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Outcome: Socially and Emotionally Healthy and Safe

Reporting Respect For Diversity

From 2013 to 2015, there has been a slight positive trend in this indicator.

Significance of Indicator: A school environment that is inclusive and respectful fosters healthy relationships, a sense of safety, respect for others and a supportive setting for learning.

How we are doing on this Indicator: Elementary school students report the highest levels of respect for diversity, followed by high school students, while middle school students consistently lag behind. From 2013 to 2015 there has been a slight positive trend on this indicator.

Elementary students' perceptions of how often their classmates show respect to students who are different has stayed relatively flat from 2013 to 2015. Among high school students, the data indicate an increase from 2013 to 2014. Perceived respect in middle school increased from 73% in 2013 to 79% in 2015.

what the data tell us

Click on this graph to download an excel spreadsheet with expanded information

Definition: Percentage of students responding favorably ("a lot of the time" or "sometimes") to the statement, "My classmates show respect to other students who are different."

Data Source: Student Climate Survey, Austin Independent School District, 2015

Data Considerations: The method of reporting changed in AISD's 2015 report, so data cannot be compared prior to 2013.

The story behind the data

Although middle school students' perceptions of how often their classmates show respect to students who are different than they are has increased since the 2006-07 school year, middle school students consistently lagged behind both elementary and high school students in this area. One reason for this data pattern may be the high prevalence of bullying during middle school.

A positive school climate characterized by safety, mutual respect and acceptance of diversity, is related to higher academic achievement (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, School Connectedness, 2009).  Positive, connective school climates are protecting children from risk factors including substance use, violence, truancy and other acts of misconduct. (Swearer, Espelage, Vaillancourt & Hymel, 2010)

Local efforts to improve the indicator