As summer comes to a close and the first day of the new school year rapidly approaches, many kids are probably dreading going back to school. Most probably just aren’t excited about giving up all that free time, but some kids might not be enthused about returning to school for another reason: bullying.
A statistic from the National Education Association states that “one in three American schoolchildren grades six through 10 are affected by bullying, and 83 percent of girls and 79 percent of boys report experiencing harassment” at school.
Bullying has become more of a political issue in the past few years, with several states enacting policies to curb online and in-person bullying. But how does Texas stack up to the rest of its peers when it comes to stopping bullying? A new study released by WalletHub suggests the Lone Star state isn’t too great at combating bullying.
In its “States with the Biggest Bullying Problems” ranking, WalletHub evaluated 45 states and the District of Columbia on bullying prevalence, bullying impact and treatment and anti-bullying laws. (Colorado, Iowa, Minnesota, Oregon and Washington were excluded because of data limitations.) Each state was graded on a scale of 1-100, with a higher score indicating a higher prevalence of bullying. Texas ranked 27th for bullying prevalence, first for bullying impact and environment and third for anti-bullying laws, for an overall score of 55.08 overall, placing 6th. Michigan took first place, with a score of 60.18.
According to the study, Texas also tied for first in its metric measuring the highest cost of truancy for schools due to bullying. Other metrics used to evaluate ranking were the prevalence of online bullying, the prevalence of physical bullying, the number of high school students who have attempted suicide and the percentage of students involved in a physical fight at school.
You can see the full methodology here.