Bullying can contribute to an environment of fear and intimidation in schools (Carney, Hazler, and Higgins 2002; Ericson 2001). In the School Crime Supplement to the National Crime Victimization Survey, students ages 12-18 were asked if they had been bullied (for example, picked on or made to do things they did not want to do) at school during the previous 6 months. In recent years, fewer than 1 in 10 students reported being bullied at school during the last 6 months. Although the percentage who had been bullied increased from 5 percent in 1999 to 8 percent in 2001, no difference was detected between 2001 and 2003 (figure 12.1 and table 12.1). In 2003, 7 percent of students reported that they had been bullied at school.
In 2003, White students were more likely than Hispanic students to report being bullied (8 vs. 6 percent; table 12.1). No other differences were detected in the percentage of students who reported that they had been bullied according to students’ race/ethnicity or sex.
Grade level was inversely related to students’ likelihood of being bullied: as grade level increased, students' likelihood of being bullied decreased (figure 12.2 and table 12.1). For example, in 2003, 14 percent of 6th-graders, 7 percent of 9th-graders, and 2 percent of 12th-graders reported that they had been bullied at school.
In 2003, public school students were more likely to report being bullied than private school students (7 vs. 5 percent). In the same year, rural students were more likely than their urban and suburban counterparts to report being bullied (10 percent of rural students vs. 7 percent each of urban and suburban students).
|View Table 12.1|