Averted School Attacks Data Collection Platform

Project Description/Goals:

The Averted School Attacks Data Collection Platform seeks to improve the amount of information pertaining to averted school attacks as a part of the data systems enhancement efforts that stem from the Comprehensive School Safety Initiative. The Platform will collect in-depth information regarding averted and completed school attacks through the development and implementation of a new data in-take platform. The Police Foundation will develop this data intake platform and market it to school and law enforcement officials in order to gather in-depth information on averted school shootings.


Study Design & Methods:

The system will enable schools and law enforcement agencies to input data on averted school attacks, including various data points that may be useful to researchers and others who wish to identify lessons learned and effective practices. The database will be populated initially by reviewing public domain sources and interviewing local officials involved in prevented and completed school attacks since January 2000. With a deeper understanding of the dynamics, timing and evolution of these threats, those directly responsible for protecting the nation’s students will be better prepared to accomplish that critical responsibility.





Funding & Collaboration:

The “Averted School Attacks Data Collection Platform” is being developed and implemented with the funding assistance of the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS).


Implications for Policy & Practice:

There is currently no national repository of information about averted school attacks or even completed school attacks. As a result, policymakers and practitioners lack valuable evidence-based insights that could guide their decisions and actions, and increase the number of positive outcomes. Because school shootings themselves are relatively rare events, the universe of data on these episodes is small. Widening the area of focus to include averted school attacks would expand greatly the available information on these threats. Currently, no available data system exists that systematically collects information on these types of events.





Point of Contact:

Frank Straub PhD
Senior Law Enforcement Project Manager

(202) 833-1460



School violence, school safety, threat assessment, best practices

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