Recently an article was published
in the Philadelphia Inquirer about the increase of school
violence, and the steps that need to be taken in order to solve this growing
problem. Over the past year or so, the issue has received a lot of attention
from media because the problem became racial. With the violent attacks towards
Asian students at South Philadelphia High, the flaws of the Philadelphia School
District were put on display for the entire country to see. A policy is already
in place for students in order to decrease violence. Programs that will
heighten children’s tolerance for different races and sexualities are hopefully
going to change this problem. In an the same article (linked above) Michael
Johnson, a science teacher at Germantown High School states, “The policy is wonderful… The implementation
is missing." Meaning that even though the policies are there, the
district, teachers, and even student fail to enforce it. This problem could
possibly stem from the recent cut of the Office of Safe Schools Advocate, which
was eliminated in August 18, 2009. According to the National School Safety and Security
Services website, “While
the State claimed the cuts were for budgetary reasons, Stollsteimer [monitor of school crimes and violence in
Philadelphia Schools.] alleged the cuts were due to his advocacy
and unwillingness to not document failures by the school district to report
Some key players in this issue are the names we hear in Philadelphia all
the time. Officials such as, John Street (when in office), Chaka Fattah, Paul
Vallas, and 150 community leaders were said to have pledged to increase the
saftey of schools in Philadelphia back in 2004.
the public officials and active citizens of Philadelphia, entrusted with
"securing the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity,"
pledge to work together and with our youth leaders to combat violence in our
schools and to build safe and supportive neighborhoods for young people
throughout the city.
Even though Street is no longer is office, this pledge to uphold the
safety in schools was taken 6, almost 7 years ago but at yet the violence in
out schools has increased.
From doing this research it seems as though my main job is to get these
officials back on track with their plans. It seems as though they have
forgotten about the problems in school, because of the small policies they put
in place but did not truly enforce. Issues such as money, health care, and the
recent elections have totally taken the attention away from our schools and
their lack of safety. It is time now to bring it back.
Some recent hearings on school violence were held back in January.
There were 11 hearings with more than 125 testimonials from activist, city
leaders, student, and parents. The topics of these hearing were of coarse about
the South Philadelphia incidents. Other then those hearing there haven’t been
any recent hearings about the violence, which I hope to change soon
Sachdev , Nina. "The School District
Needs the Feds to Tell Them What to Do?!." Philly Now 1 Sept 2010: 1. Web. 22 Nov 2010.
Trump, Ken. "School Crime
Reporting and School Crime Underreporting." National School Saftey and Security Services. National School
Safety and Security Services , 2009. Web. 22 Nov 2010.
Graham, Kristen. "City panel
says hearings on school violence heard of problems and also promise Read more:
Watch sports videos you won't find anywhere else." Philadelphia Inquier 17 Nov 2010: 1. Web. 22 Nov 2010.