Are you safe?

Dave Sherman wrote in his blog:

Some people seem to think that school administrators have gone overboard with school security. They think we are spending too much time and money to secure our schools, when we should really be spending our resources on teaching and learning only.

Is this what you think, too? Are we just paranoid that something bad may happen in our schools because there have been a handful of school shootings in the last decade? Should we stop all this security talk? As I write this, I am preparing for our very first lock down drill with our students (see previous post). Is it all a waste of time?

In a report from the NCES they start their findings by saying:

Our nation’s schools should be safe havens for teaching and learning, free of crime and violence. Any instance of crime or violence at school not only affects the individuals involved but also may disrupt the educational process and affect bystanders, the school itself, and the surrounding community (Henry 2000).

Many statistics show that violence in schools are decreasing. The chart below from the NCES report shows the percentage of students ages 12–18 who reported criminal victimization at school during the previous 6 months, by type of victimization:

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In talking to adults they believe wholeheartedly that children are at a much higher risk of being a victim of violence today than when they were they were kids. What is the truth? I ask you…do you feel safe in school? Have there been times that you did not feel safe? What were those times. I am looking for some really honest answers to start a discussion. The adults in the building and society have ideas that aren’t always based in reality. What is reality? Is worrying about security a waste of time? Are you safe?

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