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Gang Violence

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Violence and crime in our school system have become a problem that many of our schools are facing today. Across the United States, violence in schools continues to thrive. According to federal activities addressing violence in schools, "There are more possibilities of violent acts and crimes taking place in public schools, than in private schools." Crime and violence in schools can disrupt the learning process and have a negative effect on students, the school staff, and the community as a whole. School violence and crime are problems that comes from homes, video games, media, and neighborhoods. Crime in schools and colleges is therefore one of the most troublesome social problems in the south coast region today.

According to a federal government report, "...violence is one of the leading problems; it does not stop at any schools front doors,"(Kopa). school violence is also refer to, as the harmful behaviors that start at a early age and continues into young adulthood. It includes bullying, slapping, punching, weapon use, and rape.

The most common cause for the occurence of school violence are substance abuse, association with gangs, and guns. Which lead to the crime of possession of a controlled substances and people getting arrested for breaking the law. Also possession of a weapon excluding firearms and powerful explosives, possession of an alcoholic beverage and assault on school personnel resulting in serious injury. This has been coming up as of late more frequently.

Gangs have also played a large role in school violence. A gang is a group of people, usually of the same ethnic group and from the same neighborhood. Even though many people think of black teenagers when they think of gangs, there are white, Asian, Hispanic, gangs also. For some young people, gangs provide the only emotional support that they have.

Now a days it is common for students to call each other names, sometimes these are the students carrying a gun or even starting a fight in school. "Government educators had found over 2,000 weapons stashed by students in lockers and backpacks."() This including all of massachuttes. This proves that school are not all that safe for students and staff. Most shooting are usually done by the one you least expect and usually shocked many people. It only takes one person, to destroy a school and many of its students' lives. According to School violence report, "As more violent acts occurs, more kids are afraid to go to school". Students often seem afraid because of all the violent acts that have occurred in schools.

Not only does crime and violence affect those involved in the criminal incidents, but it also hinders societal growth and stability. It is very important for us to understand the characteristics surrounding crime in schools and the offenders who reportedly commit these offenses so that law enforcement, policy makers, school administrators, and the public can properly combat and reduce the amount of crime occurring at our schools. When children are exposed to steady verbal and physical violence that begins early it continues throughout their lives. Also, children who behave violently are themselves victims of violence. Most of the time children who are at risk send signals, that they feel isolated from and maligned by society. They can suffer serious injury, significant social and emotional damage, or even death. They can be a victim, an offender, or a witness to the violence or a combination of these. The miss behavior and the lack of achievements in school make grades begin to drop. Violent doesn't have to be just physical harm. "Often violent acts can be included to demean, harm, or infringe up one another civil right" (). For this reason, harm also can be verbal and mentally damage. For an example, name calling would not scare a person in a physical way, but it would hurt him or her in a mental way. According to State Superintendent June Atkinson, "It will take the entire school community's involvement to have an impact on school crime and violence". Schools should be the safest places for our children. Yet, for some of our students, that is not always the case. The principals and teachers need to remain vigilant and report inappropriate activities to law enforcement. Parents need to ensure that their children know the importance of respecting the law and the consequences for breaking it, and the community need to demonstrate that any act of crime or violence will not be tolerated.

According to the USA Today, Society for the advancement of education , their are four steps to dramatically reduce school violence.

1. Assure all school-age children and teens access to after-school, weekend and summeryouth development programs to shut down the "Prime Time for Juvenile Crime."

2. Assure all families access to the school readiness child care programs proven to

dramatically reduce crime.

3. Help schools identify troubled and disruptive children at an early age, and provide children



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