NEW YORK, Aug. 23 (UPI) -- Thousands of New York City schoolchildren were granted "safety transfers" last year because they were beaten, threatened or otherwise bullied at school.
City education officials approved the transfers for 2,540 students from September 2003 to June 2004, the first time officials have collected citywide data on the practice, the New York Post reported.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg compiled a list of the city's most dangerous schools last fall. He boosted security and expelled the worst offenders at those facilities, and a significant drop in transfers followed.
An average of two students were transferred for safety concerns at each of the city's 1,300 schools.
"If the transfer policy was widely known, the number of transfers would skyrocket," said City Council Education Committee Chairwoman Eva Moskowitz.
"The fact that thousands of our kids are so fearful for their personal safety shows that school security is an issue that the administration has to constantly keep its focus on -- not just in a few schools but all over the system," said United Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten.