More than one in six schoolkids get bullied in Sweden: study

More than one in six schoolkids get bullied in Sweden: study
File photo from a school in Sweden. Photo: Jessica Gow/TT
More than a sixth of all Swedish 15-year-olds experience bullying at least a few times a month, according to an OECD survey investigating student wellbeing in the developed world.

The OECD released the most recent volume of its major Pisa education rankings on Wednesday, which this time looked at issues such as students' well-being, their feelings of belonging and bullying.

A total of 17.9 percent of Swedish pupils told the study they were exposed to some form of bullying “at least a few times a month”, slightly below the OECD average of 18.7 percent.

According to the findings 9.4 percent of pupils said these bullying acts consisted of their peers making fun of them, below the OECD average of 10.9 percent, and 5.4 percent said they had got hit or pushed around, above the OECD average of 4.3 percent.

The results were similar for boys and girls (17.8 of 15-year-old boys quizzed for the study said they regularly experienced some kind of bullying compared to 18.1 percent of girls).

However, the survey also suggests a sharp divide between pupils depending on their background, with the figure of bullying rising to 20 percent of socio-economically disadvantaged students.

A total of 83 percent said they had “never or almost never” been threatened by other students.

Pupils were also asked about their general well-being and stress, with 61.1 percent of Swedish students saying they feel anxious ahead of a test even if they are well prepared, and 41 percent saying they get tense when they study, both above the international average.

Sweden showed marked improvements in the latest major Pisa ranking released in December, which measured pupils' performance in mathematics, reading and science. But one of the main challenges is an increasing gap between the highest and lowest performing pupils, as well as between socio-economically advantaged and disadvantaged pupils.

READ ALSO: The Local interviews Education Minister Gustav Fridolin

READ ALSO: What Pisa rankings actually say about Swedish schools