School Climate & Safety

School Violence Leads to 90,000-Plus Emergency-Room Trips a Year, Says Study

By Evie Blad — January 13, 2014 1 min read

Every year, 90,000 students suffer “intentional” injuries at school that are bad enough to warrant trips to the emergency room, according to a new study reported by NBC News.

That’s a slight decline over previous years, but not as much of a drop as researchers anticipated given anti-bullying and anti-violence efforts in schools.

Researchers at Brown University analyzed 2001-2008 data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System to arrive at their conclusions. Said the NBC News report:

The ER reports include a plethora of detail, including the type of injury, whether it occurred at school, and whether it was the result of an accident or was intentional. While cuts and bruises were the most common injuries at 40 percent, fractures accounted for 12 percent, brain injuries for 10 percent, and sprains and strains another 7 percent. The vast majority of injuries—96 percent—were the result of an assault, with most perpetrators identified as friends or acquaintances. A full 10 percent of the assaults involved multiple perpetrators."

This lines up with something educators and school safety experts have said in the past, that school safety efforts can’t be entirely focused on costly plans to respond to less frequent, gun-related events. Smart schools also emphasize behavioral interventions, school climate efforts, and consistent discipline that discourages fights and violence, they have said.

A version of this news article first appeared in the Rules for Engagement blog.