Nearly half of elementary teachers admit to bullying kids

The Menninger Clinic

Nearly half of elementary school teachers surveyed about bullying in schools, admitted to bullying students, according to a study in the May issue of The International Journal of Social Psychiatry. (You may access the full-text of the Twemlow et al article by registering for the International Journal of Social Psychiatry free trial. Current and back issues are available until October 31, 2006. Also, access IJSP and other SAGE Psychiatry journals for free until August 31, 2006.)

The study surveyed 116 teachers from seven elementary schools. While more than 70 percent of teachers believed that bullying was isolated, an estimated 45 percent of teachers admitted to bullying a student themselves.

“It didn’t surprise me that nearly half of teachers admitted to bullying, because they are aware it is a problem,” says former teacher Stuart Twemlow , M.D., lead author of the study and director of the Peaceful Schools and Communities Project of the Child and Family Program at The Menninger Clinic. “Teachers need methods and help with disciplining children. The tragedy is that school districts rarely give teachers any help with discipline. They learn it by the seat of their pants.” Full story.


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