Making Schools A Safe Place For Learning
The levels of abuse and violence in institutions are rising at an alarming level. Even though the world is becoming more and more aware of the consequences of prejudice, the practices of hate crime have not reduced. Therefore, schools are being advised to take effective measures to establish a safe learning environment for all children, regardless of their ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation or religion.
Along with bias and prejudice, there is also a sharp increase in external gun violence since the last decade and the CDC reported that due to safety concerns, more than seven per cent of students remain absent from schools.
Here are some steps from the best essay writing service that schools can undertake to ensure that every child feels free to express and learn without any danger.
Build Strong Security
Practising control in the premises by the installation of cameras and efficient monitoring systems can reduce hate crime. When students would be aware of the security and their movements being recorded, they would not just feel safe but also be more careful about their actions. After installation, orientations should be held for guardians and children to alert them about the devices so that the security is not misused by any child or staff member for their interest.
One of the reasons why the culture of bullying has widely spread is the lack of awareness. Developed countries like the United States and the United Kingdom are home to various ethnicities and religions. Even though this is a good example of cultural diversity, it has given rise to many problems. The hatred for minorities is at an all-time high, and there is little to no awareness regarding the prejudice against them. Schools should conduct seminars and counselling sessions where families and young people should be taught about their rights as free citizens, the consequences of individual actions and their responsibilities towards the minorities.
Devise Effective Anti-Harassment/Bullying policies
Schools should include the regulations regarding bullying and harassment in their curriculum. The guidelines should be well-defined and inclusive of all the possible instances that occur in schools so that no student can breach them. The awareness of technological monitoring should be reinforced, and if any event is reported or noticed, the administration must be vocal and condemn it publicly to make their stance clear.
Many victims of bullying and harassment hesitate to report because their confidence in the administration is low. The belief that the acknowledgement of the matter in front of adults would only worsen it is highly prevalent among students. However, as a safe institution, it is your responsibility to ensure that kids are not reluctant to report any incident of prejudiced violence. Establish credible counselling and reporting offices to ensure confidentiality. If victims do not feel safe, then they must take measures to deal with the matter by protecting their identities.
Be Sensitive and Take Strict Actions
Several times, schools are unwilling to pursue an issue legally because of the strong influence of an attacker in the administration. Make sure that your administration is unbiased and is always available to lend an ear to the students. When a student reports an incident, listen carefully and avoid any statement that might discourage or harm them further. Sometimes, schools promote a culture of victim-blaming, and this prompts silent suffering. Therefore, take the matter seriously and inflict harsh punishments for the crime to ensure a safe and disciplined environment.
Schools should employ methods and techniques to develop a relationship of trust between them and students. For instance, instead of preaching colour-blind ideology, cultural differences should be celebrated to make students from different backgrounds feel welcomed. One way to do this is to organise food festivals so students can not only learn about different ethnicities but also promote a general message of harmony. Magazines, social media platforms, awareness walks and processions should be utilised to design messages of friendship, communal peace and safety.
Promote Solidarity Among Students
Students must be taught to speak up if they see anyone being a target of abuse. This would instil a sense of accountability as standing up for others is a part of a community. Students should be able to safely challenge the actions of attackers to show solidarity with the victims. This is an effective way of ensuring alliance because this will help the victims and the supporters feel empowered, and the factor of helplessness that most students experience would be erased.
Hence, schools should not be silent about the wave of change in the surroundings and must develop policies to make it a secure and safe place for learning and self-expression.