The issue of conflict and violence in the school is of considerable importance to students, staff, parents, school administrators, school district administrators and the community at large. By being aware of the behaviors, the communication, and the philosophical perspective a particular school adopts, these stakeholders can appreciate and understand the overall school culture that they create. Within the context of this culture, interactions occur and the potential for conflicts exists. The chosen community can be described in many ways.
There are old buildings that look run down and there are new buildings in the neighborhood. There are restaurants around like the big daddy’s restaurant, spiro’s restaurant and baxter’s restaurant. The area has changed because new homes and town houses are being built in the community. The city of Norfolk have changed the names of some of the school who had the name park for example Richard Bowling Elementary school used to be call Bowling park elementary school. The reason behind this name change is that most of the areas around these schools that had the name park in them were populated by lower income people.
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When the city of Norfolk started rebuilding these neighborhoods with diverse incomes, the names of the schools were changed also to meet the rebuilding of the area. Most of the people in the community have lived in this area for their whole life. This community is a diverse community so there are young, old, homeless, people who are single and people who have a families. Most of the population is African American making up 97% of the community, 2% of the community is Hipics and Caucasians. 1% of the community is of another origin.
In the community there weren’t any mosques and temples. In a three miles radius from Richard Bowling Elementary school there were three Baptist churches like the Unity Lutheran church, Temple of God, and St. Mary Pentecostal. So, the overall theme was that the culture was a positive, caring, and consistent environment. The community generally is a group who were committed to setting up a culture that was a safe, positive environment for the students. III. Subsystems The community around the school looks nice. There are new homes being built.
There are still a few building that look run down and but for the most part they are trying to make the area around school look good. Across the street from the school there are mixers of homes being built which include town homes and houses. These same mixers of homes are being built in the back of the school too. There are health and social services available in the community. One shelter where most homeless people go is called the Union Mission. At the Union Mission they can only accept a certain amount of homeless people because they are limited on the amount of space provided to the homeless.
The Salvation Army and habitat for humanity helps the homeless by giving them clothes for interviews. In the School there aren’t any homeless children who attend the school. Most of the families in the community go to the hospital id they have any problems with their health. In the community there are three clinics in the area called New Walk and Hunterville community center, and Parkplace community center. These clinics are limited on what they can offer the community and resources. At this clinic they see a variety of people from pregnant women to people with diabetes.
Most of the people who are sick go to the emergency room because there are more hospitals in the area then local clinics. Some of the hospitals in the area include Norfolk General Hospital, Sentara Leigh Hospital and Depaul Hospital. The home health agency that is most common in the community is provided by the Sentara hospitals. In the area around the school there is only one nursing home called Norfolk Healthcare. There are resources outside the community such as WIC, Medicaid, and Famis from social services. Most of the resources can be accessible to the community by the health department.
The health department makes these resources available but it is up to the community if the take advantage of these resources. Hence, this community seems like more of a thriving community because of the reconstruction they are doing with the neighborhoods and renaming the schools. Also, people in the community shop at the common stores such as Wal-Mart, Farm Fresh, Food Lion and the Spartan Market. Most of the people in the community use a variety of ways to travel such as bus, cabs, Hampton roads transit, walk, and a few ride their bike.
90% of the children in the school ride the bus and the other 10% of the children walk to school because they live close to the school. There are sidewalks that they can use in going to school but there aren’t any bike trails. There are also private transportation that is available to the community like personal vehicles. The public transportation that is available to the community include: buses, taxes and Hampton roads transit. There are also protective services that are available to the community are police, fire department and sanitation.
But still there are crimes committed like robbery, thief, murders, stealing, and people doing and selling drugs. But in general, most of the people in the community feel safe because they have lived here so long that they have learn to adapt to the neighborhoods. Various forms of communication, formal and informal is also available like the door to door, email, and cell phones. There are also news papers such as Virginia pilot, apartment guides, trade post, USA today, and magazines. Most people also have TVs and radios.
Most of them like to watch cartoons, music videos, sports, and realty shows. During the summer the children play at the park and basketball courts. In the winter time the children go to other recreation activities such at skating or boys and girls club. Their major forms of recreation are basketball, football, and cheer dancing. Parents may sponsor and participate in events their children are in. Other recreations are the boys and girls club, Skating rings, but most of the children in the area participates in school activities. IV. Perceptions
Most of the people love this community and refuse to leave it. The only thing they would like is for their community to be more diverse. Most residents find their community`s strength is their older people. They considered the older people as the strength in the community because they have been in the community the longest and seen the way things use to be. They are the people who stand their ground and enforce change. Problems in the community that can be identified are gang violence, violence in general, discipline from parents, and obeying the city of Norfolk curfew regulations.
V. Project The researcher is interested in selecting the elementary school in this community as I see that it has a positive reputation. The selected school was suggested through an extensive consultative process involving the principal of various elementary schools who were aware of the reputation of their feeder schools. Also used as criteria for the selection of the school was the responses that were collected from the community dwellers during the community assessment process.
Insight and guidance were also sought from specialized personnel in the district`s central office who worked in the elementary school as their major role in their job description. The researcher then visited the school. The school was old, constructed of brick. The student population was approximately 200. It was located in a low to medium socio-economic area, as determined by the perceptions of the respondents. The researcher visited the school principal where she discussed the proposed program, the method of conducting the program.
The principal of this school expressed enthusiasm for the proposed program and offered to take this idea to the staff. The response from the staff was overwhelmingly positive and the entire staff agreed verbally to be involved. It is believed, by the researcher, that this particular staff was proud of the school they worked at and subsequently were interested in further insights. The proposed program is a modification of the “Bully Proofing Your School” program developed by Garrity and her colleagues (1997), which , in turn, was modeled after Olweu`s core intervention program (1978).
This program is unique in its emphasis on clinical support to victims and bullies in the form of individual and group counseling, as well as its collaboration with community services. The major goals of this program are to reduce bullying behaviors and create safe and secure school environments. The main components include the following: 1. VI. References Garrity, C. , Jens, K. , Porter, W. , Sager, N. , & Short-Camili, C. (1997). Bully proofing your school. Longmont, CO: Sopris West. Olweus, D. (1978). Aggression in the schools: Bullies and whipping boys. Washington, DC: Hemisphere (Wiley).
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