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Area Schools Deal With Violence, Fights

Posted September 15, 2007

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— School systems officials are imposing stricter punishments after a surge of violence at Wake and Durham schools this week resulted in more than 25 students being arrested.

School violence experts said that students often test the system at the beginning of the year to see what they can get away with.

"It starts with trash-talking and put-downs and small fights, and they build on themselves over the year," said William Lassiter, director of the North Carolina Center for the Prevention of School Violence.

If school administrators and police make it clear they can't get away with violence, things usually settle down, Lassiter said.

"If schools nip it in the bud in the beginning - to use a Barney Fife slogan there - if they really focus on it at the beginning of the year, we've seen those activities actually decrease over the school year," he said.

Lassiter also said school systems should look for solutions that are longer term than suspensions and arrests.

School officials said deciding what punishments are appropriate involves a variety of factors and that they are allowing police to charge students involved in fights.

"We look at the history of these individuals. We look at the severity of the fight. We look to see if there's any injuries," said David Rohrbach, the director of Wake County school resource officer program.

Durham County Sheriff Worth L. Hill said additional deputies are typically made available to schools during the beginning and end of the school year.

"Unfortunately, (violence) is becoming typical for high school students at the beginning of the school year," Hill said, in a statement released Monday. "We normally keep extra personnel available until the students settle down into their routines."

Wake County school resource officers said they usually spend more time just keeping up with the students, but are increasingly called on to keep the peace.

"We want our campuses to be safe for all of the kids here. That's our goal, and whatever we need to do to achieve that goal, that's what we're going to do," Rohrbach said.

96 Comments

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  • Esq Sep 17, 2007

    I'm from NC but I did 9th and 10th grade at a school outside of Memphis, Tenn before graduating from a HS in Eastern NC in 99 and I tell you this.....the school in Tenn. didn't have half of the violence and madness that goes on here, two words...........Corpal Punshiment

  • rpdwife05 Sep 17, 2007

    This was in the article about the East Wake High School fight last week: "A school official said he believed the fight was an isolated incident and that fighting is rare for the school, which has about 1,600 students."

    I would like to let everyone know what a joke that comment is. I went to that school and my sibling currently attends and there are fights weekly! They just don't make the news. HA HA!

  • joey2 Sep 17, 2007

    Attend a public school lately ????

  • lizard Sep 17, 2007

    Everyone home school=no problem

  • PrivateSchoolTeacherGonePublic Sep 16, 2007

    Why am i not surprised that you don't get it Collie? Do you honestly think the kids got to choose the rules?

    Some people are just clueless...

  • NZ Sep 16, 2007

    (sic)First sentence of Second Paragragh should have ended first paragraph in bottom post.

    Add- America does whatever it takes. To first paragraph

    So ...

    Look at Zimbabew, they are a economic system in ruin. They are eating dogs, family pets now. They are starving they are doing whatever it takes. Why do you think we are in Iraq? America does whatever it takes.

    Lastly, parents should have NO choice to whether to subject themselves or their children to CP or JC, in schools or prisons respectively.

    If we can open up a can of "whoop a$$" on other countries where the stakes are higher, we must be able to self correct ourselves and defeat "Domestic Terrorism" which hurts the our basic unit, the families.

  • NZ Sep 16, 2007

    Look at Zimbabew, they are a economic system in ruin. They are eating dogs, family pets now. They are starving they are doing whatever it takes.

    Why do you think we are in Iraq? Historical norms must be melded with elements of Liberalism, Tolerance, Technological Innovation and practicality.

    I've seen Ivy league educated teachers hold it better than most in the classroom but feel beaten up completely at the end of the day with some of these kids. Their role models are outcasted and sent to prisons, and is know wonder they are revolting at the expense of all the other "good kids". There really is nothing wrong with these kids other than they have been deprived by an archane system.

    We need to adapt quickly, reduce harm and move forward.

    Corporal Punishment in Schools; Judical Canings in Prisons

    With an End to the Dug War =

    Better America in 5 years

    Save the money on prisons, fund more money on human services which don't break families up.

  • whatusay Sep 16, 2007

    Problems in the school system started when integration was forced on the citizens of this country. To compound the problems iyr government intruduced social services. Spanking became a race issue and that is why it was banned and students were taught their "rights".

  • gopanthers Sep 16, 2007

    angora - You and I are very the same old school infact I would say most of the babyboom era people and (and for the most part) we all turned out just fine. Now you can't even spank your kid on the rear end for fear of being reported for abuse.

  • umustbekiddingme Sep 16, 2007

    Did anyone notice that all of the names /addresses released from the Northern High fight lived within walking distance from each other. They all surrounded a park that is very well know for gang activity. And they want to say it is not thought to be gang related. Give me a break!

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