According to ABC 7 News, the boy, identified as Diego, sustained fatal injuries on September 16 when his head struck a concrete pillar after being punched by another boy at Landmark Middle School in Moreno Valley. Diego was pronounced dead Tuesday night.
The incident leading to Diego’s death was recorded, and the two students involved in the attack have been arrested. The attackers have not been publicly identified because they are minors.
School and district officials held a press conference where parents voiced concerns about whether it was previously known that the child was being bullied and the lack of adult presence – security, teachers, and staff – when the incident occurred.
In March, sheriff’s deputies had to respond to a large fight on the campus involving roughly 50 students. Deputies had to fire pepper balls in order to break the altercation.
Academic and Emotional Effects of Bullying
A recent study led by Gary Ladd, a professor of psychology at Arizona State University and aimed to collect data on the then-mostly-unexplored topic of bullying’s effect on academic achievement. Ladd notes that he was interested in studying the issue because most existing research only focused on psychological and health adjustment of victims.
Researchers enrolled 383 kindergarteners into their study and frequently assessed each child’s feelings of victimization, enthusiasm for school, academic esteem and performance through teacher evaluations and standardized test scores.
Children were asked about how frequently they were bullied, with answer choices ranging from “almost never” to “almost always.” The children were studied through the 12th grade.
Nearly a third of the kids experienced little or no bullying, 18% experienced mild bullying, and 24% experienced chronic levels of bullying.
Victims of chronic bullying were more likely to be boys. Chronic bullying victims had lower academic achievement, a greater dislike of school, and less confidence in their academic abilities.
The study found that both the prevalence and frequency of victimization declined through each successive grade level.
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