The recent mass shooting at Robb Elementry School,Texas-USA has awaken our fight against school and gun violence. The school is a place for learning and not a death trap for teachers and students. Everyone needs to feel safe in school as the safety of learners, teachers and school administrators directly influence learning outcomes.
The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines school violence as youth violence that occurs on school property, on the way to or from school or during a school- sponsored event. A young person can be a victim, a perpetrator, or a witness of school violence. In some cases, the perpetrator (s) or victim (s) are adults within or from outside the school environment.
School violence takes different forms;
• 𝗙𝗶𝗴𝗵𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 (punching, slapping, kicking)
• 𝗪𝗲𝗮𝗽𝗼𝗻 𝘂𝘀𝗲
• 𝗚𝗮𝗻𝗴 𝘃𝗶𝗼𝗹𝗲𝗻𝗰𝗲
• 𝗦𝗲𝘅𝘂𝗮𝗹 𝘃𝗶𝗼𝗹𝗲𝗻𝗰𝗲
In Cameroon, as it is the case with other countries, violence in schools has been on a steady rise, why? 𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗕𝗕𝗖 𝗡𝗘𝗪𝗦 reports that there has been 215 mass shooting in the United States alone since the beginning of this year. In Cameroon, it has been from one violent incident to another; students stabbing peers to death, students stabbing teachers, teachers sexually molesting pupils/students, students fighting with teachers, students bullying peers into comiting suicide etc.
The School-Associated Violent Death Surveillance System (SAVD-SS) monitors school-associated violent deaths across the U.S. They revealed in their findings that;
• Firearms used in school-associated homicides and suicides came primarily from the perpetrator’s home or from friends or relatives.
• Nearly 50% of homicide perpetrators gave some type of warning signal, such as making a threat or leaving a note, before the event. As the case with the Robb School shooting.
The big questions are: How do we tackle and put an end to school violence? How do we make the school environment safe again for teaching and learning?
Image Credit: BBC News
RIP to the Soulsof the departed
Condolences to bereaved families