2011 Marks Rise in Victimization, Decrease in Gangs in Schools: Study
Ideally, schools would be safe havens from crime and violence, but these disruptions inevitably find their way in. The Bureau of Justice Statistics and the National Center for Educational Statistics recently released their new Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2012 report, which provides the most current information on crime and safety at school from the perspectives of students, teachers and administrators.
Key findings include:
- Of the 31 student, staff and nonstudent school-associated violent deaths between July 1, 2010, and June 30, 2011, there were 25 homicides and six suicides. From July 1, 2010, through June 30, 2011, there were only 11 homicides and three suicides of school-age youth (ages 5-18) at school.
- In 2011, students age 12-18 were victims of about 1,246,000 nonfatal victimizations at school (including 648,000 thefts). Students in the same age rage experienced more victimizations at school than away from school – 49 victimizations per 1,000 students in 2011.
- Four percent of students at public schools report being victimized. Only two percent of private school students report victimization.
- Approximately 19 percent of students attending public schools in 2011 reported that gangs were present at their school, compared with two percent of students attending private schools. However, this marks a decrease from 2009, when 22 percent of public school students reported gang activity at school.
- During the 2009-10 school year, 85 percent of public schools recorded one or more crime incidents, amounting to an estimated 1.9 million crimes.
- Seven percent of students (grades 9-12) reported being threatened or injured with a weapon such as a gun, knife or club while on school property. A higher percentage of males than females report being threatened or injured with a weapon on school property (10 percent vs. five percent in 2011).
- In 2011, about 28 percent of 12- to 18-year-old students reported being bullied at school, and a higher percentage of females than males reported that they were made fun of, called names, or insulted (19 vs. 16 percent), were the subject of rumors (24 vs. 13 percent) and were purposefully excluded from activities (6 vs. 5 percent). However, a higher percentage of males reported being pushed, shoved, tripped or spit upon (9 vs. 7 percent).
- Approximately nine percent of students (ages 12-18) reported being cyber-bullied in 2011. Of those students, about four percent reported that another student had posted hurtful information on the Internet and reported being the subject of harassing text messages.
Nearly all students ages 12-18 in 2011 say they had observed safety measures at school, including:
- Code of student conduct (96 percent);
- Visitor sign-in requirements (95 percent)
- Adult or staff supervision in hallways (89 percent)
- Presence of one or more security cameras (77 percent)
- Presence of security guards or assigned police officers (70 percent)
- Metal detectors (11 percent)
You can read the full report online here.