Evaluation of the "Imagine ... a school without bullying" tool in the region of Waterloo : parent survey
Master of Public Health
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Bullying behaviour and its adverse health consequences are a major problem in elementary schools in the Region of Waterloo. The purpose of this project was to gather baseline information on the frequency and context of bullying behaviour as one way to evaluate a new framework tool, “Imagine...A School Without Bullying,” as a bullying prevention strategy. The researcher analyzed baseline data from a parent survey at five schools in the Region of Waterloo to determine the frequency and context of bullying behaviour; identify the characteristics of perpetrators and victims (i.e., age, gender, race, and recent enrollment at the school); synthesize recommendations for improvement of the program by parents (i.e., qualitative analysis); ^d offer recommendations to the Youth Health Team of the Region of Waterloo Public Health Department (ROWPHD) to improve the program. Analysis of the data found that boys are five times more likely than girls to physically bully at least once a month and more than twice as likely to perpetuate verbal bullying at the same rate. At a rate of once or twice a month, boys are far more likely to be bullied physically. Girls are bullied electronically three times more than boys. Grade 6 students, in comparison to students in Grades 4, 5, and 7, experience a greater incidence of name-calling. The researcher found a statistically significant difference between boys and girls with respect to sexual harassment in the form of name-calling. Parents offered constructive criticism, with the most reported themes being more supervision, more education, and harsher punishment. Bullying prevention is best accomplished through a whole community perspective (i.e., students^ teachers, school staff, parents, community members). Education, awareness, assessment, intervention, and policy changes are recommended to reduce bullying behaviour.