School bus drivers’ perceptions of bullying on the bus: A mixed-methods study
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Bullying is often overlooked on school buses, despite the fact that many students experience bus rides at the beginning and end of each school day. Given that bus drivers are often tasked as the lone adult supervisors of these children, bus drivers’ observations and experiences regarding bullying have the potential to be useful in bullying prevention. This research gathered data from bus drivers about the kinds of bullying drivers witnessed on their bus and how frequently; what strategies drivers used to address bullying; how drivers were supported in addressing bullying; and how drivers perceived their own preparedness for addressing bullying on the bus. Data were collected using a sequential mixed-methods approach. During the first phase, an online survey with closed and open-ended questions was distributed to bus drivers within a region in Southern Ontario spanning several school jurisdictions; 22 responded. The quantitative data were analysed using descriptive statistics, while thematic analysis was employed with the data from the open-ended questions. Following the survey analysis, the second phase of the research entailed in-depth semi-structured interviews with ten bus drivers to explore their perceptions and experiences. Findings indicated that 74% of the surveyed bus drivers experienced bullying, and drivers reported increased frequency and severity of bullying when school administration provided less support. In addition, results offer descriptions of the nature of the bullying drivers observe on the bus, the strategies they use to address it, as well as drivers’ perceptions of their preparedness for, and how supported they feel in dealing with bullying. Given the limited research in this area, the findings from this study make significant contributions to understanding bullying in school bus environments, as experienced by bus drivers.
URI for this recordhttp://hdl.handle.net/1974/26184
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