CONNECTICUT SCHOOL VIOLENCE: A TALE OF TWO CITY SCHOOLS (MIDDLE SCHOOL)

ROBERT D KING, Fordham University

Abstract

The purpose of the study was to examine school practices and the levels of student bonding in high and low violence urban middle schools. These explorations were based on control theories of delinquency which hold that an individual's behavior is controlled by the level or degree which that individual is bonded to the institutions of society, and the strength of this bond is due to the behaviors or practices of the particular institution. The study explored the possibilities that a causal path could be traced from specific school practices to a stronger student/school bond and from thence to a reduced level of school violence.^ Student questionnaires were administered to representative samples of students in two urban middle schools. Besides the questionnaires, interviews and observations at both schools and school and district records were used in the study. The methodology used both statistical analysis and case study approaches.^ In the first, or quantitative phase of the study, the samples were compared across all the variables and shown to be essentially the same in all aspects save on the level of school violence and on certain of the independent variables. When the two samples were combined, the subsequent statistical analysis supported the study's contentions relevant to the relationships between violence and student bonding, and between student bonding and school practices.^ This study concludes that the level of violence in a school is a measure of the students' attachment and commitment, and that school personnel can, despite external forces, control the level of violence in their schools by fostering in their students those two elements of the student/school bond.^ The level of violence in a school is also directly affected by the degree to which that school facilitates its students' accomplishment of the school's primary mission: academic achievement. When it fulfills its compact with its students, a school may expect that its students will reciprocate by being docile, cooperative learners. ^

Subject Area

Educational administration

Recommended Citation

KING, ROBERT D, "CONNECTICUT SCHOOL VIOLENCE: A TALE OF TWO CITY SCHOOLS (MIDDLE SCHOOL)" (1987). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI8715806.
http://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8715806

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