New study reveals children who are physically bullied can be up to nine months behind their peers in academic performance.

The Murdoch Children’s Research Institute surveyed 965 primary school children, looking at child-reported bullying and NAPLAN results as a marker of academic achievement, reports 9 news.

The analysis found frequent bullying did have an impact on a child’s grades, with one in three boys and one in four girls aged eight to nine experiencing incidents weekly.

Children who were physically victimised were found to be about six to nine months behind other students academically.

Boys were more likely to be physically bullied, but there was no gender differences for teasing and name calling.

The detrimental academic effect was, however, stronger for girls than boys.

The study’s lead author Lisa Mundy said bullying was most common in mid-to-late primary school, just before puberty and when children become aware of group hierarchies.

“We need to better equip schools and teachers to deal with the prevention of bullying to minimise the potential long-term effects it can have on a child’s social and emotional development,” Dr Munday said.

MoM says

Our eldest son was the victim of bullying a couple of years ago. It was also the year his school results slipped terribly and I fought tooth and nail to make sure he was helped get back to standard grades. I knew what he was dealing with daily was having a major impact on him, but I was brushed aside in the end and told he just wasn’t applying himself enough.

That bullying had a major affect on his confidence and two years later we are still struggling to build it back up.

Has your child experienced bullying and it impacted on their learning? We would love to hear from you.

Share your comments below.

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  • my eldest get teased because she is smart. we try to sort it out at school and encourage her to ignore them. we show her she is worth being treated right


  • I was bullied by my first teacher because I am left handed. She was very biased. Consequently initially I didn’t do well at school until I told my parents what was happening. Mum visited the school the following Monday and warned them to stop harrassing me. Dad couldn’t go to as he went into hospital that weekend.


  • Not surprising that bullying , like any other forns of trauma and stress negatively impact learning, sleeping and overall wellbeing.


  • I was never bullied but l am sure it does impact your life so much.


  • Well duh!


  • Why are we surprised? Bullying is ghastly nd has horrible impacts.


  • It never happened to my child, but it did to the son of one friend of mine. He used to lock himself into the bathroom to hide from the bullies. His grades started to decline. But the school wasn’t very keen to approach the bullies and kind of dismissed my friend’s complains. At the end she took the child out of school (it was high school) and home-schooled him for the two final years.


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