Bullying and Students with Disabilities


Young, J., Dr. , Ne’eman, A., & Gelser, S. (2012). Bullying and students with disabilities . National Council on Disability , 1-6. Retrieved July 12, 2017.

This article was written to provide information about the prevalence of bullying specifically of students with disabilities and what can be done to reduce it. It starts by giving some background information about the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and other special education laws that stress the legal obligation to provide inclusive education opportunities to students with disabilities. However, frequent bullying experiences students with disabilities continue to face show that schools are not always welcoming environments. The authors provide a literature review which discusses actual statistics in regards to this topic. Authors explain that there are many ways a student can qualify as a student with a disability under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and/or under IDEA. They go on to explain how districts may be legally responsible to protect students with disabilities from bullying behaviors under IDEA’s free, appropriate public education (FAPE) and least-restrictive environment (LRE) provisions. They provide some policy recommendations to effectively address this problem.

From this article, I learned that an IEP meeting serves as a good opportunity to help students develop self-advocacy skills to use when they feel that they are being bullied or harassed. I did not realize that this was an appropriate place to discuss these things, but now I know that I can utilize the meeting to also plan for how I, as an educator, can help protect students from bullying behaviors. I also learned the importance of notifying parents of incidents of bullying and harassment as soon as possible, whether their child is the perpetrator or the victim. This might be an important tool, especially for students that have communication-related disabilities/ difficulties who might not be able to provide their families with this type of information. This resource contributed to my research because it helped me to see how bullying can contribute to a student’s self-confidence and also how self-advocacy skills can help reduce the effects of bullying for a students. Prior to finding this resource I had been ignorant and had not considered looking into bullying as part of my Content Resource Collection for this topic.




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