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Bullying, Peer Harassment, and Victimization in the Schools: The Next Generation of Prevention.

Bullying, Peer Harassment, and Victimization in the Schools: The Next Generation of Prevention. Edited by Maurice J. Elias and Joseph E. Zins; published by the Haworth Press, (Web); 205 pages; $24.95.

In Washington State alone, nearly one in three of the state's 47,000 sixth and eighth grade students are victims of bullying at least once a month. Almost 14,000 are victimized weekly. Recent studies have shown the dramatic psychological, social, and academic effects that bullying can have on students. Compared to their peers, kids who are bullied are five times more likely to be depressed. Boys are four times more likely to be suicidal, and girls are eight times more likely.

This book provides extensive documented detail on who is bullied and how it occurs. The editors validate the perception that bullying is most likely to happen to students making the transition from elementary to middle school and from middle school to high school. They also dispel the perception that the bully is a social misfit; he or she is typically popular. Also explored is how bullying varies by gender, race, and ethnic background. Such detail, as well as an abundance of source material, makes this book very interesting reading.

The style and tone are, however, that of a doctorate-level academic tract, and the book also is lacking in solutions. Thus, it is not a practical security guide. It is a fascinating cataloging of the problem nonetheless.

Reviewer: Fred Zagurski, CPP, CDT (Certified Document Technician), is an independent technical consultant based in Washington State, who specializes in physical security at educational facilities. He is a past member of the ASIS Council on Educational Institutions.