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National Assessment of School Resource Officer Programs: Survey of Students in Three Large New SRO Programs

NCJ Number
Date Published
February 2005
43 pages
Jack McDevitt; Jenn Panniello
As part of a larger national evaluation of school resource officers (SRO's), students in three schools with SRO programs, each in a different State, were surveyed to determine their comfort in reporting crimes to the SRO and their perception of safety at school.
Data were obtained from 907 students. Through univariate, bivariate, and multivariate analysis, several factors were found to be linked to students' comfort in reporting crimes to SRO's and their perceptions of safety in schools. There was a statistically significant relationship between the number of student and SRO conversations and students' feeling of comfort in reporting crimes to the SRO. There was also a statistically significant relationship between a positive opinion of the SRO and feeling comfortable about reporting a crime to the SRO. Students' perception of safety at school also had a significant link with feeling comfortable in reporting crimes. Overall, the study indicated the importance of students having a positive opinion of the SRO as the common factor in feeling comfortable in reporting crime to the SRO and in feeling safe while at school. This finding suggests that SRO programs should focus on building a positive image of the SRO among the student body. Ways of doing this are beyond the parameters of this study. Further research is needed to address this issue. 13 tables, 21 references, and an appended copy of the questionnaire

Date Created: April 17, 2008