Sunday, August 31, 2003

On reporting crime data in schools

The Roanoke Times has this report which concludes that state and federal law creates an incentive for Virginia's schools to under-report crime on campus.

The articles explains that "[t]he Code of Virginia, the federal Gun-Free Schools Act and the federal Safe and Drug-Free Schools Act require state schools to report all incidents that occur on school property involving assaults, sexual crimes, firearm possession, drug crimes, explosive or incendiary devices, bomb threats and threats to staff," and that "[t]he new federal law contains a provision that will label a school as 'persistently dangerous' if it does not meet state-set guidelines for three years in a row. Each state adopted its own criteria for identifying 'persistently dangerous schools.'" The federal legislation "will allow parents to remove their children from schools that have consistent safety problems."

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