Teen Dating Violence - Is Your District Prepared?
According to a new study, 76% of high school principals surveyed say they do not have a procedure or policy in place to respond to a teen dating violence incident. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that about 1.5 million high school students experience abuse from a dating partner. Next month is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month so it’s a good time to educate your staff on the warning signs of teen dating violence.
The National Resource Center on Domestic Violence has a number of great resources for your school staff to help promote teen dating violence prevention among their students.Besides raising awareness on the topic, it’s helpful to know warning signs of domestic abuse. Common signs and symptoms that a student may be the victim of dating violence include:
- Unlikely explanation for injuries.
- Wearing heavy makeup to cover up bruises or wearing inappropriately heavy clothing to cover bruises.
- Missing class or withdrawing from campus activities.Injuries that occur with increasing frequency or severity.
Teen dating violence is often kept a secret because the parties involved tend to be inexperienced with dating relationships, have romanticized views about love, feel pressure from their peers to be in a relationship, and want to be independent from their parents.
Always carefully follow your district’s policies and procedures regarding reporting on violence.
To help prevent dating violence, your district can provide students with information about the characteristics of healthy relationships and warning signs of violent relationships. By learning about dating violence, and increasing your awareness about its impact on students, you are already taking an important step in reducing this danger.
The SafeSchools Online Staff Training System includes an informative Dating Violence: Identification and Prevention course geared to help your staff recognize the signs and symptoms of dating violence.