Skip Navigation
small NCES header image

Table 16.  Number of students involved in the use or possession of a weapon other than a firearm at school, and the number and percentage of students receiving various disciplinary actions, by selected school characteristics: School year 2003–04


School characteristic     Disciplinary actions taken for students involved in the use or possession of a weapon other than a firearm at school
Total students
involved in
recorded offenses
  Removals without
continuing services
  Transfers to
specialized schools1
  Out-of-school
suspensions
lasting 5 or more days
  Other disciplinary action2 
Number   Number Percent   Number Percent   Number Percent   Number Percent
All public schools  57,535   2,720 5   12,415 23   20,262 37   19,679 36
                           
Level3                           
Primary  20,295   180 1   774 4   4,878 26   13,158 69
Middle  19,440   937 5   5,854 31   8,294 43   3,992 21
High school  15,709   1,544 10   5,201 34   6,328 42   2,108 14
Combined  2,091   60 3   586 32   762 42   422 23
                           
Enrollment size                           
Less than 300  2,777   189 8   252 10   978 40   1,039 42
300–499  12,528   280 2   1,254 10   3,325 27   7,244 60
500–999  20,914   855 4   3,843 19   7,052 35   8,546 42
1,000 or more  21,316   1,396 7   7,066 35   8,906 44   2,849 14
                           
Urbanicity                           
City  25,586   900 4   5,876 24   8,610 35   9,470 38
Urban fringe  18,518   1,023 6   4,265 24   7,877 45   4,465 25
Town  5,982   348 6   1,103 19   1,718 29   2,713 46
Rural  7,449   448 7   1,170 17   2,057 31   3,030 45
                           
Crime level where students live4                           
High  7,676   184 2   1,966 26   3,413 45   2,102 27
Moderate  17,509   1,011 6   4,699 28   6,680 39   4,639 27
Low  17,993   954 6   3,618 22   6,239 37   6,011 36
Mixed  14,356   570 4   2,132 16   3,929 29   6,926 51
                           
Percent minority enrollment5                           
Less than 5 percent  3,974   256 7   440 12   1,205 34   1,625 46
5 to 20 percent  8,833   480 6   1,416 17   3,339 40   3,145 38
20 to 50 percent  12,951   980 8   2,711 22   5,528 45   3,196 26
50 percent or more  31,085   957 3   7,651 25   10,105 33   11,465 38
                           
Percent of students
eligible for free or
reduced-price lunch 
                         
0–20 percent  8,065   646 8   1,868 24   2,868 37   2,381 31
21–50 percent  17,509   1,117 7   3,957 24   6,501 40   4,803 29
More than 50 percent  31,961   957 3   6,590 21   10,893 35   12,494 40
                           
Percent of students below 15th
percentile on standardized tests 
                         
0–5 percent  9,529   444 5   1,778 19   3,644 40   3,265 36
6–15 percent  19,684   1,026 6   3,555 19   7,508 40   6,487 35
More than 15 percent  28,322   1,250 5   7,081 26   9,111 33   9,927 36
                           
Percent of students likely
to attend college 
                         
0–35 percent  25,043   916 4   4,286 18   8,428 35   10,267 43
36–60 percent  16,641   879 6   3,947 25   6,013 38   5,035 32
More than 60 percent  15,850   925 6   4,181 27   5,821 38   4,376 29
                           
Percent of students who consider
academic achievement important 
                         
0–25 percent  6,772   284 4   1,560 24   2,457 37   2,336 35
26–50 percent  18,176   830 5   2,825 17   5,988 35   7,353 43
51–75 percent  17,485   915 5   4,477 26   5,824 34   5,743 34
More than 75 percent  15,100   691 5   3,553 25   5,993 41   4,246 29
                           
Percent male enrollment                           
0–44 percent  3,214   205 8   669 25   1,256 47   548 20
45–55 percent  45,314   2,350 5   10,790 25   16,932 39   13,804 31
More than 55 percent  9,007   164 2   956 11   2,074 24   5,327 63
                           
Student-to-teacher ratio6                           
Less than 12 students  16,038   629 4   2,507 17   6,099 40   5,890 39
12–16 students  25,245   1,183 5   5,452 23   7,305 30   10,172 42
More than 16 students  16,252   908 6   4,456 28   6,857 43   3,616 23
                           
Number of classroom changes7                           
0–3 changes  6,767   153 2   697 11   2,181 35   3,207 51
4–6 changes  30,914   1,561 5   6,214 21   9,998 34   11,743 40
More than 6 changes  19,853   1,006 5   5,504 28   8,083 42   4,728 24
                           
Regular use of law enforcement8                           
Regular use  39,528   2,118 6   10,714 28   15,452 41   9,405 25
No regular use  18,007   602 3   1,701 10   4,809 28   10,274 59
                           
Number of serious
discipline problems9 
                         
No problems  22,401   1,110 5   5,020 24   8,016 38   7,147 34
1 problem  14,883   556 4   2,414 17   4,264 29   7,293 50
2 problems  6,960   507 7   1,425 21   2,963 43   1,922 28
3 or more problems  13,292   546 4   3,556 29   5,019 40   3,316 27
                           
Transfers as a percentage
of enrollment10 
                         
0 to 6 percent  6,727   315 5   1,187 18   2,952 45   2,151 33
6 to 11 percent  7,164   445 6   1,421 20   3,144 45   1,921 28
11 to 21 percent  16,292   758 5   4,121 26   6,135 39   4,907 31
21 percent or more  27,353   1,202 5   5,686 22   8,030 31   10,699 42
                           
Prevalence of schoolwide
disruptions11 
                         
No disruptions  48,206   2,336 5   9,455 21   17,252 38   16,921 37
Any disruptions  9,329   384 4   2,960 32   3,009 33   2,757 30
                           
Percent of students
absent on a daily basis 
                         
0–2 percent  2,553   115 5   664 26   1,047 42   695 28
3–5 percent  24,830   1,045 4   4,111 17   7,198 31   11,198 48
6–10 percent  25,512   1,274 5   6,259 25   9,960 40   7,256 29
More than 10 percent  4,640   287 7   1,381 32   2,056 48   530 12
                           
Prevalence of violent incidents12                           
No violent incidents  902   29 3   77 8   348 39   449 50
Any violent incidents  56,633   2,691 5   12,338 23   19,914 37   19,230 35
1 Specialized school was defined for respondents as "a school that is specifically for students who were referred for disciplinary reasons. The school may also have students who were referred for other reasons. The school may be at the same location as your school."
2 Other disciplinary actions include suspension less than 5 days, detention, etc.
3 Primary schools are defined as schools in which the lowest grade is not higher than grade 3 and the highest grade is not higher than grade 8. Middle schools are defined as schools in which the lowest grade is not lower than grade 4 and the highest grade is not higher than grade 9. High schools are defined as schools in which the lowest grade is not lower than grade 9 and the highest grade is not higher than grade 12. Combined schools include all other combinations of grades, including K–12 schools.
4 Respondents were asked, "How would you describe the crime level in the area(s) in which your students live?" Response options included "high level of crime," "moderate level of crime," "low level of crime," and "students come from areas with very different levels of crime."
5 These estimates exclude data from Tennessee because schools in this state did not report estimates of student race.
6 Student-to-teacher ratio was calculated by dividing the total number of students enrolled in the school by the total number of full-time-equivalent teachers and aides. The total number of full-time-equivalent teachers and aides is a combination of the full-time and part-time teachers and aides, including special education teachers and aides, with an adjustment to compensate for the part-time status.
7 Respondents were asked, "How many classroom changes do most students make in a typical day?" Responses exclude morning arrival and afternoon departure.
8 Respondents were asked, "During the 2003–2004 school year, did you have any sworn law enforcement officers, security guards, or security personnel present at your school on a regular basis?"
9 Serious discipline problems include student racial tensions, student bullying, student sexual harassment of other students, student verbal abuse of teachers, widespread disorder in classrooms, student acts of disrespect for teachers, gang activities, and cult or extremist group activities. If a respondent reported that any of these problems occurred daily or weekly in their school, each was counted once in the total number of serious discipline problems.
10 Transfers as a percentage of enrollment combines the number of students who were transferred to a school and the number of students who were transferred from a school divided by the total number of students enrolled in the school.
11 Schoolwide disruptions include actions that disrupted school activities such as death threats, bomb threats, and chemical, biological, or radiological threats. Respondents were instructed to exclude all fire alarms, including false alarms.
12 Violent incidents include rape, sexual battery other than rape, physical attack or fight with or without a weapon, threat of physical attack with or without a weapon, and robbery with or without a weapon.
NOTE: The numbers of students involved in offenses were provided by the principal or the person most knowledgeable about discipline issues at the school. Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding. Reponses were provided by the principal or the person most knowledgeable about crime and safety issues at the school.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, School Survey on Crime and Safety (SSOCS), 2004.


Would you like to help us improve our products and website by taking a short survey?

YES, I would like to take the survey

or

No Thanks

The survey consists of a few short questions and takes less than one minute to complete.
National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education