NEWTOWN, Conn. (CBS Connecticut/AP) – As families prepare for the upcoming academic year, many expressed continued concern for the safety of their children when they are in school.

The fear is reportedly attributed to the Dec. 14 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, during which 20-year-old gunman Adam Lanza shot 26 people – mostly children – and himself at the school after killing his mother at their Newtown home.

His motive remains unclear, but the ramifications are present in the latest Gallup Poll – a third of all parents of school-age children in the country are still scared for their children when they are at school, a figure that has not changed since the incident itself occurred.

Researchers at the polling center also observed that the number of parents who expressed concern – 33 percent – is higher than the amount of parents who noted similar fears before the start of the previous school year; just before the start of the 2012-2013 academic year, only 25 percent of parents were worried.

The figures additionally mark a shift from the previously lower sense of fear experienced by American parents in past years.

“Parents of school-aged children had been expressing less worry about their children’s safety in the five years prior to the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, with the percentage fearful ranging from a low of 15 percent in 2008 to 26 percent in 2009,” a release on the poll’s findings noted.

The figure was discovered while gathering information for Gallup’s Work and Education Poll, conducted annually. Parents were questioned for the study between Aug. 7 and Aug. 11 of this year.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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