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Table 10.  Percentage of public elementary schools reporting selected types of disciplinary problems occurring at school daily or at least once a week, or at all, by selected school characteristics: School year 2009–10

 
    Happens daily or at least once a week     Happens at all  
School characteristic   Student racial/ethnic tensions   Student bullying   Student sexual harassment of other students1   Student sexual harassment of other students based on sexual orientation1,2   Student verbal abuse of teachers   Widespread disorder in classrooms   Student acts of disrespect for teachers other than verbal abuse3     Gang activities4   Cult or extremist group activities5  
All public elementary schools   2.1   19.6   1.8 ! 0.8 ! 3.4   1.9 ! 6.1     7.5   1.4 !
                                         
Enrollment size                                        
Less than 300     14.2               3.6 !  
300–499   2.3 ! 23.8       5.2   2.0 ! 9.5     8.9    
500–999   1.7 ! 19.2   1.3 !   2.7 !   4.5     8.8    
1,000 or more               20.2 !      
                                         
Urbanicity                                        
City   4.5 ! 24.9       5.9   3.1 ! 8.0     15.2    
Suburb   1.6 ! 15.3       3.5 !   5.0 !   5.7    
Town     21.0           10.8 !      
Rural     18.2           3.1 !   3.3 !  
                                         
Crime level where students live6                                        
High   7.0 ! 32.4       14.5 !   18.1 !   30.0    
Moderate   4.5 ! 27.2       4.9 !   9.8     12.9    
Low     14.2           2.6     2.6 !  
Mixed     22.9       5.5 !   8.8 !   7.6 !  
                                         
Percent of combined Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, Asian, Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander, and American Indian/ Alaska Native students                                         
Less than 5 percent     17.8 !                
5 to less than 20 percent     18.1           5.0 !      
20 to less than 50 percent     17.1       3.6 !   6.5     3.9 !  
50 percent or more   4.0 ! 22.6   3.4 !   5.6   4.4 ! 8.1     16.5   2.6 !
                                         
Percent of students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch                                        
0–20 percent     13.4                  
21–50 percent     14.3           2.4 !      
More than 50 percent   3.0 ! 23.9   2.3 !   5.5   3.0 ! 9.4     12.3   1.8 !
                                         
Percent of students below 15th percentile on standardized tests                                        
0–5 percent     14.3           2.6 !   2.4 !  
6–15 percent   1.4 ! 22.1       2.6 !   6.2     10.1    
More than 15 percent   4.6 ! 25.4   4.2 !   8.1   5.9 ! 12.3     12.9    
                                         
Percent of students likely to attend college                                        
0–35 percent   4.7 ! 29.3       4.4 ! 5.4 ! 6.5     14.5    
36–60 percent     21.8       4.5 !   9.1     7.3    
More than 60 percent     13.7       2.2 !   4.3     4.3   1.9 !
                                         
Percent of students who consider academic achievement important                                        
0–25 percent     31.4 !             14.1 !  
26–50 percent   8.2 ! 31.8         4.7 ! 9.0 !   14.2    
51–75 percent     21.9       4.6 !   7.3     9.2    
More than 75 percent     14.8       2.8     5.3     4.7   1.7 !
                                         
Percent male enrollment                                        
0–44 percent     18.0               10.6 !  
45–55 percent   2.5   20.7   2.2 ! 1.0 ! 3.6   1.6 ! 6.6     7.4   1.2 !
More than 55 percent     13.5               6.1 !  
                                         
Student-to-FTE ratio7                                        
Less than 12 students     17.1               6.0 !  
12–16 students   2.8 ! 18.9       2.9 !   6.6     8.7   2.6 !
More than 16 students     20.8   2.6 !   4.0   1.6 ! 6.3     7.0    
                                         
Number of classroom changes8                                        
0–3 changes   2.3 ! 19.8   2.6 !   5.0   2.4 ! 6.5     5.5    
4–6 changes   1.7 ! 19.3       1.9 !   5.9     6.8   1.5 !
More than 6 changes     20.2       4.4 !   6.0 !   15.1    
                                         
Regular use of law enforcement 9                                        
Regular use   4.1 ! 22.7       6.4     8.4     10.7   2.7 !
No regular use   1.3 ! 18.4   1.4 !   2.2   1.5 ! 5.3     6.3    
                                         
Number of serious discipline problems10                                        
No problems                   5.2    
1 problem     84.0           8.8 !   10.7 !  
2 problems     89.7       14.8 !   59.5        
3 or more problems   37.2   93.6   32.2 ! 17.2 ! 64.4   35.6   70.7     39.0 !  
                                         
Transfers as a percentage of enrollment11                                        
Less than 6 percent     13.6               2.5 !  
6 to less than 11 percent   3.8 ! 23.5   3.0 !   4.8 ! 2.6 ! 8.1     11.0   3.2 !
11 to less than 21 percent     17.6       2.2 !       4.8 !  
21 percent or more     23.6       4.7 ! 2.5 ! 10.7     11.6    
                                         
Prevalence of schoolwide
disruptions12
                                       
No disruptions   2.2   19.7   1.8 ! 0.8 ! 3.4   1.8 ! 6.0     7.3   1.4 !
Any disruptions     16.5 !             13.5 !  
                                         
Percent of students absent on a daily basis                                         
0–2 percent                      
3–5 percent   2.6 ! 18.1   2.4 !   2.6 ! 1.4 ! 3.7     6.3   1.7 !
6–10 percent     25.9       5.7   2.3 ! 14.1     12.1    
More than 10 percent     29.0 !                
                                         
Prevalence of violent incidents13                                        
No violent incidents     6.9                  
Any violent incidents   2.8 ! 26.6   2.6 ! 1.2 ! 5.2   2.2 ! 9.3     11.1   1.9 !
!Interpret data with caution. The standard error for this estimate is from 30 percent to 50 percent of the estimate’s value.
‡Reporting standards not met. The standard error represents more than 50 percent of the estimate.
1Sexual harassment was defined for respondents as "unsolicited, offensive behavior that inappropriately asserts sexuality over another person. This behavior may be verbal or nonverbal."
2This item is new to the 2009–10 School Survey on Crime and Safety.
3The wording of this item has changed between the 2006 and 2008 collections. In 2008, the phrase "other than verbal abuse" was added to this item. Caution should be exercised when making direct comparisons to prior School Survey on Crime and Safety collections.
4Gang was defined for respondents as "an ongoing loosely organized association of three or more persons, whether formal or informal, that has a common name, signs, symbols, or colors, whose members engage, either individually or collectively, in violent or other forms of illegal behavior."
5Cult or extremist group was defined for respondents as "a group that espouses radical beliefs and practices, which may include a religious component, that are widely seen as threatening the basic values and cultural norms of society at large."
6Respondents 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."
7Student-to-FTE 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.
8Respondents were asked, "How many classroom changes do most students make in a typical day?" Responses exclude morning arrival and afternoon departure.
9Respondents were asked, "During the 2009–10 school year, did you have any security guards, security personnel, or sworn law enforcement officers present at your school at least once a week?"
10Serious discipline problems include student racial/ethnic tensions, student bullying, student sexual harassment of other students, student verbal abuse of teachers, widespread disorder in classrooms, student acts of disrespect for teachers other than verbal abuse, 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.
11Transfers 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.
12Schoolwide 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.
13Violent incidents include rape or attempted 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: "At school" was defined for respondents to include activities that happen in school buildings, on school grounds, on school buses, and at places that hold school-sponsored events or activities. Responses were provided by the principal or the person most knowledgeable about crime and safety issues at the school. Elementary schools are defined as schools in which the lowest grade is not higher than grade 3 & the highest grade is not higher than grade 8. Race categories exclude persons of Hispanic ethnicity.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), 2009–10 School Survey on Crime and Safety (SSOCS).