American schools unable to handle teen dating violence, study finds

July 23, 2012 By Marc Ransford

(Phys.org) -- Preventing and addressing adolescent dating violence is not a high priority for most American schools, even though the majority of counselors have assisted survivors, says a new study from Ball State University.

"Adolescent Dating Violence: A National Assessment of School Counselors' Perceptions and Practices," to be published in the August edition , is based on a of school counselors, says Jagdish Khubchandani, a community health education professor in Ball State's Department of Physiology and Health Science and a faculty fellow with the university's Global Health Institute.

This research found the vast majority (81.3 percent) of the school counselors reported that they did not have a protocol in their schools to respond to an incident of . Yet about 61 percent of school counselors reported that they had assisted a survivor of dating violence in the past two years.

"The lack of formal training is the most important barrier to assisting student of dating violence," Khubchandani said. "School counselors also perceived that dating violence is a minor issue and even if they want to help, the parents might not approve of school's interference.

About 90 percent of respondents also said training to assist survivors of dating violence has not been provided to personnel in their schools in the last two years, and 76 percent of respondents said their school did not have a committee that meets periodically to address health and safety issues that include dating violence. 

The study also found:

• Most of the survivors who received assistance were female. 
• The most common method of responding to a survivor of adolescent dating violence was calling the parents and guardians or referral to legal authorities.
• Slightly more than one in 10 school counselors actually assisted a survivor by referral to child protection agencies and school nurses, for legal and medical assistance.
• School personnel who received formal training on adolescent dating violence and perceived dating violence to be a serious problem were significantly more likely to assist survivors of dating violence. 

Khubchandani points out that the study is the first national assessment of the role of school personnel in preventing and responding to adolescent dating violence.

"It is also the first research project to identify the need of formal training on adolescent dating violence for school personnel," he said. "Hopefully, this study will be a pioneer in helping establish school policies, protocols and procedures for adolescent dating violence prevention."

Explore further: U.S. high schools lax in preventing dating abuse: study

Related Stories

U.S. high schools lax in preventing dating abuse: study

July 9, 2012
(HealthDay) -- Although dating violence is a recognized problem for U.S. teens, a majority of high school counselors say their school provides no training or guidelines for dealing with abusive romantic relationships, a ...

Know a teen hurt by a date? Someone else has been hurting them too, research finds

February 13, 2012
Teen victims of dating violence are overwhelmingly more likely to have been victims of other forms of violence, such as sexual violence and child abuse, according to new research from the University of New Hampshire Crimes ...

Girls less likely to be violent when seeking others' approval

May 13, 2011
(PhysOrg.com) -- Many teen girls who push, slap or punch their dates know the situation could become more violent, but they think most consequences are unlikely, a new study shows.

Recommended for you

Molecules in spit may be able to diagnose and predict length of concussions

November 20, 2017
Diagnosing a concussion can sometimes be a guessing game, but clues taken from small molecules in saliva may be able to help diagnose and predict the duration of concussions in children, according to Penn State College of ...

Breastfed babies are less likely to have eczema as teenagers, study shows

November 13, 2017
Babies whose mothers had received support to breastfeed exclusively for a sustained period from birth have a 54% lower risk of eczema at the age of 16, a new study led by researchers from King's College London, Harvard University, ...

Obesity during pregnancy may lead directly to fetal overgrowth, study suggests

November 13, 2017
Obesity during pregnancy—independent of its health consequences such as diabetes—may account for the higher risk of giving birth to an atypically large infant, according to researchers at the National Institutes of Health. ...

Working to reduce brain injury in newborns

November 10, 2017
Research-clinicians at Children's National Health System led the first study to identify a promising treatment to reduce or prevent brain injury in newborns who have suffered hypoxia-ischemia, a serious complication in which ...

Why do some kids die under dental anesthesia?

November 9, 2017
Anesthesiologists call for more research into child deaths caused by dental anesthesia in an article published online by the journal Pediatrics.

Probability calculations—even babies can master it

November 3, 2017
One important feature of the brain is its ability to make generalisations based on sparse data. By learning regularities in our environment it can manage to guide our actions. As adults, we have therefore a vague understanding ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.