Christian Science Monitor quotes Astor in article about bullying

Ron Avi Astor

Dr. Ron Avi Astor

The Christian Science Monitor quoted Ron Avi Astor in an article titled, “Do schools’ anti-bullying programs really help?”  The article noted that the effectiveness of anti-bullying programs is coming under more scrutiny since a University of Texas study suggested that such programs may encourage bullying by teaching students new bullying tactics and ways to hide them. Astor points out that there is not a quick fix to bullying:

“America is very country-centric and tends to think something is new because it has just become an issue here,” says Ron Avi Astor, a professor in urban social development at the University of Southern California here, and a member of a blue-ribbon panel that examined bullying on behalf of the American Educational Research Association. “But its real problem is that Americans want a quick fix, and behavior that is so socially and emotionally based does not lend itself to that.”

He adds:

“The most important element of the changes is a shift in the overall climate of a school community,” says Astor. An emphasis on educating the whole person, rather than focusing solely on academic achievement, has resulted in significant and measurable decreases in bullying behavior, he says.