Anonymous Reporting Systems for School-Based Violence Prevention: A Systematic Review

Messman E, Heinze J, Hsieh HF, Hockley N, Pomerantz N, Grodzinski A, Scott B, Goldstein N, Zimmerman MAnonymous Reporting Systems for School-Based Violence Prevention: A Systematic Review. Health Educ Behav. 2022;10901981211073734. doi:10.1177/10901981211073734.


Anonymous reporting systems (ARS) have been used as a violence prevention strategy in schools by providing a means for individuals within a school community to safely and securely report information about potential violence or concerns about mental health, for example, through an anonymous hotline or reporting app. Despite widespread implementation of ARS in schools, as well as mandates for reporting systems in schools in 21 states, there is limited evidence on the effectiveness of ARS for school violence prevention, and information about best practices for ARS implementation is lacking. This systematic review aims to summarize the current research on the effectiveness of ARS as a school safety and violence prevention strategy, which is an important step in building an evidence-base to guide schools and policymakers about best practices.

Keywords: Anonymous reporting system, code of silence, prevention, school violence, systematic review.