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The Bullying of Teachers

Bullying among students and peer groups is a hot topic, but talking about teacher victimization is considered taboo.

A 2011 study, “Understanding and Preventing Violence Directed Against Teachers,” reported 80% of about 3,000 K-12 teachers surveyed felt victimized by students, students’ parents or colleagues in the past year. Teachers reported that students were most often behind the verbal intimidation, obscene gestures, cyberbullying, physical offenses, theft or damage to personal property. But few teachers or researchers are talking about it.

 

The study found that 44% of teachers said they’ve experienced physical victimization. Men who participated in the study were more likely than women to report obscene remarks and gestures, verbal threats and instances of weapons being pulled on them. Women, on the other hand, were more likely than men to report intimidation.  Young teachers especially might be afraid to talk with a principal about being victimized in the classroom because they believe it means “they’re being ineffective somewhere.”

The Internet has created multiple avenues to increase the bullying of educators.  Students have the ability to create fraudulent twitter account pretending to be someone else, possibly a teacher. The perpetrator then intentionally creates a fake account with the sole purpose being to harass and humiliate an educator. By creating a twitter or false Facebook account with malice of forethought is a violation of education codes as well as cyber bullying laws and Facebook and Twitter can be made to take down the accounts..

 

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