School preventing dating violence
Students responded using a 5-point scale — rating a particular source’s helpfulness from zero (“not at all helpful”) to four (“extremely helpful”), and rating the likelihood of talking to that source from “not at all likely” to talk to the source (zero) to “extremely likely” to talk to the source (four) — see the figure.Notably, teens expressed positive views about the helpfulness of police, teachers, priests, and lawyers, but those views did not translate into a corresponding likelihood that they would turn to these sources for help if needed.Violence between dating partners represents a significant public health problem. Victims face the threat of injury and also an elevated risk of substance abuse, poor health, sexually risky behavior, pregnancy, and suicide. teens report dating someone who became violent with them.Its contents are the sole responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the CDC.Abstracts of all RAND Health publications and full text of many research documents can be found at RAND Health.The study found that the intervention created a long-term improvement in students’ knowledge of dating violence, reduced tolerance for aggressive or violent behavior, and improved teens’ perceptions about getting help if they experienced dating violence.The study also found that Latino teens are most likely to turn to peers for help, and consequently, peer counselors are a promising source for assistance.
In particular, no study has examined the effectiveness of prevention programs for Latino teens, a large and growing group in public schools.
Survey results also showed that teens who experience or witness aggression in their family life and among peers hold less negative attitudes about dating violence, so finding opportunities for reducing aggression in teens’ daily lives may be helpful.
In schools, a focus on reducing school and peer aggression and violence might bolster prevention efforts aimed at dating violence.
The intervention improved teens’ perceptions of police, lawyers, teachers, and school nurses as helpful, but the intervention improved their likelihood of seeking help only with respect to lawyers.
To explore student views of help-seeking behavior in greater depth, the research team conducted focus groups following the intervention.