According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a recent national survey found that 1 in 10 teens reported being purposely hit or physically hurt by a boyfriend or girlfriend at least once in the 12 months prior to the survey.
Victims of teen dating violence have an increased likelihood of being depressed and doing poorly in school. They also are more likely to engage in destructive behaviors like using drugs and alcohol, have eating disorders, and have suicidal thoughts and attempts.
To help spread awareness and share solutions for this growing issue, February is now known as Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month to educate teens, parents and educators about the signs and effects of teen dating violence and tactics for its prevention.
A Teen Dating Violence plan should be part of a school safety program. This will inform educators and students about signs of and actions to be taken if one suspects a student is a victim, imperative since victims may see or have to interact with their perpetrator daily. When educators and students become aware of the signs, they will be better prepared to intervene and help create an environment where students feel safe. Read the following articles for tools to help curb teen dating violence.