Physical fighting in school is generally against school policy as it is disruptive to the learning process and is dangerous for students, staff and bystanders. Maintaining a safe school environment is the responsibility of all members of the school community. School counselors are often helpful in assisting students with anger and impulse control issues, bullying tendencies, etc., to develop the coping and problem solving skills they need to be successful both academically and socially. Fighting in school is usually grounds for suspension or expulsion, depending upon the severity of the situation.
- Teach students how to avoid conflict
- Model and reinforce positrive behavior.
- Watch for warning signs. Students often display signs of violent behavior before physical aggression toward a peer or staff member occurs.
- Today’s reality is that school counselors and school administrators need to have well-crafted crisis plans ready to go.
- Equally as important is the attention that school personnel should pay to the smaller, day-to-day issues that affect a school’s safety, from racial microaggressions and bullying to dating and relationship violence.
- School counselors need both preventive and reactive tools in their toolboxes.
- Violence can be defined as anything that is done with the intent to harm someone else.
- In school settings, conversations about safety should take into consideration that violence can be physical, such as fighting, or nonphysical, including aggressive behavior that is verbal, psychological or carried out over social media.
- An inclusive and resilient school environment in which counselors play pivotal roles is crucial in helping to maintain a safe school environment.
- One key way school counselors can foster a culture of safety is by making themselves a familiar face and ready resource for students, parents and school staff.
- Counselors can play a key role in making connections and building rapport with and between students.
- School counselors can also play an important role in ensuring school safety by working with teachers and other school staff to identify and reach out to students who are at-risk or struggling, be it socially and/or academically.
- Some early high risk behaviors for school violence are: physical and verbal aggression, social withdrawal, the inability to wait or cope with frustration, lack of pro-social behaviors, such as caring and empathy; and relational aggression.
- The approaches school counselors take to cultivate a safe environment must be tailored to their schools’ unique needs.
- A school-wide assessment is a great first step to address the needs of the school for fostering a safe school environment.
- Indiana School Discipline Laws and Regulations
- The counselor’s role in ensuring school safety
- School Counselors Serving Students with Disruptive Behavior Disorders
- School Violence Prevention
- How to Handle Physical Fights at School
- Warning Signs of School Violence
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