Sexual Harassment in Schools: 9 Things to Know

Sexual Harassment in Schools: 9 Things to Know


Sexual harassment is a problem too serious to ignore and it happens more often than you’d expect.

It is present in society and far prevalent in the workplace. However, schools are also areas where sexual harassment is frequent and may take even the smallest of forms. It can be quite a shock considering how the school should be the safest place for our children.

How do we address sexual harassment in schools? The following are some things that may help you understand this concerning situation.

1. Sexual Harassment Frequently Happens in Schools

Sexual harassment is not limited to the workplace, as this is also becoming a frequent scenario in schools as well. The frequency in its occurrence is troubling and the victims involved in them are mostly students.

It shows that regardless of where it is, sexual harassment has shown as a problem. While reported cases get noted during high school, there are instances when such cases occur in elementary and middle school. However, the tendency is that these are not reported and are instead hidden away.

2. Sexual Harassment Comes in Many Forms

Sexual harassment has more than one form present. It is an act that fully disturbs the victim to the point that they are unable to function properly in any of the activities.

This includes verbal forms through comments, slurs, and accusations. Physical actions like touching or grabbing in an inappropriate manner are also a form of harassment. Visual in the form of indecent imagery in terms of pictures and gestures are also a form of harassment.

These acts can also escalate towards criminal actions like sexual assault and rape.

While students are among the targets of these kinds of abuse, this is not limited to them. Faculty and staff are also likely targets for sexual harassment. Anyone can be a target of harassment, which is why it’s important to take more courses and gain more awareness.

3. Developed and Pretty Girls Are Among Likely Targets

Everyone can be a target, faculty or student, male or female. However, it is more likely for females to get targeted. In schools, girls who are pretty and more developed have a higher chance of being a target for sexual assault.

In one of the studies conducted by the American Association of University Women, girls with developed bodies have a 58% chance of being sexually harassed. Other likely targets for assault are pretty girls at around 41%, boys who are not masculine at 37%, girls who are not pretty or not feminine at 32%, and overweight boys and girls at 30%.

4. 1 in 5 High School Girls Have Allegedly Been Sexually Assaulted

As per this study of 1000 students, about 53% of them are sexually assaulted and 39% of those assaults occurred in school. In this study, this tallied the unwanted sexual contact. However, the impact is severe despite the degree of the acts involved.

While the assaults were on the milder side of the spectrum: thus being the likes of unwanted kissing, hugging, and the like, there is a minority of these that are of a severe degree of assault.

5. 1 in 8 High School Girls Were Allegedly Raped

This study conducted by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention noted that about 10.5% of high school girls and 4.2% of high school boys reported that they got forced to have sex. In another study conducted by the same group, it was also found that 42.2% of female rape victims were first raped at 18 years old.

6. Middle School Bullies are More Likely to Sexually Harass

Sexual harassment and assault are escalations of bullying. Address the issue before it gets worse. In this study of 979 students, it shows that male 6th graders who have bullied other kids are far likelier to commit sexual harassment years later at almost five times the rate.

When checking the cause for this, using gay slurs had an effect that would increase a boy’s likeliness to commit sexual assault and harassment to prove his masculinity and say “I’m a boy.”

It shows that bullying can be a precursor to sexual assault and harassment. Take, for instance, the case of Chaz Wing where the bullying escalated to rape.

7. Teens Being Sexually Abused in their Relationships

It is more likely for teens to get sexually abused when dating or when they are in a relationship. This got pointed out in a study conducted on 667 teenagers, funded by the National Institute of Justice.

From this, nearly 20% of boys and girls reported as victims of sexual abuse in their relationships. In that same survey, it was also taken note that about one in eight teens report that they have abused someone they are dating.

8. 60% of High School Boys Find Forcing Sex on a Girl Acceptable In Certain Circumstances

According to a study conducted back in 1993, a series of scenarios got presented to 237 Louisiana high school students. In each of these, there are descriptions of forced sex. The question is if this was something acceptable.

The result, about 60% of the boys found one of the forced sex scenarios acceptable. Rape culture being a norm is something that has to change.

9. U.S. Public Schools Recorded Over 4,200 Sexual Assaults

This particular number of sexual harassment at school was from the 2009-10 school year. In that record compiled from the Department of Justice and the Department of Education, the 4,200 sexual assaults included about 600 rape cases and 3,600 cases of different forms of sexual assault.

There is still a sizable amount that was not reported to the authorities. In fact, in a 1993 study conducted on Louisiana high school students, about 20% got forced into sex but only half told anyone about it.

While it may seem like an uphill climb, it is possible to change the culture by teaching the next generation about respect and having a caring culture.

Now, when you need help or someone you know has been a victim of sexual harassment, these lawyers can help you.

Stop Sexual Harassment in Schools

Sexual harassment in schools is never okay. All look down on it with disdain and contempt. With this being prevalent in every sector of our society, we must make the change in every means possible to prevent such from happening.

If you have become a victim of this or if someone you know has been a victim, do not hesitate to seek help from local authorities.

And if you are looking for other courses that you would wish to learn online, we offer a variety of subjects that you can choose from. Contact us today to know more.


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