Study: 1 in 3 Parents Not Engaged in Campus Safety


On the cusp of the 10th anniversary of the Columbine school shootings, the National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC) says parents are not engaged in school safety and prevention efforts at their children’s school.

The findings come from a newly released survey by NCPC, the nonprofit group best known for its icon McGruff the Crime Dog. NCPC’s report shows that one in three parents have not had any discussions with school officials about school safety issues such as bullying or weapons in school. Of those parents who have spoken with school officials about safety issues, they do so an average of one time per year.

“It is disconcerting to find parents are more likely to talk to school officials about social issues such as ‘getting along with others’ than they are to talk about school safety,” says NCPC President and CEO Alfonso E. Lenhardt. Lenhardt continued by saying parents must be actively involved if we are to keep our children safe. Most violent incidents in schools today are often preceded by warning signs of trouble ahead. NCPC believes if we can get parents, school officials, and students working in concert, we can thwart some of these tragedies.

While these findings are disturbing, NCPC says the picture is not all doom and gloom. Parents of middle school students reported being aware of a range of prevention methods used in their children’s school.

  • Nearly nine in ten (87 percent) of parents say their school requires visitors to check in or sign in at a designated location.
  • More than half of parents say their child’s school requires parental involvement in school safety activities (59 percent).
  • Fifty percent report that their child’s school has a school safety officer such as a security guard or police officer (50 percent).

For an executive summary of the parent survey or tips on ways parents, students, school personnel, law enforcement, and the community can prevent school crime and violence, visit

National Crime Prevention Council April 2009 press release.

See More Related News on Columbine:
The State of School Safety Today
What schools learned about safety since Columbine
10 years later, Columbine’s hold remains strong
Surviving Columbine: What We Got Wrong
10th Anniversary of the Columbine Tragedy
VIDEO: 1,000 Gather to Remember Columbine Victims
Do We Blame the Columbine Parents?

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