Are there zero tolerance policies at your children’s school? Find out the pros and cons of applying these rules.
There are many schools that have zero tolerance for any type of aggression among students to avoid problems of bullying or harassment in their classrooms. In fact, zero tolerance policies in schools are controversial because there are opinions that say they are too restrictive and others perhaps too soft.
ZERO TOLERANCE IN SCHOOLS
Supporters of zero tolerance say strict policies are needed to keep the learning environment safe for students . Advocates report that no matter why a rule is broken, if it is broken, there must be consequences without exception. There should be no exceptions under any circumstances and children should receive severe consequences for breaking the rules.
Supporters also say zero tolerance policies better prepare children for the real world. After all, the police officer generally doesn’t care if he was speeding because he was late for work , if you break the law, you have your legal consequences. The same thing happens at work … your boss does not care why you are late, you should not do it, period because if you continue to be late at the end what will happen is that you will be fired and you will be unemployed.
Proponents also say that zero tolerance reduces favoritism because there is no room for subjectivity. Just because a student is smart or has parents who are involved with the school, it doesn’t mean that there should be leniency when rules are broken.
CRITICISMS OF THE ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY
Critics of zero tolerance policies express concern that such policies lack “common sense.” For example, there is often little agreement on what constitutes a rule violation. Zero tolerance has not been shown to improve school climate or school safety.
There are those who express their concern about the inflexibility that can be in certain cases and how children or adolescents can be reprimanded for relatively minor infractions. In 2013, the American Academy of Pediatrics also released a statement criticizing zero tolerance policies. The report expressed concern that such policies are detrimental to students because students who receive suspensions and expulsions are 10 times more likely to drop out of high school.
Students who are sent home may not have an adult to supervise their activities and are more likely to engage in illegal activities or fall into more severe social problems in the future. If from home there is no joint work with the school on the expulsion, the student feels that he is displaced and rejected, something that can worsen the situation.
There are many alternatives to zero tolerance policies that can help keep children in school and also teach them valuable life lessons. Of course, preventing violence is one of the best ways to keep everyone in a safe school system.
Restorative justice programs and community service may be better interventions for first-time offenders. Determining the consequences on a case-by-case basis can avoid too harsh consequences. Out-of-school suspensions and expulsions may be reserved for repeat offenders who pose a real risk to school systems. Psychological attention from the educational center would be ideal before going to expulsion.
DEAL WITH A ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY
If your child’s school has a zero tolerance policy, you will need to be well informed about the rules from the beginning. Your child must also understand what the rules are in order to comply with them correctly. It will take a proactive approach to prevent your child from breaking the rules in the most innocent way. Staying involved with your child’s school so that you can understand the reasons behind the rules and understand the performance of the center’s professionals.
Dr. Tabriella Perivolaris, Sara's mother and fan of fashion, beauty, motherhood, among others, about the female universe. Since 2018 she has been working as a copywriter, always bringing to her articles a little of her experience and experience as a mother and woman.