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Table 15.  Number and percentage of public middle schools reporting the use of serious disciplinary actions and the percentage distribution of serious disciplinary actions taken, by selected offenses: 1999–2000

Offense Schools using a serious disciplinary action   Percentage distribution of serious disciplinary actions
Number of schools Percent of schools Number of actions taken   Removals with
no services for at least 1 year
Transfers to
schools for at least 1 year
Out-of-school suspensions
lasting 5 days
to 1 year
Total offenses 11,978 78 382,072   8 7 85
Use of a firearm/explosive device1 370 2 895   23 29 48
Possession of a firearm/explosive device1 955 6 2,013   16 20 64
Use of a weapon2 other than a firearm1 1,234 8 2,085   15 34 51
Possession of a weapon other than a firearm 5,224 34 14,251   9 22 70
Distribution of illegal drugs 2,962 19 7,991   12 25 63
Possession or use of alcohol or illegal drugs 6,263 41 24,504   9 15 77
Physical attacks or fights3 8,571 56 122,965   8 5 87
Threat or intimidation4 5,390 35 43,991   8 5 87
Insubordination5 4,622 30 91,433   10 5 85
Other infractions (not including academic reasons) 3,359 22 71,945   7 4 89
1 Firearm/explosive device was defined for respondents as, "any weapon that is designed to (or may readily be converted to) expel a projectile by the action of an explosive. This includes guns, bombs, grenades, mines, rockets, missiles, pipe bombs, or similar devices designed to explode and capable of causing bodily harm or property damage."
2 Weapon was defined for respondents as, "any instrument or object used with the intent to threaten, injure, or kill. Includes look-alikes if they are used to threaten others."
3 Physical attack or fight was defined for respondents as, "an actual and intentional touching or striking of another person against his or her will, or the intentional causing of bodily harm to an individual."
4 Intimidation was defined for respondents as, "to frighten, compel, or deter by actual or implied threats. It includes bullying and sexual harassment."
5 Insubordination was defined for respondents as, "a deliberate and inexcusable defiance of or refusal to obey a school rule, authority, or a reasonable order. It includes but is not limited to direct defiance of school authority, failure to attend assigned detention or on-campus supervision, failure to respond to a call slip, and physical or verbal intimidation/abuse."
NOTE: Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding. "At school/at your school" was defined for respondents as including activities happening in school buildings, on school grounds, on school buses, and at places that are holding school-sponsored events or activities. Respondents were instructed to, unless the survey specified otherwise, only respond for those times that were during normal school hours or when school activities/events were in session. Serious disciplinary action includes suspensions lasting 5 days or more, removals with no services (i.e., expulsions), and transfers to specialized schools.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, School Survey on Crime and Safety (SSOCS), 2000.