Welcome to Friday Facts! Each week we’ll be taking a look at a specific chart from the Data & Resources section of our website. This week we’re focusing on school safety in Los Angeles County.
We hope that our schools as safe places where children can learn without fear. For the most part, that’s the case. But inequities do exist, and in some communities, children of color are less likely to feel safe at their school than their White counterparts.
As you can see in today’s Friday Facts table, such inequities exist in Los Angeles County. Students of color are less likely to describe their school as “very safe” or “safe” than White students. African American (55.7%) and Latino (56.5%) students were the least likely to consider their school safe, especially compared to 71.4% of White students.
In our fact sheet, Spotlight on Children’s Health: Los Angeles County, we discussed the correlation between school safety and academic achievement. We noted that students who feel safe at school (87%) are much more likely to consider attending college compared to those who do not feel safe (69%). We also highlighted the connection between school safety and drop-out rates and how dropping out of school impacts a student’s future employment potential.
The same fact sheet included the following recommendations to increase school safety in the county:
“We need to implement policies and practices to reduce school violence and crime, including programs that educate students on bullying and teen dating violence. We should also promote youth development programs and strategies that teach children how to handle difficult social and peer situations without violence.”
Reducing these inequities in school safety in Los Angeles County should be a priority, especially considering communities of color represent 72% of the population and more than 5 of every 6 babies born in the county.