sm ith v. G uilford Board o f Education, (2d Cir. 2007) Shore Reg 7 High Sch. Bd. o f Educ. v. P.S. ex rel. P.S.(3d Cir. 2004) H e ld « M X .......... H e ld _____ m F ile d COM M ENTS ......... H e ld A utism sp ectrum diso rd er ✓ X ✓ X ✓ X ✓ X ✓ X ✓ X ✓ X ✓ C e re b ra l palsy, A D H D , dyslexia, P D D ✓ ✓ X ✓ ✓ X ✓ X O th e r health im paired b ecause o f nonverbal learning disability ✓ Cleidocranial d ystosis. D isa w o w e d claim s u n d er 1DHA A D H D . * R em anded. ✓ ✓ M.L. v. Federal Way Sch. Dist. (9th Circ. 2004) Charlie F. v . Bd. O f Educ. O f Skokie (7th Circ. 1996) X ✓ P erceptual impairment, later changed to em otional d isturbance. Autism, m ental retardation, m accrocephaly. * R em in d ed . ✓ O bsessive/com plusive, A D H D , panic d isorder, anxiety d isorder. * R em anded. 116 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 III. Case Analysis A. IDEA E arly cases 40 of bullying and disability were typically brought under IDEA by plaintiffs using th a t as a source to seek relief. In the Seventh Circuit case, Charlie F. u. Board of Education o f Skokie , 41 Charlie was an eleven-year-old boy w ith obsessive/compulsive disorder, attention deficit disorder, panic disorder, and anxiety disorder. While in fourth grade, his “teacher invited her pupils to express th e ir com plaints about C harlie . . . leading to hum iliation, fistfights, m istrust, loss of confidence and self esteem , and disruption of C harlie’s educational progress .” 42 S tudents were also told not to tell anyone about these sessions . 43 C harlie’s parents u n ilaterally removed him from the school and placed him in another nearby public school. 44 Once he was in his new school his p aren ts were satisfied w ith his placem ent, b u t disturbed by his fourth grade experience . 45 They brought su it on C harlie’s behalf seeking dam ages from the teacher, the school’s principal (who knew about the gripe sessions), the school d istrict’s superintendent, and the school district itself . 46 In Judge Easterbrook’s opinion, he noted th a t “both the genesis and the m anifestations of the problem are educational; the IDEA offers comprehensive educational solutions; we conclude, therefore, th a t a t least in principle relief is available under th e IDEA .” 47 However, the decision was rem anded to the district court “w ith instructions to dism iss for failure to use th e IDEA’S adm inistrative rem edies . ” 48 C harlie’s parents did not exhaust adm inistrative rem edies as p a rt of th e ir dissatisfaction w ith the school district; hence, Judge Easterbrook’s claim th a t C harlie’s circum stances did suggest relief under IDEA w ent untested. 40 Early cases refer to teasing when students engage in misconduct against another student. It then evolved into harassment and bullying. 41 Charlie F. v. Bd. of Educ. of Skokie Sch. Dist., 98 F. 3d 989 (7th Cir. 1996).(In the case of Charlie F. there was no direct reference to teasing, bullying, or harassment, but to students taunting Charlie that “inflicted emotional distress on him”). 42 Id. at 990. 43 Id. 44 Id. 45 Id. 43 Id. « Id. 48 Id. at 5. 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 117 A sim ilar decision was made by the N inth Circuit in M.L., a minor; C.D., his parent; S.L., his parent, Petitioners-Appellants, v. Federal Way School District ™ Even though facts of the case indicated th a t a child w ith a disability was bullied, the paren ts did not tak e all necessary steps, as in Charlie, to ensure a FAPE; th u s no claims were ruled in favor of the p aren t and the case was rem anded to the district court.50 Similarly, in M.L. v. Federal Way, a p aren t alleged bullying and u n ilaterally removed h er child from the classroom after five days. In its ruling, th e N inth Circuit Court asserted th a t by removing her child after only five days the m other did not allow the school “a reasonable opportunity to find a way to prevent the other students from teasing M.L.”51 Thus, there was not sufficient evidence th a t “teasing resulted in the loss of an educational benefit.”52 A nother case rem anded on the m erits of IDEA claims was Sm ith v. Guilford Board of Education , 53 In th a t case, Jerem y was a high school student identified as having atten tio n deficit hyperactive disorder, yet his com plaint alleged th a t the bullying was the resu lt of his dim inutive size, not his learning disability. Even though he qualified as disabled under IDEA, th ere was no evidence in the p a re n ts’ claim th a t the bullying was directly related to his disability.54 The outcome of Charlie F., M.L., and Sm ith fall flat in determ ining the legitimacy of a bullying claim under IDEA. Yet the rulings are a rem inder th a t school districts need to closely m onitor appropriate procedural due process under IDEA to minim ize costly litigation regardless of p aren tal claims. In addition, parents need to u n derstand th a t even if th e ir child has a disability and is bullied, if the bullying is a resu lt of another intervening variable, such as in Smith, it is less likely they will be successful in a claim under IDEA. Conversely, favorable rulings for parents in th eir IDEA claims occurred w hen a child w ith a disability experienced intense bullying incidents.55 A decision by the Third Circuit 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 M.L. v. Fed. Way Sch. Dist., 387 F.3d 1101 (9th Cir. 2004) Id. Id. at 1107. Id. Smith v. Guilford Bd. of Educ., 226 F. App’x 58 (2d Cir. 2007) Id. Shore Reg’l High Sch. Bd. of Educ. v. P.S., 381 F.3d 194, 196 (3d Cir. 118 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 reversed and rem anded a district court’s finding th a t th e school district provided a FAPE as required by IDEA as erroneous because no m a tte r w hat program the district im plem ented, the stu d en t would not have been adequately protected from h a ra ssm e n t . 56 Curiously, the school district rationalized th a t they could not g ran t a p aren t’s request for a new school placem ent because they “would have to g ran t the request of non-disabled students who wished to atten d ” 57 a different school. In light of Rowley , 58 denying a different school because other non-disabled students m ight m ake the same request has never been the stan d ard when determ ining a FAPE. By th e very n a tu re of special education and related services, students w ith disabilities are often afforded an education th a t is quite different from th eir non-disabled peers . 59 P a re n ts in this case were not seeking to maximize th eir child’s educational benefits, but to elim inate or a t th e very least minimize the bullying experiences so th a t th e ir child would benefit from the special education program .60 M atriculating to the sam e school as th e bullying peers produced a greater likelihood of bullying incidences as opposed to staying a t a new school where he was dem onstrating academic success. W as the district court “[substituting] th eir own notions of sound educational policy ” 61 ra th e r th a n review ing suggestions by both the p aren t and an independent evaluation th a t provided evidence th a t th e student would and did thrive a t the neighboring school? It was not th a t th e school district could not control the bullying th a t made the placem ent inappropriate as the district court suggested. It was th a t the intense bullying did not afford the student an opportunity to benefit from his special education program .62 2004)(Bullies constantly called P.S. names such as “faggot,” “gay,” “homo,” “transvestite,” “transsexual,” “slut,” “queer,” “loser,” “big tits,” and “fat ass.” Bullies told new students not to socialize with P.S. Children threw rocks at P.S., and one student hit him with a padlock in gym class. When P.S. sat down at a cafeteria table, the other students moved. Despite repeated complaints, the school administration failed to remedy the situation). “ Id. 57 Id. 58 Bd. of Educ. of Hendrick Hudson Cent.Sch. Dist., Westchester Cnty. v. Rowley, 458 U.S. 176 (1982). 59 Id. 60 Shore, 381 F.3d 194 61 Id. at 20. 62 Id. 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 119 In another IDEA case, Judge W einstein also ruled in favor of the p a re n t’s IDEA claims and set forth a four-point directive in a New York D istrict Court case w here a child experienced frequent bullying th a t often w ent ignored by school supervisors - even though in some instances the child bullied was also the aggressor.63 In his opinion, Judge W einstein asserted th a t schools (1) m ust prom ptly act to investigate any reported harassm ent, (2) take steps to prevent th e h arassm en t in the future, (3) have a duty even if the misconduct is covered by its anti-bullying policy, and (4) the school m ust be proactive ra th e r th a n w aiting for com plaints from stu d en ts before taking action.64 Conversely, rulings were in favor of school districts when they provided a FAPE th a t addressed the unique needs of the child even if the child continued to experience difficulty in social situations.65 Courts recognized th a t a stu d en t w ith a disability m ay face bullying, b u t “a fair appropriate public education does not require th a t the D istrict be able to prove th a t a stu d en t will not face future bullying a t a placem ent, as this is impossible.”66 It would be an onerous ta sk for districts to prove th a t a child would never experience bullying even under th e m ost ideal circum stances. Schools are responsible for providing individualized instruction th a t meets the unique needs of th e child, not to guarantee th a t the child will always have close friends or be free of any negative social situations.67 Sim ilarly, schools were not held liable w hen th ere was evidence of only a few incidents of bullying.68 Schools cannot expect to provide intense intervention w hen there is lim ited evidence of harassm ent, particularly in light of the Davis stan d ard .69 School districts also experienced a high ra te of success, even in the face of bullying, w hen they were not indifferent, took a 63 T.K. V. N.Y.C. Dep’t of Educ., 779 F. Supp. 2d 289, 295 (E.D.N.Y. 2011) (Students would not touch things after she handled them and evidence of “constant negative interactions.” Teacher aides reported that the student experienced a great deal of teasing; from her peers; students would “physically push her away for fun.” In addition, the student was also the aggressor, including one report “where she is accused of hitting her teacher”). 64 Id. at 317. 66 J.E. v. Boyertown Area Sch. Dist., 452 F. App’x 172 (3d Cir. 2011). 66 Id. at 177. 67 See id. 68 See K.R. v. Sch. Dist. of Philadelphia, No. 06-2388, 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 49064 (E.D. Pa. June 26, 2008.). 69 Davis, 526 U.S. 629 (1999). 120 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 num ber of steps to address any negative incidents , 70 and took prom pt action . 71 By im plem enting a comprehensive bullying plan for the classroom and responding to a stu d en t’s individual needs in response to bullying, districts were more likely to be found to be providing the child w ith a FAPE, particularly when th e student was m aking positive progress under his IE P .72 Courts recognize th a t it is unfortunate th a t an IE P and its im plem entation cannot always prevent altercations . 73 However, a bullying incident does not negate the appropriateness of an educational program . 74 A few examples of courts finding th a t districts provided an appropriate program to m eet the unique needs of the child w ith the disability, who was bullied, include those im plem ented in E m ily D. v. Mt. Lebanon Sch. D ist . 75 and T.B. v. Waynesboro Area School. 76 In E m ily D., the district designed a comprehensive plan to respond to stu d en t h arassm en t including: conducting a functional behavioral assessm ent (FBA); designing a behavioral intervention plan (BIP); providing an inclusion specialist for additional classroom support; providing a personal care a ssistan t to help the child in teract w ith other students “on the playground, during lunch, and in the hallw ays ;” 77 and providing “social skills train in g in a sm all group setting two tim es a w eek .” 78 W hen incidents did occur, the principal would meet with both children and speak to all the children in the classroom about appropriate school behavior .79 A sim ilar comprehensive plan was designed by the W aynesboro A rea Schools to m eet the needs of a stu d en t who experienced difficulty dealing w ith social situations and 70 Emily Z. v. Mt Leb. Sch. Dist., 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 79890 (W.D. Pa. Oct. 24, 2007); K.R. v. Sch. Dist. of Philadelphia., 373 F. App’x 204, (3d Cir. 2010); T.B. v. Waynesboro Area Sch. Dist., 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23534 (M.D. Pa. Jan. 19, 2011). (Parents also brought unsuccessful claims under 504 and ADA). 71 T.K. v. N.Y.C. Dep’t of Educ., 779 F. Supp. 2d 289, 295 (E.D.N.Y. 2011) 72 T.B., 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23534. 72 Id. 74 Id. 75 Emily Z. v. Mt Leb. Sch. Dist., 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 79890 (W.D. Pa. Oct. 24, 2007). ™ T.B„ 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23534. 77 Emily Z„ 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 79890 at *2. ™ Id. 79 Id. 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 121 com m unicating effectively w ith peers.80 In designing the IEP, they used visual and verbal cues and prompts; role-playing situations; positive reinforcem ent; peers to provide good models; m onitoring use of appropriate social skills such as using non-threatening words and good problem solving strategies; being concrete and specific, providing inform ation about change in routine; and talking him through stressful situations or allowing him tim e in a stress-free environm ent.81 Location and th e frequency of each service were also identified on the IE P.82 In sum, it is evident th a t under IDEA claims, courts expect school districts to respond to bullying by addressing the stu d en t’s needs and designing an IE P th a t m eets academic needs. Additionally, it m ust provide for ongoing social skill development, particularly in cases w hen a child experiences difficulty w ith peer-to-peer social interactions. W hen a district avoids investigating intense bullying behavior, is not proactive in preventing potential bullying incidents, and does not design an IEP th a t includes strategies to m eet the needs of the stu d en t w ith the disability who is bullied, th e courts are more likely to rule in favor of the parents. B. Section 504, ADA, Section 1983, and Title IK when Parents Prevail In th e la st few years, litigants have chosen to bring federal suits against school districts under the other cousin laws (i.e., Section 1983, Title IX, Section 504, and the ADA) ra th e r th a n under IDEA, w ith the m ajority m aking 504 and ADA claim s.83 P aren ts enjoyed a higher ra te of success in 504 and ADA claims com pared to early cases m aking claims under IDEA.84 P aren ts were successful in only two incidences under Section 1983 and Title IX.85 Federal district and circuit courts have analyzed 504 80 T.B. 2011 U.S.Dist. LEXIS 23534 81 Id. 82 Id. 83 Note in Table 1 th a t in the last few years parents have filed special education cases related to bullying under the cousin laws rather than IDEA. 84 See Galloway v. Chesapeake Union Exempted Vill. Sch. Bd. of Educ., 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 152080 (S.D. Oh. 2012); M.S. v. Marple Newtown Sch. Dist., 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 125091 (E.D. Pa. 2012); Preston v. Hilton Cent. Sch. Dist., 876 F. Supp. 2d 235 (W.D.N.Y 2012); Braden v. Mountain Home Sch. Dist., 903 F. Supp. 2d 729 (W.D. Ark. 2012). 85 See Braden v. Mountain Home Sch. Dist., 903 F. Supp. 2d 729 (W.D. Ark. 122 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 and ADA claims related to bullying students w ith a disability in a sim ilar fashion to IDEA cases, w ith p aren ts prevailing w hen the district did not respond appropriately to bullying, or w hen the district was deliberately indifferent to ongoing, intense bullying.86 W hen a district tu rn s a blind eye to b la ta n t incidents of bullying, and acts in bad faith and w ith gross m isjudgm ent, p aren ts are successful w ith 504 and ADA claims.87 F u rth er, in such circum stances, parents are also successful w ith Title IX and Section 1983 claims, particularly w hen a stu d en t w ith a disability is sexually harassed.88 For example, in Joseph Galloway v. Chesapeake Union Exempted Village Schools Board of Education, Joseph was confronted w ith alm ost daily bulling including: [0]ne teacher repeatedly questioned Joseph about his seizures in front of the entire class and questioned w hether he really had seizures; students threw w ater on their p an ts to mock the fact th a t during seizures Joseph could become incontinent; students would call Joseph ‘seizure boy,’ w ith the knowledge and approval of the teacher; . . . students would . . . hide his belongings, shove him, th re a te n to break his computer, steal his b a c k p ac k . . . a student punched Joseph in the back; students encouraged Joseph to commit suicide; and the bullying culm inated in several sexual assaults, in which students would come up behind Joseph in a locker room and grind th eir penises into Joseph’s back.89 2012); Galloway v. Chesapeake Union Exempted Vill. Sch. Bd. of Educ., 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 152080 (S.D. Oh. 2012). 86 See supra note 74 and accompanying material. 87 See Braden, 903 F. Supp. 2d at 732-35, 739 (Where a student repeatedly sexually harassed a student with a disability by ‘‘periodically exposing his genitalia in class, simulating masturbation, and, on one occasion, placing his penis on the classroom overhead projector in front of the other students . . . assaulting [the disabled student] by forcing [the student’s] head into [his own] genital area while a teacher was present in the classroom . . . [and], in the presence of a paraprofessional, [by] pull[ing] down his shorts during math class, exposing] himself to [the disabled student], and compel [ing] [him] to perform oral sex on him, which [he] did while another student watched”). 88 Id. 89 Galloway, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 152080 at *4. Other incidents include a) [d]uring a Project Lead-the-Way class in Joseph’s tenth grade year, two other students told Joseph they wanted him to ‘hang himself, let us watch, we will tighten the noose, dig your grave, cut the rope after you’re dead and cover you up with dirt.’ Joseph asked the teacher, Mrs. Williams, if he could be taken out of the group in which he was placed and the teacher refused, so Joseph went to the Chesapeake High School assistant principal, who told him he needed to learn to 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 123 After presenting their case to 15 different school teachers and officials with no resolution, the parents brought action under Section 1983, 504, the ADA, and Title IX. 90 When ruling on the 504 and ADA claims the court found there was sufficient evidence that the district was aware of bullying occurring in the classroom and that Joseph was “discriminated against due to his disability.”91 Using the Dauis standard for claims made under Title IX, the court concluded that the Amended Complaint clearly alleges more than simple acts of teasing among school children and “[we] cannot say beyond doubt that Plaintiffs can prove no set of facts in support of a Title IX claim which would entitle Joseph Galloway to relief’ and therefore denied the school district’s motions to dismiss.92 Finally, on the 1983 claim the court ruled that the parents properly alleged that the school district knew about the incidences described above resulting in disparate treatment of Joseph by its faculty and staff. However, the school did nothing to remedy the problem, which constitutes knowing acquiescence. Therefore, the claims against individual employees were not dismissed.93 ‘work it out;’ Id. at **18, *20 and b) “Joseph joined the Chesapeake Junior High School wrestling team and after one wrestling match, on the bus on the way home, several students pulled out their penises, telling him to ‘touch my dick, you know you want to’. Id. at *27. “During wrestling practice at Chesapeake High School, on several occasions in the locker room and in the school hallways, other students would come up behind Joseph and pull his pants down.” Id. 90 Id. at *15. Although the parents also brought action under substantive due process, equal protection, negligence, and Title V (unconstitutional municipal policy, practices, and procedures) for the purpose of this paper the findings will only be discussed within the context of an endnote. The court dismissed the substantive due process and equal protection claims against the School District and against school officials in their official capacities; however, equal protection claims against the school officials in their individual capacities survived. Id. at 38. The court also denied the motion to dismiss the negligence claims and held that the defendants’ actions fell within the exception to immunity under Ohio law. Id. School district’s motion to dismiss the Title V claim was granted. Id. 91 Id. at *25. 92 Id. at *29. 93 Id. at *18-20. Examples of allegations against employees include the following: (a) “Mr. Rase said that Joseph was starting to act out in class and he showed them [Mr. and Mrs. Galloway] a document which he said was a petition signed by several students in Joseph’s CCC classes saying they wanted Joseph ‘out of there’ Mr. Rase indicated that the teacher of the class, Kim Williams, a Lawrence County employee, had also signed the document;” (b) “In sixth grade, his teacher Mrs. Jeannie Harmon asked [Joseph], in front of the entire class, if he really had seizures and questioned what the seizures looked like because ‘I have never seen you have a seizure.’ Joseph was so embarrassed he came home crying that day;” (c) “In sixth grade, during a parent-teacher conference, Mrs. Harmon told Mr. and Mr. Galloway that it 124 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 It is not surprising th a t th e court held for th e p aren ts in Galloway, particularly since courts are only likely to rule on behalf of school districts w hen districts provide ongoing resolutions to bullying incidents, which was not th e case in Galloway. W hen employees not only ignore bullying behavior of th e ir students, b u t are tacitly or directly involved in an incident, courts hold them accountable if not as a school employee, th en individually. Such was th e case in Galloway w here the court dism issed claims against individuals in th eir official capacity, b u t held th a t as individuals th a t they did display disparate tre atm en t.94 Finally, not unlike cases under IDEA, w hen a p a re n t m akes repeated requests for the school to provide a rem edy for ongoing bullying, when a school shows indifference to those requests, and if a stu d en t’s perform ance continues to fall in the m idst of the ongoing bullying, the courts have ruled in favor of the p aren ts under the cousin law s.95 In some instances, a simple action such as scheduling the bully in a different class, as the p aren t requested, would have shown a good faith effort th a t the district was acting in the best in terest of the child w ith the disability so th a t the child could successfully access special education.96 Or, a t the very least, the district could have exacted consequences for bullying behavior in an attem p t to decrease the ra te of future behavior.97 Although no school district can elim inate all bullying behavior, complete inaction lends itself to a district being found to have acted deliberately indifferent. C. Section 504, the ADA, Section 1983, and Title IX when Districts Prevail In contrast, federal district and circuit courts have decided cases involving the bullying of students w ith a disability w here was ‘nuisance to teach Joseph,’ that he was ‘lazy,’ not disabled, and that his parents were ‘enabling’ him to feel like a victim;” (d) ‘Throughout his sixth grade year, Mrs. Harmon continued to quiz Joseph in front the entire class about the validity of his seizure disorder;” (e) “During a seizure, Joseph often became incontinent, and other children in his class mimicked him by throwing water on their pants and shaking themselves violently, and calling Joseph ‘seizure boy,’ all with the knowledge and approval of Mrs. Harmon”. Id. 94 Galloway, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 152080 at *4 “ See Marple, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 125091 at *2-3 96 See id. 97 See, e.g., Preston, 876 F. Supp. 2d at 242. 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 125 districts took clear m easures to punish or work w ith the bully as well as providing alternative arrangem ents and educational supports for the child who was bullied.98 In these cases, even if the outcome for the ta u n te d stu d en t was sim ilar to those m entioned above, school districts have not been found to have acted w ith deliberate indifference. W ithout deliberate indifference, claims made under any of the “cousin” federal laws seeking dam ages th a t a child w ith a disability was bullied were more likely found for the school.99 A few cases reflect the challenges adm inistrators face, under extrem e circum stances, when parents claim th a t th eir child w ith a disability com m itted suicide as a direct resu lt of the district’s deliberate indifference.100 Although tragic, a d istrict is not found to have dem onstrated disability h arassm en t under the ADA and 504, to have deprived a stu d en t a C onstitutional right under Section 1983, or to be liable for Title IX claims because the p aren t did not provide sufficient evidence th a t created a triable issue of fact; therefore th e ir claims did not survive. 101 Schools m ight have a lack of knowledge th a t bullying is occurring, particularly a t the high school level where it is typically socially unacceptable to “ta ttle ” on perpetrators. For example in Jill Moore u. Chilton County, an overweight student who had Blount’s disease was h arassed alm ost exclusively aw ay from any other ad u lts,102 w ith the teasing stopping when “students saw a teacher in the vicinity.”103 Thus, in large part, th e bullying took place out of ear shot so teachers and adm inistrators would not be aw are of the occurrences unless 98 In Table 1, cases that are marked with an “X” under held were ruled in favor of the school district based. In all incidents there was some evidence that the school provided some type of intervention for the child with disabilities who was bullied 99 Id. 100 See, e.g., Moore v. Chilton Cnty. Bd. of Educ., U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26631 (M.D. Al. 2014); Long v. Murray Cnty. Sch. Dist., 2012 U.S.Dist. LEXIS 86155 (N.D. Ga. 2012); Estate of Montana Lance; Jason Lance, Deborah Lance v. Lewisville Indep. Sch. Distr. No. 12-41139, 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 3863 (5th Circ. Feb. 28, 2014). 101 See Moore v. Chilton Cnty. Bd. of Educ., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26631 (M.D. Al. 2014); Long v. Murray Cnty. Sch. Dist., 2012 U.S.Dist. LEXIS 86155 (N.D Ga 2012 ). 102 Moore v. Chilton Cnty. Bd. of Educ., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26631 at *2 (M.D. Al. 2014) (When Jill was eight or nine years old she was diagnosed with Blount’s Disease a “progressive disorder of the proximal growth plate of the tibia, resulting in a range of bowing deformity of the legs”). 103 M a t *4. 126 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 they were reported by the student. In h er attem p t to m anage the teasing, the student ignored th e h arassm en t and called students out to stop the nam e calling, yet she did not have the necessary skills to avoid internalizing the incidents, eventually taking her own life . 104 Even when a stu d en t commits suicide, the court rem inds us th a t “[d elib erate indifference is an exacting standard; school adm inistrators will only be deemed deliberately indifferent if th eir ‘response to th e h arassm en t or lack thereof is clearly unreasonable in light of the known circum stances . ’” 105 Given the lack of knowledge by school personnel in Moore, it is understandable th a t the court ruled in favor of the school. The school was unaw are th a t th e intense bullying occurred; therefore, it could not have known th a t a response to bullying was needed. Courts do not expect schools to be prognosticators and predict each and every possible incident of bullying, particularly w hen the school district im plem ented an individualized education program th a t th e p aren ts consented to a t every stage of the child’s academic career. Even in th e case of Lance v. Lewisville Independent School District, 106 where the facts revealed th a t a nine-year-old student hanged himself, the Fifth Circuit used th e Covington stan d ard and held th a t “the evidence does not dem onstrate th a t th e ‘school district knew about an im m ediate danger to [M ontana’s] safety .” 107 Courts expect school districts to design and im plem ent a comprehensive bullying prevention and intervention plan. However, it is highly unlikely th a t even w ith a solid plan in place th a t the courts expect schools to prevent unexpected circum stances as was the case w ith the suicides in Moore and Lance. Sim ilar to success under IDEA cases, school districts prevailed under cousin law cases w hen responses were 104 Id. 105 Long v. M urray County School District, No. 4:10-CV-00015-HLM, 2012 U.S.Dist. LEXIS 86155, at *96-97 (D. Ga. May 21, 2012). 106 Estate of Montana Lance; Jason Lance, Deborah Lance v. Lewisville Indep. Sch. Distr. No. 12-41139, 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 3863 (5th Circ. Feb. 28, 2014). 107 Id. at 18 (“[T]he school district placed the student in the same area as a school custodian who had no known criminal record, sexual or otherwise, with school teachers in the same building but not in the immediate area. . . . Such post hoc attribution of known danger would turn inside out this limited exception to the principle of no duty.”). Covington, 675 F.3d at 866; see also Doe v. Hillsboro Indep. Sch. Dist., 113 F.3d 1412, 1415 (5th Cir. 1997) (en banc). 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 127 reasonable, w hen th ere was no indication th a t th e schools’ responses either “caused additional h arassm en t,”108 or when the schools did not take necessary m easures to “rem edy disability h arassm en t.”109 In Long u. Murray ,110 extensive m easures were tak en to respond to bullying including a plan to discipline harassers; increasing adult m onitoring during class; tak in g rem edial m easures to prevent future, sim ilar incidents; diligently investigating each reported incident; m eeting every sem ester to address any p a re n tal or stu d en t concerns to adjust the IE P plan if necessary; and using monitoring techniques to prevent future bullying. The court reasoned th a t even though these m easures did not completely eradicate all bullying, the d istrict is not found to be deliberately indifferent “simply because the m easures it takes are ultim ately ineffective in stopping h arassm en t.”* *111 This suggests th a t the courts expect school districts to design and im plem ent a comprehensive bullying prevention and intervention plan. However, it is highly unlikely th a t even w ith a solid plan in place th a t the courts expect schools to stop all future bullying. Evidence of a clear and present strategy was also the stan d ard for a school’s successful outcome under cousin laws in a Sixth C ircuit ruling w here a school prevailed w hen there was a record of action tak en on behalf of th e stu d en t.112 The school d istrict evidenced action by investigating bullying allegations even w hen th e child w ith the disability was the perpetrator; disciplining all students involved; separating the bullying peers w hen necessary; conducting trainings and m ediation sessions; and contacting parents and police w hen appropriate.113 W hen a school can design an intervention based on the needs of the child they have th e flexibility to tailor responses to circum stances. W hen there is a record of “active responses by the School D istrict to incidents involving [the student], no discrim inatory i n t e n t . . . m ay be im puted to th e school 108 Long v. M urray County School District, No. 4:10-CV-00015-HLM, 2012 U.S.Dist. LEXIS 86155, at *123 (D. Ga. May 21, 2012). 109 Id. 110 Long v. M urray County School District, No. 4:10-CV-00015-HLM, 2012 U.S.Dist. LEXIS 86155 (D. Ga. May 21, 2012). 111 Id. at *123. 112 S.S v. Eastern Kentucky University, No. 06-6165, 2008 U.S. App. LEXIS 13852 (6th Cir. July 2, 2008). Id. 128 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 district .” 114 Finally, using the sam e IDEA stan d ard th a t a few incidents of bullying are not sufficient to allege h arassm en t of a disability, courts favored school districts under cousin laws w hen there was a lim ited record of bullying incidents . 115 Courts also applied the stan d ard used for IDEA cases in accordance w ith Davis - th a t when h arassm en t is not severe, pervasive, or system ic , 116 rulings were in the district’s favor. In addition, the Third Circuit also held th a t a lim ited record of bullying instances provides insufficient evidence to m ake a bullying claim under the cousin law . 117 F u rth er, w hen a student has clearly dem onstrated the ability to m ake friends, socialize w ith acquaintances, successfully complete high school, and pursue a college education, it is evidence th a t he or she was not severely restricted despite the lim ited bullying incidents . 118 IV. Conclusion An analysis of federal and circuit court cases where parents took action under IDEA and all the cousin laws reveals th a t there was a higher rate of success w hen the district was deliberately indifferent and dem onstrated a lack of responsiveness to the paren tal complaints. Specifically, p aren ts prevailed w hen evidence showed th a t th e ir child was not dem onstrating an educational benefit in the setting where the bullying occurred, and th a t the school did not provide a resolution to th eir request to intervene on behalf of th eir child. 114 Estate of Montana Lance; Jason Lance, Deborah Lance v. Lewisville Indep. Sch. Distr. No. 12-41139, 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 3863, at 1000 (5th Circ. Feb. 28, 2014). 116 Hoffman v. Saginaw Pub. Schs. No. 12-10354, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88967, at *1(D. Mich. June 27, 2012). (In its decision, the court asserted that one instance when teasing was about her son’s posture was not a sufficient allegation that the harassment was because of the disability. Her son was born with hereditary exostoses”..the condition is hereditary and involves multiple benign bone tumors and growths. . .”). 116 Werth v. Bd. Of Dirs. Of Pub. Schs. No. 05-C-0040, 2007, U.S. Dist. LEXIS 4535, 1129 (D. Wise. Jan. 22, 2007) (“Different offenders, on different dates, three months apart” and not harassment that had a “systemic effect of denying the victim equal access to an educational program.” Joseph Werth was born with cleidocranial dysostosis, “a congenital disorder of bone development, characterized by absent or incompletely-formed collar bones, an abnormally shaped skull, characteristic facial appearance, short stature, and dental abnormalities”). 117 Weidow v. Scranton Sch. Dist., No. 11-1389, 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 2422 (3rd Cir. Jan. 13, 2012). 118 Id. 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 129 P a re n ts also were successful w hen th ere was evidence th a t school personnel (i.e., teachers, supervisors, adm inistrators) were fully aw are of the bullying, b u t failed to tak e action. In some instances, school personnel not only ignored the bullying, b u t also contributed to the harassm ent. Court rulings also favored p aren ts w hen th ere was evidence of m ultiple incidents of th eir child being bullied or evidence of more th a n one individual involved in the bullying. This was particularly tru e w hen the school district dem onstrated a lack of action to rem edy the problem, even in cases w here the child w ith the disability was the perpetrator. P aren ts were not always successful in th eir claims against the school district, particularly w hen they did not exhaust adm inistrative rem edies prior to seeking relief. Courts were also lim ited in th e ir support of p a re n tal claims w hen the p aren t did not allow a sufficient am ount of tim e prior to u nilaterally rem oving th e ir child from th e school because of bullying (e.g., five days), or w hen th ere were only a few recorded incidents. In addition, courts did not support h arassm en t based on disability w hen parents claimed th a t th e ir child w ith a disability was bullied if the disability was not th e root cause of the harassm ent. M erely having a disability does not necessarily suggest th a t claims made on behalf of th a t disability will be successful. Finally, even though th eir child may have been bullied, p a re n tal claims did not survive if the d istrict offered credible evidence th a t th e school provided a plan including specific steps/strategies tak en for th e victims and the perpetrators; as well as, plans to lim it future bullying. It is clear th a t w hen there was evidence of documentation, individualized decision m aking, and ongoing intervention, the courts ruled in favor of the school or district. Specifically, when th ere was a comprehensive plan th a t showed a good faith effort to respond to bullying—including, b u t not lim ited to, following up on bullying incidents, disciplining offenders, regularly com m unicating w ith the parents, and adjusting th e IEP to m eet the bullied child’s needs—schools were more often g ranted sum m ary judgm ent as was the case in Emily, T.B., Long, and S.S. This does not suggest th a t the school has the burden to guarantee a stu d en t will never be bullied in the fu tu re,119 nor is it plausible to expect a school district to 119 J.E., et al., v. Boyertown Area Sch. Dist., No. 10-2958, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 130 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 m onitor and intervene on all bullying incidents against a student w ith or w ithout a disability . 120 In cases in which there were m ultiple incidents of bullying w ith repeated intensity and deliberate indifference rising to the level of the Davis standard, as in Shore, T.K. Galloway, and Braden, the courts ruled w ith a heavy h an d ag ain st school districts th a t failed in th eir obligations to m onitor and protect the stu d en t w ith a disability. In these cases, p aren ts’ concerns w ent unansw ered, student perform ance was affected, and in some instances, teachers either ignored or contributed to the bullying. Failure to appropriately address issues w ith regard to bullying for students w ith disabilities in these cases may leave a school’s program s susceptible to com pensatory education claims and years of costly litigation and th e ir students w ithout sufficient support to combat the long-term and adverse effects of bullying . 121 A lthough school district adm inistrators are in the business of m anaging a school, they also are in th e business of leading educators to provide program s th a t m eet th e needs of th eir students. They m ust therefore consider solutions to minimize litigation. As p a rt of any successful special education program , districts need to regularly m onitor a child’s behavior to determ ine if the child is a t risk for either bullying or being bullied and not denied a FAPE. Educators and p aren ts need to be cognizant as to w hat extent a child’s disability may increase the likelihood of being bullied and/or being at-risk for bullying. To w hat extent would a child w ith a disability who has difficulty discrim inating betw een appropriate and inappropriate behavior go along to fit in and engage in 12555, at *10 (D. Pa. February 4, 2011). (“[A] fair appropriate public education does not require that the District be able to prove that a student will not face future bullying at a placement, as this is impossible”). 120 See Vance v. Spencer County Public School Dist., 231 F.3d 253, 260—61 (citing and quoting Davis). David Patterson and Dena Patterson v. Hudson Area Schls., No. 08-1008, 2009 U.S. App. LEXIS 25; 2009 FED App. 0002P at * 18 (6th Cir. Jan. 6, 2009). (“It is manifestly unreasonable to read the guidelines and Vance as holding that a school district may be responsible for not preventing future harassment by entirely separate and new harassers. To suggest otherwise, as the majority does, comes extremely close to requiring that schools be ‘purged’ of all offensive behavior and be completely harassment-free, which the Supreme Court and Sixth Circuit have unequivocally held is not required—or possible”). 121 Paul M. Secunda, At the Crossroads of Title IX and a New “IDEA”: Why Bullying Need Not be “a Normal Part of Growing Up”for Special Education Children, 12 Duke J. Gender L. & P olY 1,3 (2005). 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 131 bullying? W hat about a stu d en t whose im pulsivity is a tra it of his or her disability and would also easily engage in bullying activities? Or how does a school address a stu d en t w ith a cognitive processing problem and/or social skill deficits th a t do not filter rational thinking and act on im pulse as was the case in Lance, S.S., T.K. v. NYC Dept, of Educ., and T.B. v. Waynesboro w here the child w ith th e disability was not only h arassed but in some instances was the perpetrator? V. R ecommendations Given the tren d th a t continues, how do K -12 schools best address th e issue of bullying and children w ith disabilities? An appropriate approach to anti-bullying m easures m ust take into consideration requirem ents a t the federal, state, and local levels, but also individualized and student-specific program m ing needs under IDEA and Section 504. It is therefore im portant for schools and districts to develop and im plem ent not only appropriate district-w ide, school-wide and classroom-wide responses, but to im plem ent individualized and student-specific responses to each stu d en t’s disability related needs. Team s should offer appropriate accommodations and supports to students w ith disabilities in order to minimize bullying and bullying related claims; in order to ensure FAPE for students w ith disabilities; and in order to hopefully reduce the negative effects of stu d en t on stu d en t bullying and h arassm en t for all students. A lthough p aren ts and educators w ant all children to thrive in “safe” academic surroundings, we do an injustice to children if we do not provide them w ith the necessary skills to be selfsufficient in m anaging the effects of bullying, since upon entering adulthood, they have a larger social society to contend w ith w here adult bullying can be more subtle yet equally hurtful. How will they m anage w hen they are in the work place or higher education and teasing goes “underground” and perpetrators are savvy about m inimizing w hat is observed by a boss or college instructor? A snapshot of this was evident in Moore at the high school level, as stud en ts clearly understood th a t they were engaging in inappropriate behavior when all bullying came to a h a lt if they noticed an ad u lt nearby.122 122 Moore v. Chilton Cnty. Bd. of Educ., U.S. Dist. LEXIS 26631 (M.D. Al. 2014); 132 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 S tudents need to be ta u g h t the harm ful effects of peer-on-peer teasing as a deterrent to bullying. Additionally, they should be ta u g h t a strong set of skills to deflect teasing both as th e one being teased and as a potential ally. Simply ignoring and giving a verbal reto rt may not be sufficient to override the influence of daily ta u n ts on one’s self-perception. F urther, ignoring cruel behavior also eats away at positive self­ perception. Students may need to have changes in an IE P th a t reflect th e ir need to develop appropriate social skills to avoid bullying ra th e r th a n going along to get along w ith inappropriate, but from th eir perspective, peer-enhancing, bullying activities. In addition, students who are a t risk of being bullied also need to develop life skills th a t give them methods to eith er avoid bullying or lim it the negative effect of possible bullying in the future. A district cannot depend on stu d en ts alone to respond to bullying by w alking away, telling a teacher, or both. W hat m easures are districts taking to provide students, p articularly those w ith a disability, to avoid the effects of bullying so th a t even if the student ignores h arassm en t they do not do so at the risk of internalizing the behavior and either acting overtly (becoming a perpetrator) or covertly (committing suicide or developing a eating disorder)? Also, are th ere elem ents of p arent engagem ent and train in g th a t can assist paren ts to be effective and proactive advocates for reducing and reporting bullying th a t affects th e ir children? How can stu d en ts be ta u g h t to advocate for themselves? How can stu d en ts be tau g h t to appropriately advocate for others? Although we w ant to protect our most vulnerable children, we cannot legislate the hum an condition. We can discipline perpetrators, b u t students w ith disabilities need to know how to respond beyond the closed environm ent of the school. Findings in the cases related to bullying and special education clearly delineate the need for school districts to have a concise action plan to prevent bullying, b u t also a strategy to intervene during real tim e incidents. It would behoove schools to take preem ptive m easures by providing access to current state bullying legislation and local school district policies by distributing copies or m aking available links to online copies of these documents. To encourage active participation, have Long v. Murray Cnty. Sch. Dist., 2012 U.S.Dist. LEXIS 86155 (N.D. Ga. 2012). 1] BULLYING ISSUES IMPACTING STUDENTS 133 personnel, parents, and students (when age appropriate) acknowledge in w riting th e ir understanding of th eir obligations u nder th e law and policy. W hen feasible, conduct school-wide and age specific anti-bullying train in g and assem blies where the applicable laws and school policies are highlighted and explained in a m eaningful way. If bullying incidents do occur, consider revising policies th a t tak e into consideration unexpected procedural concerns th a t arise following the im plem entation of the original school/district bullying policy. As w ith any school and district wide plan, consult w ith legal counsel w hen necessary to consider appropriate responses to situations and claims, and have legal counsel review applicable laws and policies w ith A dm inistration. A nother preem ptive m easure is to m ake sure th a t students are supervised appropriately by adults who u n d erstan d th eir obligations to provide an im m ediate intervention th a t is in accordance w ith school-wide and student-specific plans, and who do not them selves engage in conduct th a t could exacerbate situations. W hen an incident does occur, ask th e ad u lt to document responses and results of investigations. This should include providing a standardized protocol sheet for teachers and adm inistrators so they can record the n a tu re of the incident, date, time, who was involved, who was notified of the incident, specific steps tak en to respond to the incident for both the bullied and perpetrator, and identify a follow-up date. F u rth er, the standardized protocol sheet should include a section to identify when contact was made w ith parents, including if it was staff or p aren t initiated, how the staff responded to any concerns, and an agreed upon date to reconvene for follow-up. For eligible and/or qualifying students, include in any IE P or 504 plan goals to develop appropriate social skills th a t teach students to avoid being bullied or engage in bullying and th a t lim it the effect of future bullying. No one is im m une to bullying and students need skills to be self-sufficient in responding to bullying well into adulthood. M onitor progress on goals and the effectiveness of specially designed instruction for students. Consider supplem entary aids and services th a t may help students. Consult w ith behavioral specialists, counselors, social w orkers and/or other specialists w here appropriate to complement the team ’s expertise. In some instances, a simple resolution to future issues is to separate the individuals by 134 B.Y.U. EDUCATION & LAW JOURNAL [2015 varying schedules or class assignm ent. As p a rt of the design structure of the IEP or 504 plan, consider w hether to conduct a Functional Behavioral A ssessm ent (FBA)123 and im plem ent a Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP)124 to provide the team w ith additional inform ation, analysis, and strategies for dealing w ith bullying, especially when it is interfering w ith a child’s education. 125 Include in th e BIP a framework to teach appropriate and/or replacem ent behaviors to students w ith an em phasis on research-based strategies (e.g., rational emotive behavior th erap y )126 to teach skills th a t encourage students to m anage emotions appropriately whereby avoiding bullying or m inim izing th e effects. Or if a BIP is already in place, the team needs to review the plan and modify it, as necessary to address th e behavior. Some suggestions can be im plem ented w ithout expending significant resources. O thers require tim e on th e p a rt of teachers and/or adm inistrators, which can be burdensom e, particularly considering the daily curricular, assessm ent, and logistic dem ands in the school day. However, devoting tim e to a t least some consistent, stan d ard policies and practices noted above, will yield a benefit w orthy of consideration p articularly w hen w eighted against the potential for legal action ag ain st a school and long-term negative effects th a t bullying has on victims, perpetrators, and the larger school community. >23 20 U.S.C.§ 1415 (k)(l)(F)(i). >24 20 U.S.C.§ 1415 (k)(l)(F)(ii). 125 See Cynthia A. Dieterich & Christine J. Villani, Functional Behavioral Assessment: Process Without Procedure, 2 BYU EDUC. & L.J. 209, 211-212 (2000) (An early discussion of the statute and regulations related to FBA and BIP). See Joseph T. DiMaria, Disciplining Student with Disabilities: A Comparative Analysis of K -12 and Higher Education, BYU EDUC. & L.J. 421, 421—23 (2012) (A more recent overview of FBA and BIP). 126 See Tachelle Banks, Helping Students Manage Emotions: REBT as a Mental Health Educational Curriculum, 4 EDUC. PSYCH. IN PRAC. 383 (2011) (A general overview of research-based studies using rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT)). Copyright of Brigham Young University Education & Law Journal is the property of Brigham Young University Law School and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use.
Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 DOI 10.1007/s10648-013-9221-7 REVIEW ARTICLE A Review of Research on School Bullying Among African American Youth: An Ecological Systems Analysis Desmond Upton Patton & Jun Sung Hong & Abigail B. Williams & Paula Allen-Meares Published online: 21 April 2013 # Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013 Abstract School bullying and peer victimization are social problems that affect African American youth across various environmental contexts. Regrettably, many of the empirical research on bullying and peer victimization among African American youth has examined individual and direct level influences in silos rather than a constellation of factors occurring in multiple settings, such as home, school, and neighborhood. As a holistic model, the social–ecological framework provides a context with which to situate and interpret findings and draw implications from a broader psychosocial framework, which can be applicable across various systems. We utilize Bronfenbrenner’s (American Psychologist 32:513–531, 1977) social–ecological framework as a springboard for investigating the accumulation of risk contributors and the presences of protective factors in relation to school bullying and peer victimization of African American youth. More specifically, we examine the risk and protective factors occurring in the micro- (i.e., parents, peers, school, and community), exo(i.e., parental stress), and macrosystem levels (i.e., hypermasculinity, and gender role beliefs and stereotypes). We then discuss implications for research and school-based practice. Keywords African Americans . Bullying . Peer victimization . School . Youth School bullying and peer victimization are major concerns for students, parents, teachers, and school officials. Although a number of definitions exist, bullying is commonly identified as physical, verbal, or social forms of aggression perpetrated by an individual or a group of individuals against a particular individual (Espelage and Swearer 2003). American children of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds are increasingly exposed to bullying (Hanish and D. U. Patton (*) : A. B. Williams School of Social Work, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA e-mail: dupatton@umich.edu J. S. Hong School of Social Work, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL, USA P. Allen-Meares Office of the Chancellor, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA 246 Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 Guerra 2000), although the literature indicates higher rates among African American youth. More specifically, researchers have pointed out that physical fighting tends to be more common among African American (37.9 %) youth than whites (30.5 %; Carlyle and Steinman 2007), whereas African American youth generally report being bullied with less frequency than other racial/ethnic groups (Eisenberg and Aalsma 2005; Nansel et al. 2001). Bullying is defined in terms of specific acts and events of victimization. Acts of bullying include: physical aggression (e.g., hitting or kicking), verbal aggression (e.g., name calling), indirect/relational aggression (e.g., exclusions from a social group), and more recently cyber aggression. At its core, bullying is about a power differential in which a more powerful person or group of people dominates someone perceived to be less powerful (Fitzpatrick et al. 2007). Peer victimization is defined as an experience of a child who is a target of the aggressive behavior of other children who are not siblings (Hawker and Boulton 2000). Similar to bullying, peer victimization is characterized as overt (e.g., physical or verbal; Storch et al. 2005) and covert/relational (e.g., Crick and Bigbee 1998). Relational victimization occurs in which a child’s social relationships and social standing are harmed (Crick and Bigbee 1998). Youth who engage in bullying behaviors report higher levels of conduct problems and are more likely to display violent behaviors such as carrying a weapon or physical fighting. Studies consistently point out that children who are involved in bullying are also likely to display antisocial and criminal behaviors during late adolescence and adulthood (Nansel et al. 2001; Olweus 1992, 2004; Sourander et al. 2007). For instance, an earlier study conducted by Olweus (1992), which examined the behaviors of bullied youth, found a significant increase in criminal behavior at age 24. A more recent study by Sourander et al. (2007) also reports from a sample of Finnish youth that bullying-involved adolescents are significantly at risk of engaging in criminal behaviors (e.g., violence, property, drunk driving, and criminal offense). Prevalence of bullying and peer victimization has been difficult to generate (Espelage and Swearer 2003), and research findings vary when race/ethnicity is considered. For example, Wang et al. (2009) indicate a higher likelihood of African American youth (compared to Latino and white youth) being perpetrators of physical, verbal, and cyber bullying and less likely victims (verbal and relational). Conversely, Nansel et al. (2001) examined a nationally representative sample of youth and found that African Americans reported higher rates of peer victimization (physical and verbal) than their Latino and white peers. These data were supported by the recent work of Koo et al. (2012) who found African American girls to be at a higher risk of physical and verbal victimization by their peers than Asian American girls and Latinas. These findings are confounded by a body of research which consistently points to African American students being viewed as more aggressive than white and Latino youth by both teachers and other youth (e.g., Graham and Juvonen 2002). Significant advances have been made in research on school bullying and peer victimization over the years. However, little is known about the integration of multiple level risk and protective factors that foster or mitigate bullying and peer victimization among African American youth. Risk factors increase the likelihood that youth will be involved in bullying and peer victimization. However, risk factors are not direct causes of bullying and victimization; rather, they contribute to these behaviors (Mercy et al. 2002). On the contrary, protective factors has been commonly defined as factors that reduce the impact of a risk factor, helps individuals to not engage in potentially harmful behavior, and/or promotes an alternative pathway (Spooner et al. 2001). Although the term protective factor has been used in many ways in resilience research, we use the term to focus on resilience and positive outcomes and strengths rather than solely Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 247 on the deficits (Luthar et al. 2000), which connotes a commitment to understanding processes underlying the effects of vulnerability (Luthar and Cicchetti 2000). However, we equally recognize the variation in protective factors that espouse a more dynamic process of interactions between risk factors and either interpersonal (personality) or external (family support) factors that buffer the effects of risk. The studies presented in this article represent direct ameliorative effects, whereas protective factors may also undergird a moderating process in which an individual is “stabilized” within the context of increased risk or enhanced as an individual gains new knowledge as a result of increased risk (Luthar and Cicchetti 2000). Understanding the risk and protective factors within multiple contexts is important, considering that bullies and victims are at heightened risk of poor mental health outcomes, such as depressive symptoms (Fitzpatrick et al. 2010; Gomes et al. 2009). Moreover, various risk and protective factors influence young people’s attitudes and behaviors with regard to bullying and victimization and are also relevant to the efficacy of bullying prevention and intervention programs. A broader assessment of the risk and protective factors is a critical first step for developing and implementing culturally relevant school violence prevention strategies. The focus of this article is to review research on bullying and peer victimization among African American youth using the social–ecological framework. Examining the factors associated with bullying and peer victimization among African American youth is important for several reasons. Although bullying and peer victimization are serious problems for school-age youth of all racial/ethnic groups, there have been scant number of studies that investigated the correlates of bullying and victimization among African Americans at multiple levels of the social ecology. Much of the existing research on bullying among African American has focused on psychosocial behaviors that increase the likelihood of bullying and victimization, such as internalizing and externalizing behaviors (e.g., McMahon and Watts 2002; Peskin et al. 2007), as well as peer relationships (Estell et al. 2007; Farmer et al. 2003; Storch et al. 2003; Xie et al. 2003) and school environment (Benhorin and McMahon 2008; Felix and You 2011; Hanish and Guerra 2000; Juvonen et al. 2006). Regrettably, there has been a serious dearth of research that examined relevant broader contexts, such as community and culture This review contributes to the existing literature by moving beyond sole microsystems approach to understanding bullying behavior and victimization and moving towards the integration of broader level factors and how they interact with more microsystem factors. Understanding the broader level factors is particularly important because African Americans are more likely than other racial/ethnic groups to live in a dangerous neighborhood, which may be predictive of bullying and victimization (see Bowen and Bowen 1999). In Chicago for example, high resourced neighborhoods are more like to have lower average rates of problem behaviors as compared to poor neighborhoods (Elliott et al. 2006). Neighborhoods become spaces in which young African Americans develop their identities. To some, that may also mean developing a tough, aggressive demeanor in order to garner street credibility. The ecological systems theory serves as a useful framework for understanding the multiple level contexts that may foster and inhibit bullying and victimization among African Americans. Bullying involvement is frequently explained as emerging from a wide range of risk and protective factors within the social ecology of youth (Espelage and De La Rue 2012). When the social–ecological framework is applied, bullying and peer victimization may be facilitated and/or inhibited as a result of the interrelations among multiple contexts (Bronfenbrenner 1977). As a holistic model, this framework is conceived as an interactive 248 Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 set of systems nested within each other, which shape the context in which the individual experiences the phenomenon. Moreover, bullying and victimization are influenced by the reciprocal interactions among the biological and psychological characteristics of the youth, his/her behavior, and the environment (Espelage and De La Rue 2012). Although African American youth do not all belong in a monolithic group, many of the studies cited in this review pertain to low-income African American youth. However, there remains societal stigma and discrimination against African American which presents an additional layer of risk and has the potential to influence protective factors that could mitigate bullying behaviors and peer victimization among this racial group. Moreover, it is also important to examine protective factors, which can facilitate the development of culturally relevant intervention strategies and prevention measures. Considering that research on African American youth has primarily focused more on deficits and problems and less on strengths (Belgrave and Allison 2010), identifying protective factors is essential. Thus, our goal is to investigate risk and protective factors within the social–ecological context, from which we draw implications for research and practice. Method of Selection Empirical research and literature review were identified through electronic bibliographic databases and manual searches. Considering a major dearth of research on bullying and peer victimization among African American youth, a time frame of 1990–2010 was selected. Databases for the literature search included GoogleScholar.com, Medline, ProQuest, PubMed, and PsycINFO. As previously mentioned, subtypes of bullying and peer victimization include physical, verbal, and relational. Key words and phrases for the search included African Americans, blacks, racial and ethnic minorities, school bullying, aggression, aggressive behavior, peer victimization, relational aggression, and relational victimization. According to the World Health Organization (1977), adolescence covers a period of life between 10 and 19 years of age. However, because we focus specifically on bullying and peer victimization occurring from pre-school to high school, our search was limited to studies that include sample whose age range from early childhood to 18 years of age. Research studies on bullying and peer victimization outside of school (e.g., workplace bullying) and those that involve participants over 18 years of age were excluded from this review. The search included all available studies published from 1990 onwards, and titles, authors, and abstracts from all studies were reviewed to determine whether they met the inclusion criteria. Findings from the Review In sum, 23 articles were included in the review. The following section examines African American children and adolescents’ experience in school bullying and peer victimization within the context of the microsystem, exosystem, and macrosystem. Although the social– ecological framework also suggests that mesosystem levels can impact youth’s involvement in bullying, there is a dearth of research on the relationship between mesosystem and bullying involvement among African American youth. Therefore, mesosystem was excluded from this review. Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 249 Social–Ecological Framework In the following sections, we enumerate of the microsystem, exosystem, and macrosystem factors that influence or inhibit school bullying and peer victimization among African American children and adolescents. Researchers have proposed several different variables to explain the sources of bullying and victimization, such as parenting practices, family characteristics, peer relations, community environment, and gender role socialization. It is not any one of these factors that affect peer relations in particular, but their accumulation in the life of the individual youth. The social–ecological framework facilitates a broader understanding of a social phenomenon and is critical in enhancing our understanding of bullying and peer victimization among African American youth. When this framework is applied, bullying and peer victimization may be facilitated and/or inhibited as a result of the interrelations among multiple contexts (Bronfenbrenner 1977). Using a social–ecological framework (Bronfenbrenner 1977, 1979), we investigate the complex interplay between immediate and distal influences in bullying and peer victimization among African American youth. A series of concentric structures—micro-, exo-, and macrosystems—directly and indirectly affect the development, with the individual youth situated as the focal point of influence (Bruyere and Garbarino 2009; Garbarino 1992). More specifically, we investigate the risk and protective factors occurring in the micro- (i.e., parents, peers, school, and community), exo- (i.e., parental stress), and macrosystem levels (i.e., hypermasculinity and gender role beliefs, and stereotypes). Only by understanding the complex interplay of influences will the development of effective violence prevention and intervention strategies for African American youth follow. Microsystem As Bronfenbrenner’s (1977, 1979) social–ecological framework suggests, microsystem is characterized as a pattern of activities, social roles, and interpersonal relations experienced by the individual or a group of individuals in a direct setting (e.g., home, school), in which the individual is embedded. The interactions occurring within the microsystem consistently shape the individual or a group of individuals. Various microsystem level factors/contexts can directly foster or inhibit bullying and peer victimizations among African American youth, such as parents, peers, school, and community. Parents Many of the influences that foster or impede bullying are found within the home, as youth spend a great deal of their time with their family. Research examining the relevance of family system on bullying and peer victimization among African Americans has focused on parents, and more specifically, parenting practices (Curtner-Smith et al. 2006; Griffin et al. 1999), parental support (Benhorin and McMahon 2008), and parental abuse (Fitzpatrick et al. 2007). Several family characteristics have been found to be positively associated with bullying behavior among African American youth. These characteristics include: low involvement with parents, low parental warmth, low family cohesion, and single-parent family structures. In addition, one study has found that parental abuse (i.e., parents hit and beat routinely) is significant predictor of physical bullying behavior among African American youth (Fitzpatrick et al. 2007). Childhood family experiences also impact bullying behavior. Experiences may include family violence, inconsistent punishment, bullying by siblings, and the father’s history of bullying. On the other hand, perceived parental monitoring and support reportedly lowered the risk of bullying among African American youth. Parental 250 Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 support is found to be associated with positive outcomes in children and adolescents, such as higher likelihood of prosocial behavior (Bean et al. 2003; Carlson et al. 2000) and better school performances (Bean et al. 2003), as well as lower likelihood of psychological distress (Bean et al. 2006; Gray and Steinberg 1999), substance use (Parker and Benson 2004; Willis et al. 2004), and bullying behavior (Grant et al. 2000; Holt and Espelage 2007; Wang et al. 2009). Family-based support sources are especially important for African American children in coping with daily life struggles (Maton et al. 1996). Maton et al.’s (1996) study, which examined parental, peer, partner, and spiritual support among African American and white youth, found that in different contexts, different support sources were higher in level and/or more strongly associated with adjustment for one racial group than the other. Among 15- to 29-year-olds, parental support was significantly higher for African Americans than for whites. Connectedness to family and family support are resources that have traditionally helped African American youth cope with living in a society often perceived as hostile (Maton et al. 1996). Despite the significance of family-based support, we were only able to locate one study that examined the association between family support and bullying involvement among African American youth. One study conducted by Benhorin and McMahon (2008) found from a sample of 127 African American adolescents (ages 10– 15) residing in urban areas that perceived parental support was related to lower level of teacher-reported physical and verbal bullying and aggressive behaviors in school. However, the researchers did not find any significant main effects for parental support in relation to self- and peer-reported aggressive behaviors, which implies that these youth may display aggression in certain settings (e.g., home, neighborhood), but not in others (e.g., school). As previously mentioned, parental support is a salient protective factor that is relevant to African American youth. Considering the importance of parental support, additional research that examines the association between parental support and bullying involvement among African American youth is needed. Peers The quality of peer relationship represents another important microsystem, which may influence or inhibit bullying and peer victimization. Given that social skills are learned in the home, it is likely that these behaviors will be displayed to peers and teachers in the school setting (Espelage and Swearer 2003). Peer relationships are an important part of youth’s microsystem, which involves youth interacting with, influencing, and socializing with each other (Rodkin and Hodges 2003). Furthermore, a correlative pattern between the quality of peer relations and bullying and peer victimization has been observed among several researchers (see Hong and Espelage 2012, for a review). Researchers investigating the association between quality of peer relationship and bullying and peer victimization among African American adolescents report that the frequency of bullying behavior was high among adolescents under negative peer influence (i.e., pressured by peers to engage in illicit behaviors, such as alcohol and drug use; Farrar 2006; Fitzpatrick et al. 2007; Griffin et al. 1999). Other researchers also have investigated social relations and peer networks of African American adolescents who were identified as aggressive (Estell et al. 2007; Farmer et al. 2003; Xie et al. 2003). Although peer acceptance, popularity, and social networks are important for most adolescents (Espelage 2002), research findings on social relations of bullying involved youth have been mixed. A study conducted by Farmer et al. (2003), which includes subtypes of rural African American early adolescents (161 boys and 258 girls), found that bullies identified as tough boys and popular girls were rated higher by their peers on social prominence (e.g., cool, popular), compared to troubled boys and girls, although these youth were disliked by their peers. Moreover, youth involved in bullying (as measured Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 251 by physical and relational forms) showed higher levels of social network centrality than youth identified as non-aggressive (Xie et al. 2003), although they associated with aggressive and non-aggressive as well as popular and unpopular peer groups (Estell et al. 2007). Relatively few researchers identified protective factors within peer level contexts, such as peer support (Benhorin and McMahon 2008) and prosocial behavior from peers (Storch et al. 2003). For instance, Storch et al.’s (2003) research investigated the association between peer victimization (overt and relational) and internalizing behaviors (i.e., depressive symptoms, fear of negative evaluation, social avoidance, and loneliness) in a sample of 190 Hispanic/Latino and African American children (5th–7th grades). The researchers found that although overt (i.e., confrontational behavior directed towards another individual or a group of individuals; Griffin and Gross 2004) and relational victimization (i.e., being excluded from a social group, being a target of exclusion, rumors, or humiliation in a social setting; Griffin and Gross 2004) were both correlated with all types of internalizing behaviors, prosocial support from peers buffered the effects of peer victimization on loneliness. It is evident that risk and protective factors for bullying and peer victimization depend largely on the quality of peer relationships. Current research findings suggest that the likelihood of bullying and peer victimization is strong for youth with negative peer relations (e.g., negative peer influence). However, the findings also support the view that peer affiliation and social network of bullies vary, and some bullies are socially skilled and can have relatively high social status. Nevertheless, a limited number of researchers also found that prosocial behavior from peers and peer support could mitigate bullying behavior and negative outcomes associated with experiences in peer victimization. School Certain aspects of the school condition might facilitate or impede bullying behavior (Baker 1998; Espelage and Swearer 2003). Thus, school environment, in relation to bullying and peer victimization, has received a substantial amount of research attention (Hong and Espelage 2012). Many low-income African American youth are at greater risk of exposure to various types of violence. They also are likely to have few resources that might protect them from bullying and peer victimization; as a consequence, these youth may perceive their school environment as unsafe (see Fitzpatrick et al. 2010), which can heighten the risk of bullying and peer victimization. However, there are a number of protective factors in schools, such as perceived support from teachers (Benhorin and McMahon 2008), diversity in the classrooms (Felix and You 2011; Juvonen et al. 2006), and racially/ethnically integrated school settings (Hanish and Guerra 2000). To illustrate, Hanish and Guerra (2000) found from a sample of 1,956 racially and ethnically diverse children attending racially/ethnically integrated schools that racially/ethnically integrated school attendance was associated with a slightly lower risk of physical and verbal peer victimization for African American children, whereas it was associated with a significantly higher risk of victimization for white children. As theorized by Juvonen et al. (2006), greater diversity can increase racial and ethnic minority students’ perceptions of safety and reduce feelings of vulnerability because in diverse settings, students affiliate with one of many racial/ethnic groups that share a balance of power. Findings from Hanish and Guerra’s (2000) study also demonstrate that there is a critical need for examining contextual factors, such as racial/ethnic composition of the school as potential contributors to victimization. Community Because schools are embedded in neighborhoods, neighborhoods that are perceived as dangerous are significantly associated with bullying behavior in school (Hong and Espelage 2012). Considering that placement in risky school and classroom environments occur more frequently for African American than for white children due to the 252 Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 demographic of the neighborhood, it is not surprising that African American youth residing in socioeconomically disadvantaged (Thomas et al. 2006) and dangerous communities (Boxer et al. 2008; Fitzpatrick 1997; Griffin et al. 1999) are more likely than other racial/ethnic groups to be exposed to deviant and delinquent peer interactions, such as bullying. African American youth, particularly those residing in low-resourced neighborhoods, are also more likely than youth of other races/ethnicities to attend schools where exposure to violence is prevalent (see Bowen and Bowen 1999). Researchers have theorized that exposure to community violence leads to desensitization or disengagement and a cognitive orientation that normalizes violence (Ng-Mak et al. 2002). Children who develop such cognitive orientation believe that aggression is normal and morally acceptable, and believe that it is more beneficial to bully than be victimized (Belgrave 2009). Likewise, children in low-income communities may have learned bullying as a self-protective mechanism against potential harm (Belgrave 2009), which also can result in greater engagement in this behavior (Boxer et al. 2008). Exosystem Understanding the multiple influences of bullying and peer victimization requires an examination of the individual as embedded within larger social units. Exosystem comprises linkage between two or more interactions or settings, but only one directly affecting the individual (Bronfenbrenner 1977). There are settings or events that may influence the individual youth’s socialization, although the youth has no direct role in them. The exosystem has an indirect effect on the youth because the exosystem usually affects the youth as it “trickles” down through other people (e.g., caregiver) in the youth’s life. The quality of youth’s relationship with their peers can be influenced by a larger system or social structure that is not directly experienced by the individual youth. Exosystem level factors are significant in research on African American youth, given the highly stressful environmental context for many African Americans (Bean et al. 2006). One notable exosystem level factor is parental stress. For example, parental stress due to external factors (e.g., lack of financial resources) may not be directly related to individual youth but can affect the microsystem, which the youth are embedded (e.g., parent–youth relationship). In addition, African American parents may experience an added dimension of stress that is direct relation to their racialized experiences within the U.S. context. More specifically, African American parents experiencing stress due to their racialized experiences prepare their children for potential stigma, oppression, and discrimination. As such, these parents must also communicate message that outline behaviors that further develop their sense of identity as an African American in effort to prepare them for a continuum of racism (Fischer and Shaw 1999). Parental stress can compromise caregiving practices and parent–youth attachment at home, which can affect youth’s developmental outcomes. More specifically, mothers’ stress due to lack of financial resources, dearth of social support, and personal problems has been examined in a number of studies on African American children and adolescents, and has reported to be significantly correlated with youth’s psychosocial development (e.g., Brody et al. 1994; Caldwell et al. 2002). Regrettably, despite the significance of exosystem level factors, there appears to be a major dearth of empirical studies on exosystem level factors associated with African American youth’s involvement in bullying and peer victimization. Nevertheless, one study has examined parental stress (e.g., Curtner-Smith et al. 2006) as a risk factor for physical, verbal, and relational bullying among African American children. Curtner-Smith et al. Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 253 (2006) findings from a sample of predominantly African American children attending a Head Start Program suggest high level of mothers’ stress disrupts parent–child relationship, which can influence children’s involvement in overt and relational bullying. In evaluating the role of exosystem level factors in African American youth’s experiences in bullying and peer victimization, it is important to point out that they are the by-products of changes occurring in the larger social milieu, in which the developing youth is not embedded. For instance, mother’s stress may be due to external forces, such as poor neighborhood conditions or place of employment. Such forces could compromise her parenting practices and parent–child attachment in the home, and subsequently predispose the youth to negative peer relationships outside the home. Despite the limited number of empirical support, it is evident that understanding the multifaceted nature of the risk and protective factors for bullying and peer victimization of African American youth requires a consideration of external forces that unduly affect immediate settings (e.g., home) and interactions (e.g., parent–child relationship). Macrosystem The most distal influences of African American children and adolescents’ experiences in bullying and peer victimization are macrosystem level factors, such as society, in which micro- and exosystem factors are embedded. By society, we are referring to cultural norms and beliefs. An examination of the macrosystem level factors, such as hypermasculinity and gender role beliefs, can shed more light on the complex web of causal factors that may play a role in understanding bullying behaviors among African American youth. Hypermasculinity Most evident are culturally prescribed gender role socialization, such as hypermasculinity and relational aggression (i.e., engaging in gossip, rumors, threatening to sabotage friendships), which may perpetuate normative beliefs about aggression among boys and girls. According to Cassidy and Stevenson’s (2005) study, the pervasive notion of physical and verbal aggression among African American male adolescents may facilitate acceptance by peers in their adolescent years. Some individuals may put on a façade of aggression, although in actuality, they feel vulnerable. Among African American males in urban communities, aggressive behavior can be presented as hypermasculinity. Displays of hypermasculinity are associated with vulnerability and developmental sequelae to include depression, sensitivity to peer rejection, and fear of safety. As such, growing up in a volatile environment often requires urban African American males to be fearless and tough (Anderson 1999), thus making it difficult for African American boys to take on the persona of a more child-like demeanor (Patton and Garbarino 2013). This hypermasculine behavior may in fact hide the need of African American boys to receive social support from caring adults. Gender Role Beliefs and Stereotypes Hypermasculinity as it relates to African American males as a cultural construct has been developed by researchers to investigate how gender role beliefs reinforce male dominance (Mosher 1991; Murnen and Byrne 1991). It has been characterized as perceiving dangerous events as exciting, and as believing that aggression and violence are the norms for males (Kreiger and Dumka 2006). Hypermasculinity also has been linked to aggressive expression of anger and frustration, suppression of weak emotion (e.g., fear), domination of others, and acceptance of sexual aggression (Gold et al. 1992; Hamburger et al. 1996). Hypermasculinity has been identified as a correlate of bullying 254 Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 behavior of African American male adolescents. Farrar (2006) examined verbal bullying (i.e., upsetting others, teasing) within the sociological construct of race/ethnicity, gender, and the role of perceived gender stereotypes. Consistent with previous research findings, African American and males reported higher frequencies of initiating bullying, as compared with whites and other racial/ethnic groups and females. The author also found that stereotype perceptions increase bullying behavior. Interestingly, the author theorized that within the hegemonic paradigm, being a male gives a sense of gendered power among African American male adolescents. Therefore, acting in the stereotypical role of the hypermasculine male, which encompasses bullying behaviors, allows African American males to gain back some form of self-respect within the hegemonic paradigm. With regard to stereotypes, Ferguson (2000) reported that African American boys, when perceived by their teachers as being troublemakers and failures, resorted to exemplifying the popular media images of the hypermasculine male in an attempt to gain respect and self-esteem when they had self-determined that they would be unsuccessful in the classroom setting. The author found that fear, disrespect, anger, anxiety, student identity, and negative peer networks were significantly correlated with bullying behavior. In examining African American youth’s interactions with their peers, the author found that African American male students may draw upon stereotypical expectations in order to gain acceptance and popularity—which may lead to engaging in bullying behavior. It is clear that African American students were aware of broadly held stereotypes of African Americans as menacing and aggressive, and that those stereotypes influenced their interactions with peers. Among African American girls, relational aggression has been found to precede physical aggression in school (Talbott et al. 2002). One plausible explanation is that African American girls who were identified as relationally aggressive were more popular than girls who did not engage in relational aggression (Leff et al. 2009). In evaluating a program to specifically address the cultural and gender-related needs of African American girls within the school context, Belgrave et al. (2004) found that interventions which develop positive interpersonal relationships among African American girls and introduce ideas that raise youth’s awareness of issues relating to gender, ethnicity, and oppression significantly decreased relational aggression. These findings add to the growing body of literature on resilience among African American girls and how taking into account race and gender in multiple contexts can make a difference in decreasing relational aggression. Discussion Findings from research reveal that African American children and adolescents’ experiences in school bullying and peer victimization are multifaceted. Despite this, much of the research has focused on microsystem level influences that occur within the home and school. Consequently, relatively few have examined broader level influences within the exosystem and macrosystem levels, which are relevant to African American youth. With regard to the microsystems, parenting practices that are characterized as harsh and abusive are significantly associated with bullying involvement among African American youth (Fitzpatrick et al. 2007). Findings from Fitzpatrick et al. (2007) are consistent with studies that found that negative childhood family experiences can trigger bullying behavior among youth of other races/ethnicities (Hong et al. 2012). However, our review also suggests that family-based social support has been found to reduce bullying behaviors among African American youth (Benhorin and McMahon 2008). This is not surprising, considering that family social Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 255 support has traditionally been a critical resource for African American children who are confronted with daily struggles (Maton et al. 1996). Thus, additional research on familybased social support as a protective factor for bullying and peer victimization among African Americans needs to be conducted. With regard to peer and social relationships, negative peer influence and social networks were found to be significantly associated with bullying behavior among African American youth (Farrar 2006; Fitzpatrick et al. 2007; Griffin et al. 1999). However, a limited number of researchers have also identified protective factors, such as peer support and prosocial peer behaviors, which can reduce bullying behaviors (Benhorin and McMahon 2008). Identifying these protective factors is critical, which can inform effective bullying prevention and intervention strategies for African American youth. As indicated in this review, unsafe school climate as unsafe can increase the risk of bullying and victimization among African American youth (Fitzpatrick et al. 2010), while perceived teacher support (Benhorin and McMahon 2008), diversity in the classrooms (Felix and You 2011; Juvonen et al. 2006), and racially/ethnically integrated school (Hanish and Guerra 2000) can mitigate bullying involvement. This is not surprising, considering that students within the same schools share similar experiences with regard to their perceptions of their school climate and the need to use aggression in response to frustrations (Bradshaw et al. 2007). It is imperative that researchers investigate occurrences in the school settings, which can trigger bullying behavior and the role teachers and school administrators can play in fostering or inhibiting bullying behavior. Teachers, administrators, and staff members can influence the social climate of the school, and teachers’ ability to identify incidents of bullying can be influenced by a number of factors (Espelage and De La Rue 2012). In terms of broader level factors such as community environment, and factors occurring in the exosystem, and macrosystem, empirical research is seriously limited compared to the immediate level factors in the home and school environments (e.g., peer relationships). African American youth are more likely than youth of other races/ethnicities to reside in an impoverished and low resourced community where their parents experience greater levels of stress, which can undermine parent–child attachment and relationship (Curtner-Smith et al. 2006). Moreover, culturally prescribed gender role socialization (e.g., hypermasculinity; Cassidy and Stevenson 2005) and gender role beliefs supportive of male dominance (Kreiger and Dumka 2006) can reinforce normative beliefs about aggression among boys and girls (Cassidy and Stevenson 2005). Additional research investigating the broader level factors associated with bullying and victimization among African American youth is essential, considering that they have a significant influence in youth behavior and their relations with their peers. Nevertheless, this review of research highlights several potential areas for future scholarly theorizing and research and identifies areas to buttress practice and policy. Bronfenbrenner’s social–ecological framework serves as a useful heuristic tool for identifying factors across multiple contexts that trigger or impede bullying involvement among African American youth. Parenting behavior is an area researchers have identified as important for shaping peer relationships. Parental monitoring is associated with prosocial behavior, while negative parenting practices significantly predicted aggressive behavior among African American youth. Within the family context, researchers need to attend not only to the relationship between parenting practices and support (microsystem) and children’s peer relationships in school but also external factors that induce parental stress (exosystem), which could undermine parenting practices. Primary caregivers, particularly mothers, typically reside in the same community as their 256 Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 children. Thus, parental stress from navigating various forms of violence and poverty may impact how mothers discipline, monitor, and interact with their children. In addition, exposure to violence is a particularly relevant antecedent to bullying and peer victimization among African American youth in low-resourced communities. We also should point out that other community level factors such as parental unemployment or underemployment, high rates of teacher burnout or stress, and lack of school services provisions can also have a negative impact on children’s development and their peer relationships (Astor and Pitner 1996). Surprisingly, there are relatively few studies on community level factors associated with bullying. Researchers and practitioners need to assess community level factors, which can lead to more effective prevention and intervention strategies or to the enhancement of current socio-ecological intervention frameworks such as multisystemic therapy or response to intervention that is currently used in school districts nationally. Additional research is needed to fully understand how peer relationships influence or mitigate bullying involvement. Researchers suggest that the frequency of bullying is highest among individuals with negative peer influences (Farrar 2006; Fitzpatrick et al. 2007; Griffin et al. 1999). Peer relationships, particularly within the context of risk and stress are complex, and more specifically for urban African American youth, and negative peer influence can increase bullying behavior in one context (school), but might provide necessary protection against violence exposure or potential victimization in another context (community). Peer socialization among aggressive youth needs to be closely examined both within and outside the school, as these youth are likely influenced by peers in unmonitored settings, such as communities (e.g., gangs; Astor and Pitner 1996). It is imperative that school practitioners explore youth friendships as a mechanism that impacts individual behavior in various contexts, which can result in the development of intervention programs that meet the needs of African American youth. School climate has the potential to facilitate or impede the development of bullying behavior (Espelage and Swearer 2003). Schools that are perceived as unsafe can increase the risk of bullying and victimization. However, when schools embody a positive school climate and offer strong teacher support, the risk of bullying is lowered. Moreover, bullying and other forms of violence can occur in spaces within and outside the classrooms (Astor et al. 1999), and it is important that researchers examine peer dynamics and peer conflicts within various locations, such as hallways and cafeterias, where adults are typically not present. School practitioners (e.g., educational psychologists, counseling psychologists, social workers) may also think critically about working with school officials in developing school climate policies that attend to and integrate issues of school and community safety. For example, practitioners in urban schools may consider the extent to which adults in the school building (e.g., teachers, support staff, school administrators, and security guards) provide a level of safety among students. Understanding the relationships between adults and students not only influences how adults relate to students but can also result in broader policy conversations regarding adult/student interactions and the implications for overall wellbeing and academic achievement. Further, more research is needed to explicate how African American youth make meaning of school conditions and how they might be involved in bullying and peer victimization. We also explored the ways in which bullying and peer victimization are gendered. As previously mentioned, African American males and females to some extent experience the social world differently based on their racialized and gendered experiences. Whereas negative stereotypes within and outside school influence how African American males behave in school, interpersonal relationships in school can reinforce bullying among females Educ Psychol Rev (2013) 25:245–260 257 (Leff et al. 2009). As evident in the research finding, additional studies are needed to further explore macrosystem factors that might reinforce bullying behavior among African American males and females. Lastly, there are few qualitative studies which consider the voices of African American youth with regard to their lived experiences across the social–ecological systems. Understanding how these youth make meaning of and navigate community, school, family, and peers can help detect unknown factors that might contribute to bullying behaviors and why they are gendered. It is equally important to discussing bullying behavior within the context of limitation inherent in the social–ecological model. As stated earlier, fundamental to bullying is oppression. Currently, the social–ecological model lacks an analytical frame for which to examine oppression as a mechanism that influences and infiltrates the multiple systems individuals navigate on a daily basis (Mullaly 2007). Future research may consider a more in-depth understanding of oppression and its impact on bullying behavior within the context of individual youth navigating multiple social systems. In summary, this review has generated more unanswered questions than a definitive understanding of the etiology. 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School: UIUC


Bullying in American schools




Different authors gave varied definitions about the concept of bullying in Americans
schools. Desmond et al. (2013) defined bullying as actions and events of victimization that takes
place among students or any other environment with human interaction. It involves actions like
physical aggression, verbal aggression, and relational aggression. These actions make children
experience aggressive behaviors from other students that are not their siblings in schools.
Cynthia A., Nicole D & Christine V (2015) also gave a general definition of bullying in schools.
They explained that bullying occurs as a set of activities that affects emotional, educational and
physical results among students with disabilities.
Thesis Statement
Bullying is a serious problem in schools in America today; it affects students
academically, emotionally, and socially. In this discussion, there is an examination of the various
aspects of the bullying in American schools at the present moment and its effects to the students.
Moreover, the discussion goes ahead to examine the intervention measures of reducing the
bullying activities in the American schools. The various aspects of bullying covered under the
discussion include sleep deprivation while at school, bullying based on racial/ethnic perceptions,
physical fighting, assault and discrimination and even setting an individual due to a failure or
intrusion to an individual’s private life. Regarding the effects that bullying has on the students at
the school, various issues are discussed. The main issues considered include impairing the
academic performance of the students, interference with the social lives of the learners and
portrayal of adverse behaviors while at school. There is also an examination of mental effects of
bullying at the school and incidences of experiencing stressful conditions. The other area of



concern by this discussion include the measures of intervention undertaken to prevent bullying in
the American schools. The prominent measures considered include perceived support from the
teachers, racial/ethnic integration, addressing the problems of dehumanization and creation of an
anti-bullying culture.
The aspects of bullying in American schools today
Sleep deprivation is one of the significant aspects of bullying in the American schools at
the present. Specific aspects of the conditions within the school environment might facilitate or
impede the bullying behaviors among the students within the school (Baker 1998; Espelage and
Swearer, 2003). Therefore, the school environment is a major factor whenever it comes to sleep
deprivation within the American schools. Regarding this aspect of bullying, the students do not
have ample moment to sleep due to maybe a poor environment of sleeping or even due to
numerous cases of disturbances. Students might cause disturbance between themselves and in
such a condition, they find it hard to have enough sleep. In addition, numerous forms of
disturbances like noise disturbance may interfere with the sleeping program and patterns of
sleeping among the students. For an individual to have enough sleep, he or she requires an
environment that is free from any kind of a disturbance and it should be favorable in terms of the
conditions where an individual is sleeping. Therefore, sleep deprivation is one of the main
bullying aspects that is prominent in the American schools currently.
Racial/ethnic perceptions are the other prominent form of bullying in the American
schools at the moment. There are numerous cases of racial and ethnic bullying that are prominent
in the learning institutions. Specifically, the learners that are not of the American origin
experience the case of racial or ethnic bullying from the students that a...

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