My school or our school? The effects of individual versus shared school experiences on teacher perceptions of safety

Staci D. Roberts, Pamela Wilcox, David C. May, Richard R. Clayton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

While the research in the area of fear of criminal victimization among students at school continues to grow, few studies have focused on the prevalence or correlates of fear of crime at school among teachers. Using data from 1,438 teachers from 54 public high schools in Kentucky, we examined the individual- and school-level predictors of teacher perceptions of school safety using hierarchical linear regression models (HLMs) of teacher perceived safety. Overall, we found that teacher perceptions of school safety were largely a function of individual experiences at school. Nonetheless, perceptions of safety did vary substantially across schools, and school-level characteristics accounted for part of this contextual variation. In particular, we found evidence that the incivility hypothesis-largely heretofore applied to understanding neighborhood variation in fear of crime-also extended to teachers nested within school settings. Presence of physical disorder (measured as both individual and within-school shared perceptions of incivility) decreased teachers' perceptions of school safety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33-55
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of School Violence
Volume6
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality

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