To answer the question, how many school shootings have occurred in the United States, it is important to look at the history of such incidents. A look at the statistics will reveal a clear pattern: the victims of a school shooting include students, teachers, bus drivers, police officers, and parents. Of these victims, 97% were under the age of 18, and the remaining 3% were over 18. The most recent school shooting took place in Texas, and the NCES report does not include this incident.
Many of the shooters were motivated by psychological or debilitating factors. They may have suffered from abuse, dysfunction in their family, or mental illness. They may also have had suicidal thoughts or attempted suicide. The sources of motivation vary, but are often connected to depression, persecution, and the desire for attention. In addition to these psychological factors, many shooters cited entertainment sources as influences. However, these sources were rarely backed by credible peer-reviewed studies.
According to the Sandy Hook Promise, there have been more than 2,000 school shootings in America since 1970. Among these, the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, was the deadliest, killing 27 people. The National Center for Education Statistics says that 93 school shootings were reported in the United States in 2017, with 43 of those shootings ending in death.
The Washington Post also keeps track of the number of shootings in schools in the U.S. and compares it to that of 2009. Although the rate of non-fatal school violence declined, the number of shootings with fatalities increased from 11 in 2009 to 93 by 2021. The Washington Post has compiled this data by examining news articles, open-source databases, law enforcement reports, and calls to schools and police departments.
The mental health of students is a major challenge in reducing school violence. While the Supreme Court ruled in 2008 that people with mental illnesses cannot own firearms, the internet and social networks still allow these individuals to get access to firearms. While educators cannot prevent students from accessing guns, they can create a safe, nurturing environment in their schools. Healthy students are more likely to learn and become academically successful.
When asked about the causes of school violence, the researchers found that there are several variables that influence a school shooting’s frequency and outcome. One factor is the level of alienation among the perpetrators. Students who feel alienated tend to want revenge on those who have hurt them. Typically, this means that they have experienced physical abuse at home or witnessed it. These students often drink and use drugs, and do not have good friends. In addition, they are exposed to violence through television shows and movies.