Michigan: Alarming statistics cite weapons, intimidation in schools

By Alicia Ebaugh
The News Dispatch
MICHIGAN CITY — In Indiana, one in five high school students carried a weapon at some point during the school year — a rate higher than the national average. And about one in 10 Indiana children are threatened or injured with a weapon each year.

Those statistics may seem frightening, but they are a reality now for children, according to statewide statistics on bullying released this year in a report by the Indiana Youth Institute.

Although Michigan City Area Schools doesn’t keep specific data on how often its students use weapons to intimidate their classmates, data provided to the Indiana Department of Education report that 94 of Michigan City’s school expulsions or suspensions during the 2007-08 school year involved weapons, drugs or alcohol.

Bullying goes far beyond the use of weapons, however. Boys are more likely to be hit, slapped or pushed by their tormentors, according to information from the Youth Institute.

Girls endure more rumors or sexual comments. There isn’t specific local data, either, kept on the number of bullying incidents encountered by school staff. But with a new school year about to start, school officials are keeping in mind that it requires a proactive approach at all age levels to deal with problems created by bullying. Full story.


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