Date of Award

Fall 10-2016

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Education

First Advisor

Dr. Shelly Fransen

Second Advisor

Dr. Sherry DeVore

Third Advisor

Dr. Terry Reid

Abstract

This research involved examination of the causes of school violence, attitudes concerning violence, and preventative measures used by schools in the United States in relation to problems and solutions found in southwest Missouri schools. The goal of this dissertation was to study perceptions of school violence in the United States to form a better understanding of what schools are doing to combat violence and why these actions are seen as necessary for the safety of students, staff, and faculty within schools. To gather relevant information for the study, a literature review was conducted, followed by a written questionnaire administered to school superintendents of southwest Missouri. This research revealed two significant findings. First, school superintendents in southwest Missouri generally consider their communities to be safe and the likelihood of school violence to be low. Second, the main influences for school violence are perceived to be factors outside of the school over which administrators have little control. These findings reveal the need for more involvement of families and communities in order to combat violence before it reaches the schools.

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