Safety Policies And Procedures In Schools

1146 words - 5 pages

Violence in schools has become a growing epidemic. Hearing of a school shooting where students are gunned down for no apparent reason is a reminder of the seemly increasing national problem of school violence. Dewey Cornell (2010) a clinical psychologist and education professor at the University of Virginia suggest that school shooting in “Columbine High School in Colorado and Virginia Tech has reinforced a perception that schools can be dangerous places” (p.1). Yet, there has been a downward trend in school violence over the past several years. According to the CDC (2010) violent deaths at school among students has “accounted for less than 1% of the homicides and suicides ...view middle of the document...

In general, it refers to a set of common values, attitude, beliefs and norms, some of which are explicit and some of which are not (Heathfield, 2012). “Just as culture is critical to understanding the dynamics behind any thriving community, organization, or business, the daily realities and deep structure of school life hold the key to educational success” (Deal & Peterson, 2003, p. 23). People in a certain culture may or may not be conscious of its influence and may or may not be able to articulate its elements. Leaders can have considerable influence on the organization culture. “However, all members of staff help shape the dominate culture regardless of what senior management or leader feels it should be” (Ng’ang & Nyongesa, 2012, p. 2). Therefore, culture is also determined by staff working in the organizations to the extent to which they accept and adhere to leadership’s policies and practices or “only pay lip service” (Ng’ang & Nyongesa, 2012).
School climate reflects the physical and psychological aspects of the school that are more susceptible to change and that provides the preconditions necessary for teaching and learning to take place. Climate is important in improving academic performance and school reform. It is also; considered as a potential solution to problems such as bullying, inter-student conflicts, suicide, character education, and moral education (Clarke & Russell, 2007). Although, components most emphasize caring and safety as core values. Safety is deemed an orderly environment in which staff and students feel valued and are able to pursue the mission with fear of disruptions. (Best Practices, 2004).
The four aspects of a school environment (a) the physical environment welcoming and conductive to learning, (b) social environment that promotes communication and interaction, (c) the affective environment that provides a sense of belonging and builds self-esteem , and (d) the academic environment that promotes learning and achievement. The common thread in each environment is safety. In the physical aspect students must feel safe and comfortable everywhere on school property. Social environment; staff members are open to students’ suggestions, and students participate in decision-making. Staff and students are trained to prevent and resolve conflicts.
In the affective environment teachers and staff are caring supportive and respectful. Teachers and staff feel they are contributing to the schools success, and there is an attitude of ownership. The four environments are interrelated and do not operate independently of one another. They are dependent upon one another and together will produce a positive school...

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