A report from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health finds girls in Ontario are twice as likely as boys to be victims of cyber-bullying.
It’s the first time in 35 years of surveying Ontario schoolchildren about their mental health and well-being that the centre asked about cyber-bullying — and one in five students say they’ve experienced it.
The survey found 28 per cent of girls reported being victims of cyber-bullying, compared to 15 per cent of boys.
Girls — 31 per cent of them — were also more likely to report being victims of bullying at school, as opposed to 26 per cent of boys.
The latest findings from the study show that 29 per cent of students in Ontario, an estimated 288,000 adolescents, are affected by bullying.
Researchers surveyed 9,288 students from Grades 7 through 12 in 181 schools across Ontario between October 2011 and June 2011.
Annie Kidder, executive director of the Toronto-based group People for Education, says the report shows the differences in bullying between genders and the need for different approaches to bullying based on highly visible cases in the classroom and fewer visible incidences online.
Dr. Claire Crooks, a clinical psychologist and associate director of the CAMH Centre for Prevention Science, says it’s difficult to analyze bullying from the perspective of genders, but that both sexes engage in both overt and concealed bullying.