School-associated student homicide events, especially those involving multiple victims, generate considerable media attention, prompting questions regarding whether rates of school-associated violent deaths are increasing and regarding the characteristics of such events. During the 1990s, the rate of school-associated single-victim student homicides decreased significantly, whereas rates for school-associated homicides in which two or more students were killed (i.e., multiple-victim homicides) increased (1).
Additional studies of such events during the same decade documented the rarity of lethal school-associated violence (2,3). To 1) update temporal trends in rates for school-associated student homicides during July 1992--June 2006 and 2) describe the epidemiologic characteristics of school-associated student homicides that occurred during July 1999--June 2006 (the period for which the most recent data are available), CDC analyzed data from the School-Associated Violent Death (SAVD) study.
This report describes the results of that analysis, which indicated that rates of school-associated student homicides decreased during the overall period, July 1992--June 2006, but stabilized during July 1999--June 2006, when 116 students were killed in 109 school-associated homicide events. Although school-associated student homicides are rare and represent approximately 1% of homicides that occur among school-age youths, schools should expand use of comprehensive measures to prevent behaviors that often precede fatal violence.