Cyber-bullying becomes most common form

Cyber-bullying has now become the joint most common form according to the latest Government-commissioned research. The National Centre for Social Research analysed bullying among more than 10,000 secondary school pupils in England between the ages of 14 and 16 and found that 47 per cent of 14-year-olds have been a victim. This figure falls to 41 per cent amongst 15-year-olds and 29 per cent for 16-year-olds.

Top cyber-bullying searches:
  1. Cyber bullies
  2. Bullying on line
  3. How to stop bullying
  4. Bullying websites
  5. Anti bullying video
  6. Bullying at school
  7. Bullying prevention
  8. Bullying helplines
  9. Kids bullying
  10. Bullying articles
But the internet has become the medium of choice for bullies, along with the use of mobile phones to taunt children with threats of violence. Girls were more likely to be bullied than boys but name-calling and exclusion from their friends were more common, where boys were more likely to fall victim to theft and violence.

The study also revealed the effect that bullying can have in the long-term. Those bullied at the age of 14 and 15 scored significantly lower in their Key Stage 4 (GSCE level) exams and victims of bullying were also more likely to be what is called a "Neet" – meaning not in education, employment or training."

Published to mark the launch of anti-bullying week, the report concluded that in those cases where parents had reported the abuse, the child was less likely to face bullying in the future.

Schools Secretary Ed Balls, said of cyber-bullying: "It's really important that young people can use new technology and the internet to learn, have fun and stay in touch with their friends. But we also know that mobile phones or computer screens can be used to taunt and bully young people, which can have devastating consequences. I want parents to feel confident coming forward and reporting bullying incidents to school, as we know this helps to stop bullying continuing."

Do you have a child who has been a victim of bullying and what do you think is the best way to tackle the problem?