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School Improvement & Safety Archives
Part of our School Issues Center, you'll find reports, resources, and programs to help you with your safety issues.

School Violence Resources
This page in our Counseling Community offers a set of resources to help prevent and cope with school violence and bullying.


Anonymity Spurs Students to Report Potential Violence
Students often know about the threat of violence in a school -- even when administrators and teachers are in the dark. Yet fear of reprisal or being labeled a snitch may keep students silent. Programs that provide anonymity to students and others reporting crime, violence, or the threat of violence can help make our schools safer places for learning. But, administrators caution, such programs are just one piece of an effort to make schools safer places. Included: Education World talks with administrators who use online violence reporting programs in their schools.

Secret Service Report Targets School Violence
School shooters don't snap. They plan. And somebody else usually knows before they attack. The Secret Service advises schools to get troubled kids help before they plot their attack and to find ways to break down the barriers that inhibit students from telling an adult about a planned attack. Included: Tips for identifying potential school shooters.

An Education World e-Interview With Hank Nuwer, Author of "High School Hazing: When Rites Become Wrongs"
Hank Nuwer, currently an adjunct professor in journalism at Indiana University-Purdue University, has been writing and speaking about hazing behavior and its consequences "nonstop" for the past 14 years. His earlier books on hazing, "Wrongs of Passage" (Indiana University Press, 1999) and "Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing" (Longstreet Press, 1990), were written for adults. Recently, Nuwer talked to Education World about his latest book, "High School Hazing: When Rites Become Wrongs" (Franklin Watts, 2000), which is directed toward high school students.

The School Shooter: One Solution Doesn't Fit All
A new FBI report shares the organization's expertise so educators can systematically evaluate student threats. In detailed guidelines, the report provides criteria to help educators determine the level of risk posed by a particular student threat, describes the risk factors in four different contexts that should signal a warning about a student, and suggests interventions. Some educators raise concerns that the guidelines could be used to unfairly profile students. Included: The FBI's list of student traits and school, family, and social dynamics that may signal warnings of potentially violent behavior.

Hazing: Its Not Just a College Problem Anymore!
In a public statement released this week, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) accepted responsibility for the alcohol-related death of freshman Scott Krueger in a 1997 fraternity hazing ritual. In a letter to Kruegers family, MIT President Charles Vest wrote, At a very personal level, I feel that we at MIT failed you and Scott. A recent study suggests that hazing isnt just a college problem anymore. Our high schools, it appears, also fail their students. Included: Tips to help schools prevent hazing.

Don't Get Even; Get Help!: Support for Victims of Bullies
Education World continues its week-long exploration of bullying with a story about students in one Canadian school who decided to do something about bullying in their school. They created www.bullying.org, a Web site designed to help victims of bullies deal with the problem in nonviolent ways -- and to help victims and others learn how to solve the problem.

Bullying Intervention Strategies That Work
"Bullying," according to noted expert Dan Olweus, "poisons the educational environment and affects the learning of every child." Learn what you can do to keep bullying behavior from poisoning your school. Included: Practical tips for changing the behavior of bullies and their victims.

Sticks and Stones and *Names* Can Hurt You: De-Myth-tifying the Classroom Bully!
Bullies are raised in the home, but their victims are too frequently created in the classroom. Learn how what you believe about bullies can hurt your students! Included: Ten myths about bullies, and the research that helped identify those myths!

Stop Bullying Now!
For many years, bullying was seen as a necessary evil -- an unpleasant, but unavoidable, rite of childhood. Ignore it, we thought, and eventually it will go away. The problem hasnt gone away, though, and educators can no longer afford to ignore it. Included: Ten activities for teaching kids about empathy, anger management, and effective conflict resolution.

FEMA Program Helps Schools Develop Emergency Response
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has introduced a planning process to help schools develop procedures to respond to all types of disasters, including school violence.

How Are Schools Reacting to the Crayon Scare?
Tests reveal the presence of asbestos in some brands of crayons, according to Seattle Post-Intelligencer reports this week. How should schools react to this news?

Guide Helps Schools Guard Against Violence
The Department of Education and the Department of Justice have joined forces to create a free 68-page "how-to" guidebook to help schools and communities prevent school violence. The manual, Safeguarding Our Children: An Action Guide, offers practical tips for designing and implementing school safety plans to reduce violence and help children get the services they need.

Restraining Orders: How Can Schools Respond?
A 16-year-old Boston girl has a restraining order against two students who posted threats to her on the school's e-mail system. One of the offending students was expelled; the other was suspended and will soon return to school. How would your school respond to this situation?

COPPA Plea: Keep Kids Safe Online
The Childrens Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) requires Web site operators to obtain *verifiable* parental permission to collect personal information from children younger than 13. How will that affect the online activities students participate in at school? Education World has the answers! Included: Online resources to help you and your students understand the issues --- and the law!

Revisiting the AUP: A Digital Double Take
In the beginning, when the Internet was new, many schools attempted to keep online students safe by establishing strict standards and rules known as acceptable use policies (AUPs). Now, according to instructional technology consultant David Warlick, schools can protect students without restricting their ability to participate in valuable collaborative learning experiences.

An Education World e-Interview: Youth Violence Expert James Garbarino
This week, the nation remembers the school killing spree that a year ago left 15 dead and 21 injured at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. James Garbarino ---a national expert on youth violence and author of Lost Boys: Why Our Sons Turn Violent and How We Can Save Them --- talked with Education World earlier this week. Included: Garberinos ideas about how we can make our schools safe again.

Are Our Children Safe in School?
The shots that killed 15 people April 20, 1999, at Columbine High School were heard throughout the nation -- but the changes prompted by that tragedy were still unable to prevent another school killing. On February 29, 2000, a first-grader shot and killed a classmate in a Michigan elementary school. What have we learned from the Columbine tragedy? What do we still need to do? Are our children safe in school? Included: Experts suggestions to prevent school violence!

AN EDUCATION WORLD E-INTERVIEW: Principal-in-Residence Speaks Out on Key Issues
Preventing violence in schools, involving parents in education, and finding strength in diversity --- in an e-interview with Education World, Carole Kennedy, the new principal-in-residence at the Department of Education, touches on those issues and more!

A Slow Healing: Jefferson County Schools Move On
Six months after the shootings at Columbine High, how is the community doing?

Safe Schools: Four Web Sites Help Administrators Address a Complex Issue
This week, Education World recognizes America's Safe Schools Week (October 17-23) with a comprehensive examination of four valuable Web sites that address the complex job of creating safe schools.

Is the Teacher in the Classroom Next Door a Convicted Felon?
This week, Education World examines the problems that have led many communities and states to require background checks for all school personnel. Included: Practical tips from attorneys and other experts who specialize in school safety issues.

Stop Bullying Before It Starts!
Bullying is no longer seen as the norm in the school or the community at large, and prevention has become the name of the game. Included: Poor and good solutions to bullying.

Schools Combat Violence
What's being done to combat violence in America's schools? What can school administrators and teachers do? Should disruptive students be expelled? These are some of the problems educators, lawmakers, and other experts are tackling today.


Center for the Prevention of School Violence
The Center for the Prevention of School Violence provides information that school officials and community members can use to establish and maintain safe schools.

This site explains the 1998 Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), which took effect on April 21, 2000. Sponsored by the Federal Trade Commission, KidzPrivacy is part of a national kid's privacy educational campaign. (Grades: 9-12)

Creative Partnership for Prevention
This Web site, based on the Creative Partnerships for Prevention initiative, provides current information and resources for using the arts and humanities to enhance drug and violence prevention programs. (Grades: 6-12)

Administrators : Education Issues: Administrators : School Counselors : At-Risk Resources:


Keys To Safer Schools.com
This site equips teachers, students, parents, administrators and counselors with simple, yet effective tools, training and materials. The programs and publications offered rely heavily upon nationally researched methods for early warning and intervention of school violence. KEYS was developed to be interactive and responsive.

A Guide to Safe Schools
from the U.S. Department of Education

The Safety Zone
If you're seeking models of school safety, the Safety Zone is the place to search. The Web site of the National Resource Center for Safe Schools, the Safety Zone includes a searchable database of "promising and effective practices."

Keeping Our Schools Safe Library
From the National PTA

What Are the Issues?
Violence Prevention resources from the National PTA.

NEA Safe Schools
The site offers a PDF file of the NEA's Safe Schools Manual, which includes plans for school emergencies, forms for reporting school crimes, and educational strategies for preventing violence, among other things.

National School Safety Center
Among the most popular resources on this site is a checklist for characteristics of violent youth. The list of 20 red-flag characteristics -- behaviors that could indicate a student's potential for harming himself or herself or others.

Teaching Tolerance
A national education project dedicated to helping teachers foster equity, respect, and understanding in the classroom and beyond.