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School-Based Curricula

Educators can implement these curricula in their schools and communities. Teachers and students can be shown better ways to learn about and model healthy relationships.

Why Teach Prevention in Schools?

It’s where teens gather.
It’s where their friends are found.
It’s where their boyfriends and girlfriends may be.
It’s where teens (and tweeners) will learn about relationships.
Schools can help them learn what healthy relationships look like.

Schools Can Teach Healthy Relationships

School-based activities for abuse prevention can help build skills for healthy relationships and benefit a teen’s emotional development. In healthy relationships, both partners give and get respect, make decisions and have some freedom.

Pennsylvania has a model policy for schools to use to address teen dating violence, but it is not mandatory that schools adopt it. Not all Pennsylvania schools have a policy to bring prevention programs to schools. They also may not have staff trained to educate or help students on this topic.

Prevention work through the community can include teens, youth, young adults, educators, school staff and parents. It can also include local businesses and media. Some of the school curricula also share activities for outside of school that engage boys and men. This work can build healthy relationships and prevent dating violence.

Dating Abuse Happens

It can happen from middle school through college. Both males and females can be victims of dating abuse (also called relationship abuse). Research shows that more young women than men may have serious injuries as a result of such abuse. Abuse at the hands of a dating partner can cause short-term and long-term problems. Teens who have been abused by a dating partner may have:
  • Low grades
  • Social problems
  • Physical and mental health problems
  • Drug and alcohol use
  • Suicide attempts
  • Sexual abuse
  • Fights
  • Patterns of abuse or trauma into future relationships

Research Among School Students

Researchers ask students to find out how many of them are affected by dating violence. A study of 1,430 7th-grade students reveals that most are dating and many experience physical, psychological and electronic dating violence. A survey of dating college students finds that nearly half experience violent or abusive dating behaviors. Read more

PCADV´s Curriculum Reviews

PCADV based the reviews on the growing body of evidence-based research about prevention work. In particular the Effective Principles of Prevention were used to create an internal tool. This tool helped reviewers assess the effectiveness of the curricula, materials or campaigns listed below.

As a result, the reviews may offer some suggestions to broaden the impact. It is highly recommended that advocates review a number of curricula. This will help make sure a well-rounded prevention program is used that meets the needs of a community. Advocates should attempt to include as many of the nine principles as possible for each program offered.


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