Results of a bullying survey conducted in the Washington School District’s eight elementary schools should be known soon.
Students in second through sixth grade took the online survey, according to Kelly Bauer, elementary guidance department.
Bauer spoke to school board members Wednesday night about the survey and other aspects of the guidance program.
The survey was done to analyze bullying behaviors, she said, to increase awareness and develop strategies to prevent it.
“We want to find out if it’s happening and places where it happens,” she told the board.
Students were asked to rank how safe they feel in specific places, such as their classroom, on the playground, in the cafeteria, in the hall, on the bus, in the gym before school, art class, music class, gym class and in the library.
Responses were safe, so-so, and unsafe for each place listed.
The survey also asked students if and how often they’ve been teased in a mean way, called hurtful names, left out of things on purpose, threatened, and hit, kicked or pushed. Possible responses included every day, 1 to 2 times a week, 1 to 2 times a month, 1 to 2 times a year and never.
Students were asked to identify, not by name, but by gender, and whether it was a group or individual, who bullied them, said mean things, teased them, called them names, or tried to hurt them at school. What grade the student or students who bullied them also was asked. Responses included in my classroom, in the same grade, but a different class, in a lower grade, in a higher grade, or I haven’t been bullied.
The survey also asked students about their response if they were bullied. Responses included I do nothing, tell the bully to stop, get away from the bully, hurt other kids, stay home from school, tell an adult, tell a friend, or I don’t get bullied.
If they’ve been bullied, the survey asked whom they have told about it — mother of father, sister or brother, a teacher or another adult at school, another student at school, nobody, or I’ve never been bullied — and if they feel the person told helped them with the situation and what happened after they told someone, whether it got better or worse, or nothing changed.
The survey also asked students if and how often they hit, kick or push other children, and if and how often they say mean things, tease others, call others names, leave someone out on purpose and put their hands or feet on someone else. The final question asked how often they saw someone else doing any of those things.
Bauer said guidance department is in the process of updating its curriculum and programs to define bullying, increase awareness of student behavior and provide strategies to empower students in such situations.
Several school counselors also have been attending a series of workshops that address bully prevention in the schools. Bauer said the participants will share the information with all counselors.
Additionally, Bauer said counseling services are being provided to students in small groups and individual settings.
Although the number of students who reported feeling safe in school, according to previous student/parent surveys conducted, has been above 94 percent the last two years, Bauer said counselors felt a survey specific to bullying might glean better information.
Students also were asked on this latest survey how they feel about being at school with answers ranging from very happy, to sometimes, so-so, sometimes unhappy and very unhappy.