‘It’s not my job’ is not going to fly now

Published 12:00 am Friday, March 10, 2000

Schools say they need help.

Friday, March 10, 2000

Schools say they need help. They cannot seem to stem the recent tide of violence in the nation’s schools. These education professionals say it is tough to pick the students who will commit violent acts – that there are just too many who face untold horrors at home or simply have no good adult authority to monitor what they do.

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And that makes school personnel worry.

The time when we as a society can pass this job on to the schools is simply over. There is no way they can catch every potential powder keg or get every troubled child the help he or she needs to prevent a tragedy.

Add to that concerns about the quality of some parenting itself these days and there are plenty of warning signs that this is a problem that is not going to disappear after a bunch of pronouncements from vote-seeking politicians.

The violence that plagues schools today and the apparent loss of innocence of our children is a societal problem that needs more than words to be resolved.

Because the concerns are so widespread and the job so daunting, making progress will require more than just the efforts of a few schools and more laws that seem to be having little effect on changing the ways our children behave in schools and, more importantly, how they resolve conflict.

If there was ever a need for some real town meetings, it is now.

If raising a child truly takes a village, then the time of passing the buck has ended. Putting the blame on schools and educators is nothing more than an avoidance of the real issue.

Perhaps we need to look at our communities, churches, neighbors, families and friends to see what we can do to save our children – now. For change to come, a dialogue and a partnership have to begin.

Once blood has been shed, it is too late.