You can never have too much kindness in your schools. Random Acts of Kindness Day is Feb. 17, 2022, and to celebrate, CM Regent has created this list of ways you can prevent student altercations at your school or lessen their duration or impact.
- Provide crisis training for staff members. Every employee who interacts with students should understand the steps they need to take when students get into heated arguments. The ideal situation is that staff would intervene well before any such arguments escalate into a fight. Train your staff to recognize the warning signs—such as posturing and the presence of an audience—that might lead to a fight.
- Review your school’s internal response procedures.
- Create a written protocol for staff to use when there is a student altercation. This protocol should detail whether staff members should become involved or call for help, and whether there are specific personnel who are cleared to intervene. Carefully consider the safety of students and staff members and liability concerns.
- Conduct thorough investigations for each altercation and implement a documentation process. If your school experiences frequent student fights, there may be a pattern you haven’t yet noticed. Keep careful records of every altercation, noting the students involved, time of day, condition of the hallways and location. It’s possible there is an easy solution, such as altering travel routes to lessen congestion in the hallways. Other possibilities include increasing the number of staff members in a specific area at a specific time to lessen the possibility of problems.
- Conduct walk-through drills for your staff. Many of your staff members may be concerned about the possibility of witnessing a student fight, which is understandable. You can simulate such a situation and walk them through what they should do.
- Educate staff members about how they can assess the altercation to identify the appropriate course of action. They should take into consideration the number of students directly and indirectly involved, the location, and the ability to escape if the situation becomes dangerous for the staff member.
Not only are you promoting kindness by preventing altercations at your school, but you are also protecting your staff. If an employee becomes injured in such a situation, that can result in missed time from school and costly workers’ compensation claims.