What role can schools play in preventing and responding to teen dating violence?
A nationwide study of school principals has shown that while the majority had assisted a victim of teen dating violence (TDV) recently, most of them had never received formal training in this area and their school did not have a specific protocol for dealing with TDV. The most common approaches of school principals for responding to TDV found are discussed in an article published in Violence and Gender.
The article entitled "Preventing and Responding to Teen Dating Violence: A National Study of School Principals' Perspectives and Practices" is coauthored by Jagdish Khubchandani, MBBS, PhD, Ball State University (Muncie, IN) and colleagues from Illinois State University (Normal, IL), University of Houston (Victoria, TX), University of Toledo (OH), Indiana Area Health Education Center (Muncie), and Illinois Education Association (Chicago). The researchers provide data related to TDV prevention practices by schools, training to assist TDV victims provided to personnel within the past 2 years, and the most common ways principals assisted victims of TDV.
"This article is truly an eye-opener. According to the authors, teen-dating violence has emerged as a 'significant child and adolescent social and health problem,' but school administrators and staff are not equipped to address it," says Editor-in-Chief Mary Ellen O'Toole, PhD, Forensic Behavioral Consultant and Senior FBI Profiler/Supervisory Special Agent (ret.) and currently, Director of the Forensic Sciences Program, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA. "More training is absolutely essential to address this problem effectively. This first of its kind national study will help principals, teachers, and others realize their own deficiencies and develop proper procedures to address an issue that affects our children and adolescents in every school throughout the country."