Using school violence data from a state with urban, suburban, and rural counties, this study examined the landscape of school violence in Pennsylvania (PA) through mapping, descriptive statistics, and factor analysis.
School violence is a public health issue with direct and collateral consequences that have academic and social impacts for youth. School violence is often considered a uniquely urban problem, yet more research is needed to understand how violence in rural and suburban schools may be similar or different from urban counterparts. Findings from the current study indicate that school violence is not solely an urban problem. Schools in all county types and across grade levels deal with violence to varying degrees, and the majority of schools across county types experience low levels of violence. Types of violence experienced by PA schools loaded onto three factors, suggesting that targeted interventions may be better suited to addressing school violence. (publisher abstract modified)