At the mention of Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, most Americans shudder to remember the violent massacre of 12 students and a teacher, as well as the deaths of the two students who committed the crime. Although this tragedy alerted the public that American education would never be the same, it was not an isolated incident. Tragedies of similar proportions at schools in Kennedy, Arkansas, Pennsylvania and Oregon by students ranging in age from 11 to 15 demonstrate that the problem is widespread geographically. Educators, researchers and parents all struggle to understand why violent crime by school-aged children has increased since 1989, while crime in society has declined.
This special issue of THE ANNALS, School Violence, explores the roots of school violence and how to create systems to prevent it. This issue aims to develop short- and long-term strategies to address school violence. Articles in this issue discuss the following:
· Gangs in Schools
· Effects of School Climate on School Disorder
· School Discipline
· Poverty, Inequality, and Youth Violence
· Juvenile Corrections
· Creating Peaceable Schools
The several contributors to this volume bring together their critical and analytical skills to address what is clearly one of the most pressing problems facing American society as we enter the 21st century. This issue is a valuable resource for both academics and researchers exploring the nature, scope, causes and policy implications of the growing trend to school violence.