Order Code RL30482 Report for Congress Received through the CRS Web The Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Program: Background and Context Updated March 14, 2003 Edith Fairman Cooper Analyst in Social Science Domestic Social Policy Division Congressional Research Service ˜ The Library of Congress The Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Program: Background and Context Summary The No Child Left Behind Act (P. L. 107-110), amends and reauthorizes the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act (SDFSCA) as Part A of Title IV – 21st Century Schools. The Department of Education administers SDFSCA through the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities program, which is the federal government’s major initiative to prevent drug abuse and violence in and around schools. Through the Act, state grants are awarded by formula to outlying areas, state educational agencies, and local educational agencies in all 50 states, the District of Columbia (DC) and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Also, funds go to a state’s Chief Executive Officer (Governor) for creating programs to deter youth from using drugs and committing violent acts in schools. National programs are supported through discretionary funds for a variety of national leadership projects designed to prevent drug abuse and violence among all educational levels, from preschool through the postsecondary level. There are other federally sponsored substance abuse and violence prevention programs administered in the Departments of Justice, Health and Human Services, and other agencies. Those programs are not discussed in this report. Despite the reports about violence in the nation’s schools and the surge in multiple homicides in schools in recent years, the 2000 Annual Report on School Safety indicates that the nation’s schools are generally considered to be safe. School crime rates actually declined between 1992 and 1998. The study, Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2002, found a continued decrease in such crime rates through 2002. Although crimes were still occurring in schools, some students seemed to feel more secure at school now than they did a few years ago, while many others seemed to feel less safe. Such feelings, however, depended on the racial and/or ethnic group of the students. Larger percentages of Black and Latino students feared attack or harm at school than White students. Derogatory words related to race, gender and others were reported by 12% of 12- to -18-year old students to have been used by someone at school against them. Females were more likely than males to report gender-related hate words, and Blacks were more likely than Whites to report race-related hate words. Analysts noted that such discriminatory behavior created a hostile environment that was not conducive to learning. The Monitoring the Future study conducted by the University of Michigan revealed overall declines in drug use in all 8th, 10th, and 12th grade levels surveyed from 2001 to 2002. Results included significant decreases in the use of MDMA (ecstasy), marijuana, LSD, inhalants, alcohol, cigarettes, and smokeless tobacco. Heroin use, which declined significantly among 10th and 12th graders from 2000 to 2001, remained stable for each grade level from 2001 to 2002. Also, cocaine use remained unchanged from 2001 to 2002 for each grade. Crack use, however, showed significant increases in use by 10th graders, along with sedative use by 12th graders. For the first time, questions were added to the survey regarding the non-medical use in the past year of the prescription drugs to relieve pain – Oxycontin and Vicodin. Researchers concluded that results showed reasons for concern. Contents Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 School Safety . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 School Homicides . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 The 1996 Study on School-Related Violent Deaths . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Update of the 1996 Study . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2001 Reported Study . . . . 7 Source of Firearms Used in School-Related Violent Deaths . . . . . . . . . 8 Multiple Deaths and Injuries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Drug Abuse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Marijuana Use . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Ecstasy Use . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Other Illicit Drug Use . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Alcohol Use . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Cigarette Smoking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Smokeless Tobacco Use . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 The SDFSC Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 State Grants . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 State Chief Executive Officer’s Funds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 State and Local Educational Agencies Grant Allocations and Activities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 State Application . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 LEA Application . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 LEA Limitation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Principles of Effectiveness for State and Local Grant Recipients . . . . 25 National Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 Federal Activities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 Impact Evaluation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 National Coordinator Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Community Service for Expelled or Suspended Students Grant Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Grants to Reduce Alcohol Abuse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 Mentoring Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 The Gun-Free Schools Act . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Evaluation of the Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 List of Figures Figure 1. Any Illicit Drug Use by 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders Within the Last 12 Months, 1992-2002 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 Figure 2. Any Alcohol Use by 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders, Within the Last 30 Days, 1992-2002 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Figure 3. 30-Day Prevalence of Any Cigarette Use for 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders, 1992-2002 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Figure 4. 30-Day Prevalence of Smokeless Tobacco Use for 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders, 1992-2002 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Figure 5. The Program Formula to State and Local Schools, 2002-2003 School Year . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 List of Tables Table 1. Multiple School-Related Violent Deaths and Injuries, 1995-96 — 2000-01 (as of July 31, 2001) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 The Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Program: Background and Context Introduction Since 1986, drug abuse of students in school has been a congressional concern. In 1994, this concern was expanded to include violence occurring in and around schools. A U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO) report stated that in 1994, when the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act was enacted, about 3 million violent crimes and thefts occurred annually in or near schools, which equaled almost 16,000 incidents per school day.1 The Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS) conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) indicated that in the 1993-94 school year, violence in public schools was on the rise and schools appeared less safe than in the 1987-88 school year. From the 1987-88 school year to the 1993-94 school year, an increasing percentage of public elementary and secondary school teachers reported that physical conflict and weapon possession among students were moderate to serious problems in schools.2 Similarly, between 1992 and 1995, drug use rates among school-aged youth increased for over 10 different drugs, particularly marijuana, after declining in the 1980s.3 To address those concerns, on October 20, 1994, President Clinton signed into law the Improving America’s School Act (P.L. 103-382), which reauthorized the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), and created the Safe and DrugFree Schools Act (SDFSCA) as Title IV. The 1994 legislation extended, amended, and renamed the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act of 1988 (P.L. 100-297, DFSCA).4 Violence prevention was added to the DFSCA’s original drug prevention purpose by incorporating the Safe Schools Act.5 Consequently, the SDFSCA was 1 U.S. General Accounting Office, Safe and Drug-Free Schools: Balancing Accountability With State and Local Flexibility, GAO report GAO/HEHS-98-3 (Washington: October 1997), p. 1. 2 U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Research and Improvement, National Center for Education Statistics, “How Safe Are the Public Schools: What Do Teachers Say?” Issue Brief, NCES 96-842, April 1996, p. 1. 3 Ibid. 4 The DFSCA was originally created by Title IV, Subtitle B of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986, P.L. 99-570. 5 The Safe Schools Act was originally created by Title VII of The Goals 2000: Educate America Act of 1994 (P.L. 103-227). CRS-2 intended to help deter violence and promote school safety as well as discourage drug use in and around the nation’s schools. Funding was authorized for federal, state, and local programs to assist schools in providing a disciplined learning environment free of violence and drug use, including alcohol and tobacco.6 The No Child Left Behind Act (P. L. 107-110) amended and reauthorized SDFSCA within ESEA as Part A of Title IV – 21st Century Schools. The Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act is administered by the Department of Education (ED). Grants are awarded to states and at the national level for programs to promote school safety and assist in preventing drug abuse. For FY2002, $746.8 million was appropriated for the program. For FY2003, Congress appropriated $716 million7 for the program, $30.8 million less than for FY2002. For FY2004, the George W. Bush Administration has requested $694.3 million in funding for SDFSC program, a $50 million increase over the $644.3 million FY2003 request, but $21.7 million less than the FY2003 appropriation. For information about the reauthorization and appropriations for the SDFSC program, see CRS Report RS20532, The Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act: Reauthorization and Appropriations. Although the SDFSC program is the primary federal government program targeted to reduce drug use and violence through educational and prevention methods in the nation’s schools,8 it is one of several substance abuse and violence prevention programs funded by the federal government.9 In its 1997 report, GAO identified 70 federal programs authorized to provide services for either substance abuse prevention or violence prevention. ED, the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), and the Department of Justice (DOJ) administered 48 of the programs.10 This report discusses various aspects of the SDFSCA as it exists under current law, as newly amended. It begins with background information about the school safety and drug abuse issues, provides a detailed overview of the program, and discusses an evaluation of the SDFSC program. 6 “Title IV — Safe Schools,” 1994 CQ Almanac, v. 50 (Washington: Congressional Quarterly, Inc., 1994), p. 394. 7 This figure reflects the required 0.65% across-the-board budget reduction for federal agencies as estimated by the ED Budget Service in its table entitled, Dept. of Education Fiscal Year 2004 President’s Budget, March 5, 2003. It includes all activities that are authorized under the SDFSC Act. Therefore, this total differs from the one reported in the ED Budget Office’s table, which lists appropriations for national program grants for community service for expelled or suspended students, and alcohol abuse reduction separately from the rest of the SDFSC Act. 8 “About Safe and Drug-Free Schools Program,” [http://www.ed.gov/offices/OESE/SDFS/aboutsdf.html], visited February 08, 2002. 9 U.S. General Accounting Office, Safe and Drug-Free Schools, p. 8. 10 U.S. General Accounting Office, Substance Abuse and Violence Prevention: Multiple Youth Programs Raise Questions of Efficiency and Effectiveness, GAO testimony before the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, GAO/T-HEHS-97-166 (Washington: June 24, 1997), p. 5. CRS-3 School Safety The nation’s schools are generally considered to be safe, despite the reports about violence and the surge in multiple homicides in schools. The 2000 Annual Report on School Safety (Annual Report), published by the Departments of Education and Justice, indicates that school crime11 rates actually declined between 1992 and 1998. A companion report, Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2002 (Indicators Study discussed below), found a continued decline in such crime rates through 2000.12 The 2000 Annual Report qualified the safety of most schools by stating that, “... notwithstanding the disturbing reports of violence in our schools, they are becoming even safer.”13 The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) study, Juvenile Offenders and Victims: 1999 National Report, states that juveniles are at the highest risk of becoming victims of violence at the end of the school day.14 In addition, Annual Report researchers found that reports of the presence of street gangs on school property, which can cause students to feel less safe, have declined. Consequently, although crimes are still occurring in schools, some students seem to feel more secure at school now than they did a few years ago, while many others seem to feel less safe at school. Such feelings, the report reveals, depend on racial and/or ethnic group of the students. In 1995 and in 1999, larger percentages of Black and Latino students feared attack or harm at school than White students.15 The Indicators Study reported that in 2001, 12% of 12- to 18-year-old students revealed that someone at school used hate-related words against them (that is, a derogatory word having to do with race, religion, ethnicity, disability, gender, or sexual orientation). Females were more likely to report gender-related hate words than males, and Blacks were more likely to report race-related hate words than Whites. The report noted that such discriminatory behavior creates a hostile environment that is not conducive to learning16. The Indicators Study, found a mixed picture for school safety. Overall crime rates in schools have decreased, but violence, gangs, and drugs remain evident in 11 School crimes included serious violent crimes such as homicide, suicide, rape, sexual assault, aggravated assault with or without a weapon, and robbery. Less serious or nonviolent crimes included theft/larceny and vandalism of school property. 12 J. F. DeVoe, et al., Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2002, U.S. Depts. of Education and Justice, NCES 2003-009/NCJ-196753 (Washington: 2002), p. iii. 13 U.S. Dept. of Education and the U.S. Dept. of Justice, 2000 Annual Report on School Safety, [http://www.ed.gov/offices/OESE/SDFS/annrept00.pdf], p. iv. 14 Howard N. Snyder and Melissa Sickmund, Juvenile Offenders and Victims: 1999 National Report (Washington, D.C.: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, 1999), p. 34. 15 2000 Annual Report on School Safety, p. 7. 16 J. F. DeVoe, et al., Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2002, p. 36. CRS-4 some schools, which indicated, the report stated, that more work needs to be done.17 The Indicators Study data were drawn from a variety of independent sources including federal departments and agencies such as the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the National Center for Education Statistics, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. With multiple and independent data sources combined, the authors of the Indicators Study hoped to present a more valid picture of school crime and safety. Some of the key findings of the report were as follows:18 ! ! ! ! ! From July 1, 1998, to June 30, 1999, 47 school-related violent deaths occurred in the nation’s schools – 38 were homicides, 6 were suicides, two were killed by a law enforcement officer in the line of duty, and one was unintentional. Thirty-three of the 38 homicides were school-aged children, which researchers stated were relatively few (that is, 1% of all youth homicides), compared with a total of 2,391 homicides of children ages 5 to 19 years occurring in the nation during the same time period. Of that total, 2,358 murders occurred away from school. Four suicides, of the 6 suicides mentioned above that occurred between July 1, 1998 and June 30, 1999, were of school-aged children and occurred at school. A total of 1,855 suicides of children ages 5 to 19 years occurred away from school in the 1999 calender year. In 2000, 12- to 18-year-old students were victims of about 1.9 million crimes of violence or theft at school, a slight decline from 2.5 million in 1999. They were, however, more than two times as likely to be victims of nonfatal serious violent crime19 away from school than at school. In 2000, such students were victims of about 373,000 serious violent crimes perpetrated on them away from school compared with 128,000 such incidents at school. The victimization rate for such crimes at school and away from school generally declined from 1992 to 2000. In 2001, both males and females were more likely to be bullied at school within the last 6 months than in 1999, that is, 8% of 12- to -18-year-olds compared with 5% of such students in 1999; In the 1996-97 school year, one serious violent crime was reported to the police or law enforcement representative by 10% of all public schools; 47% of public schools reported a less serious violent or nonviolent crime; and 43% of such schools did not report any such crimes to the police. Elementary schools were less likely than middle or high schools to report any type of crime; From 1996 to 2000, teachers were victims of about 1,603,000 nonfatal crimes at school. This number includes 1,004,000 thefts and 599,000 violent crimes. Those data translate into 74 crimes per 1,000 teachers per year; and 17 Ibid., p. iii. 18 Ibid., pp. v, vii-x, 2, 6. 19 Nonfatal serious violent crimes included rape, sexual assault, robbery, and aggravated assault. CRS-5 ! Between 1995 and 2001, the percentages of 12- to -18-year-old students who reported feeling unsafe at school or on their way to and from school decreased from 12% in 1995 to 7% in 1999, to 6% in 2001. In both 1999 and 2001, such students were more likely to fear being attacked at school or on the way to and from school than away from school. For example, in 2001, 6% were afraid of being attacked at school, while 5% feared being attacked away from school. School Homicides The 2000 Annual Report on School Safety acknowledges that although homicides at school remain extremely rare events, they do occur and affect the perspective of all citizens, particularly children.20 Research reported by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) discovered that less than 1% of homicides and suicides among school-aged youth occur on school property or when traveling to or from school or at school-sponsored events.21 The 1996 Study on School-Related Violent Deaths. In 1996, JAMA published the first study investigating violent school-related deaths nationwide that was conducted by researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the Department of Health and Human Services, the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Program at ED, the National School Safety Center (NSSC)22 of Westlake Village, CA, and the National Institute of Justice of DOJ. The period studied covered two consecutive academic years from July 1,1992, through June 30, 1994 (specifically, July 1, 1992-June 30, 1993 and July 1, 1993-June 30, 1994). Over the two-year period, 105 school-related deaths were identified. The researchers used a case definition for school-associated deaths as “any homicide or suicide in which the fatal injury occurred on the campus of a functioning elementary or secondary school in the United States, while the victim was on the way to or from regular sessions at such a school, or while the victim was attending or traveling to or from an official school-sponsored event.”23 Deaths of students, non-students, and staff members were included. 20 2000 Annual Report on School Safety, p. 9. 21 Nancy D. Brener, Thomas R. Simon, Etienne G. Krug, and Richard Lowry, “Recent Trends in Violence-Related Behaviors Among High School Students in the United States,” JAMA, vol. 285, no. 5, August 4, 1999, p. 440. 22 The National School Safety Center was formerly a national clearinghouse for school safety program information that was funded by ED and DOJ and housed at Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA. In FY1997, federal funding ended and NSSC became a private, non-profit, independent organization. Although NSSC is not a research-based group, it participated in the 1996 released JAMA study on school-associated deaths. Discussed in a telephone conversation with the Associate Director of NSSC on July 31, 2001. 23 S. Patrick Kachur, et al., “School Associated-Violent Deaths in the United States, 1992 to 1994,” JAMA, vol. 275, no. 22, June 12, 1996, p. 1729-1730. CRS-6 Two strategies were used in obtaining the data – deaths identified by study collaborators at the ED and the NSSC through newspaper accounts and informal voluntary reports from state and local educational officers, and a systematic search of two computerized newspaper and broadcast media databases. The first strategy revealed 78 possible cases and the second strategy revealed 160 possible cases. Out of the total 238 probable cases, 52 duplicate cases were identified and eliminated, leaving 186 possible cases. The probable cases were confirmed through various sources.24 As a result, 81 cases were eliminated because they failed to meet the case definition for various reasons. Consequently, the 105 cases were confirmed. Researchers discovered the following: ! As mentioned above, less than 1% of all homicides among schoolaged children, 5 to 19 years, occur in or around school grounds or on the way to and from school; ! 65% of school-related deaths were students, 11% were teachers or other staff members, and 23% were community members who were killed on school property; ! 83% of school homicide or suicide victims were males; ! 23% of the fatal injuries occurred inside the school building, 36% happened outdoors on school property, and 35% occurred off campus; and ! The deaths included in the study occurred in 25 states across the nation and took place in both primary and secondary schools and communities of all sizes.25 Update of the 1996 Study. The December 5, 2001 issue of JAMA contains the results of an update of the 1996 study. Entitled, “School-Associated Violent Deaths in the United States, 1994-1999,” the study continues where the 1996 research ended and describes the trends and features of such deaths from July 1, 1994, through June 30, 1999.26 Using a definition similar to the 1996 study, a school-related death case was defined as “a homicide, suicide, legal intervention27, or unintentional firearm-related death of a student or nonstudent in which the fatal injury occurred (1) on the campus of a public or private elementary or secondary school, (2) while the victim was on the way to or from such a school, or (3) while the 24 At least one local press, law enforcement, or school official familiar with each case was contacted and brief interviews were conducted to determine whether the case definition had been met. 25 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Facts About Violence Among Youth and Violence in Schools,” Media Relations Fact Sheets, April 21, 1999, [http://www.cdc.gov/od/oc/media/fact/violence.htm]. 26 Mark Anderson, et al., “School-Associated Violent Deaths in the United States, 19941999,” JAMA, v. 286, no. 21, December 5, 2001, p. 2695-2702. 27 A legal intervention is assumed to mean that a student was shot by police. The available information about the study that CRS has at this writing, however, does not define the phrase. CRS-7 victim was attending or traveling to or from an official school-sponsored event.”28 Researchers discovered that between 1994 and 1999, there were 220 events that led to 253 school-related deaths. Of the 220 events, there were 172 homicides, 30 suicides, 11 homicide-suicide occurrences, 5 legal intervention deaths, and 2 unintentional firearm-related deaths. Several emerging trends were noted in a CDC press release as follows: ! ! ! ! ! ! “School-associated violent deaths represent less than one percent of all homicides and suicides that occur among school-aged children.” “Troubled teens often give potential signals such as writing a note or a journal entry, or they make a threat. In over half the incidents that were examined, some type of signal was given.” “While the rate of school-associated violent deaths events has decreased significantly during the study time period, the number of multiple-victim events has increased.” “More than fifty percent of all school-associated violent death events occurred during transition times during the school day – either at the beginning or end of the day or during lunch-time.” “Homicide perpetrators were far more likely than homicide victims to have expressed previous suicidal behaviors or had a history of criminal charges; been a gang member; associated with high-risk peers or considered a loner; or used alcohol or drugs on a weekly basis. Among students, homicide perpetrators were twice as likely than homicide victims to have been bullied by peers.” “The rate of school-associated violent deaths was over twice as high for male students.”29 Researchers conclude and emphasize that such deaths remain rare events but have occurred often enough to detect patterns and to identify possible risk factors. Therefore, this information might assist schools in responding to the problem. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2001 Reported Study. The CDC, which has been involved in school-associated violent deaths research in collaboration with ED and DOJ (as mentioned above), also collected data to assess whether the risk for such deaths varied during the school year. The case definition for school-associated violent deaths used in this study was the same one that was used in the 1996 study discussed above. Researchers analyzed monthly counts of school- associated homicides and suicides for seven school terms, from September 1, 1992, to June 30, 1999, that occurred among middle, junior, and senior high school students in the nation. For that 7-year period, 209 school-related violent deaths occurred that involved either a homicide or a suicide of a student. An average of 0.14 school-related homicide incidents occurred each school day, which translated to one homicide every 7 school days. Homicide rates usually were highest near the 28 29 Ibid., [http://jama.ama-assn.org/issues/v286n21/abs/joc11149.html]. U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, “Study Finds School-Associated Violent Deaths Rare, Fewer Events But More Deaths Per Event,” CDC Media Relations, Press Release, December 4, 2001, [http://www.cdc.gov/od/oc/media/pressrel/r011204.htm]. CRS-8 beginning of the fall and spring semesters, and then declined over the subsequent months. An average of 0.03 suicide incidents occurred each school day, which was one suicide every 31 school days. The overall suicide rates were higher during the spring semester than in the fall semester, but did not vary significantly within semesters.30 The CDC researchers believe that these findings could be useful for school personnel in planning and implementing school violence prevention programs. They point out that possible explanations exist regarding why high school-related homicide rates occurred at the beginning of each semester. One suggested explanation is that conflicts that began either before or during the semester or holiday break might have escalated into deadly violence when students returned to school for the start of a new semester. Another suggestion was that the beginning of a new semester represented a time of considerable change and stress for students when they have to adapt to new schedules, teachers, and classmates. Such stressors might contribute to violent behavior. For these reasons, they propose that schools should consider policies and programs that might ease student adjustment during the transitional periods. The researchers warn that the results of the study should be interpreted with caution because incidents were identified from news media reports. Therefore, any such event that was not reported in the news media would not have been included in the study. Reports of suicides were of particular concern because media coverage of such events might be limited or discouraged. If under reporting of suicides did occur, the report states, “coverage probably did not vary by time of year and would not account for the higher rate observed during the spring semester.”31 Source of Firearms Used in School-Related Violent Deaths. In March 2003, CDC released findings regarding the source of firearms used by students in the violent deaths of elementary and secondary students that occurred from July 1, 1992 through June 30, 1999. Information on the types of weapons and their sources was obtained by interviewing school and police officials and by reviewing official police reports. CDC found that the majority of weapons used in such school-related violent deaths were obtained from either the perpetrator’s home, or from friends or relatives. CDC concluded that, “The safe storage of firearms is critically important and should be continued. In addition, other strategies that might prevent firearm-related injuries and deaths among students, such as safety and design changes for firearms, should be evaluated.”32 30 “Temporal Variations in School-Associated Student Homicide and Suicide Events — United States, 1992-1999,” MMWR Weekly, August 10, 2001, vol. 50, no. 31, pp. 657-660. [http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5031a1.htm]. 31 32 Ibid. “Source of Firearms used by Students in School-Associated Violent Deaths – United States, 1992-1999,” MMWR, Vol. 52, no. 9, March 7, 2003, p. 169. CRS-9 Multiple Deaths and Injuries There has been an increase in high-profile multiple-victim school shootings since 1996. Those occurrences might tend to skew the public perception about the safety of children and youth at school. On February 2, 1996, a 14-year-old male student walked into a junior high school algebra class in Moses Lake, WA with a hunting rifle and allegedly killed the teacher, two students, and injured a third student. A little over one year later on February 19, 1997, another multiple shooting occurred in a Bethel, Alaska high school when a 16-year-old male student opened fire with a shotgun killing the principal and a student, and wounded two other students. Those incidents appeared to begin a pattern of several multi-victim attacks at various schools across the nation, from the 1995-96 school year through the 1998-99 school term. Using the 1996 study’s case definition for school-related violent deaths (see above), during those academic periods, from various news accounts of the incidents, it appears that about 34 students and teachers were killed at school. Also, a larger number of 75 individuals were wounded in the various incidents. One shooting occurred during the 1999-00 school year when four students were wounded, increasing the total to 79 injured. Two incidents occurred in the 2000-01 academic year, increasing the number to 36 students killed and 103 persons wounded, for a total of 139 victims from 1995 through 1999. Multiple homicides in schools appeared to be sporadic during the periods discussed, with the largest number of persons killed and wounded in one incident, during the 1998-99 school session (see Table 1). On April 20, 1999, during the 1998-99 school year, an incident that has been called the worst school shooting tragedy in the nation’s history by some commentators, occurred at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. Two male students armed with handguns and rifles shot and killed 12 classmates, a teacher, and wounded 23 others, before killing themselves. This incident stirred much concern and questions about safety in the nation’s schools. For the 1998-99 school year, it was reported that, “States and Territories ...expelled an estimated 3,523 students for bringing a firearm to school.”33 On March 5, 2001, during the 2000-01 academic year, in what was described as the worst episode of school violence since the Columbine tragedy, a 15-year-old male student randomly shot and killed two students and wounded 13 others (including two adults – a security guard and a student teacher) at the Santana High School in Santee, California, a community about 10 miles northeast of downtown San Diego. It was reported that the teenager had been belittled by his freshman classmates. Prior to and shortly after the Santana tragedy, the news media reported that similar acts of violence by disgruntled students had been averted because of quick thinking youths who alerted authorities about violent threats that were made by certain students. Notwithstanding, two days after the Santana High School shooting, the USA Today newspaper reported six separate school-related violence threats made 33 U.S. Dept. of Education, Fiscal Year 2003 Justifications of Appropriation Estimates to the Congress, vol. I, p. C-115. CRS-10 across the nation, and mentioned a concern that possible “copycat” acts might transpire. Edward Farris, a youth crisis counselor in Los Angeles was quoted as observing that copycat violence is common after high-profile school incidents.34 On March 22, 2001, two weeks and three days after the Santana High School incident, an 18-year-old male student opened fire with two guns at the Granite Hills High School in Cajon, California, an adjacent suburb of Santee, injuring at least seven people, including two teachers before being shot in the face and subdued by the police officer assigned to the school. A friend of the gunman stated that he believed the shooter was upset because he did not have enough credits to graduate in Spring 2001.35 Table 1. Multiple School-Related Violent Deaths and Injuries, 1995-96 — 2000-01 (as of July 31, 2001) Number of deaths Number wounded Total victims School year City/town/state 1995-96 Moses Lake, WA 3 1 4 1996-97 Bethel, AK 2 2 4 1997-98 Pearl, MS 2 7 9 West Paducah, KY 3 5 8 Jonesboro, AR 5 10 15 Pomona, CA 2 1 3 Springfield, OR 2a 22 24 Richmond, VA 0 2 2 Littleton, CO 15 23 38 Conyers, GA 0 6 6 1999-2000 Fort Gibson, OK 0 4 4 2000-2001 Santee, CA 2 13 15 Cajon, CA 0 7 7 11 36 103 139 1998-99 Totals Source: Congressional Research Service (CRS), compiled from various news accounts and based on the 1996 JAMA published study’s case definition for school-associated violent deaths (see discussion above). A similar table presented in earlier versions of this report relied on NSSC data that reflected multiple school-related violent deaths compiled from various news sources, for which a similar case definition was not applied. a The alleged killer’s parents were later found shot to death in their home. 34 Scott Bowles, “Violence Threatens Schools Across U.S.: Arrests Made 2 Days After Calif. Shooting,” USA Today, March 8, 2001, p. 3A. 35 Todd S. Purdum, “Gunman Fires on School Near Site of Earlier Shooting,” The New York Times on the Web, March 23, 2001, visited March 23, 2001. CRS-11 Drug Abuse Since 1975, the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research has conducted the Monitoring the Future (MTF) study and has been funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse at the National Institutes of Health of DHHS.36 High school seniors and, since 1991, 8th and 10th grade youth have been canvassed annually about their behavior, attitudes, values in general, and substance use. At each grade level, responses of students surveyed were used to represent all students nationwide in public and private secondary schools. In 2002, about 43,700 students in 394 schools were surveyed about their use of illicit drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and smokeless tobacco within three prevalence periods, that is, lifetime, annual (or 12 months), past month (or 30-day), and daily use.37 MTF researchers reported that 2002 survey results revealed overall declines in drug use in all grade levels from 2001 to 2002 in the proportion of students using any illicit drug (that is, marijuana, MDMA (ecstasy), LSD, inhalants, and others), drinking alcohol, smoking cigarettes, or using smokeless tobacco.38 Principal investigator and social psychologist, Lloyd Johnston reported that this significant decline in the use of any illicit drug among 10th graders is the first time this has occurred since 1998. Limited progress, however, has been made in such use among 12th graders. Researchers found that none of the declines in any illicit drug use among 12th graders was statistically significant. Reasons for the decline were attributed to a possible impact of 9/11, although the decline in all drug usage after this tragic event could be coincidental, according to Lloyd Johnston.39 He noted, however, that a decline already was in progress for several substances such as cigarettes, inhalants, LSD, and others. He observed further that, “On the other hand, the downturn in alcohol use this year was striking, and overall illicit drug use began to decline for the first time across the board. So, I think it quite possible that the tragedy of 9/11 had somewhat of a sobering effect on the country’s young people. Maybe it helped some, at least, to clarify what is and is 36 DHHS sponsors two other major drug use-related studies – The National Household Survey on Drug Abuse, which is the primary data source of illicit drug use of persons 12 and older in the nation that was periodically conducted from 1971 and taken annually since 1990, and the Youth Risk Behavior Survey of students in grades 9 through 12 concerning health-related risk behaviors as well as drug abuse that began in 1990, and sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control. This report focuses on MTF results only. 37 Daily use of drugs, the MTF report states, usually refers to use on 20 or more occasions in the past 30 days. 38 Lloyd D. Johnston, P.M. O’Malley, and J. G. Bachman, “Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Drops for the First Time in Recent Years, and Overall Drug and Alcohol Use Also Decline in the Year After 9/11,” The University of Michigan, News and Information Services, Ann Arbor, MI, December 13, 2002, p. 1 [http://www.monitoringthefuture.org], visited March 5, 2003. 39 Ibid.,p. 8. CRS-12 not important to them.”40 The only significant increases in drug use in 2002 were in crack use by 10th graders in the past year and sedative use by 12th graders within the same time period.41 Declines in teen use of specific drugs are discussed below. Marijuana Use The use of marijuana, the most widely used illicit drug among all grade levels, remained steady in 2001. There was no change in marijuana use among 8th graders after a slow decline since reaching peak usage rates in 1996. Also, marijuana use remained steady among 10th and 12th graders in 2001, at rates slightly lower than the peak rates reached in 1997.42 In 2002, however, marijuana use decreased in all grades. The 10th graders, however, were the only group that showed statistically significant decreases in annual and 30-day prevalence rates of marijuana use. For annual prevalence rates, 10th graders’ use was down somewhat below the 1997 usage peak, while annual prevalence rates were down for 8th graders from the 1996 peak in usage. Only a modest decline of marijuana use was found for 12th graders in 2002, from the 1997 peak.43 Researchers reported that in the past, declines in marijuana use could be attributed to an increase in a perceived risk of using the drug among students. In 2002, however, there was no such increase in this belief. Nor did surveyors find a change in the proportion of students who personally disapproved of marijuana use, although such disapproval was higher in 2002 than in 1996 or 1997 when disapproval was lowest among 8th and 10th graders. Analysts found, however, a slight decrease in the perceived availability of the drug in 2002. Lloyd Johnston noted that the decline in marijuana use without a change in the underlying attitudes and beliefs about using the drug, might reflect a decline in the students’ motivation to use drugs in general. He believed that this theory could be consistent with the notion that 9/11 had an effect on these youth in regard to drug use.44 Ecstasy Use In 2001, there was a sharp increase in the proportion of students who believed that using ecstasy was dangerous. Although an increase in the drug’s use among 10th and 12th graders was noted from 1999 to 2001, the rate of increase began to slow 40 Ibid. 41 Ibid., p. 1-2. 42 Lloyd D. Johnston, P. M. O’Malley, J. G. Bachman, Monitoring the Future National Results on Adolescent Drug Use: Overview of Key Findings, 2001, (NIH Publication No. 02-5105), Bethesda, MD: National Institute on Drug Abuse, 2002, p. 3-4. 43 “Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Drops for the First Time in Recent Years, and Overall Drug and Alcohol Use Also Decline in the Year After 9/11,” The University of Michigan, News and Information Services, December 13, 2002, p. 3. 44 Ibid., p. 4. CRS-13 among all students.45 In 2002, however, there was another marked rise in the proportions of teens saying that using ecstasy was dangerous, and a decline in the drug’s usage occurred. MTF researchers reported that ecstasy use was down in all three grade levels and for all three prevalence periods measured, that is lifetime, annual, and 30-day use.46 The perception that there is a great risk associated with experimenting with ecstasy increased from 38% in 2000 to 46% in 2001, and to 52% in 2002.47 Lloyd Johnston felt that these changes in belief about the risk involved in using ecstasy constituted an unusually rapid change in such belief and probably reflects an impact of media coverage about adverse effects of the drug, as well as efforts by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) to document and distribute information about the adverse effects of using ecstasy. Students reported that the availability of the drug leveled off in 2002 after previous years of sharp increases in availability. Other Illicit Drug Use Since 2000, student use of illicit drugs other than marijuana has shown evidence of some decline or has remained steady. Specifically, in 2000, use of heroin among 12th graders reached its highest point since 1975 when the survey began, while such use significantly fell among 8th graders. In 2001, for the first time, 10th and 12th grade students showed a decline in heroin use. Nearly all of this improvement, researchers found, occurred in the use of heroin without the needle (that is, in smoking or snorting the drug).48 In 2002, however, heroin use remained steady among teens.49 In 2000, an increased use of anabolic steroids was noted among 10th graders, while such use remained steady among 8th and 12th graders. In 2001, steroid use significantly increased among 12th graders, but showed no further increase among 8th 45 “Rise of Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Begins to Slow,” The University of Michigan News and Information Services, December 19, 2001, Ann Arbor Michigan, [http://www.monitoringthefuture.org], visited March 15, 2002, p. 2. 46 “Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Drops for the First Time in Recent Years, and Overall Drug and Alcohol Use Also Decline in the Year After 9/11,” The University of Michigan, News and Information Services, December 13, 2002, p. 2. 47 Ibid., p. 2. 48 “Rise of Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Begins to Slow,” The University of Michigan News and Information Services, December 19, 2001, p. 3. 49 “Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Drops for the First Time in Recent Years, and Overall Drug and Alcohol Use Also Decline in the Year After 9/11,” The University of Michigan, News and Information Services, December 13, 2002, p. 5. CRS-14 or 10th graders.50 In 2002, anabolic steroid use remained steady in all three grades.51 In 2000, a notable drug use change occurred among 12th graders who showed significant declines in using LSD, crack, and cocaine powder.52 In 2001, LSD use dropped significantly in 10th graders, but non-significantly in 8th graders. No further change occurred for LSD use among 12th graders.53 In 2002, LSD use sharply and significantly declined among all three grades. Also, there was a reported significant drop in LSD’s availability in all grades.54 Although in 2001, both crack and cocaine powder were moderately down from peak levels of use in the 1990s, and far below peak use in the mid-1980s, only use of cocaine powder showed a significant decline and only among 10th graders.55 In 2002, cocaine use remained steady in all three grades.56 The use of inhalants, which began to decrease in 1996 from peak levels in all three grades, continued to decline in 2001, but significantly only among 12th graders.57 In 2002, inhalant use continued declining, except among 12th graders who showed no change in annual prevalence rates. Significant declines in lifetime prevalence rates for inhalant use were found among 8th and 10th graders, and in annual rates for 8th graders. Disapproval for the use of inhalants also increased and remains at high levels.58 50 Lloyd D. Johnston, P. M. O’Malley, J. G. Bachman, “`Ecstasy’ Use Rises Sharply Among Teens in 2000; Use of Many Other Drugs Steady, But Significant Declines Are Reported For Some,” University of Michigan News and Information Services, December 2000, Ann Arbor Michigan, p. 3 [http://www.monitoringthefuture.org], visited December 20, 2000. 51 “Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Drops for the First Time in Recent Years, and Overall Drug and Alcohol Use Also Decline in the Year After 9/11,” The University of Michigan, News and Information Services, December 13, 2002, p. 6. 52 “`Ecstasy’ Use Rises Sharply Among Teens in 2000; Use of Many Other Drugs Steady, But Significant Declines Are Reported For Some,” University of Michigan News and Information Services, December 2000, Ann Arbor Michigan, p. 3 [http://www.monitoringthefuture.org], visited December 20, 2000. 53 Lloyd D. Johnston, et al., Monitoring the Future National Results on Adolescent Drug Use, p. 4. 54 “Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Drops for the First Time in Recent Years, and Overall Drug and Alcohol Use Also Decline in the Year After 9/11,” The University of Michigan, News and Information Services, December 13, 2002, p. 4. 55 Lloyd D. Johnston, et al., Monitoring the Future National Results on Adolescent Drug Use, p. 4. 56 “Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Drops for the First Time in Recent Years, and Overall Drug and Alcohol Use Also Decline in the Year After 9/11,” The University of Michigan, News and Information Services, December 13, 2002, p. 6. 57 Lloyd D. Johnston, et al., Monitoring the Future National Results on Adolescent Drug Use, p. 4. 58 “Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Drops for the First Time in Recent Years, and Overall Drug and Alcohol Use Also Decline in the Year After 9/11,” The University of Michigan, News and Information Services, December 13, 2002, p. 5. CRS-15 In 2002, the MTF surveyors asked students for the first time about their nonmedical use of two prescription drugs. Oxycontin and Vicodin are highly addictive and powerful narcotics intended to relieve pain. Oxycontin’s annual prevalence use rates were 1%, 3%, and 4% in 8th, 10th, and 12th grades, respectively. For Vicodin, considerably higher annual prevalence use rates were found – 3% for 8th graders, 7% for 10th graders, and 10% for 12th graders. Lloyd Johnston observed that although the percentages were not as high as some might have feared, they were not insignificant rates for the use of such drugs.59 Analysts believe that these findings give some reason for concern.60 Trend data were not yet available. Figure 1 depicts the usage levels of any illicit drug within the last 12 months by grade level from 1992 through 2002. Figure 1. Any Illicit Drug Use by 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders Within the Last 12 Months, 1992-2002 Source: Congressional Research Service presentation of data from Monitoring the Future High School Drug Stats Table 2, [http://monitoringthefuture.org/data/02data.html]. 59 60 Ibid., p. 6. “2002 Monitoring the Future Survey Shows Decrease in Use of Marijuana, Club Drugs, Cigarettes and Tobacco,” NIDA News Release, December 16, 2002, p. 3, [http://www.drugabuse.gov/Newsroom/02/NR12-16.html], visited February 22, 2003. CRS-16 Alcohol Use In 1998, the use of alcoholic beverages decreased among all three grade levels as students’ beliefs about the harmfulness of weekend binge drinking began to change. Also, 1998 was the first year of evidence of a decrease in alcohol use among 10th graders since 1995. In 1997, alcohol use climbed for 12th graders, after slightly declining in 1995 and in 1996. Alcohol use slightly dropped in 1998 for 12th graders, although MTF analysts reported that it was not statistically significant. Among 8th graders, 1998 was the second year for a decline in alcohol use. (See Figure 2.) Furthermore, in 1998, one-third of all high school seniors reported being drunk at least once within the 30 days prior to the survey.61 Lloyd Johnston concluded that such behaviors of students using both illicit drugs and alcohol tended to change very slowly, and only after young people had assessed the danger in using the various drugs, as well as how acceptable or unacceptable drug use might be to their peers.62 In 1999, researchers concluded that although daily alcohol use declined among seniors, and within the past 30-days use dropped for all grade levels, alcohol use among all teenagers remained at unacceptably high levels.63 In 2000, teen alcohol use remained relatively stable as in previous years. Almost a quarter of 8th graders surveyed reported drinking alcohol within the past 30 days, while exactly one-half of 12th graders had done so. Also, 1 in 12 eighth graders reported being drunk at least once in the past 30 days, as did one-third of the 12th graders surveyed.64 Two statistically significant changes occurred between 2000 and 2001 regarding teen alcohol use – a decline among 8th graders who reported having been drunk in the past year, but contrastingly, an increase among 12th graders in daily alcohol use.65 In 2002, some significant declines occurred in teen alcohol use. Quite large drops occurred in the proportion of students in all three grades who said that they had consumed any alcohol in the past year or in the past 30 days. These were statistically significant declines for 8th and 10th graders. Also, Lloyd Johnston noted that among the younger students, there was an important decrease in the proportion who said that they had ever drank an alcoholic beverage any time in their life. Furthermore, there were decreases in the proportion of students in all three grades who indicated that they got drunk in the past year and in the past 30 days. The proportions of students 61 Lloyd D. Johnston, et al., “Drug Use By American Young People Begins To Turn Downward,”The University of Michigan News and Information Services, December 18, 1998, Ann Arbor, Michigan, [http://www.isr.umich.edu/src/mtf/pressreleases/mtfnar98.html], visited November 10, 1999. 62 Ibid. 63 “Drug Use Among Teenagers Leveling Off,” HHS News. 64 Lloyd D. Johnston, et al., “`Ecstasy’ Use Rises Sharply Among Teens in 2000 ...,” p. 7. 65 “2001 Monitoring the Future Survey Released: Smoking Among Teenagers Decreases Sharply and Increase in Ecstacy Use Slows,” HHS News, NIDA Press Office, December 19, 2001, p. 4, [http://www.nida.nih.gov/MedAdv/01/NR12-19.html], visited February 4, 2002. CRS-17 who reported that they were drunk at least once within the past 30 days were high, but those rates declined by between 1 and 4 percentage points from 2001.66 Figure 2. Any Alcohol Use by 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders, Within the Last 30 Days, 1992-2002 Source: Congressional Research Service presentation of data from Monitoring the Future High School Drug Stats Table 2, [http://monitoringthefuture.org/data/02data.html]. Note: MTF researchers explained that in 1993, the question asked participants regarding their alcohol use slightly changed. The term “drink” was defined to mean that they consumed “more than a few sips.” What the term “drink” meant for students surveyed in 1992 was not indicated. It is assumed that it might have meant to some participants the consumption of a “few sips” of alcohol. Cigarette Smoking Cigarette smoking (defined as smoking one or more cigarettes during the past 30 days), which showed a steady increase among all grade levels since 1992, decreased between 1997 and 1998 with 10th graders showing the larger percentage of decline.67 In 1999, there were no significant changes among all grade levels in cigarette use.68 Cigarette smoking significantly declined in 2000, among all grade levels. Researchers concluded that the improvements occurring would have meaningful long-term consequences for the health and longevity of this generation 66 “Ecstasy Use Among American Teens Drops for the First Time in Recent Years, and Overall Drug and Alcohol Use Also Decline in the Year After 9/11,” The University of Michigan, News and Information Services, December 13, 2002, p. 7. 67 “Drug Use Among Teenagers Leveling Off,” HHS News. 68 Ibid. CRS-18 of youth.69 In 2001, cigarette smoking sharply fell among all teenage groups surveyed. Researchers noted that this decline was statistically significant among 8th and 10th graders, but not for 12th graders. (See Figure 3.) Lloyd Johnston observed that “These important declines in teen smoking did not just happen by chance. A lot of individuals and organizations have been making concerted efforts to bring down the unacceptably high rates of smoking among our youth.”70 In 2002, researchers found that teen cigarette use continued to decline. They reported that “between 2001 and 2002, the proportion of teens saying that they had ever smoked cigarettes fell by 4 or 5 percentage points in each grade surveyed ... – more than in any recent year.”71 Lloyd Johnston and his associates emphasized that these significant reductions translate into the lengthening of many lives and preventing even a larger number of serious illnesses, such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, and emphysema.72 MTF analysts noted that the attitudes of students concerning smoking and smokers have become negative in recent years. About one-half of teens in all three grades expressed the view that they strongly disliked being near people who smoked; an increasing proportion believed that smoking reflected poor judgment on the part of their peers who smoked; and most importantly, analysts observed, the proportion who said that they preferred to date non-smokers increased substantially in all grade levels and was equally strong among both males and females.73 69 Lloyd D. Johnston, P. M. O’Malley, J. G. Bachman, “Cigarette Use and Smokeless Tobacco Use Decline Substantially Among Teens,” The University of Michigan News and Information Services, December 2000, Ann Arbor, Michigan, [http://www.monitoringthefuture.org], visited December 20, 2000, p. 1. 70 “Cigarette Smoking Among American Teens Declines Sharply in 2001,” The University of Michigan News and Information Services, December 19, 2001, Ann Arbor, Michigan, p. 3. 71 Lloyd D. Johnston, P. M. O’Malley, and J. G. Bachman, “Teen Smoking Declines Sharply in 2002, More Than Offsetting Large Increases in the Early 1990s,” University of Michigan News and Information Services, Ann Arbor, MI, [http://www.monitoringthefuture.org], visited March 5, 2003, p. 1. 72 Ibid. 73 Ibid., pp. 4-5. CRS-19 Figure 3. 30-Day Prevalence of Any Cigarette Use for 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders, 1992-2002 Source: Congressional Research Service presentation of data from Monitoring the Future High School Drug Stats Table 1, [http://monitoringthefuture.org/data/02data.html]. Smokeless Tobacco Use In 1998, smokeless tobacco use declined more among 10th graders compared with 8th graders and 12th graders.74 In 1999, as with cigarette use, smokeless tobacco use slightly declined among all students, but no significant changes occurred. Researchers observed that the disapproval of regularly using smokeless tobacco increased among 8th and 10th graders.75 In 2000, smokeless tobacco use substantially declined among teens by an even larger proportion than cigarette use. Researchers discovered that in 2001, smokeless tobacco use rates remained statistically unchanged from 2000. According to Lloyd Johnston, these rates, however, reflect a decrease by about 40% of smokeless tobacco use by teens from peak levels reached in the mid-1990s.76 (See Figure 4.) Researchers found that there were some demographic differences related to smokeless tobacco use by teens. Such use tended to be higher in the South and North 74 Lloyd D. Johnston, et al., “Drug Use By American Young People Begins To Turn Downward.” 75 76 “Drug Use Among Teenagers Leveling Off,” HHS News. Lloyd D. Johnston, et al., Monitoring the Future National Results on Adolescent Drug Use, p. 34. CRS-20 Central regions of the nation than in the Northeast or in the West. Also, such use tended to be more focused in non-metropolitan areas than in metropolitan regions, such use was negatively correlated with the education level of the parents, and tended to be higher among Whites than among Black or Hispanic youths. Analysts concluded that one important reason for the considerable declines in smokeless tobacco use by teens in the late 1990s was that a growing portion of youth believed that using the product could be dangerous.77 In 2002, researchers reported that the lifetime use of smokeless tobacco by 10th graders declined from 2001 to 2002.78 In addition, data revealed (as presented in Figure 4) that the use of smokeless tobacco among teens in all grade levels declined from 2001 to 2002 in the past 30 days prior to the survey. Figure 4. 30-Day Prevalence of Smokeless Tobacco Use for 8th, 10th, and 12th Graders, 1992-2002 Source: Congressional Research Service presentation of data from Monitoring the Future High School Drug Stats Table 2, [http://monitoringthefuture.org/data/02data.html]. 77 78 Ibid. “2002 Monitoring the Future Survey Shows Decrease in Use of Marijuana, Club Drugs, Cigarettes and Tobacco,” NIDA News Release, December 16, 2002, p. 3. CRS-21 The SDFSC Program The Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act is administered by the Department of Education. Grants are authorized for state programs and for a variety of national programs to promote school safety and assist in preventing drug abuse in the nation’s schools. How the program is administered is discussed below. State Grants State grants are administered through a formula grant program. Funds for state grants are disbursed as follows: From the total appropriation for state grants each fiscal year, 1%, or $4,750,000 (whichever is greater) is reserved for outlying areas (Guam, American Samoa, the Virgin Islands, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands); 1% or $4,750,000 (whichever is greater) is reserved for the Secretary of the Interior to administer programs for Indian youth; and 0.2% is reserved to provide programs for native Hawaiians. The remaining funds are distributed to the states, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico by a formula based 50% on school-aged population and based 50% on ESEA Title I, Part A concentration grants for the preceding fiscal year. No state receives less than the greater of one-half of 1% (0.5%) of the total amount allotted to all of the states, or the amount the state received for FY2001. State grant funds in any amount may be redistributed to other states if the Secretary determines that a state will not be able to use the funds within 2 years of the initial award. Also, funds appropriated for national programs may not be increased unless state grant funding is at least 10% more than the previous fiscal year’s appropriation. Of the total allotted to a state, up to 20% is used by the state Chief Executive Officer (Governor) for drug and violence prevention programs and activities, and the remainder is administered by the State Educational Agency (SEA).79 The Governor may use not more than 3% of the funds for administrative costs. These aspects of the SDFSC program are discussed below. The distribution of state funds is depicted in Figure 5. 79 P.L. 107-110, section 4112(1). CRS-22 Figure 5. The Program Formula to State and Local Schools, 2002-2003 School Year * The sum of these percentages exceeds 100%. States will have to make some adjustments either in Administration or State Activity costs to accommodate LEA percentages. Source: Congressional Research Service. Adapted from Figure 1, “How Funding Reaches States and Local Schools, Fiscal 1995,) in the GAO report, Safe and Drug-Free Schools..., p.2. The FY2002 SDFSC state program funds will become available for distribution in July 2002 for the 2002-2003 school year (see Table 3 below). State Chief Executive Officer’s Funds. As mentioned above, of the total state allotment, up to 20% goes to the Governor to award competitive grants and contracts to local educational agencies (LEAs), community-based groups, other public entities, private groups and associations. Grant and contracts are to be used to support the comprehensive state plan for programs and activities that complement an LEA’s drug and violence prevention activities. The Governor must award grants based on the quality of the proposed program or activity, and how such program or activity fulfill the principles of effectiveness.80 Funding priority for such programs and activities must be given to children and youth who are not normally served by SEAs and LEAs, or to populations that require special services, such as youth in juvenile detention facilities, runaway and homeless children and youth, pregnant and parenting teens, and school dropouts. In addition, 80 Ibid. CRS-23 when awarding funds, the Governor must give special consideration to grantees that seek to accomplish a comprehensive approach to drug and violence prevention efforts that include providing and incorporating into their programs mental health services related to drug and violence prevention. Furthermore, funds must be used to implement and develop drug and violence prevention programs that include activities to prevent and reduce violence related to prejudice and intolerance, to disseminate information about drug and violence prevention, and to develop and implement community-wide drug and violence prevention plans. The Governor may use not more than 3% of the funds for administrative costs.81 State and Local Educational Agencies Grant Allocations and Activities. SEAs can reserve up to 5% of their allotted funds for statewide drug and violence prevention efforts. Funds should be used for planning, developing, and implementing capacity building, training and technical assistance, evaluating the program, providing services to improve the program, coordinating activities for LEAs, community-based groups, and other public and private entities that are intended to assist LEAs in developing, carrying out, and assessing comprehensive prevention programs that are consistent with the SDFSC mandated requirements.82 Such uses of the funds are required to meet the principles of effectiveness (discussed below), should complement and support LEA funded activities, and should be in agreement with the purposes of state activities.83 Funded activities may include, but are not limited to, identifying, developing, evaluating, and disseminating drug and violence prevention projects, programs, and other information; training, technical assistance, and demonstration programs, to address violence associated with prejudice and intolerance; and providing financial assistance to increase available drug and violence prevention resources in areas that serve numerous low-income children, that are sparsely populated, or have other special requirements. SEAs may use up to an additional 3% of funds for administering the program. For FY2002 only, however, in addition to the 3%, an SEA may use 1% of its allotment (minus funds reserved for the Governor) to implement a uniform management information and reporting system (UMIRS, discussed below).84 At least 93% of SEA funds must be subgranted to LEAs for drug and violence prevention and education programs and activities. Of those funds, 60% are based on the relative amount LEAs received under ESEA Title I, Part A for the previous fiscal year, and 40% are based on public and private school enrollments. Of the amount received from the state, LEAs may use not more than 2% for administrative costs.85 LEAs are required to use funds “to develop, implement, and evaluate comprehensive programs and activities, which are coordinated with other school and community- 81 Ibid.,section 4112(2)(3)(5)(6). 82 U.S. Dept. of Education, Fiscal Year 2003 Justifications of Appropriation Estimates, p. C-112. 83 P.L. 107-110, section 4112(c)(2). 84 Ibid., section 4112(b)(2). 85 Ibid., section 4114(a). CRS-24 based services and programs.”86 Such programs should nurture an environment conducive for learning that is safe and drug-free and supports academic attainment, should be consistent with the principles of effectiveness, and should be designed to prevent or reduce violence, the use, possession, and distribution of illegal drugs, and delinquency. Activities should be included to promote parental involvement in the program or activity, coordination with community organizations, coalitions, and government agencies, and distribution of information about the LEA’s needs, goals and programs that are funded under the SDFSCA.87 Uniform Management Information and Reporting System. States are required to create and maintain a uniform management information and reporting system to provide the public with information about truancy rates, the frequency, seriousness, and incidence of violence and drug-related offenses resulting in suspensions and expulsions in elementary and secondary schools; the types of curricula, programs, and services provided by the Governor, SEA, LEAs, and other fund recipients; and about the incidence and prevalence, age of onset, perception of health risk, and perception of social disapproval of drug use and violent behavior by youth in schools and in communities.88 The data collected must include incident reports by school officials, and anonymous student and teacher surveys.89 In addition, the state must submit a report to the Secretary of Education (Secretary) every two years on the implementation, outcomes, and effectiveness of its SEA, LEA, and Governor’s SDFSC programs, and on the state’s progress toward achieving its performance measures for drug and violence prevention efforts.90 State Application. To receive an allotment, a state must provide the Secretary with an application that contains a comprehensive plan about how the SEA and the Governor will use the funds for programs and activities that will complement and support LEA activities to provide safe, orderly, and drug-free schools and communities; how such programs and activities comply with the principles of effectiveness; and that they are in accordance with the purpose of the SDFSCA. The application must describe how funded activities will promote a safe and drug-free learning environment that supports academic attainment; must guarantee that it was developed by consulting and coordinating with appropriate state officials and others; must describe how the SEA will coordinate its activities with the Governor’s drug and violence prevention programs and with the prevention efforts of other state agencies and programs, as appropriate; and must comply with several other additional requirements.91 LEA Application. An LEA must submit an application to its SEA that has been developed through timely and meaningful consultation with state and local 86 Ibid.,section 4115(b)(1). 87 Ibid. 88 Ibid., section 4112(c)(3)(B). 89 Ibid., section 4112(c)(3)(C). 90 Ibid., section 4116. 91 Ibid., section 4113. CRS-25 government representatives, as well as representatives from public and private schools to be served, teachers and other staff, parents, students, community-based groups, and others such as, medical, mental health, and law enforcement personnel with relevant and demonstrated expertise in drug and violence prevention activities. The application should contain, among other things, an assurance that the funded activities and programs will comply with the principles of effectiveness, promote safe and drug-free learning environments that provide for academic achievement, and contain a detailed account of the LEA’s comprehensive plan for drug and violence prevention activities.92 LEA Limitation. LEAs are authorized to use the funds for a wide range of related activities. There is a limitation, however, on the use of funds by LEAs regarding drug and violence prevention activities related to (1) “Acquiring and installing metal detectors, electronic locks, surveillance cameras, or other related equipment and technologies”; (2) “Reporting criminal offenses committed on school property”; (3) “Developing and implementing comprehensive school security plans or obtaining technical assistance concerning such plans ....”; (4) “Supporting safe zones of passage activities that ensure that students travel safely to and from school ...”; and (5) “The hiring and mandatory training, based on scientific research, of school security personnel ....” Not more than 40% of LEA funds may be used to support these five activities. Out of the 40% of LEA funds used for the five activities, not more than one-half of those funds (that is, 20% of the LEA funds) may be used to support the first 4 activities. An LEA, however, may use up to 40% of the funds for the first 4 activities, only if funding for those activities is not received from other federal government agencies.93 Principles of Effectiveness for State and Local Grant Recipients. A 1997 study94 authorized by ED to assess drug and violence programs in 19 school districts across the nation, found that few districts weighed research results when planning their prevention programs nor generally did they use proven prevention approaches with the greatest potential to make a difference among students. Therefore, to improve the quality of drug and violence prevention programs, ED devised four principles of effectiveness for all grant recipients. On July 1, 1998, the Principles of Effectiveness became operative. Under these principles, grantees are required to use SDFSC State and Local Grants Program funds to support researchbased drug and violence prevention programs for youth. The principles were adopted by the Secretary to ensure that SEAs, LEAs, Governors’ offices, and communitybased groups would plan and implement effective drug and violence prevention programs95 and use funds as efficiently and effectively as possible. 92 Ibid., section 4114(c)(d). 93 Ibid.,section 4115(c)(1)(2). 94 U.S. Dept. of Education, Planning and Evaluation Services, School-Based Drug Prevention Programs: A Longitudinal Study in Selected School Districts, Final Report, 1997, by E. Suyapa Silvia, Judy Thorne, and Christine A. Tashjian, Research Triangle Institute, (Washington: GPO, 1998), p. 5-3. 95 U.S. Dept. of Education, “Safe and Drug-Free Schools Program,” Federal Register 63, no. (continued...) CRS-26 Grant recipients must: ! ! ! ! Base their programs on a thorough evaluation of objective data about the drug and violence problems in the schools and communities served; Design activities to meet goals and objectives for drug and violence prevention; Create and implement activities based on research that provides evidence that the strategies used prevent or reduce drug use, violence, or disruptive behavior among youth; and Assess programs periodically to determine progress toward achieving program goals and objectives, and use evaluation results to refine, improve, and strengthen the program, and refine goals and objectives as necessary.96 National Programs Under National Programs, funding is authorized for various programs to foster safe and drug-free school environments for students and to assist at-risk youth. These activities and programs are discussed below. Federal Activities. The Safe Schools/Healthy Students Initiative has been funded under the National Program’s federal activities since FY1999. This program is jointly funded with DHHS and DOJ to assist school districts and communities in developing and implementing community-wide projects in order to create safe and drug-free schools and to encourage healthy childhood development. For FY2002, and for each fiscal year, the Secretary is required to reserve an amount necessary to continue the Safe Schools/Healthy Students initiative. Other SDFSC National Programs collaborative efforts include funding grants with DOJ’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) for projects to recruit and train adult mentors to assist at-risk youth in avoiding alcohol, illegal drug use, participation in gangs, and in acts of violence. Another joint project with OJJDP is supporting a National Safe Schools Resource Center to provide training and technical assistance to large urban school districts.97 Federal activities are authorized to allow the Secretary to consult with the DHHS Secretary, the Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), and the Attorney General, to administer programs aimed at preventing violence and illegal drug use among students and promoting their safety and discipline. The ED Secretary must carry out such programs directly or through discretionary grants, contracts, or cooperative agreements with public and private 95 (...continued) 104, 1 June 1998: p. 29902. 96 Dept. of Education, Fiscal Year 2001 Justifications of Appropriation Estimates, v. I, p. D-68. 97 Ibid. CRS-27 entities and persons, or by agreements with other federal agencies, and coordinate such programs with other suitable federal activities.98 Impact Evaluation. The Secretary may reserve up to $2,000,000 to conduct a required evaluation every 2 years of the national impact of the SDFSC program and of other recent and new enterprises to deter violence and drug use in schools. The evaluation must report on whether funded community and LEA programs complied with the principles of effectiveness, considerably reduced the usage level of illegal drugs, alcohol, and tobacco, lowered the amount of school violence, reduced the level of the illegal possession of weapons at school, conducted effective training programs, and accomplished efficient parental involvement.99 Similar to the required uniform management information and reporting system for states, under national programs, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) must collect data to determine the incidence and prevalence of illegal drug use and violence in elementary and secondary schools in the states. Such data must include incident reports by school officials, and anonymous student and teacher surveys. Furthermore, by January 1, 2003, and subsequently, biennially, the Secretary has to submit a report on the findings of the impact evaluation to the President and to the Congress. Along with such findings, the Secretary must provide NCES collected data, and statistics from other sources on the incidence and prevalence of drug use and violence in elementary and secondary schools, as well as on the age of onset, perception of health risk, and perception of social disapproval of such behavior among students.100 National Coordinator Program. In FY1999, the National Coordinator Initiative was created under national programs allowing LEAs to recruit, hire, and train persons to serve as SDFSC program coordinators in middle schools. ED officials believed that middle school students were at the age where they were most likely to begin experimenting with drugs and becoming more involved in violence and crime. SDFSCA continues this permissive activity by expanding coverage for national coordinators to serve as drug prevention and school safety program coordinators in all schools with notable drug and safety problems. The coordinators are responsible for developing, conducting, and analyzing assessments of drug and crime problems at their schools and for administering the SDFSC state grant program.101 Community Service for Expelled or Suspended Students Grant Program. The Secretary may use national program funds to make formula grants available to states (which include the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico) for administering a new program that requires students expelled or suspended from school to perform community service. Grants would be made to states with 50% of allotted funds based on school-aged population 98 P.L. 107-110, Section 4121(a). 99 Ibid., Section 4122. 100 Ibid. 101 Ibid., Section 4125. CRS-28 and 50% based on ESEA Title I, Part A concentration grants for the preceding fiscal year. No state would receive less than one-half of 1% (0.5%) of the total allotted to the states.102 The program is forward-funded, which means that funds will become available on July 1, 2002 and remain available for 15 months through September 30, 2003.103 Grants to Reduce Alcohol Abuse. The Secretary may award competitive grants, in consultation with the Administrator of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA, within DHHS), to LEAs allowing school districts to develop and implement new programs to reduce alcohol abuse in secondary schools. The Secretary may reserve 20% of amounts used for these grants to empower SAMSHA’s Administrator to provide alcohol abuse resources and startup assistance to LEAs receiving the grants. Furthermore, the Secretary may reserve up to 25% of the funds to award grants to low-income and rural SEAs.104 To be eligible to receive a grant, LEAs must prepare and submit an application to the Secretary containing the following required information – ! ! ! ! ! Describing activities that will be administered under the grant; Guaranteeing that such activities will include one or more of the proven strategies that reduce underage alcohol abuse; Explaining how activities to be conducted will be effective in reducing underage alcohol abuse by including information about previous effectiveness of such activities; Guaranteeing that the LEA will submit an annual report to the Secretary about the effectiveness of the programs and activities funded under the grant; and Providing any additional information required.105 Mentoring Programs. The Secretary may award competitive grants to eligible entities, that is, LEAs, non-profit community-based groups, or a partnership between an LEA and a non-profit community-based organization, for assistance in creating and supporting mentoring programs and activities for children with greatest need. The mandate defines a child with greatest need as “a child who is at risk of educational failure, dropping out of school, or involvement in criminal or delinquent activities, or who lacks strong positive role models.” A mentor is defined as “a responsible adult, a postsecondary school student, or a secondary school student who works with a child.”106 102 Ibid., Section 4126. 103 U.S. Dept. of Education, Fiscal Year 2003 Justifications of Appropriation Estimates, p. C-121. 104 P.L. 107-110, Section 4129(a)(d). 105 Ibid., Section 4129(b). 106 Ibid., Section 4130(2)(B)(C). CRS-29 Grants, which will be made available for an obligation of up to three years, may be awarded to eligible entities for mentoring programs that are designed to link children with greatest need, especially those living in rural areas, high-crime areas, stressful home environments, or children experiencing educational failure, with mentors who have been trained and supported in mentoring; screened with appropriate reference checks, child and domestic abuse record checks, and criminal background checks; and who have been deemed as interested in working with such children. Mentors are expected to achieve one or more of several goals with respect to the children including – providing general guidance; fostering personal and social responsibility; increasing participation in, and enhancing the ability to profit from elementary and secondary school; discouraging the illegal use of drugs and alcohol, violent behavior, using dangerous weapons, promiscuous behavior, and other criminal, harmful, or potentially harmful behavior; encouraging goal setting and planning for the future; and discouraging gang involvement.107 When awarding grants, the Secretary must give priority to each eligible entity that provides adequate service for children with greatest need who live in rural areas, high crime areas, reside in troubled homes, or who attend schools with violence problems; provides high quality background screening of mentors, training for mentors, and technical assistance in administering mentoring programs; or that plans a school-based mentoring program.108 The Gun-Free Schools Act The Gun-Free Schools Act, which was Title XIV, Part F of the ESEA, was incorporated as part of SDFSCA because of its close relationship with the SDFSC program. This provision calls for each state receiving funds under the No Child Left Behind Act to have a law that requires LEAs to expel for 1 year any student bringing a weapon to school. The chief administering officer of an LEA, however, can modify the expulsion requirement on a case-by-case basis.109 In order to receive funds under the SDFSCA, an LEA must have a policy requiring that any student who brings a firearm or weapon to school will be referred to the criminal justice or juvenile delinquency system.110 107 Ibid., Section 4130(b). 108 Ibid., Section 4130(b)(5). 109 Ibid., Section 4141 (b)(1). 110 Ibid., Section 4141(h). CRS-30 Evaluation of the Program The purpose of the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act under the ESEA prior to its reauthorization was to support, through federal, state, and local programs, the National Education Goal Seven, which was to ensure by the year 2000 that every school in the nation would be free of drugs, violence, and the unauthorized presence of firearms and alcohol, as well as tobacco, thereby offering disciplined environments conducive to learning. There were few evaluations of the program under prior law. One assessment of the program’s effectiveness concluded that it had failed to meet its stated goal. The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University111 concluded: A year past the year 2000 deadline and $4.3 billion Title IV federal dollars later, drugs still infest our nation’s schools and rates of parental involvement in their children’s education remain abysmally low. Efforts to attain Goal 7 – Safe, Disciplined and Alcohol- and Drug-Free Schools – have failed and millions of children at schools where drugs are available are in danger of being left behind.112 One positive aspect of the SDFSC program observed in CASA’s report is the Middle School Coordinator Initiative effort (see National Coordinator Program above). CASA terms this aspect of the program as one promising initiative for effectively using SDFSC funds. The study stated that “the presence of a full-time prevention coordinator can positively influence both the development of programs and teacher motivation to implement a program curriculum. Active program coordination led to program stability and careful planning and assessment activities.”113 In November 2000, a national evaluation of the SDFSC program by ED was released.114 Surveyors found that the efforts of several LEAs to reduce school violence and drug use through the program were haphazard, and federal funds might be spread too thin. Also, it was found that only 50% of the 600 LEAs canvassed have a definitive goal in place for prevention efforts, such as changing student behaviors or attitudes toward violence and drug use; LEAs with a goal lacked quality data to assess progress; and only 9% had implemented prevention programs based on research. Others used programs like D.A.R.E., which has been found by some analysts to be ineffective. The ED concluded that it was questionable to what extent LEAs were complying with the Principles of Effectiveness that require grantees to use program funds to support research-based drug and violence prevention programs for youth. 111 The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, Malignant Neglect: Substance Abuse and America’s Schools, Columbia University, September 2001, p. 17-18. 112 Ibid., p. 18. 113 The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, Malignant Neglect: Substance Abuse and America’s Schools, p. 46-47. 114 “ED Finds Districts’ Drug, Violence Prevention Lax,” Education Daily, v. 33, November 22, 2000, p. 1, 4.