Injury surveillance trends in career–technical education: New Jersey 1999–2018

Laura E. Jones, Nimit N. Shah, Judith M. Graber, Maryanne L. Fakeh Campbell, Lauren N. Gonzalez, Koshy Koshy, Daniel C. Uhiara, Derek G. Shendell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Adolescents engaging in school-sponsored work experiences may be at risk of injury due to factors such as inexperience. This article examines trends in 20 years of reported injuries among New Jersey (NJ) adolescents engaging in school-sponsored work experiences, and compares a transition from paper to online reporting format. Methods: New Jersey requires reporting of injuries occurring during school-sponsored work experiences to the NJ Department of Education. Injuries reported by NJ schools from 1999 to 2018 (n = 2,119) were examined; incidence rates for 2008 to 2018 (n = 743) were calculated using publicly available NJ Department of Education enrollment data for the denominator, including for specific groups of students: career and technical education; special healthcare needs. Results: A downward trend in reported injuries in NJ schools was observed. However, the year online reporting became required by code (2013), an increase of nearly 50% was seen from 2012 (59–89), followed by a decline in reported incidents 2014 to 2018 (mean = 65, range 76 down to 47). Injury rate trends over time paralleled those of reported incidents. Conclusions: This study suggested worker safety and public health benefits of improvements from State of NJ code required training programs and online injury surveillance report form. Practical Applications: One potential method to address the safety and health of adolescents engaging in work experiences is the use of online reporting forms, to aid in surveillance efforts, coupled with occupational safety and health training specifically geared toward teachers and administrators who both supervise young, relatively inexperienced and vulnerable workers and who make relatively frequent worksite visits. Incorporation of specific details of the instructions on the use of a reporting form into required trainings, in addition to providing a clear, accessible guidance manual online, could further help improve youth worker safety surveillance efforts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)153-159
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of safety research
StatePublished - Jun 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality


  • Adolescent health
  • Career–technical education
  • Injury reporting
  • New Jersey
  • Surveillance
  • Vocational education


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