The Increasing Violence in Suburban Middle Schools

Introduction

According to Schwartz (2003) violence is thought to be a suburban public school problem and a consequence of poverty and family dysfunction; however, he argues that stable schools across the country are experiencing violence even though the nature and extent is different in suburban and city schools. Teenage violence within school systems have been a growing concern for the educational system, particularly suburban schools. Numerous studies have reported that in the United States alone 36% of all discriminating or personal assaults and 40% of robberies that teenagers face take place when they are within the school vicinities (Elliott, 2000). Arndt (1994), Elliott (2000), Kaplan and Owings (2006) and Rubel (1999), have also focused on how the overall peer intimidation affects the teenagers in different phases of their academic life. Rubel (1999) stated:

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Seven percent of eighth graders stay home at least once a month to avoid a bully. Twenty-two percent of suburban 12 and 13 year olds students know at least one person of the same age that participates in a gang. The typical victim of an attack or robbery at school is a male in the seventh grade assaulted by a boy his own age (p. 12).

As violence escalates, Theriot (2009) has asserted that a way to prevent violence is for resource officers to get involved as guides and pathways to either prevent or define peaceful paths out of potential violent situations. Rubel (1999) explained that there were certain sections of schools, for example, locker rooms and toilets, where students faced more violence than in other sections and hence these sections needed the thorough and strict administration of the resource officers, for example, school corridors and playground, he states:

First, early adolescence is a difficult age because young teenagers are physically hyperactive and without acceptable social behavior. Second, many middle school students for the first time meet same age people from different ethic and social backgrounds (p. 13).

Suburban schools in particular are the focus of this study as numerous researchers reveal certain characteristics of violent teenagers like low-income groups, students suffering from family dysfunctions, psychological strains, etc are found more commonly in suburban setting (Arndt, 1994; Rubel, 1999; Elliott, 2000). However the problem is not restricted within this context as many stable schools are also facing problems with crimes being committed by teenagers (Furlong, 2005). However the extension and variation of violence in suburban schools is very different from other schools as a study by the National League of Cities of 700 communities reports that more than 50% of students within suburban school setups believed that the violence rates within their schools are increasing; the same study also reports that more than 30% suburban schools have experienced a significant increase in violence in half a decade (Arndt, 1994).

It is but an obvious choice to opt for a society that is predominantly colorblind or faith blind. The basic norm of a democratic society is to provide its mass with a structural form that offers equality in terms of justice and social characteristic. It is an unwanted phenomenon but it is also extremely true at the same time that racism is a curse that exists among us whether we like it or not. The presence of racism is well documented in many societal domains including workplace, school, health care, and housing. It is very peculiar to consider racism is an ideology where humans are separated into various groups in the belief that some people are superior because they belong to a particular ethnic or national group. It could be summarized that racism is the result of having negative judgments, beliefs, and feelings toward certain identifiable groups (Waldron, 2009). There are much evidences that racism based discriminatory approaches are leading to violence in recent time and it can be identified that about 70% of school violence is fundamentally racial in nature (Cornell, 2006).

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The focal point of the study will be to evaluate the significance of resource officer in controlling the violence. This particular method is a popular strategy in many schools to prevent crimes and violence as it shows promising signs of not only reducing violence but also creating an academic environment that promotes learning, discussions, collaborations and healthy interactions amongst students with different backgrounds (Kaplan & Owings, 2006). This case study will analyze, evaluate and reflect on the role of resource officers within suburban school structures especially when dealing with the potential of violence amongst teens and within schools. A through qualitative method would carried out that would include resource officer in interviews to asses the problem.

Statement of the Problem

The problem to be addressed in this qualitative study is to examine the factors that result in the increasing violence in suburban middle schools. The fundamental problem of the research is to assess the problem of valance and reduce the problem of violence. Thus, it would be interesting to look at resource officers to see if discrimination really plays a role in violence, and what they can offer as support. Violence, generally stems from a certain group of students who act out towards their peers within school grounds. The earlier defined environment for schools being safe havens for children no longer exists as the more and more parents now fear that their children are exposed to different categories of violence within schools grounds (Waldron, 2009). This rising concern amongst parents has led many administrators to try and figure out a strategy that could be helpful not only in the short term but also be helpful for the future. Gang violence and racist crimes have plagued schools for years whether it was studied the 1970s and 1980s or studied in the 21st century. As per the findings of a study conducted by the California Safe Schools Coalition, 7.5% of middle and high school students based in California, which amounts to in excess of 2000 students per year, are exposed to some form of violence (Johnson, 2009). The entire situation adds a very detrimental impact on the society in the long run. These elements of discrimination would continue to grow in future once the sufferers of such discrimination enter the society. There would be a negative approach towards other races and it would disrupt the balance of the society in the long run (Johnson, 2009). A method must be formulated to stop the violence and the best people who can formulate such methods or can provide insights in formulation a solution of this problem of violence in suburban middle schools are the resource officers (Cornell, 2006).

Resource officers are involved on a daily basis with administrators, students, and parents and hence have the opportunity to observe many different situations which they can then adapt to and transform so that the children and teenagers understand them to instead of being frustrated by them (Larson, 2005). The hiring criteria of resource officers need to be set at a high parallel as they would be required to be adept at working with a variety of people with different personalities. Because of this work, resource officers will need to have access to important information and likely hold distinctive perspectives (Waldron, 2009).

Despite the concern about suburban middle school violence, there is a lack of research on suburban middle school resource officers. In the absence of such research, it would be useful to examine how these resource officers perceive their duties, as well as to gather their recommendations to suburban middle school principals for improving the school learning climate. This will basically design the purpose of this case study more thoroughly (Elliot, 2000). Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this qualitative case study is to look at resource officers to assess the situation and their overall responsibility towards the violence within the environment of the suburban middle schools (Denmark, 2005). Qualitative research is almost always stated as a process with interpretative standards along with the various actions of theoretical assumptions. This definition can be based on its sustainable nature which highly depends on the experience of an individual with respect to communication. It can also be taken into account that the entire definition considers the fact that social formulations are responsible for the creation of reality (Cornell, 2006). Further, it is also important to declare that qualitative research basically targets the social context so that we are able to describe interpret and even decode the fundamental importance of such a phenomenon (Denmark, 2005). Such a process is completely functional within the constraints of the interpretative standards which lessen its illusions by sharing subjectivity through conforming to the intricacy, genuineness and contextualization of such a study (Creswell, 2003).

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The method of the researcher will be to gather information through the use of interviews of 11 resource officers assigned to three selected suburban middle schools along with analysis of selected case studies. Interviews of 11 resource officers would be suitable as it is not a very large number to handle and it is, at the same time, not a small number to make the study insufficient. These interviews will provide an in-depth look at the factual responsibilities of resource officers and their better idea of the assessment of the issue of violence and carry out these responsibilities effectively. Additionally this study will document the resource officers’ recommendations for improving safe learning environment (Denmark, 2005).

Research Questions

What roles do resources officers have in reducing violence in schools by identifying and reducing discrimination?

The complimentary or secondary research questions that will guide this study as offshoots of the main question could include:

  1. How do resource officers identify their duties towards decreasing violence in the suburban middle school?
  2. How do resource officers identify their political influence on the violent inclinations exhibited by students and help the researcher to formulate a strategy or method to stop the violence?
  3. What main approach do the resource officers implement in order to reduce violence and maintaining a safe school climate conductive to learning?

This study’s findings will serve as a baseline for further examinations of resource officers’ attitudes, and behavior towards their responsibilities within the suburban school. This study will also provide an overview of the recommendations from resource officers concerning school environments and academic standings (Cornell, 2006). The educational structure today has its own set of problems that not only include resource allocation and the provision of adequate academic and practical education but also includes the increasing violence and victimization that has been growing in the past two decades (Elliot, 2000). This study will contribute to the educational leadership literature by providing important, current and new (if and wherever possible) information and theories about the tasks and responsibilities of the suburban middle school administrators, resource officers and parents as well as the overall input that the community can give towards decreasing violence and crimes within school structures (Cornell, 2006).

Definition of Key Terms

This section of the paper will focus on explaining the general terms that will be used regularly throughout the paper and are part of the research questions for this qualitative study.

Resource Officers. In the context of this literature review the resource officers will be defined as the counselors and the guides for students regarding matters that are outside the jurisdiction of basic academics but within the dominion of the law. The term resource officers is used, it simply means a supervisor and counselor whose main task will obviously be to guide the children away from violent activities towards more constructive activities like sports arts, academics, etc. the resource officers will also serve as a non-authority figure who is part of the administration so that the students feel comfortable talking and interacting with the resource officer. Furthermore, this stance will allow the resource officer to be a buffer between the educators and the students (ADA County Sheriff’s Officer, 2009).

Suburban School. Suburban schools and their environment are defined by the suburban societies. The suburban societies or suburbs are usually the explained as the smaller communities that are formed at the outer borders of a city. Usually suburbs are made up of detached or dysfunctional family setups with single parents. The overall population in the suburbs is a lot lower than the city that they surround. Hence, the suburban schools will exist in such circumstances sand will in turn have characteristics such as: students from low income rate family, low-paying job opportunities, limited government funds and resources, poor security, diversity of culture and discriminations amongst other things (Baxandall & Ewen, 2000).

Violence. The threat or use of physical force with the intention of causing physical injury, damage, or intimidation of another person (pinker, 2007).

Political influence. Political influence for this study will be defined as the overall impact that eth activities and observations of the resource officers will have on their overall ability to formulate the policies of the schools that they are working in, in the long and short term and how these changing policies will be used within the school structure to not only improve the overall school environment but also reduce the level of violence or crimes committed (Hawkes, 2003).

Brief Review of the Literature

Violence in schools is growing by 20% per year (Elliott, 2000) and Resource officers currently are involved on a daily basis with administrators, students, and parents; that is why they have the opportunity to observe many different situations from a bird’s eye view. Suburban middle school resource officers hold tactically placed information-gathering positions within schools. Because of their unique interactions with students, teachers, and staff, resource officers have valuable knowledge to offer principals regarding maintenance of a school climate conducive to learning. However, no research has been conducted to determine what information resource officers have to offer with special regards to their influence on reducing violence.

In the absence of such research, it would be useful to examine how these resource officers perceive their duties, as well as to gather their recommendations to suburban middle school principals for improving the school learning climate. Because of the possible lack of scholarly studies on this topic and the significance of violence in schools has for society, there is a need to develop knowledge of how suburban middle school resource officers perceive their duties and examine their recommendations to suburban middle school principals for decreasing violence in schools while simultaneously improving the school learning climate. A qualitative research study will be developed to examine this issue.

The job description of a suburban middle school resource officer typically includes the recognition enforcement of laws and regulations governing the order and security of the city’s public schools. The position requires a close daily working relationship with the children, counselors, teachers and parents. The work performed by resource officer is conducted under the supervision of the school principal or building administrator (Bond, 2001).

Merton (as cited in Siegel, 2003), explains that socioeconomic conditions add considerably to the extent and the degree of school problems, which is why we can see that violence is suburban schools is far more extreme and recurrent then in the city schools. Merton (1957) also stated “without acceptable means for obtaining success, individuals feel social and psychological strain”. He calls this condition anomie and says that as a consequence, it should not be surprising if “these youths may use deviant methods to achieve their goals” (p. 114) (as cited in Siegel, 2003). One of the most relevant ways that resource officers can initiate a positive change in the suburban schools and eliminate violence and crime rates is through the use of character education programs that mainly aim to improve the individuals.

These education programs are the pillars that design the characteristics of the youth that drives the future of any society. It is true that the word or phrase character education has always been addressed and tackled as the one phenomenon whereby the older generations in a society can design the behavior, information, mannerisms and personalities of the younger generations by controlling and managing their experiences in early childhood or youthful years (Banas, 2001; Posey, Davidson, Korpi, 2002). The burden of violence is carried more so by teachers nowadays than any other segment of people in a society, or in the case of this study, this burden will be carried by the resource officers employed in the suburban schools. Hence, looking at a more academic approach for a definition of character education, one can say that resource officers can build the idea that can reduce violence. Methods must be created that would enable a student to drift away from violence and more towards education. It should look for their own emotional and mental stances as well as their overall contribution to the society by creating experiences that will not lead to violence, delinquent behavior, frustration or anger so that students cannot only learn but also develop their own skills as law-abiding citizens but also as human beings and a positive structural part of the society (Curtis, 2002; Devine, Ho Seuk, & Wilson, 2000).

Besides all that has already been mentioned, this study will also aim to present the different notions that have been made available over the years with regards to character education and its affect on the overall teacher’s attitudes towards eliminating violence and academic settings. The paper will include some of the popular beliefs amongst researchers of why character education is important in relation to its affect on the overall improvement within students and their inclination to be violent (Gauld, 2003). Furthermore the overall financial inequalities across different levels of school for providing education will also be discussed from the point of view of the administrators within the suburban schools and how that has an impact on the overall violence and crime ratios. We will also highlight the importance of effective communication in the character development process and will provide the solutions that can be applied for implementing a more effective character development program by the resource officers to eradicate violence (Klee, 2000).

The social interdependence principle is also an integral part of a character education program especially one that is aimed to eradicate violence and crimes within schools. The foundation of the social interdependence principles lies in the belief that the phenomenon of cooperation is an aftermath of the positive ideas and approach of students towards each other after the recognition and completion of a similar goal. This particular approach is vital to implement in suburban schools that suffer due to diverse cultures and lack of common ground between these cultures. Social interdependence will cause many of the students from diverse cultures to interact and thus develop understanding and patience towards each other which in turn will reduce violent or discriminating crimes between these cultures (Jarvis, 2000; Murphy, 2002).

Kurt Koffka, a psychologist from Gestalt, in his analyses early in the 1900s explained that while the groups of students are vibrant and energetic, the interdependence, characters and attitudes of and/or between the group members is diverse and inconsistent (Nucci & Narvaez, 2008). In a relative study, the researcher explains that interdependence created from having similar objectives becomes the sole reason of existence for the group and allows that group to act as a “dynamic whole” and develop a positive structure of character, principles and personalities within the group. Everything stays connected and communicated so change in one area affects or causes a change in the entire structure of the group, hence the development or abandonment of a trait in one member of the group, like a violent act, results in the trigger of a similar reaction in the entire group, like decrease in overall violent attitude (Jarvis, 2000; Lickona, 2004).

It should be noted that Personal networking helps product managers in leading their cross-functional product team. It can be defined as the practice of maintaining and developing a personal network that is beneficial in launching global products by stretching the established conceptions of teamwork outside our direct peer group. It improves productivity and is attempted over an extended time period. Being well connected improves our personal effectiveness and we are able to launch new products faster (Lamb, 2004).

The main barriers to communication are lack of empathy, physical disconnection between the receiver and sender, hindrance in transmission of message, inadequate or shortage of effective attention in word selection, incorrect mental outlook, and choice of unsuitable media, inadequate feedback and noise barrier. To overcome the difficulty in selecting proper words we should always use familiar, concrete and single words that are short and simple to understand. To overcome the mental block the sender should not be arrogant, should not assume the message in a rational manner and should not have any strong emotions, self-interests or misconceptions. Noise barrier can be overcome if we can identify its source (Lamb, 2004).

Managing up helps a team to get interested in their work, take more responsibilities and work for longer hours. It humanizes our workplace as employers and employees realize that both care for each other. Managing up helps a team as it makes us realize what the team leaders are looking for and what matters most to them. We should be able to say yes and no as per the teams’ view making the leader realize that we are focused on the needs of the team. Being curious and suggesting ideas to the leaders will help us improve ourselves. The team members become more responsible in solving their own problems thus, filling the holes in the team and are also able to bring out their abilities (Lamb, 2004).

Horizontal communication is the exchange of information among the functional units or departments by coordinating their basic activities. In order to coordinate the efforts of the team members at same levels of a firm horizontal communication is important. It is more efficient as information does not flow from top levels to the bottom levels of a team or vice verse but in a horizontal manner. Thus, it increases the effectiveness of communication (Lamb, 2004).

Culture surely affects communication of a team and thus, should begin right at the top with the leadership team. Without proper culture in a team we will not be able to trust and be open with our leaders and team members. The team will not be strong and cooperative with each other. It also brings about higher morals and improves our productivity and customer care services. It establishes better communication among the various levels and interdepartmental sections of an organization. It encourages people to speak up and be more participating in the products of the team (Lamb, 2004). The cultural change cognitive process also helps to plan and manage the basic human side of our workplace. Innovative communication to keep the management and team members informed about the project, its due dates and various launch activities could be achieved through the following communication styles:

  • Self-Talk or Intra-personal Communication
  • Interpersonal Communication
  • Listening to team members and leaders
  • Feedback
  • Maintaining a small group
  • Non-verbal Communication
  • Public Speaking
  • Asking right questions
  • Intercultural communication patterns
  • Organizational communication system (Lamb, 2004)

Thus, it would be better for resource officers to apply all these means of communication and yield the best possible result in the context of violence in school.

Hence, to conclude, this paper will thus focus on the attitudes of resource officers towards implementing character education programs as well as other academic setups in suburban elementary settings to counter the growing concern about safety and the universal threat of violence in suburban schools. This study will analyze the overall approach that most resource officers currently have when implementing these necessary education programs. All of the aspects discussed in this paper are discussed from the point of views of the resource officers on the current situation of the programs being implemented to counter violence and their own responsibilities within these programs as well as the efficient or successful steps that are being implemented and can be improved upon in the future.

Measurement Assessment

Qualitative method

Qualitative research is a broad expression for exploratory methodologies characterised as ethnographic, naturalistic, anthropological, field, or participant observer research. It highlights the importance of taking a look at variables in light of the inherent backgrounds in which they are to be found. Interaction amongst the variables is significant in this regard. Comprehensive information is collected by means of open ended queries that present direct references. The researcher, questionnaire designer or the interviewer constitutes a very fundamental component of the investigation process. This approach diverges from those adopted in quantitative research techniques which make efforts to collect data by objective routines to facilitate analysis and present information on the issues of relations, comparisons, and forecasts and makes an attempt to do away with the role of the investigator from the process of investigation (Banyard 2005).

The primary objective of a qualitative research is to understand the resource officers’ view of a particular issue and their idea of formulating a method to eradicate violence. Qualitative researches focus on a holistic description. In the process of conducting qualitative researches, the researchers aspire to procure an overall or complete picture. A holistic description of proceedings, incidents, and philosophies taking place in its inherent background is frequently required to facilitate precise situational decisions. This is at variance as compared to quantitative research approaches in which carefully chosen, pre-defined variables are examined. Corroboration is an important aspect of qualitative research approaches. The rationale underlying corroboration is not to validate whether the people’s opinion are accurate or factual representation of a particular situation but somewhat to make sure that the research discoveries truthfully echo the people’s viewpoint, irrespective of what they are. The intention of the corroboration process is to help the researchers enhance their understanding of the likelihood that their judgments will be perceived as plausible or worthy of contemplation by others (Creswell 2003).

Research design

This particular research material makes use of the survey technique with a carefully designed questionnaire as the data collection instrument supplemented by a draft policy to carry out a qualitative assessment of the responses. The primary fieldwork carried out would be a survey conducted across the various sections of the construction industry. The research field work timeline would be spanned 4 months across which the extensive survey was carried out. The fundamental data collecting instrument was a carefully designed open questionnaire which was meticulously designed to procure the views of the respondents about a conscious sustainable violence management strategy and thereby analysing the role of Resource Officers in the process of violence management.

The questionnaire would gather background information on the respondents profile and specifically inquired about whether the opinions expressed were personal or represented the standpoint of an organization. In case the views expressed were from an organizational point of view, the information about the profile of the organization would be collected or else demographic information about the respondent would be collected. This would be done to keep a provision for later analysis of demographic or profile oriented analysis of the information collected.

Variables

The resource officers being studied are themselves the independent variable in this study, or perhaps more accurately the various aspects of these resource officers’ jobs and their better formulation of method that would help them reduce violence and develop their duty and effectiveness. These traits have been shown not only to be highly influential in the area of school safety in both urban and suburban schools, but also highly variegated among resource officers both individually and in different communities (Black, 2009; Bond, 2001). Existing methods of establishing the credibility and validity of these variables include detailed questionnaires and the examination of official job descriptions, obtained from the resource officers themselves, school and district administrators, and several government agencies (Fabrey, 2002; Finn, 2006; May, Feesel, & Means, 2004). The relationships of school resource officers, institutions, and districts to local law enforcement agencies also play a large role in the situations proposed for study (Chen, 2000; Rivard, 2004). The consistency among the definitions in these studies provides a great deal of certainty and reliability in these constructs, and provides sufficient data for comparison.

Other variables in the study that is more easily quantifiable, such as the level of violence in schools, the number of cases of guns being found in schools, and other statistics available through quantitative studies (Baker, 2000; Carter, & Freeman, 1999). These variables, in the context of the proposed study, are the dependent variables, and are believed to be influenced by the various responsibilities and perspectives of the resource officer—this study aims to determine the specifics and the extent of the relationship between these sets of variables, and established methods exits in these studies for such determinations.

Other variables, including drug use and other disciplinary problems in schools, are tangentially related to the question at hand as dependent variables, and these issues are also more easily quantified through statistics kept by law enforcement, school districts and individual schools, and the individual states (Duke, 2002; Gough, 2000). Psychometric analysis of the quantified data will take place according to standard and relatively straightforward statistical techniques; adjustments for school location, size, and income level—all established influences on rates of school violence—will be made according to previously established guidelines in relevant research and in the general field of statistical analysis (Radcliffe, 2009; Wilson, 2001; Cohen, 2000). In this way, valid comparisons of schools with and without resource officers, and schools that utilize (or do not utilize) their resource officers in specific ways can be reached, while controlling extraneous variable in as much as it is possible to do so (Bouma, 2002; Cohen, 2000).

The greatest difficulty in establishing the validity, consistency, and reliability of these results will be in the necessary comparisons drawn between the quantitative and qualitative data, which though one of the last steps of the research process is also that which most directly answers the research question. Some methods for such comparison have already been established, but this will in large part require the quantification of qualitative data so the statistical comparisons can be made (Bouma, 2002; Cohen, 2000).

Data collection and analysis

All these variables are considered as very relevant and important features of the statistical method and it is to be seen if these aspects are fundamentally acceptable in practical world and it could well be mentioned that education are a very relevant manifestation of the social dimensions. As a result, if the test is carried out in a proper manner with proper calculations of the population involved then there is no reason that the results would be both logical and true at the end consideration. Though it is a qualitative method, opinions of the patients would be recorded and formulated to ascertain visible trends related to the research issue.

However, it should be taken into contention that to obtain such goals in finding legitimate and verified answers substantial and thorough research should be operated in a far larger scale. For example, for interactions away from desk, the first and foremost variable required is to find out the exact location of occurrence. Thus, regular visits to the educational institutes are absolutely needed. Next, it should be looked into whether there are enough variables on the structural properties, examining how conversations are opened and closed and the ways that participants introduce and agree on conversation context. Another test prediction is about frequency. Frequent interaction should share background context as well as being familiar with each other. We therefore expected frequent interactions to show less formality in opening and closing interactions as well as reduced need for context setting (Fowler, 2002). This would make it possible to get the perfect insight the issues of the research.

References

ADA County Sheriff’s Office. (2009). School resource officers. Web.

Arndt, R. (1994). School violence on rise. Survey says: Not just a big city issue. Nation’s Cities Weekly, 17(45), 12.

Banas, S. L. (2001). Caring messages for the school year: 40 weeks of daily discussion ideas on character. Chapel Hill, NC: Character Development Group, Inc.

Banyard, P. (2005). Ethical issues and guidelines. NY: Flanagan, Cara Publication.

Baxandall, R. & Ewen, E. (2000). Picture windows: How the suburbs happened. New York: Basic Book.

Bond, B. (2001). Principals and school resource officers: Defining roles. Principal Leadership, 1(8), 52-55.

Curtis, A. M. (2002). A good place to be: A leadership guide for making your vision a reality within your school, within your classroom, within your family, within your heart. Port Chester, NY: Dude Publishing, a division of National Professional Resources.

Creswell, J.W. (2003). Research design. Qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods approaches (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Cornell, D. (2006). School violence: fears versus facts. London: Routledge.

Denmark, F. (2005). Violence in schools: cross-national and cross-cultural perspectives. NY: Springer.

Devine, T. J., Seuk, H. & Wilson, J. (2000). Cultivating heart and character: educating for life’s most essential goals. Chapel Hill, NC: Character Development Group, Inc.

Elliott, D. (2000, January). Violence in the schools: Everybody has solutions. American School Board Journal, 162, 27-37.

Furlong, M.J. (2005). Development of the california school climate and safety survey-short form. Psychology in the Schools 42(2), 137-149.

Gauld, J. W. (2003) Hyde: Preparation for life. Bath, ME: The Hyde Foundation. Web.

Guerra, N.G. What works (and what does not) in youth violence prevention: Rethinking the questions and finding new answers. New Directions for Evaluation 2006(110), 59-71.

Hawkes, D. (2003). Ideology (2nd ed.). Routledge.

Jarvis, F.W. (2000). With love and prayers: A headmaster speaks to the next generation. Jaffrey, NH: David R. Godine, Publisher, Inc.

Johnson, SL. (2009). Improving the school environment to reduce school violence. Journal of School Health, 79(10), 451-465.

Kaplan, L. & Owings, W. (2006). An instructional perspective to preventing middle level violence. Journal for effective Schools, 5(1), 17-34.

Klee, M. B. (2000). Core virtues: A literature-based program in character education (K-6). Redwood City, CA: The Link Institute.

Lamb, D. (2004). Organizational communication and management. Auckland: OPTL.

Larson, J. (2005). Managing student aggression in high schools: Implications for practice. Psychology in the Schools 35(3) 283-295.

Lickona, T. (2004). Character matters: How to help our children develop good judgment, integrity, and other essential virtues. New York: Simon and Schuster.

Murphy, M. (2002). Character education in america’s blue ribbon schools: Best practices for meeting the challenge (2nd ed.). Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press.

Nucci, L. P., & Narvaez, D. (2008). Handbook of moral and character education. New York: Routledge.

Pinker, S. (2007) The history of violence, The New Republic.

Posey, J., Davidson, M., & Korpi, M. (2002). Character education evaluation toolkit. Washington, DC: Character Education Partnership. Web.

Rubel, R. (1999). Violence and crime in the schools. Boston: Lexington.

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Seigel, L. (2003). Juvenile delinquency: Theories, practice and law. Belmont, CA: Thomas Wadworth.

Theriot, M. (2009). School resource officers and the criminalization of student behavior. Journal of Criminal Justice, 37(3), 280.

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Appendix

Annotated bibliography

Baker, K., & Rubel, L. (2000). Violence and crime in schools. Massachusetts: Cambridge University Press. Academic Search Ebrary database.

In this article, the authors provide great insight concerning the far-reaching impact violence has on schools. Special attention is paid to students’ fear of crime while travelling to and from schools. Great detail is provided regarding students and other others involved with schools take great measures in order to prevent school children from becoming victims of violence.

Black, S. (2009). The role of the school resource officer. New York: Wiley.

Here, the author explores the roles of school resource officers (SROs), including law enforcement, classroom instruction, school advisors, and role models. The benefits of SROs on campus, such as their ability to handle special cases, deal with emerging problems, and improve students, are also discussed.

Bond, B. (2001). Principals and school resource officers: Defining roles. Principal Leadership,1(8), 52-55. 

The author of this article examines how many principals have recently acquired school resource officers, police officers who are stationed in schools. Great detail is provided regarding how principals and officers understand each other’s roles and express partnership details in a memorandum of understanding.

Bouma, G. D. ( 2002). The research processs (4th ed.). Oxford University Press: South Melbourne.

The author argued that a reliable indicator or measure gives you the result each time the same thing is measured as long as what you are measuring is not changing. Reliability means that the information provided by indicators (e.g. the questionnaire) does not vary as a result of characteristics of the indicator, instrument or measurement device itself. Reliability means repeatability, and consistency.

Carter, R. (1999). Suburban schools’ mass shootings: Inner cities a haven Safety measures credited, but nobody feels invulnerable: [Home Edition]. The Atlanta Journal the Atlanta Constitution, p. JK; 1. 

When examining issues related to violence, school shootings, the author presents coverage of inner cities, urban, suburban, and rural areas. The influence of violence on urban and suburban schools was also discussed.

Chen, D. (2000). More police walking school beats in suburbs parents, students told action is a preventive step: [NORTHWEST SPORTS FINAL, NW Edition]. Chicago Tribune, p. 1. 

The author provides great insight concerning resource officers’ duties in suburban schools in this article. Recognizing the importance of adolescent behavior, Chen also discusses the critical stage in children.

Cohen, J. (1988). Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences (2nd ed.). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

The author give a wide range of verdicts on the Null Hypothesis Significance Test Procedures (NHSTP) defence in Statistical Significance. The null-hypothesis significance-test procedure (NHSTP) is defended in a framework in which deductive and inductive rules are deployed in theory. The defensible hypothetico-deductive structure of the framework is used to make explicit the distinctions between (1) substantive and statistical hypotheses, (2) statistical alternative and conceptual alternative hypotheses, and (3) making statistical decisions and drawing theoretical conclusions.

Duke, D. L. (2002). Creating safe schools for all children. Boston: University of Virginia. 

The author provides an overview and synthesis of research on school safety issues. Special attention is paid to the school as a whole, rather than on classroom or individual level planning. Recommendations are provided for school safety when dealing with behavior problems.

Fabrey, C. A. (2002). School resource officers’ experiences in middle schools in Western North Carolina: A qualitative study. Ed.D. dissertation, Western Carolina University, United States – North Carolina. Retrieved from Dissertations & Theses: Full Text.(Publication No. AAT 3045008).

The primary purpose of the study was to investigate the experiences of law enforcement officers assigned as School Resource Officers (SRO) in middle schools in Western North Carolina. Specifically, the study was guided by three research questions: (1) What are the experiences of School Resource Officers in middle schools in western North Carolina? (2) What are the law enforcement officers’ expectations as School Resource Officers in middle schools in western North Carolina? (3) How do the School Resource Officers feel about working in middle schools rather than working in a more traditional law enforcement setting? The author uses qualitative methods for gathering and analyzing data. The results shows that although differences exist at each middle school, SROs share similar experiences, hold similar expectations, and offer comparable feelings about working in middle schools in Western North Carolina.

Finn, P. (2006). School resource officer programs. FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, 75(8), 1-7. 

This article focuses on the school resource officer (SRO) programs being conducted in U.S. schools. The types of activities in which school resource officers are engaged in are identified. A discussion of the main benefits of an SRO program is also presented, including that they reduce the workload of patrol officers and road deputies while improving the image of officers among students.

Freeman, R. M. (1999). Reducing violent behavior in the classroom: A comparison of two Middle schools. Ph.D. dissertation, Georgia State University, United States – Georgia. Retrieved from the Dissertations & Theses: Full Text.(Publication No. AAT 9941589).

The authors, researchers at Georgia State University, use data from the Centers for Disease Control to evaluate the impact of the Boys Town Education Model (BTEM) on reducing violent student behaviors within a large suburban middle school setting. The author examined student discipline and compared the frequency of officer referrals and the grade level, sex, and race of the suspended students. The author finds the study reflected the BTEM was effective in reducing violent student behaviors.

Gough, P. (2000). Dextoxifying schools. Phi Delta Kappan, 81(7), 482-485.

The author criticizes schools that mimic police states and that mete out punishments for students that do not fit their crimes. According to the author, democracy should be brought back into the classroom, and the schoolhouse should be detoxified for the children.

May, D., Fessel, S., & Means, S. (2004). Predictors of principals’ perceptions of school resource officer effectiveness in kentucky. American Journal of Criminal Justice, 29(1), 75-93. 

In this article, the authors gather data regarding the impact of school resource officers (SROs) on school safety, suggesting such previous data is limited. Using surveys collected from 128 principals, the authors examine the impact of SROs on perceptions of school safety among school administrators in Kentucky. Results indicate that most principals in Kentucky feel that SROs provide a valuable addition to school safety in their schools; however, the results also reveal the importance of communication between principals, SROs, and law enforcement supervisors regarding the nature of the SRO role. The implication of these findings and their impact on future policy was also discussed.

Radcliffe, J. School first in area rated ‘dangerous’ by the state. Knight Ridder Tribune Business News,1. 

Discussing the first suburban middle school in the area to be rated dangerous by the state of Houston, the author pays special attention to the high number of drug violators present. Great detail is provided regarding the federal No Child Left Behind law.

Rivard, N. (2004). Close ties with police can help alleviate violence. District Administration, 40(7), 51-51. 

The author of this article reports on an increase in the number of school associated violent deaths in the United States. Important in preventing these deaths is the roles of the school resource officer. The author states that schools need to have a crisis response team approach.

Wilson, J. M. (2001). When guns come to school. The American School Board Journal, 18 (1), 32-34. 

In this article, the author focuses on strategies that might prevent firearm-related injuries and deaths among students in elementary and secondary schools in the United States. Wilson discusses the involvement of the Center for Disease Control in violent deaths of students. Recommendations are also provided for strategies for dealing with safety problems.

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