School Teasing and Bullying After the Presidential Election
School Teasing and Bullying After the Presidential Election

Published online in:
Educational Researcher
January 9, 2019

Francis Huang, University of Missouri
Dewey Cornell, University of Virginia


In response to media reports of increased teasing and bullying in schools following the 2016 U.S. presidential election, we investigated its prevalence with a Virginia school climate survey completed by approximately 155,000 seventh- and eighthgrade students in 2013, 2015, and 2017. Survey results were mapped onto presidential election results for each school division’s locality. In localities favoring the Republican candidate, there were higher adjusted rates of students reporting that (a) they had experienced some form of bullying in the past year (18% higher) and (b) “students in this school are teased or put down because of their race or ethnicity” (9% higher). For these two outcomes, there were no meaningful differences prior to the election. These results provide modest support for educator concerns about increased teasing and bullying since the 2016 presidential election in some schools and warrant further investigation.

Read the news release - "Study Finds Link between Voter Preference for Trump and Bullying in Middle Schools" - here.

News Coverage

A Trump-Biden debate is hardly presidential and could teach my children the wrong lessons
NBC News, October 22, 2020

Study on Post-Election Student Bullying Adds Teeth to Concerns Over ‘Trump Effect’
The 74 Million, January 16, 2019

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Study: Virginia Sees Increased School Bullying in Pro-Trump Areas
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Areas that voted for Trump have increased school bullying, study says
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Areas That Voted For Trump Have Seen Increase in School Bullying, According to Study
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The Hill, January 10, 2019

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Pacific Standard, January 10, 2019

Areas That Voted For Trump See Increased Bullying in Schools After 2016 Election
Newsweek, January 10, 2019

Bullying rates at Virginia middle schools were higher in Trump country after his election, study says
The Virginian-Pilot, January 10, 2019

More Bullying Found In Areas that Voted for Trump
Political Wire, January 9, 2019

Study: Bullying rates at Virginia middle schools were higher in Trump country after his election
The Washington Post, January 9, 2019

Is there a link between Trump’s Post-Election Behavior and Adolescent Bullying?
Diverse Issues in Higher Education, January 9, 2019

Virginia Study Finds Increased School Bullying In Areas That Voted For Trump
National Public Radio, January 9, 2019

Racist school bullying has risen in areas that voted for Trump in presidential election, study finds
The Independent, January 9, 2019

It's Not Just That Racial Bullying Jumped in Schools After the 2016 Election. It's Where It Did
Education Week, January 9, 2019

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Politico "Morning Education," January 9, 2019

Bullying is more common among middle school students who live in districts that voted for Trump in 2016, according to a five-year study of 155,000 children
The Daily Mail, January 9, 2019

New research finds link between districts that voted Trump and racist bullying post-election
Chalkbeat, January 8, 2019