Social-ecological theory of school bullying stresses the role parents play in students’ engagement in bullying. School practitioners and the researchers who support practitioners are often recommended to involve parents in their efforts to implement school-based prevention efforts. Yet, empirical support for this recommendation is scarce. Although evidence on bullying prevention programs continues to burgeon, limited efforts have been made to synthesize the impacts of adding parental components to prevention programming. This meta-analysis attempts to fill this gap by reviewing and analyzing studies published after 2000 that evaluate school-based anti-bullying programs involving a parental component. Twenty-two studies with an overall sample of 212,211 students from kindergarten to 12th grade supported a small but significant effect on reducing bully perpetration (d = 0.179, 95% CI = [0.095, 0.264]) and victimization (d = 0.162, 95% CI = [0.059, 0.265]). Moderator analysis revealed that the effectiveness of the program on both perpetration and victimization was not affected by school level, country in which the program was implemented, or type of parental component. Current caveats and suggestions for incorporating parental components in school-based anti-bullying programs are discussed.
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This project was supported by Award No. 2016-CK-BX-0012, awarded by the National Institute of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, US Department of Justice to Development Services Group, Inc. Dr. Joshua R. Polanin, formerly of Development Services Group, Inc., serves as the Principal Investigator. The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Department of Justice.
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Huang, Y., Espelage, D.L., Polanin, J.R. et al. A Meta-analytic Review of School-Based Anti-bullying Programs with a Parent Component. Int Journal of Bullying Prevention 1, 32–44 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s42380-018-0002-1