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Dorothy Espelage talks about effects of bullying as guest on Anderson Cooper Talk Show

by The College of Education / Oct 6, 2011

Dorothy Espelage, professor in the Department of Educational Psychology, appeared on the new Anderson Cooper talk show on Monday, October 3. The show airs on FOX Channel 55.

Espelage served as an expert for the episode titled “When Teen Bullying Doesn’t Get Better: The Deadly Consequences.”

Cooper interviewed two families who lost children to the effects of bullying and to a survivor of bullying. Espelage provided information on what parents and the community can do to help prevent bullying, and how to tell if bullying might be occurring in a child’s life.

On the show, Espelage emphasized that schools should not be solely responsible for bully prevention. 

“Parents need to actively communicate with each other and with school administrators,” Espelage said. “They must demand that schools create safe climates for their children.  Parents need to talk with their children and adolescents about what is happening at school and do not let them isolate.”

She said bullying in schools is quite prevalent. “Without intervention, it will escalate. Kids who are bullies and victims have serious mental health issues that interfere with their social and academic functioning,” Espelage added.

Espelage’s scholarship at the University of Illinois has focused on several health-related behaviors, including bullying and youth aggression, disordered eating in adolescents and young adults, and psychosocial adjustment of families of children managing chronic illness.
Espelage has been a faculty member at the College of Education since 1997.