To bring context to the polarizing debates that surround school shootings, Education Week journalists, in 2018, began tracking shootings on K-12 school property that resulted in firearm-related injuries or deaths. That year, there were 24 such incidents. On this page, we document where they happened, how many people were killed or injured, and other key information.
Looking for the Latest Data?
We are continuing to track school shootings. Information about the most recent year’s school shootings is available here.
As 2018 came to a close, Education Week’s Evie Blad looked back on lessons learned from a year of doing the heartbreaking work of updating this tracker, an accounting of school shootings in 2018 where individuals were injured or killed by gunfire. “The process of updating our tracker, which involves six people, has become a regular meditation on the complicated nature of school violence,” she wrote in an essay. Read more.
Behind the Numbers
To better understand how gun violence impacted students, educators, and communities in 2018, Education Week created an at-a-glance view of school shooting data. Read more.
Injuries & Deaths
Where the Shootings Happened
Size of the dots correlates to the number of victims. Click on each dot for more information.
About the Shootings
About This Tracker
In the emotionally charged aftermath of school shootings, politicians, activists, news media, and ordinary citizens often cite statistics that can present a distorted view of how many of these incidents occur. Those statistics are used to fuel ongoing debates about gun control, arming teachers, and school security.
With this tracker, Education Week looks to provide a clear accounting of K-12 school shootings. There is no single right way of calculating numbers like this, and the human toll in the immediate aftermath and long term are impossible to measure. We hope only to provide reliable information to help inform discussions, debates, and paths forward until such reports are deemed unnecessary.
This page refers to incidents:
- where a firearm was discharged
- where any individual, other than the suspect or perpetrator, has a bullet wound resulting from the incident
- that happen on K-12 school property or on a school bus
- that occur while school is in session or during a school-sponsored event
Injuries include those reported by police and news media. They may be major or minor. While we only track incidents resulting in at least one bullet wound, total injuries are not necessarily the result of gunfire. The total count of those killed or injured does not include the suspect or perpetrator.
We will not track incidents in which the only shots fired were from an individual authorized to carry a gun, such as a school resource officer, and who did so in their official capacity. The numbers of incidents and victims reported in this tracker do not include suicides or self-inflicted injuries. While suicides and attempted suicides are serious issues of health and safety, many of the critical questions and debates that those incidents raise for educators and the broader public are distinct from those generated by school shootings.
In addition to our own reporting, we rely on local news outlets, school and district websites, news alerts via online search engines, the Gun Violence Archive, and the Center for Homeland Defense and Security’s Naval Postgraduate School’s K-12 School Shooting database.
Reporting & Analysis: Evie Blad, Holly Peele | Design & Visualization: Stacey Decker, Hyon-Young Kim