ERIC Number: ED406469
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
From Words to Weapons: The Violence Surrounding Our Schools.
Chao, Lena M.; And Others
This report contains results of one of the largest research studies of its type ever conducted. For the study, 1,802 students at 11 high schools and several continuation schools of the Los Angeles (California) Unified School District were surveyed on a range of issues related to their experience with violence, their own and their friends' possession of weapons, and their suggestions for ways to lessen violence, racial tension, and conflict. This report presents numerical data and the subjective responses of these students. The racial composition of the sample mirrors the racial makeup of the Los Angeles high school student population, at 68.1% Latino, 6.9% Asian Pacific Islander, 14.6% African American, and 9.4% Anglo. Nearly 50% of students had seen a weapon at school, with cutting instruments (57.2%) and firearms (30%) most commonly seen. A similar number (44.1%) had seen a weapon on their way to or from school, and 13.9% of respondents had taken a weapon to school themselves. Only 1.4% said they always took a weapon to school. Fifty-seven percent had friends who owned guns, and 48.2% said it would be easy to get a gun at a relatively low price. Nearly 39% of students thought that gangs were the most common reason to bring weapons to school. Over one-third of students said that drug deals were common in their neighborhoods, and 45.5% experienced racial tension in their schools. Male students were more likely to have seen weapons at school or to have carried them than were female students. These data raise many questions about the safety of Los Angeles schools and the tensions their students face. (Contains 158 figures and 42 references.) (SLD)
Descriptors: Asian Americans, Conflict Resolution, High School Students, High Schools, Hispanic Americans, Racial Composition, Racial Differences, School Safety, Sex Differences, Student Attitudes, Student Surveys, Urban Problems, Urban Schools, Urban Youth, Violence, Weapons
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California, Los Angeles.