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20.7%

January 27, 2011

Whether school bullying is on the rise or just in the news, it is definitely in New Jersey, according to the New Jersey Health Survey, results of which can be found on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website. In the 2009 survey, 20.7 percent of high school students said they have been bullied on school property.

What’s more, 5.2 percent of respondents said they did not go to school for at least one day during the past 30 because they felt unsafe there or on their way to or from school. That may be why 3.1 percent of high school students said they carried a weapon -- gun, knife or club -- to school in the previous 30 days. Thus, it should come as no surprise that 6.6 percent said they were threatened or injured with a weapon on school property at least once in the previous year.

Of course, the school system is not the only place where youth violence occurs. Indeed, it seems to be safer. In the same survey, a full 9.6 percent of high school students said they carried a weapon at least once in the previous 30 days, if not in school. Of those, 1.8 percent said that weapon was a gun. Fists also fly, as 27.5 percent of high school students -- including 17.3 percent of girls -- said they’ve been in a physical fight during the 12 months before the survey.

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