School victimisation of disadvantaged children and association with depression and health related quality of life: The Baseline picture

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Hyland, John
Hyland, Pauline
Comiskey, Catherine
Issue Date
Dublin Business School
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Background: While bullying victimisation research in primary and post-primary schools is plentiful, investigation into victimisation rates and associated correlates within disadvantaged primary schools is negligible. Objectives: The aim of this paper is to present analysis of baseline data from the longitudinal ‘Healthy Schools’ programme. Method: A sample of 458 children from DEIS-Band 1 primary schools in the greater Dublin region participated. Incidences of victimisation were analysed, employing both a general measure of victimisation, and specific questions on bullying behaviours (e.g. Teasing, Name calling). In addition, victimisation rates were categorised and differences were explored with regard depression and health-related quality of life (HRQoL). Results: Frequency of victimisation (33.8%) was relatively consistent with current literature in Irish primary school. As expected, victimisation predicted higher scores on depression (p< .001) and lower scores on all five subscales of HRQoL, Physical Well-being (p = .044), Psychological Well-being (p < .001), Autonomy and Parent Relations (p = .015), Social Support and Peer Relations (p < .001), and School Environment (p = .027). Conclusion/Importance: Interesting discussion points from the baseline data include the consistency of victimisation trends compared to current trends in general primary school victimisation literature. Moreover, the large differences in depression and HRQoL across victimisation categories is a cause for concern. Author keywords: Bullying, depression, health related quality of life, disadvantaged