A tall black man in a suit in a classroom looks toward two students seen from behind who are sitting at their desks with their hands raised. A slide projected on the screen says "teens as targets" and has the FBI logo.

FBI Hate Crime Report says Juveniles Targeted at Schools

A tall black man in a suit in a classroom looks toward two students seen from behind who are sitting at their desks with their hands raised. A slide projected on the screen says "teens as targets" and has the FBI logo.

The FBI released a report last month about hate crimes in schools. Here, Special Agent Woodson speaks to students at a Virginia school in 2014 “about the dangers and responsibilities of the internet,” according to the FBI. (Federal Bureau of Investigation)

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By Michael J. Fitzgerald

A new FBI hate crime report released in January says approximately 10% of all hate crimes reported nationally in 2022 happened at a school or college campus.

And 30% of juvenile hate-crime victims were targeted at a school, the report says. Hate crimes at schools — most frequently at elementary and secondary schools — were most likely to be motivated by anti-Black sentiments.

The FBI report was based on reports hate crimes at academic institutions across the U.S. between 2018 and 2022.

“The most common bias type of reported hate crime offenses at schools was Anti-Black or African American,” the report says. “There were 1,690 reported hate crime offenses involving this bias type during the observed five years, followed by Anti-Jewish (745 offenses), and Anti-Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, or Transgender (Mixed Group) (342 offenses).”

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Hate crime victims at schools were mostly like to report intimidation, destruction and vandalism in the incidents. There were also about 800 cases of assaults in the four-year period studied.

The goal of the report has been to draw the attention of school officials and local law enforcement to the number of incidents that are occurring in schools.

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“Analyzing commonalities of reported hate crime offenses in schools can facilitate strategies to mitigate or prevent these offenses in the future,” the FBI’s report says.

Officials noted that this report does not include any data from 2023, a year in which tensions increased over the Oct. 7, 2023, Hamas attack on Israel.

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Schools were the third-most common place for reported hate crimes, following residences and homes and roads, highways or alleys.

The most common month for the occurrence of hate crime reported at schools during the five-year period of 2018 to 2022 was October. Reports show an average of 4.1 hate crime offenses reported per day during the 31-day month.

The recently released report was drawn from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program, which collects and publishes data on hate crime incidents as outlined in the federal Hate Crime Statistics Act of 1990.

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The FBI program defines a hate crime as “a committed criminal offense which is motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender’s bias against a race, ethnicity/ancestry, religion, sexual orientation, disability, gender or gender identity.”

The recently released report breaks down data into detailed categories covering a wide range of bias motivations for hate crimes.

For example, hate crimes against gay men nearly doubled during the time period from 53 to 94. And in a collective group of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons, the number of annual hate crimes rose from 41 at the beginning of the report period to 122 by the end.

In the report, the section titled “Crimes against people” showed that the number of reported aggravated assaults more than doubled, going from 33 to 77.

This resource is supported in whole or in part by funding provided by the State of California, administered by the California State Library in partnership with the California Department of Social Services and the California Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander American Affairs as part of the Stop the Hate program. To report a hate incident or hate crime and get support, go to CA vs Hate.

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