One in Five Los Angeles High School Students Bullied Last Year

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - One in 5 Los Angeles high school students and 1 in 4 elementary students say they were bullied last school year, according to a survey conducted as part of a newly released internal Los Angeles Unified School District audit.

Although the extent of bullying found by L.A. Unified’s Office of Inspector General is not necessarily out of line with national figures, the audit suggests that students are getting less help than they should, the Los Angeles Times reported.

“Most teachers and staff did not receive high quality training on bullying prevention on an annual basis,” the report says. Schools try to address bullying but fall short, to varying degrees, according to the newspaper.

In addition, the district, according to the audit, has fewer staff members overseeing anti-bullying efforts than other school systems with similar goals. At one LAUSD campus, the person in charge of handling bullying complaints was “not aware that she was appointed for this role,'' the report says. And although schools were supposed to keep bullying complaint logs, at nearly every campus the audit examined they were either not in use or were not up to date.

A survey conducted as part of the audit, according to The Times, found that:

- In elementary school, equal numbers of boys and girls said they'd been bullied. In high school, it was more boys than girls;

- Bullying declines somewhat as students move into higher grades;

- About 5 percent of students said they had bullied a peer during the current school year, and more than a third of that group said they had taken part in cyberbullying.

About 83 percent of students at 228 schools answered all or part of the survey questions, The Times reported. About 61 percent, or 48,206 students, completed the survey, allowing for full analysis.

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