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Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2007
NCES 2008-021
December 2007

Indicator 9: Students' Reports of Drug Availability on School Property

In 2005, one-quarter of all students in grades 9–12 reported that someone had offered, sold, or given them an illegal drug on school property in the past 12 months.

The availability of drugs on school property has a disruptive and corrupting influence on the school environment (Nolin et al. 1997). In the Youth Risk Behavior Survey, students in grades 9–12 were asked whether someone had offered, sold, or given them an illegal drug on school property in the 12 months before the survey. In 2005, some 25 percent of students in grades 9–12 reported that drugs were made available to them on school property (table 9.1). There was no measurable change in the percentage of students who reported that drugs were offered, sold, or given to them at school between 2003 and 2005.

Males were more likely than females to report that drugs were offered, sold, or given to them on school property in each survey year from 1993 to 2005 (figure 9.1 and table 9.1). For example, in 2005, some 29 percent of males reported that drugs were available, compared with 22 percent of females. No measurable differences were detected in the percentage of students who reported that drugs were made available to them according to grade level in 2005.

The percentages of students who reported having illegal drugs offered, sold, or given to them on school property differed across racial/ethnic groups (figure 9.2 and table 9.1). Specifically, in 2005, Hispanic students were more likely than Asian, Black, American Indian, and White students to report that drugs were made available to them (34 vs. 16–24 percent). Although it appears that Pacific Islander students were more likely than Hispanic students to report that drugs were made available to them, the difference was not found to be statistically significant.

In 2005, student reports of the availability of drugs on school property varied among states for which data were available. Among states, the percentage of students who reported that drugs were available to them at school ranged from 16 to 39 percent (table 9.2).


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