Preventing Chaos in the Classroom

Preventing Chaos in the Classroom
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Preventing chaos in the classroom
The impact of violence on education

This manual is designed to help parents, teachers, guidance counselors, administrators, social workers, psychologists, disciplinarians, staff and security personnel prevent, manage and defuse anger-based violence in the schools, and how to intervene and de-escalate disruptive or violent student behavior safely and effectively.

A subculture of violence in our society now permeates the halls and classrooms of our schools. The student body of our schools are made up of children (and some teachers!) who are products of violent subcultures. Students, especially "non-mainstream" (urban) children -- who are more severely impacted on by our violent subculture -- bring with them to school the dysfunctional patterns of behavior which has shaped them. Consequently, urban schools -- and schools with large of predominantly non-mainstream populations -- are failing and are in a downward spiral and instead of being institutions cultivating the intellectual and humanistic growth of their students, schools are becoming dangerous turfs permeated with violence, drugs, disruptiveness, disrespect, irresponsibility and incredible stupidity. Places in our communities where both teachers and students alike are in a chronic state of anger and fear for their OWN safety and security.

Many school administrators are facing very serious problems with poor academic performance, attendance, discipline problems, discouraged staff and teachers as well as distrustful, angry and alienated parents. The high levels of frustration or chaos these challenges generate, very often create a negative school culture where students have the perception that academic success and excellence, in their school environment and condition, is impossible for them to achieve. To protect themselves from the pain of failure, they decide that school and an education is unimportant and seek membership (for success and achievement) in other non-mainstream groups that also do not value school such as gangs, rat packs, dope heads, etc. Risks for dropping out, pregnancy, drug and alcohol addiction, crime and run-a-way episodes all dramatically increase. These aren't just high school problems; they BEGIN in grade school... nay, they begin at home!

The need for wide-spread development of our students, parents, and teachers emotional and psychological skills for managing anger-based violence is most urgent.