A Buffalo school board member is asking with parents to implement stricter discipline at home in order to help reduce classroom violence.
“I need to speak to parents and the community,” Buffalo School Board member Larry Scott said at a student safety special meeting last Wednesday. “We need your assistance with this. “Your children must be held accountable at home.”
“There’s only so much we can do in school,” he told me.
This month at Buffalo’s Riverside High School, one student was stabbed on campus, while another had to be restrained after punching a hole in the school’s main office. In September, fights in the grandstand forced the cancellation of the second half of a McKinley-Bennett high school football game at a different campus, resulting in several arrests.
Scott acknowledged the very genuine events that have made news, but he denied that there is a pervasive increase in violence in Buffalo schools.
“Ninety-plus percent of our students across the district are doing what they need to do, coming to school, behaving appropriately, and learning,” he said in an interview with Fox News Digital.
Scott elaborated on the shift that must first occur at home in order to help curb the violence that occurs in certain schools.
“It begins with this adult and how we’re, I think, modelling behaviour as adults,” he remarked. “I’m seeing some sometimes adults that are responding to conflict, frustration in a violent manner, and they’re displaying that in front of children.”
“We need our parents to step up and be better models for their children and most importantly, just overseeing some of their behaviour so that we’re ensuring that they’re coming to school safe and ready to learn,” he said.
Buffalo Schools Superintendent Dr. Tonja Williams highlighted new prevention tactics and de-escalation training at the school board meeting last Wednesday.
Active shooter safety measures and suicide prevention are among the new preventative approaches, as are daily debriefings between Buffalo Public Schools and the Buffalo Police Department, training for principals on bullying detection and intervention, and behavioural assessment for all students. Other measures detailed in Williams’ presentation include the fact that children who got a long-term suspension for particularly violent and dangerous behaviour will not be readmitted until they complete a school-based re-entry process that is now being developed.
“Every day, our students need to feel safe and secure,” Williams stated. “Our teachers, our administrators, our parents who may be in our educational institutions and our board members who might stop by our schools have got to feel safe and secure so that we may concentrate on these student outcomes.”
Williams also emphasised the idea of restorative justice, which emphasises agreement and mediation over punishment. Some detractors claim that the very real threat posed by the recent violence in Buffalo schools cannot be addressed by restorative justice alone. Scott declared that he “absolutely believes” in it, but he acknowledged that it “has its limitations.”
He stated that the process can only be successful if all parties involved are committed to it, which should appeal particularly to parents.
Buffalo School Board Member Highlights Restorative Justice and Parental Intervention in Addressing School Violence
Scott described restorative justice as having its limitations but also having the potential to be very helpful in settling both minor and significant conflicts. It won’t work and occasionally might even do more harm if any of the parties involved are unwilling to participate in the process, aren’t doing it voluntarily, and aren’t accepting responsibility. It is at this point, in my opinion, that parents should intervene, offer their support, and accept that their child has misbehaved. However, they now have the chance to address the issue, make up for any hurt they may have caused, and possibly even serve a
Additionally, Scott blamed some kids’ violent behaviour on their use of social media, emphasising once more that parents can and ought to step in in this situation.
“Some of these platforms out there are absolutely awful, are conditioning some individuals to be hateful and do some violent things,” Scott stated. Thus, parents must restrict their children’s access to gadgets and be mindful of the social media sites that their kids are using. One of the practises I implement with my two boys, who attend separate Buffalo Public schools, is to forbid them from bringing any kind of device or having any access to technology before bedtime.”
Regarding the immediate actions taken by Buffalo schools, Scott stated that they are planning to employ more security officers and are collaborating with more than 100 community-based organisations in addition to adding mental health professionals to the district.
In a letter sent to parents on Tuesday, the superintendent, according to Scott, suggested “some steps that parents need to consider to help ensure that our children are safe, are coming to school safe and ready to learn.”
Scott reported that Buffalo schools are collaborating with more than 100 community-based organisations, adding mental health specialists to the district, and planning to recruit more security guards as immediate actions.
In addition, Scott said that on Tuesday, the superintendent wrote a letter to parents outlining “some steps that parents need to consider to help ensure that our children are safe, are coming to school safe and ready to learn.”