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Digest of Education Statistics
2018 Tables and Figures All Years of Tables and Figures Most Recent Full Issue of the Digest


Table 233.10. Number and percentage of public schools that took a serious disciplinary action in response to specific offenses, number and percentage distribution of serious actions taken, and number of students involved in specific offenses, by type of offense and type of action: Selected years, 1999-2000 through 2015-16
[Standard errors appear in parentheses]
Type of offense and type of serious disciplinary action 1999-20001 2003-04 2005-06 2007-08 2009-102 2015-162
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Number of schools taking at least one action                                    
Total, in response to any listed offense3   (†) 36,800   (960) 40,000   (990) 38,500   (1,010) 32,300   (940) 31,100   (900)
Physical fights or attacks 29,000   (840) 25,800   (780) 26,300   (880) 26,100   (740) 24,000   (770) 22,500   (900)
Insubordination 15,000   (640) 17,400   (690) 17,700   (700) 17,800   (800)   (†)   (†)
Distribution, possession, or use of alcohol   (†) 7,400   (400) 8,500   (380) 8,100   (400) 7,600   (320) 6,700   (340)
Distribution, possession, or use of illegal drugs   (†) 17,000   (470) 17,400   (490) 16,000   (470) 16,100   (400) 15,600   (500)
Use or possession of firearm or explosive device   (†) 3,200   (320) 3,800   (290) 2,300   (220) 2,500   (340) 1,700   (240)
Use or possession of weapon other than firearm or
      explosive device4
  (†) 13,500   (690) 16,100   (760) 12,700   (650) 11,200   (650) 8,700   (510)
                                     
Percent of schools taking at least one action                                    
Total, in response to any listed offense3   (†) 45.7   (1.15) 48.1   (1.17) 46.4   (1.16) 39.1   (1.14) 37.2   (1.06)
Physical fights or attacks 35.4   (1.02) 32.0   (0.94) 31.6   (1.00) 31.5   (0.89) 29.0   (0.94) 26.9   (1.06)
Insubordination 18.3   (0.79) 21.6   (0.85) 21.2   (0.84) 21.4   (0.95)   (†)   (†)
Distribution, possession, or use of alcohol   (†) 9.2   (0.50) 10.2   (0.47) 9.8   (0.48) 9.2   (0.39) 8.1   (0.40)
Distribution, possession, or use of illegal drugs   (†) 21.2   (0.58) 20.8   (0.61) 19.3   (0.53) 19.5   (0.48) 18.6   (0.59)
Use or possession of firearm or explosive device   (†) 3.9   (0.40) 4.5   (0.35) 2.8   (0.26) 3.0   (0.41) 2.0   (0.29)
Use or possession of weapon other than firearm or
      explosive device4
  (†) 16.8   (0.84) 19.4   (0.91) 15.3   (0.77) 13.5   (0.78) 10.4   (0.61)
                                     
Number of actions taken in response to offenses                                    
Total, in response to any listed offense   (†) 655,700   (29,160) 842,400   (46,080) 767,900   (44,010) 433,800   (22,880) 305,700   (11,500)
Physical fights or attacks 332,500   (27,420) 273,500   (14,450) 328,900   (16,880) 271,800   (15,180) 265,100   (22,170) 178,000   (10,890)
Insubordination 253,500   (27,720) 220,400   (16,990) 312,900   (34,200) 327,100   (38,470)   (†)   (†)
Distribution, possession, or use of alcohol   (†) 25,500   (1,600) 30,500   (1,910) 28,400   (1,470) 28,700   (1,920) 18,400   (1,180)
Distribution, possession, or use of illegal drugs   (†) 91,100   (3,410) 108,300   (4,930) 98,700   (5,780) 105,400   (4,070) 83,800   (3,670)
Use or possession of firearm or explosive device   (†) 9,900 ! (4,300) 14,500   (2,740) 5,200   (910) 5,800   (1,360) 4,100 ! (1,240)
Use or possession of weapon other than firearm or
      explosive device4
  (†) 35,400   (1,470) 47,300   (2,100) 36,800   (2,630) 28,800   (1,580) 21,300   (1,430)
                                     
Percentage distribution of actions taken                                    
Total, in response to any listed offense   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†)
Out-of-school suspensions lasting 5 days or more   (†) 74.2   (1.60) 74.2   (1.98) 76.0   (1.63) 73.9   (1.79) 71.7   (1.32)
Removal with no services for remainder of
      school year
  (†) 4.8   (0.72) 5.4   (0.77) 5.4   (1.06) 6.1   (0.86) 4.3   (0.49)
Transfer to specialized schools   (†) 21.0   (1.49) 20.4   (1.77) 18.7   (1.38) 20.0   (1.36) 23.9   (1.18)
                                     
Physical fights or attacks 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†)
Out-of-school suspensions lasting 5 days or more 85.1   (1.78) 80.8   (1.67) 80.8   (1.58) 78.7   (1.40) 81.2   (2.18) 79.4   (1.60)
Removal with no services for remainder of
      school year
9.0   (1.64) 3.6   (0.76) 4.1   (0.71) 4.4   (0.72) 5.0   (1.22) 2.9   (0.53)
Transfer to specialized schools 5.9   (0.59) 15.5   (1.59) 15.1   (1.40) 16.9   (1.19) 13.9   (1.57) 17.7   (1.50)
                                     
Insubordination 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†)   (†)   (†)
Out-of-school suspensions lasting 5 days or more 81.6   (3.27) 78.1   (2.54) 76.0   (4.24) 82.2   (3.14)   (†)   (†)
Removal with no services for remainder of
      school year
15.0   (3.16) 3.1 ! (1.53) 4.1 ! (1.57)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Transfer to specialized schools 3.4   (0.76) 18.8   (2.41) 19.9   (3.62) 13.1   (2.29)   (†)   (†)
                                     
Distribution, possession, or use of alcohol   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†)
Out-of-school suspensions lasting 5 days or more   (†) 70.8   (2.91) 77.0   (2.07) 73.9   (2.56) 74.3   (2.23) 67.7   (2.94)
Removal with no services for remainder of
      school year
  (†) 5.5   (1.56) 4.5   (0.80) 4.5   (1.00) 4.0   (0.92) 3.7   (0.89)
Transfer to specialized schools   (†) 23.7   (2.82) 18.5   (2.01) 21.6   (1.97) 21.7   (2.27) 28.6   (3.00)
                                     
Distribution, possession, or use of illegal drugs   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†)
Out-of-school suspensions lasting 5 days or more   (†) 53.4   (2.27) 55.6   (1.96) 55.4   (2.05) 59.6   (1.70) 58.8   (2.07)
Removal with no services for remainder of
      school year
  (†) 10.1   (0.91) 10.2   (0.90) 9.1   (1.10) 8.0   (0.94) 6.9   (0.96)
Transfer to specialized schools   (†) 36.4   (2.23) 34.2   (2.02) 35.5   (1.84) 32.4   (1.57) 34.3   (2.08)
                                     
Use or possession of firearm or explosive device   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†)
Out-of-school suspensions lasting 5 days or more   (†) 66.6 ! (25.42) 67.9   (7.07) 52.9   (5.94) 55.5   (9.64) 66.3   (14.94)
Removal with no services for remainder of
      school year
  (†)   (†) 10.9   (2.89) 18.3   (5.18) 22.2   (4.96) 8.3 ! (3.69)
Transfer to specialized schools   (†)   (†) 21.2   (5.59) 28.8   (3.96) 22.3 ! (7.91) 25.3 ! (12.63)
                                     
Use or possession of weapon other than firearm or
      explosive device4
  (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†) 100.0   (†)
Out-of-school suspensions lasting 5 days or more   (†) 57.2   (2.20) 60.0   (1.89) 60.3   (2.24) 62.2   (2.44) 63.0   (2.47)
Removal with no services for remainder of
      school year
  (†) 7.7   (0.81) 10.8   (1.09) 7.8   (1.29) 8.8   (1.31) 6.2   (1.46)
Transfer to specialized schools   (†) 35.1   (2.04) 29.2   (1.83) 31.9   (1.75) 29.0   (2.32) 30.9   (2.56)
                                     
Number of students involved in offenses5                                     
Total, all listed offenses   (†) 3,912,500   (162,670) 3,919,500   (129,350) 4,783,700   (324,130) 1,057,200   (31,810) 826,300   (37,980)
Physical fights or attacks 766,900   (50,410) 1,108,600   (46,250) 1,026,100   (35,050) 987,900   (42,620) 820,100   (27,890) 633,300   (37,820)
Insubordination 1,104,200   (69,490) 2,558,500   (131,830) 2,606,700   (107,660) 3,589,300   (319,390)   (†)   (†)
Distribution, possession, or use of alcohol   (†) 44,100   (2,290) 49,900   (2,750) 38,700   (1,690) 42,200   (2,450) 30,200   (1,670)
Distribution, possession, or use of illegal drugs   (†) 118,900   (4,590) 119,400   (4,350) 106,300   (4,240) 125,700   (5,540) 119,200   (6,310)
Use or possession of firearm or explosive device   (†)   (†) 55,700   (16,540) 13,400 ! (4,270) 27,100 ! (11,180) 9,900 ! (3,090)
Use or possession of weapon other than firearm or
      explosive device4
  (†) 57,500   (4,260) 61,700   (2,540) 48,100   (3,430) 42,100   (2,220) 33,800   (2,420)
—Not available.
†Not applicable.
!Interpret data with caution. The coefficient of variation (CV) for this estimate is between 30 and 50 percent.
‡Reporting standards not met. The coefficient of variation (CV) for this estimate is 50 percent or greater.
1 In the 1999-2000 questionnaire, only two items are the same as in questionnaires for later years: the item on physical attacks or fights and the item on insubordination. There are no comparable 1999-2000 data for serious disciplinary actions taken in response to the other specific offenses listed in this table, nor for total actions taken in response to all the listed offenses.
2 Totals for 2009-10 and 2015-16 are not comparable to totals for other years, because the 2009-10 and 2015-16 questionnaires did not include an item on insubordination.
3 Schools that took serious disciplinary actions in response to more than one type of offense were counted only once in the total.
4 Prior to 2005-06, the questionnaire wording was simply "a weapon other than a firearm" (instead of "a weapon other than a firearm or explosive device").
5 Includes all students involved in committing the listed offenses regardless of the disciplinary action taken. If more than one student was involved in a single incident, each student was counted separately. If one student was involved in multiple incidents, that student was counted more than once; for example, a student involved in two separate incidents would be counted twice.
NOTE: Serious disciplinary actions include out-of-school suspensions lasting 5 or more days, but less than the remainder of the school year; removals with no continuing services for at least the remainder of the school year; and transfers to specialized schools for disciplinary reasons. Responses were provided by the principal or the person most knowledgeable about crime and safety issues at the school. Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding and because schools that reported serious disciplinary actions in response to more than one type of offense were counted only once in the total number or percentage of schools.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, 1999-2000, 2003-04, 2005-06, 2007-08, 2009-10, and 2015-16 School Survey on Crime and Safety (SSOCS), 2000, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, and 2016. (This table was prepared September 2017.)

2018 Tables and Figures All Years of Tables and Figures Most Recent Full Issue of the Digest