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The role of family and school-level factors in bullying and cyberbullying: a cross-sectional study

Bevilacqua, Leonardo, Shackleton, Nichola, Hale, Daniel, Allen, Elizabeth, Bond, Lyndal, Christie, Deborah, Elbourne, Diana, Fitzgerald-Yau, Natasha, Fletcher, Adam ORCID:, Jones, Rebecca, Miners, Alec, Scott, Stephen, Wiggins, Meg, Bonell, Chris and Viner, Russell M. 2017. The role of family and school-level factors in bullying and cyberbullying: a cross-sectional study. BMC Pediatrics 17 , 160. 10.1186/s12887-017-0907-8

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Background: Bullying and cyberbullying are common phenomena in schools. These negative behaviours can have a significant impact on the health and particularly mental health of those involved in such behaviours, both as victims and as bullies. This UK study aims to investigate student-level and school-level characteristics of those who become involved in bullying and cyberbullying behaviours as victims or perpetrators. Methods: We used data from 6667 Year 7 students from the baseline survey of a cluster randomized trial in 40 English schools to investigate the associations between individual-level and school-level variables with bullying victimization, cyberbullying perpetration, and cyberbullying victimization. We ran multilevel models to examine associations of bullying outcomes with individual-level variables and school-level variables. Results: In multilevel models, at the school level, school type and school quality measures were associated with bullying risk: students in voluntary-aided schools were less likely to report bullying victimization (0.6 (0.4, 0.9) p = 0. 008), and those in community (3.9 (1.5, 10.5) p = 0.007) and foundation (4.0 (1.6, 9.9) p = 0.003) schools were more likely to report being perpetrators of cyberbullying than students in mainstream academies. A school quality rating of “Good” was associated with greater reported bullying victimization (1.3 (1.02, 1.5) p = 0.03) compared to ratings of “Outstanding.” Conclusions: Bullying victimization and cyberbullying prevalence vary across school type and school quality, supporting the hypothesis that organisational/management factors within the school may have an impact on students’ behaviour. These findings will inform future longitudinal research investigating which school factors and processes promote or prevent bullying and cyberbullying behaviours.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Publisher: BioMed Central
ISSN: 1471-2431
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 1 August 2017
Date of Acceptance: 29 June 2017
Last Modified: 05 May 2023 20:49

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