Isolation Is Not Solution For Violent Students
Psychologists and pedagogues think that students with problematic behavior should not be isolated in special schools, but should work together with psychologists and pedagogues.
Peace education and development of emotional intelligence of students, as well as participation of teachers and parents in the strategy of reducing violence in schools are just a few of the measures recommended by experts in order school fights to become history. The experts that we have consulted confirmed that children with problematic behavior should not be isolated in special schools, but they should work together with psychologists who would help them handle with the aggression.
Zorica V. from Skopje is frightened when sends her son to school. She says that after the recent events her son is frightened.
“The school is place where children should feel safe, they should not be afraid that someone could kill them. I am concerned about his safety, I feel bad until he comes home. Someone must do something,” she says.
The fact that children are frightened when going to school was confirmed by the recent study of the Association for Security Research and Education, according to which half of the high schools students do not feel safe at schools.
Calls for peaceful behavior of students made by Ministers, NGOs, principals and experts were in vain, as only a week ago a students died in a school yard. The Minister of Interior, Gordana Jankulovska, said that, unlike 2010 when 48 cases of violence at schools were registered, in 2011 only in the first month there have been 13 registered cases.
Children’s Embassy Megjashi calls for responsibility for the recent events.
“Will ever something change about the responsibility of teachers, psychological-pedagogical services and principals, who should take care not only for the learning process, but also for the education of the students?” ask from Megjashi.
Gordana Pirkovska Zmijanac, representative of the Embassy and pedagogue, says that we should do something about prevention. She suggests including of peace education into the educational process, just like in developed countries.
“Peace education is not a special subject that should be studied, but a strategy that should be included in the education process. That means education and growing with values that promote peace and living together, non-violence as a way of communication. When a child meets with a conflict, he will know how to transform it in a behavior which is non-violent. He’ll know that problems should be solved with conversation.”
From Megjashi say that there’s almost no day without some violent act at schools, so both the children and the parents are afraid.
Psychiatrist Marija Kocevska Dimovska works on her PhD dissertation on including emotional intelligence as a subject in educational process and thinks that’s the way to reduce the violence at schools.
Kocevska Dimovska says that development of educational intelligence is a new concept which can be included in educational process.
“Teachers are the ones who should show self-control in behavior and transfer their culture of behavior to the students about how should they control their own emotions, especially the negative ones,” says Kocevska Dimovska.
Schools Should Educate
All of the experts claim that schools should restore their educational function, which is neglected. Psychologists Marija Batic calls the educational institutions to take care for the person as a whole, not only for the learning process and adopted knowledge.
“The worst remarks about the educational process are related to the orientation to adopting knowledge only, while the person as a whole is neglected,” says Batic.
Nela Radevska, assistant at Primary School Sv; Kiril I Metodij, said that about 13% of the students from this multiethnic schools have shown violent behavior.
“However, these children are not left on their own. We approach them with counseling with psychologists and pedagogues, while the interethnic tolerance is also induced. Our school is safe. We do not punish immediately those students who make problems, but we act with conversations and other inducing measures,” Radevska says.
Vanco Bozinovski, principal of High School Dimitar Vlahov, says that they fight against the violence at their school with preventive measures, which is made easier by the cameras and the hired security.
“Since we have hired security the overall number of incidents is reduced, while the rest are not serious. The problematic children talk with psychologist and pedagogue, after what we inform the parents and give them warning. In extreme case we expel thoses students from school. That has happened four times in last two years,” says Bozinovski.
Experts say that the parents must take participation in the whole process, while the responsibility should be shared among the teachers, principals and the security. From the Ministry of Education and Science say that with the recent changes of the Primary School Act and the High School Act and the promotion of the so called “schools for parents” and sanctions for the parents who do not care for their children’s behavior the incidents number will be reduced. Pirkovska Zmijanac, however, says that it’s a good reform, but it should not be the only one.
Sociologists warn that the fragile family values influence toward violent behavior, as well as weakening of parental control, the neglect by the social services, and the media and the violent contents on TVs and Internet.
Act for Youths Should Be Enacted
The Coalition of youth organizations “Sega” suggests enacting of an Act for Youths as a measure for reducing of violence among youths.
“That act, despite providing protection for youth’s rights, would point the responsibilities of the young people for developing sane community. That act should provide adequate measures for active participation of the youth into community as well as constructive use of the free time for minimization of these deviancies,” says executive Zoran Ilievski.
This organization recently made a research that included 1040 youths from 14 towns which confirmed that the bad economic conditions and the neglecting by society are the main reasons for deviancies.
The Minister’s Statement out of Context
From the Ministry of Education and Science they say that Minister Todorov’s statement about the talks that violent students should be isolated in special schools has been taken out of context.
“Minister has never said that he suggested any measure, but he talked with experts and there have been conflicting opinions,” say from MES. From Megjashi say that such a measure is not serious. Kocevska Dimovska explained that these children should be treated humanly.
Translated By Petar Todorovski