School violence has become a widespread problem within the last few years. "A 1996 Children's Institute International Poll of American Adolescents revealed that 47 percent of all teens believed their schools were becoming more violent, 10 percent feared being shot or hurt by classmates carrying weapons to schools, and more than 20 percent were afraid to go to restrooms because these unsupervised areas were frequent sites of student victimization" (The US Department of Health and Human Sciences, 2003). School violence is affecting children of all ages; it is seen as early in kindergarten where children bring guns to school to scare other children they have been fighting with (Toppo, 2003). School violence has become commonplace in the United States. For example, just by watching the news alone, one hears and sees incidences of school violence. "Highly publicized school shootings have created uncertainty about the safety and security of this country's schools and generate fear that an attack might occur in any school, in any community" (Vossekuil, 2002, 3).
Because of this national attention, the United States government began studies to determine the causes and effects of school violence. The purpose of this research paper is to examine the impact school violence has on a student's learning environment and to discover new safety strategies that can be implemented in schools. This research paper will also focus on the factors that can cause a student to lash out, as well as, the effects of their behavior has on the student's peers.
Causes of School Violence.
Contrary to popular belief, school violence does not stem from gang-related incidents, but rather from incidences of bullying. Bullying is defined as, "...exposing a person repeatedly, and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more students" (Coy, 2001). The intention of...