Hester, Jackie; Bolen, Yvette; Hyde, Lisa
September 2014
Review of Higher Education & Self-Learning;2014, Vol. 7 Issue 25, p76
Academic Journal
In middle schools and high schools across America, a troubling social epidemic continues to rise among adolescents and teens: bullying. According to the American Psychological Association, it is estimated that approximately 70% of all adolescent students experience bullying; however, only 20-40% report it. The short-term and long-term implications for victims of bullying are massive: anxiety, anger, depression, and suicide are among an exhaustive list of the negative consequences. To combat this prevalent dilemma in schools, there is active research in the prevention of bullying. Among those, one middle school in a rural school system in North Alabama implemented an award-winning bullying program that not only involved administrators and teachers but the surrounding community as well. The primary focus was to decrease the number of bullying incidents which occur during school hours. The program, P.R.E.S.S., includes five overarching strategies to prevent bullying within the school, including an interconnected web of rapport and support for the students from staff, teaching faculty, and administration. The likelihood of a student discussing a bullying incident with an adult in the building is significantly raised due to providing an environment of safety and trust. For students to report bullying, anonymity must be integral in the reporting process. The P.R.E.S.S. program provides a "bullying alert" button on the school's website, which then provides a Google Docs form for anyone to report an incident of bullying to and from school as well as during school hours. Educating students, faculty, and parents about bullying was also a strategy in the prevention and intervention of bullying incidents. The assistant principal led students through active working sessions on various topics of bullying such as the definition of bullying, what bullying involves, and how to report bullying. Parents and faculty were also provided information regarding bullying in a similar format with further focus on cyber bullying and responsible use of social media. A fourth element of the P.R.E.S.S. program involves the belief that students as bystanders of bullying must stand up and do something. As simple as this statement sounds, it may be difficult for students to speak up in front of their peers in fear of their own retaliation. When a school builds a sense of community, referring back to the importance of building relationships among stakeholders and students, a bystander may feel more comfortable to take action against bullying. Lastly, students voiced concern regarding the label of being a "snitch." In order to protect the identity of the student reporting the bullying incident, administrators ensured multiple opportunities for communication through the use of notepads dispersed throughout the school building. The notepads were used for writing informal reports that could be slid under an administrator's or counselor's door. Proactive bullying programs such as P.R.E.S.S. must be comprehensive by addressing current issues within the school and by promoting the importance of better peer relations in an effort to minimize the potential for future bullying events. By building a sense of community within the school, bullying can become a less pervasive problem.


Related Articles

  • Bully/victim problem among middle school children. Boulton, Michael J.; Underwood, Kerry // European Education;Fall93, Vol. 25 Issue 3, p18 

    Focuses on bully-victim problems in younger, middle school children. Frequency of being bullied; frequency of bullying; age and sex of bullies; Children's attitudes and responses to bully/victim problems; Feelings of the bully.

  • Basic bullying gets middle school students a day in court.  // Curriculum Review;Jan1998, Vol. 37 Issue 5, Views you can use p4 

    Discusses bullying incidents in the United States middle school. Court charges faced by several middle school boys in Wisconsin for bullying; Psychological effects of bullying to aggressor and victim; Study on bullying at elementary school playgrounds conducted by Deborah Peppler.

  • Narrowing the Gender Gap: Enduring Changes in Middle School Students' Attitude Toward Math, Science and Technology. Naizer, Gilbert; Hawthorne, Melissa J.; Henley, Tracy B. // Journal of STEM Education: Innovations & Research;Oct-Dec2014, Vol. 15 Issue 3, p29 

    Middle School students from rural school districts participated in a summer STEM program with academic year follow-up requirements. Both males and females showed increased interest and confidence regarding math science, technology, and problem-solving. Furthermore, these gains continued beyond...

  • ATRIBUCIONES CAUSALES DEL MALTRATO ENTRE IGUALES. De La A. Valadez Figueroa, Isabel; Gallegos, Noé González; De Jesús Orozco Valerio, María; Barajas, Rosalba Montes // Revista Mexicana de Investigación Educativa;2011, Vol. 16 Issue 51, p1111 

    The objective of the presented research was to explore the causal attributions made by students and employees at middle school, regarding mistreatment among equals. Data were obtained through self-reports, with a section of open-ended questions. The results reveal a pattern of attributions that...

  • Girls in the middle: Working to succeed in school.  // Women's International Network News;Winter97, Vol. 23 Issue 1, p77 

    Focuses on the report `Girls in the Middle: Working to Succeed in School,' published by the American Association of University Women Educational Foundation. Focus on the critical choices that middle school girls make in their daily lives; Factors that support the success of middle school girls.

  • Transition classes keep kids on-grade. King, Dan; Allen, Diana // Education Digest;Apr96, Vol. 61 Issue 8, p30 

    Presents a summary of an article entitled `Transition Classes Keep Kids On-Grade,' by Dan King and Diana Allen,' taken from the September 1995 issue of `The Executive Educator,' about the importance of transition classes for middle-school students.

  • Succeed with troubled adolescents. Dougherty, James F.; Greenspan, Norman // Education Digest;Nov96, Vol. 62 Issue 3, p45 

    Enumerates strategies for dealing with middle school students whose elementary career has seen significant social, emotional and learning problems. Duties of the middle-school administrators; Conducting meetings with parents and administrative team; Development of a specific plan for dealing...

  • A `fiver' for a book. Swiderek, Bobbi // Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy;Sep95, Vol. 39 Issue 1, p84 

    Asserts that teachers must not only allow middle school students to read, but sometimes must entice them to read. Ways of motivating students to read; Reading in the class; Luring students with swear words; Luring them with the forbidden.

  • A catalog of creative inquiry projects guaranteed to motivate at the middle. Johnson-Kuby, Sue Ann; Katz, Claudia Anne // Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy;Dec96/Jan97, Vol. 40 Issue 4, p312 

    Describes a catalog of inquiry projects for middle school students. Reflection of the author's life in the book; Basis of historical fiction on real events; Investigation of a scientific concept; Research on a possible career.


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics