School Violence in Context: Culture, Neighborhood, Family, School, and Gender

By Rami Benbenishty; Ron Avi Astor | Go to book overview
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Chapter 7
Student Victimization by Staff

In this book we include victimization by staff as an important aspect of school violence. Very few studies of school violence have included any questions related to students’ victimization by staff members. We believe that staff violence should be included in all conceptual and empirical investigations of school violence. However, staff victimization should be treated separately from peer victimization because it may emanate from different social mechanisms, may be associated with different risk factors, and may be amenable to different interventions. In previous chapters we focused on peer victimization. We now examine the many faces of staff victimization and its relationship with various aspects of our model, such as gender, school level, family poverty, and culture. Our goals in this chapter are multiple: First, we want to raise researchers’ awareness of the importance of including victimization by staff members as part of the conceptualization of school violence theory. This can only happen if studies include victimization by staff in their research. Second, we aim to explore the different kinds of staff victimization that may occur in schools. It is possible that different variables impact the various types of victimization. Third, we explore the relationships between age, gender, and culture on student victimization by staff. The child abuse literature in settings outside school suggest that these are essential and important components to consider. Finally, we explore the joint contributions of socioeconomic influences and cultural issues on staff violence. This kind of discussion is very important because ethnicity, culture, and economic issues are often confounded.


BACKGROUND ON STUDENT VICTIMIZATION BY STAFF

To date, the school violence and bullying literature has paid little attention to victimization of students by school staff. It was only in 1999 that Olweus, a pioneer in the study of peer bullying, reported on data he collected on teachers bullying students

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