School Violence: Bullying Behaviors and the Psychosocial School Environment in Middle Schools

Meyer-Adams, Nancy; Conner, Bradley T.
October 2008
Children & Schools;Oct2008, Vol. 30 Issue 4, p211
Academic Journal
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationships among a school's psychosocial environment and the prevalence and types of bullying behaviors that either lead to or result from that environment. More specifically, this study examined how the frequency of aggressive behaviors (for example, bullying) experienced by students (as perpetrators and as victims) contributed to their interpretation of their school's psychosocial environment and how those environments affected the existence of ongoing aggressive and avoidance behaviors. The data for this study were archival, having originally been collected for a study of school culture, climate, and violence from the Philadelphia School District during the 1993-94 school year. To understand the consequences of bullying in schools, the authors used structural equation modeling analyses to develop a theoretical model of predictive relationships among (1) students' perceptions of bullying behaviors and safety at school, (2) the schools' psychosocial environment as measured by the students, and (3) the students' reactionary behavior to both (1) and (2). Direct practice applications for school social work practice are discussed.


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