Sexual harassment is a prevalent form of victimization that most antibullying programs ignore and teachers and school officials often fail to recognize, said bullying and youth violence expert Dorothy L. Espelage.

Espelage recently led a five-year study that examined links between bullying and sexual harassment among schoolchildren in Illinois. Nearly half — 43 percent — of middle school students surveyed for the study reported they had been the victims of verbal sexual harassment such as sexual comments, jokes or gestures during the prior year…

…While verbal harassment was more common than physical sexual harassment or sexual assault, 21 percent of students reported having been touched, grabbed or pinched in a sexual way, and 18 percent said peers had brushed up against them in a suggestive manner.


Students also reported being forced to kiss the perpetrators, having their private areas touched without consent and being “pantsed” — having their pants or shorts jerked down by someone else in public.

About 14 percent of the students in the study reported having been the target of sexual rumors, and 9 percent had been victimized with sexually explicit graffiti in school locker rooms or bathrooms.
Science Daily

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write the story of a middle school child who is being sexually harassed.

Journaling Prompt: Journal about an embarrassing incident that happened when you were in middle school.

Art Prompt: Sexual harassment

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about the problem with sexual harassment among teens.

Photo Credit: Judite B on Flickr

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