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Implementing 7 steps to school safety


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Implementing 7 steps to school safety

  1. 1. Implementing 7 Steps toSchool SafetyBy Melissa Winfield
  2. 2. 1. Develop and equitably enforce a Code ofConduct for the district and building.• Our school district has a Code ofConduct that is updated annually.Students and parents are all givena copy of this booklet at thebeginning of the year.Additionally, the assistant principalalso reviews the contents of thecode of conduct in an assemblywith students at the beginning ofthe year. Students and parentsare required to sign and return aform acknowledging theirunderstanding of its contents aswell. Teachers are also giventraining during staff developmenton the proper procedures for fillingout referral forms for breaches ofthe code of conduct and for theproper protocol for handlingclassroom removals.
  3. 3. 2. Develop district safety plans and buildingemergency response plans to deal with serioussituations and conduct drills, tabletops and functionalexercises to increase the level of preparedness.• Our school regularlyholds practice drills toensure that students andstaff are familiar with theproper procedures andprotocols for emergencysituations. Substitutefolders are also equipwith information andprotocols for handlingemergency situations forwhenever there is asubstitute teacher in thebuilding.
  4. 4. 3. Personalize the school environment.• Our school personalized itsenvironment by having students inthe school Tech class build “HelpBoxes”. These colorful boxeshave been placed throughout theschool building. Students can fillout an anonymous “help slip” ifthey have a problem that theyneed help with and drop it in thelocked box. If the student choosesto include their name, one of theschool counselors will address theissue with them discreetly.Anonymous issues are usuallyread aloud during the morningannouncements, and a suggestionfor handling the issue is offered bythe principal.
  5. 5. 4. Analyze Violent And Disruptive Incident Reports (VADIR) andother student conduct data to provide information regardingpockets of concern that require attention and program strengthsthat could be replicated.• As mandated reporters to this system,our district has a SAVE team thatmeats regularly to address thesereports. Data from these reports isused to help revise and update ourdistrict annual Code of Conduct.
  6. 6. 5. Implement programs and activities that havea proven record of achieving positive results;Evaluate programs periodically for theireffectiveness and potential improvement.• Our district has annually providedan after school program forstudents. This program provideshomework help as well as electivetype courses where students canengage in activities that are ofinterest to them. Additionally, ourcity also has two other communitybased programs affiliated with thedistrict where students can go forafter school support. Finally, ourlocal library also has a homeworkhelp program for elementarystudents. For two hoursafterschool daily, these studentscan simply drop by with theirhomework and receive assistancefrom certified teachers for free.
  7. 7. 6. Actively involve and engage parents and othercommunity members in addressing issues andconcerns.• Our school maintains a policy of communicating withparents whenever there is an incident of misconduct.Teachers are required to inform parents via phone oremail communication whenever there is an incident ofconcern in the classroom. Administrators also activelycontact parents whenever a referral is issued.Additionally, the district also has attendance teachersthat specifically address attendance and truancyissues.
  8. 8. 7. Make sure students, teachers, parents,administrators, and other school staff are aware ofwarning signs of violence and the need tocommunicate to others.Warning signs of youth violence that I have seen as an educatorinclude:1. Anger and aggression toward other students and adults2. Isolating oneself from friends and loved ones3. Arguing with group members during paired group activities4. Complaints from other students about behavior or language5. Bullying behaviors6. Attempting to justify violence as rough “horseplay”7. Students bullying their parents or sibling in the homeenvironment8. Signs of gang affiliation9. Frequent bruises or disheveled appearance10. Long sleeves, coats during hot weather could be signs of aself mutilator (cutting on various parts of the body)
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  10. 10. Sources•