Schools as per our understanding should be places where children go to learn the basics of reading, writing and arithmetic. These days however, schools instead of being purely academic institutions have become an arena of teaching kids to adjust to the ever changing situations like juvenile violence. If not addressed in the proper way and with immediate effect, violence can cause division and trauma (both mental and physical) for both the perpetrator and the victim. Violence children could be an evidence of factors such as; lack of discipline at home, repeated examples of bullying at school, viewing too much of violence on the television and even poor parenting (Gerler, 2006). In my discussion below of why school violence tend to happen, I look at what I have learnt from articles and interviews about violence while showing the points of agreements and disagreements from the two sources.
Both sources of information on school violence agree that, violence in schools is existent and is a serious problem in that unlike many of us think of such violence to occur only among students themselves, it actually extends to school staff and even teachers. So serious that I read about a case in which a student brought a loaded gun to class and endangered students and his teacher at Stemmers Run Middle school, luckily, no one was injured. An interviewee also cited cases in which students brought dangerous weapons to school that included guns and knives. Some even used razor blades to execute attacks. The fact that juvenile violence is not only carried out on fellow youngster students but also to the staff and teacher is actually a new revelation to me its hard to imagine of such a thing. Moreover, gang formations in schools in America are also becoming prevalent especially in inner city schools as compared to suburban school as all the two interviews and most articles attested (Chapin & Coleman, 2006).
Information from both interviews and articles clearly shows that, even though the forms of violence might have changed over time, violence has always been a problem and is not showing any signs of coming to an end soon. Shootings in schools have become more apparent because of advancement in technology and the fact that kids are viewing violent programmes on television and social media and hence getting the stupid idea of fighting their enemies to show power over them. Before advancement, violence was evident in school but mostly took the form of throwing fists at an opponent. One interviewer said, I think it has always been there, I think with the last few years there have been more popularized deaths due to guns being used in schools in the United States... One of the articles read, the challenges of youths no longer consist of a couple of kids setting differences with their fists (tribunedigital-baltimoresun, 1993).
Information from the articles/news and interviews also showed some differences majorly on the way forward to finding solutions to the school violence menace. While the interviewees agreed that the responsibility of curbing violence laid in the hands of all the stakeholders, that is, schools, children and parents alike, articles tend to put focus on one way of trying to curb violence like increasing surveillance and posing armed guards to schools for security purposes. In my introduction, I listed some of the factors that promote violence in schools and all of them point to the fact that, children are wanting when it comes to discipline matters (Finley, 2003). Discipline is a value that ought to be taught and adapted by children from a very tender age. For kids to be disciplined, children, parents and school officials ought to work together.
Different means have been used to solve school violence before. These include punishing offenders as a corrective measure, installing surveillance cameras in school corridors and important areas to monitor childrens behaviors and posting armed security guards to schools. Today, other measures have been proposed to include the main stakeholders, that is, students, teachers and parents. Two of such measures are one, forming character groups for kids and two, forming school committees comprised of adults that can look into ways of encouraging troubled youngsters to reach out for help (tribunedigital-baltimoresun, 1993). Character groups formation at school especially for the younger kids play a critical role in ensuring that kids learn good traits from their peers, this is so because members of character groups encourage the others to speak out by being kind to them. Character groups are therefore, in my opinion, a viable way of creating understanding of the meaning of peace in a school setting (Tite, 2006). As for the second alternative, I tend to think that curbing of violence should be left to the adults to a greater extent than it should be left to the young offenders (apprehending them). Adults should be able to identify signs of trouble shown by their young ones and find means of helping such kids.
Chapin, J., & Coleman, G. (2006). Perceiving the Enemy Within. Journal Of School Violence, 5(1), 29-41. http://dx.doi.org/10.1300/j202v05n01_03
Finley, L. (2003). Teachers' Perceptions of School Violence Issues. Journal Of School Violence, 2(2), 51-66. http://dx.doi.org/10.1300/j202v02n02_04
Gerler, E. (2006). Perspectives on School Violence. Journal Of School Violence, 5(4), 1-2. http://dx.doi.org/10.1300/j202v05n04_01
Tite, R. (2006). School Violence Prevention. Journal Of School Violence, 4(4), 85-104. http://dx.doi.org/10.1300/j202v04n04_06
tribunedigital-baltimoresun,. (1993). At Loch Raven, Duncan says communities must confront school violence. Retrieved 11 November 2015, from http://articles.baltimoresun.com/2013-04-10/news/bs-md-co-duncan-loch-raven-20130410_1_school-violence-stemmers-run-middle-national-law-enforcement-partnership
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