Author(s): Martin SL, Sadowski LS, Cotten NU, McCarraher DR
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Abstract This study examined adolescents' perceptions concerning the presence of guns in their school and the adolescents' emotional and behavioral responses associated with these perceptions. Survey data from 376 African-American sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students of a low-income area of a North Carolina city were studied. Twenty-eight percent of adolescents reported that other students brought guns to school, 36\% felt afraid that someone would hurt or attack them while at school, 15\% avoided school (or places in school) because of fear that a student would hurt or attack them, and 20\% carried weapons to school for self-protection. Logistic regression analyses found that, compared to their peers, adolescents who perceived that their school mates brought guns to school were almost twice as likely to experience fear while at school, were more than three times more likely to exhibit school avoidance behavior, and were more than twice as likely to bring a weapon to school themselves for self-protection. Educators and school health professionals are urged to work together to address these problems concerning school safety.
This article was published in J Sch Health
and referenced in International Journal of School and Cognitive Psychology