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Journal Article


Peterson RL, Larson J, Skiba RJ. Law Policy 2001; 23(3): 345-371.


(Copyright © 2001, Baldy Center for Law and Social Policy, State University of New York at Buffalo, Publisher John Wiley and Sons)






The purpose of this article is to identify an array of strategies that are available to schools to address concerns school violence and to identify some of the potential school or school district policy options related to those choices. We illustrate that many promising options are available to schools to address violence and other inappropriate behavior of students. The very breadth and diversity of these options may pose a problem in attempting to develop a comprehensive local policy on this topic. While many schools have chosen increasingly punitive zero-tolerance policies as their primary strategy of violence prevention, there is little or no research evidence documenting that such an approach can contribute to school safety. Rather, effective school violence prevention requires comprehensive planning involving documented best-practice programs, preventive strategies, and effective responses to any violence that may occur. Since research documenting the effects of violence prevention strategies is inconsistent, it is incumbent upon schools to consider carefully which programs best meet the needs of their local situation, and to monitor the effectiveness of new programs in improving school safety and reducing disruption and incivility.


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