Violence directed against teachers: Results from a national survey

Susan D. McMahon, Andrew Martinez, Dorothy Espelage, Chad Rose, Linda A. Reddy, Kathleen Lane, Eric M. Anderman, Cecil R. Reynolds, Abraham Jones, Veda Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Teachers in U.S. schools report high rates of victimization, yet previous studies focus on select types of victimization and student perpetrators, which may underestimate the extent of the problem. This national study was based on work conducted by the American Psychological Association Classroom Violence Directed Against Teachers Task Force and is one of the few national studies to examine violence directed at teachers. Participants included 2,998 kindergarten through 12th-grade (K-12) teachers from 48 states who completed an anonymous web-based survey assessing their experiences with victimization. Results revealed that 80% of teachers reported at least one victimization, and of these teachers, 94% reported being victimized by students. Nearly three-fourths of all teachers experienced at least one harassment offense, more than half experienced property offenses, and 44% reported physical attacks. Findings suggest that specific teacher and community characteristics are associated with a higher likelihood of victimization, namely, male gender and urban settings; whereas, African American teachers were less likely to report victimization. Implications for teacher training, school interventions, public policy, and future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)753-766
Number of pages14
JournalPsychology in the Schools
Issue number7
StatePublished - Aug 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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