FSD3210 School Security Survey 2016
The dataset is (C) available for research only (including Master's, doctoral and Polytechnic/University of Applied Sciences Master's theses). The dataset may not be used for teaching, study (e.g. seminar papers, essays) or other theses (Bachelor's theses or equivalent).
Study description in other languages
- Näsi, Matti (University of Helsinki. Institute of Criminology and Legal Policy)
- Kivivuori, Janne (University of Helsinki. Institute of Criminology and Legal Policy)
conflicts, crime and security, educational environment, primary schools, school buildings, school bullying, school punishments, school-student relationship, secondary schools, security surveillance systems, student behaviour, students, theft, upper secondary schools
This study examined safety and security in Finnish schools as well as preparedness for safety disturbances and detrimental behaviour in the school environment. The respondents of the survey were rectors and vice rectors in Finnish primary and upper secondary schools. The study was commissioned and funded by the Institute of Criminology and Legal Policy at the University of Helsinki. Three different questionnaires were used to collect the data depending on the type of the institution (primary school, upper secondary school, combined primary and upper secondary school). The data were processed according to the questionnaire for primary schools because primary schools constituted the majority of responses, but variables specific to a certain type of institution are indicated in the data.
First, the study charted background information concerning e.g. class sizes in the school, how long the respondent had worked for the school, which grades were taught in the school, and how many times during a given day students had to switch from one classroom to another. It was also queried whether a school social worker, a school psychologist and a school nurse/doctor visited the school at least once per week. The next questions covered the school environment with questions regarding whether a variety of phenomena occurred near the school premises, e.g. panhandling, littering, drug use/sale or vandalism. It was also charted which services and locations were found within 500 metres of the school building as well as what sort of security personnel worked at the school during and outside school hours. The respondents were also asked whether syringes or other items relating to drug use had been found on school premises during the school year 2015-2016.
The next questions pertained to whether the school had adopted specific security-increasing practices, such as camera surveillance, access control in school buildings, personal user accounts and passwords for computers, restricted access to internet sites, anti-bullying campaigns, and collaboration with the police. It was also queried what sort of punishments the school used for student misbehaviour (e.g. removing a student from class, teacher-parent discussion, detention or expulsion).
Next, incidents of criminal behaviour against the school and the school building were examined (e.g. intentional damage to school or staff property, breaking and entering into school premises, arson or attempted arson, harm to information systems). It was also asked if any crimes had been reported to the police and what the monetary extent of intentional damage to school property had been during the school year 2015-2016. Cases of defamation, violence or threat of violence against personnel were charted, as well as how many days staff members had spent absent from work due to these crimes during the school year 2015-2016. Different crimes against students were also charted, such as bicycle and cellphone thefts and violence, as well as whether these cases were reported to the police. Further questions were asked about the perpetrators and victims of violent crimes, such as their gender and national background, and whether the crime was motivated by e.g. skin colour or sexual orientation.
Next, the study surveyed whether students or other persons had brought dangerous items, such as knives or other weapons, into school premises during school hours and whether the school had reported these incidents to the police. Certain phenomena, such as racism among students and between students and teachers, were also charted. General threats of violence not against any particular person were also examined as well as whether there was any sign that the maker of the threat would have been preparing to carry out the act. The respondents were also asked if the school had carried out different surveillance and security measures during the school year 2015-2016 (e.g. searching students' bags, clothes or lockers; confiscating dangerous items, alcohol or drugs) and whether these measures had prevented an act or threat of violence or if they had caused a threatening situation.
Finally, it was queried whether any students or their parents had threatened the respondent or teachers with legal action or reported a crime to the police where the respondent or teachers were accused. In addition, the respondents' preparedness to report a student's crime to the police in two hypothetical situations was examined (a student paints a graffiti on the school's wall; a student hits another student in the face, causing bruises and bleeding from the nose). The study finally surveyed some more background information on e.g. gender, age, and how many years the respondent had worked as rector or vice rector.
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