“Because of difficulties with social interaction and the inability to read social cues, children with autism and Asperger’s syndrome have higher rates of peer rejection and higher frequencies of verbal and physical attacks,” said Robin Kowalski, a psychology professor at Clemson University in Clemson, S.C....In 2009, the Massachusetts Advocates for Children in a survey of nearly 400 parents of children with autism across the state found that 88 percent of children with autism have been bullied at school ranging from verbal abuse to physical contact. [The report was titled "Targeted, Taunted, Tormented: The Bullying of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder."]...Dr. Sameer Hinduja, co-director of the Cyberbullying Research Center in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Florida Atlantic University says that, in some cases, the use of computers and technology may be a child with special needs only social outlet.... We also need to realize that what may seem normal to us – in terms of social interaction – is not normal to children with special needs, especially children on the autism spectrum."
The Daily Caller reports:
Rep. Jackie Speier, California Democrat, will introduce a bill that would require schools to report incidents of bullying against children diagnosed with conditions like Down syndrome and Aspergers to the federal government. It would also mandate that any federal dollars that promote anti-bullying programs focus partially on that group.
“There is [currently] no requirement that as part of the anti-bullying curriculum, that there be made specific reference to children with special needs. That’s particularly dumb,” Speier said during a briefing on school bullying on Capitol Hill Wednesday. “What I want to do is create an environment where there is zero tolerance. I think that starts first with education and awareness. Then, when behavior is egregious, then people have to be called out on that.”