Sunday, December 17, 2006

DOJ Reports Serious Violent Crime at School Continues to Fall

Mostly good news comes from DOJ on school crime and safety. Things seem to be improving somewhat. But, whenever I read these reports I'm amazed by the degree of violence in our schools.

Bureau of Justice Statistics Press Release: Indicators of School Crime and Safety, 2006

While the rate of violent victimization continues to fall, other aspects of safety in schools have not shown short-term improvement. During 2005, 24 percent of students reported that there were gangs at their schools, a 3 percent increase from 2003 (21 percent). Other school behavior measures, such as fighting at school, carrying a weapon and drinking remain at their 2003 levels.

Some indicators show student safety has improved over the past decade. Between 1995 and 2005, the percentage of students who reported avoiding one or more places in school declined from 9 percent to 4 percent. Fourteen percent of students surveyed in 2005 reported having been involved in a physical fight on school property during the past 12 months, compared with 16 percent in 1993. Between 1993 and 2005, the percentage of students in grades 9 through 12 who reported carrying a weapon to school in the preceding 30 days declined from 12 percent to 6 percent.

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