Shootings at schools has become a horrible commonality of the American culture. This is an issue that must be addressed at the most fundamental level of the individual. As a person that has worked with many children in a school setting, I have noticed a pattern of it becoming a common threat of children to say they will come shoot up the school. This problem has reached epidemic proportions. Many children believe that this is a viable and acceptable threat and method to solve their problems.
In many of these cases the children have reached a point of frustration with their daily life at school that they do not see any other way out. Although, in each situation that I have seen the issue dealt with the child is severely punished in the hopes of reducing the chances of future similar behavior but the core cause of the problems are typically not addressed. In many of these situations the child simply does not have the tools needed to handle the constant bombardment of problems that he or she deals with on a daily basis. For example, many of these children do not know how to calm their selves so the tension builds, and builds while at the same time being compounded daily with harassment and lack of compassion from the people around them. Although many would blame the child in these situations, I blame the communities that these children are raised in. Many adults believe that being harassed and bullied at school was something that they dealt with and that this is a normal part of growing up, so I often hear comments like, “He just needs to get over it” or “If they didn’t call him that it would just be something else, he brings it on his self”. The sad part is that these are the same people on the news saying that they had no clue that this would happen. In many cases that I have observed the children have made numerous complaints about bullying or it is obvious that the child has problems interacting with other children in the school environment but little is done to influence positive change in these situations.
There are solutions to these problems there are many programs for schools that have success in reducing these types of issues, communities need to adopt them and absorb the costs of these programs. The problem is that many communities are reactive and end up paying more in the long run when problems do arise. One program that has shown success with reducing bullying and other behavioral issues in the school environment is known as Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports or PBIS. There are many evidence based programs out there that can help prevent these problems of school shootings as a country we need to invest in these programs at all of our schools and change this horrible aspect of our culture.