The Florida Department of Education has released the latest data from the School Environmental Safety Incident Reporting System, which found one-third of incidents at schools across the state were reported to law enforcement.
The School Environmental Safety Incident Reporting System, or SESIR for short, “collects data on 26 incidents of crime, violence, and disruptive behaviors that occur on school grounds, on school transportation, and at off-campus, school-sponsored events, during any 24-hour period, 365 days per year.”
Of those 26 types of incidents, 21 “must be reported to SESIR and are expected to include consultation with law enforcement.” The types of incidents are as follows:
Alcohol Possession (Use or Sale)
Breaking and Entering/Burglary
Disruption on Campus
Sexual Offenses (Other)
Other Major (Producing/Using Counterfeit Money, Gambling, Possessing Child Pornography, etc.)
The other five types “must be reported to SESIR but “may not need to include consultation with law enforcement,” and are as follows:
With the definitions outlined, it’s time to breakdown the report which covered the 2017-2018 school year.
According to the FLDOE, there were a total of 71,246 SESIR incidents at Florida schools. Thirty-three percent of those incidents were reported to law enforcement after official action was taken by a school resource officer.
There was a near 50-50 split between incidents “expected to include consultation with law enforcement” (36,817) and those that “may not need to include consultation with law enforcement” (34,429). However, 52 percent of the SESIR incidents from the “expected” group were reported to law enforcement, whereas only 12 percent from the “may not need” group were reported to law enforcement.
The top five incidents, in order from most to least, were fighting, physical attack, tobacco, drug use/possession and threat/intimidation. While fighting might have had the most, only nine percent of those incidents were reported to law enforcement. Drug use/possession was actually the most reported to law enforcement at 84 percent.
The data also showed the top 10 counties which reported the highest number of SESIR incidents.
Duval County — 9,739 total incidents / 8 percent reported to LE
Hillsborough County — 8,268 total incidents / 21 percent reported to LE
Broward County — 6,122 total incidents / 32 percent reported to LE
Orange County — 4,428 total incidents / 22 percent reported to LE
Palm Beach County — 4,019 total incidents / 11 percent reported to LE
Miami-Dade County — 3,679 total incidents / 28 percent reported to LE
Pinellas County — 3,596 total incidents / 54 percent reported to LE
Polk County — 2,983 total incidents / 94 percent reported to LE
Lee County — 2,920 total incidents / 27 percent reported to LE
Volusia County — 2,052 total incidents / 38 percent reported to LE
In addition to showing the total number of incidents, the report also separated fighting, battery and weapons possession cases by county.
Duval had the most fighting incidents that “may not need LE consultation” with 3,844 while St. Lucie had the least at 423.
All 67 counties across the state reported 100 percent of battery and weapons possession cases to law enforcement. Pinellas had 410 battery incidents, the most of any other county. Orange County had the most weapons possession incidents with 205.
Melissa’s career in writing started more than 20 years ago. Today, she lives in South Florida with her husband and two boys.