A 2015 study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has found that Singaporean teens experience the 3rd highest rate of bullying in a survey of 50 other countries and economies. Bullying rates in Singapore are exceeded only by New Zealand and Latvia.
Randomly selected 15 year-old Singaporean students were asked by researchers to report how frequently they were exposed to varying kinds of bullying – being left out, made fun of, threatened, property taken by other students, being hit or pushed around, and having nasty rumors passed around about them.
According to these Singaporean teens, the most common form of bullying was being made fun of by other students. Close to 1 in 5 students say they experienced such bullying incidents at least a few times a month.
Another 11.9% of Singaporean teens reported being ostracized or left out of things on purpose a few times a month, another record high as compared to the OECD average of 7.2%.
9% reported having nasty rumors spread about them a few times a month. 5% were pushed, hit or had their property taaken at least a few times a month while 4.4% said they felted threatened by other students at a similar monthly frequency.
The PISA study suggests that bullying in Singapore schools happens more frequently in places where teachers are perceived as being unfair, or in schools where there is a poor disciplinary climate, which encourages students to engage in high-risk behavior. Teachers who humiliate students or undermine their self-confidence may cause such students to try and assert their superiority over more vulnerable groups to regain their self-esteem.