I am one member of a five person board. The opinions I express on this forum are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Escambia County Staff, Administrators, Employees, or anyone else associated with Escambia County Florida. I am interested in establishing this blog as a means of additional transparency to the public, outreach to the community, and information dissemination to all who choose to look. Feedback is welcome, but because public participation is equally encouraged, appropriate language and decorum is mandatory.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Violence in our Schools Part I: Audit Finding Demonstrates Schools Intentionally Under-Report School Incidents of Violence

Violence occurs in schools, that is a fact.  It happens in schools around the country, and it happens frequently locally.  The problem, the huge problem, is that some violent students get multiple "chances" to fix their violent, anti-social and dysfunctional behavior due to the threats of litigation and massive pressure from outside social justice institutions.  Lawmakers and policy-makers pass rules and laws, like the 2000 NY state safe schools bill.  These rules and laws are meaningless if they are not faithfully enforced.  A recent audit in NY found that many schools were simply not reporting the incidents, in violation of the law.  If we took an honest look at practices nationwide, and yes, even here in Escambia County Florida, we would find instances of this under-reporting are not isolated.  They happen all the time.....

From the Poughkeepsie Journal:

"auditors found that numerous schools failed to report hundreds of cases, while many cases were misclassified as less serious...The state Education Department has agreed to DiNapoli’s recommendations to improve school safety...“In recognition of the need to revisit the existing VADIR guidance and support districts’ reporting efforts, the department has begun the review of existing VADIR training materials provided to schools to improve the accuracy of data collection, reporting and records retention of annual VADIR data submitted to the department,” state deputy education commissioner Sharon Cates-Williams said in a statement...During a review of the 2011-2012 school year, auditors found 935 unreported cases of violence from the seven schools outside of New York City, including cases of sexual contact, assault and drug and weapon possession...Auditors found that East High School only reported 256 cases instead of the 769 that auditors said should have been reported, including two unreported cases of sexual offense that involved inappropriate sexual contact and 11 unreported cases of possession of a weapon...In a statement, the Rochester school district said the high school had been reporting only incidents of misbehavior that resulted in student suspensions. But auditors said the district should include students who received alternatives to suspension."

1 comment:

Gulagathon said...

I know this is true because I experienced this in escambia county at a certain middle school. Once I discovered that a student had marijuanna, and I think they got mad at me for finding out about this because they did not want to report that kids had weed in their school. They showed no approval or appreciation for my findings. This wasn't in my classroom, so they couldn't blame my classroom management skills. This isn't a violent situation, but this showed to me that they didn't want to report this, and overall, they didn't like to report bad situations. These particular kids ended up getting expelled. And by the way, these students were bad, they regularly were disruptive in class. When kids get away with so much from what I've seen, it can lead to worse things with some kids.

The school administration didn't want their image to further be tarnished, than it already was. There were fights all of the time, but the kids would be back in a couple days. Even kids that fought multiple times would be back within a week, and some of these kids were completely horrible.

I believe that they weren't reporting all of the incidents because some kids would do the most outrageous things and then be back in class. These kids felt like a bunch of Teflon Dons, and they showed off about it. The violence and other antisocial behavior is way too tolerated.