York Center Addresses Violence Prevention
statistics show that violence in schools is down; in the 1992-93
school year there were 54 violent deaths in the United States,
compared to 16 last year. Still, our schools are far from safe.
In 1997 there were 4,000 rapes and 11,000 weapon fights reported
in schools. And school shootings, in the span of three weeks this
March in the same district in San Diego, there were two separate
What can we do to cope with all this violence? Prevention maybe
the best medicine. One New York agency, the Center for Social
and Emotional Education’s goal is just that.
involved with supporting parents and educators who want to raise
socially and emotionally competent children,” says co-founder
and president, Dr. Jonathan Cohen.
Through a web site (www.csee.net),
books, videotapes and presentations, the Center teaches the importance
of developing outstanding citizenship.
basically understanding the importance of teaching children and
parents how to understand yourself and others,” says Lauren Hyman
who presents violence prevention methods in curriculum for the
Using problem-solving, conflict resolution and role playing, the
Center deals with the emotional side of the student with the hope
of developing a school climate that is safe and productive. According
to Hyman, by dealing with children on this level, violence can
cornerstone of our program is to effectively deal with children
in such a way that there feeling a sense of control and are able
to deal constructively instead of destructively,” she says.
Recent research shows that indeed, children who are taught with
preventative ways of dealing with problems are better able to
handle conflict. While many schools have plans to deal with violence
while it occurs—a lockdown or a drill, for example—Hyman says
that these reactions are already too late in the process.
wait until it happens,” she asks. “Why not deal with it before
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