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Stand Up and Start a School Crime Watch!

NCJ Number
Date Published
December 1998
8 pages
Publication Series
This bulletin explains to youth how to start and operate a school crime watch, a student-led effort that helps youth watch out for each other to make the entire school area safer and more enjoyable and to take a share of responsibility for their school community.
Youth who take part in a school crime watch learn how to keep from becoming victims, as well as the best ways to report suspicious activities or arguments between students before they turn into fights or other disturbances. It takes only one person to start a school crime watch. The first task is to gather a group of youth willing to work together to bring the entire student population into a crime-watch way of life. The group should represent the diversity of the school community. The group needs to find out which crimes are most common at school, determine what other issues to address, and decide which prevention strategies could prove the most effective. Starting the program will require a close working relationship with the principal, other officials responsible for school security, and local law enforcement. Other issues are the program kickoff, training sessions, and specific activities such as a student patrol program and an anonymous reporting system. Challenges of a school crime watch include maintaining interest, maintaining privacy, and evaluation. Active school crime watch programs have helped reduce violence, the presence of guns, drug use, and many other crime-related activities in schools across the country. List of resource organizations

Date Published: December 1, 1998