Kids with autism bullied more than general student population


About 46% of youths with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have been victims of bullying. This was discovered as part of a study on teens and adults with autism.

As more autistic children are identified, research needs to be done to find out what life is like for them as they move through the various social systems and how it can be improved where necessary.

Integration can lead to bullying

“Spending more time in a general education setting, as opposed to a segregated special education classroom, was associated with a higher rate of being bullied. Schools need to work harder at the successful integration of students with disabilities,” said Paul T. Shattuck, PhD and assistant professor at the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis.

Bullying compared between general population and ASD kids

Bullying is defined as a negative reaction toward a peer involving a power struggle between the victim and the perpetrator. Nationally represented survey data was used to determine how common bullying is for adolescents. It was compared to rate of those with developmental disabilities that coincide with major shortfalls of ASD as well as connections with bullying.

Staff training necessary to ensure a violence free school

Findings show significantly higher maltreatment is experienced by kids with ASD than the national percentage for general adolescent population. Shattuck recommends more parental interaction for plans and policies that will positively include students with disabilities. Staff and teacher training on bullying prevention to ensure a violence free school was also recommended.

Source: MedicalNewsToday, Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine

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