Thursday, January 10, 2008

'Culture of fear'

Press conference now being televised re: Falconer report on violence in the classroom. (Link added Jan. 11)

Stories are emerging about a "Culture of fear" and silence, "Crisis of Confidence", and Toronto schools "plagued" with violence.

No doubt this topic will be a prime focus of pundits in tomorrow's MSM. Hopefully some of the recommendations will be considered and implemented.

In any case, let's get away from this attitude of willful blindness.

* * * *
Report available here.

More here - Drastic improvements needed to tackle school violence: Report - Post:

...As part of its investigation, but unrelated to the Manners death, the panel uncovered allegations that a Muslim female student had been sexually assaulted in a school washroom at C.W. Jeffreys, the previous year, but that the incident was not reported by school administrators...

* * * *
Friday Update: Lots of MSM reaction. I'll try to ferret out the best (IMO)

Sun Media - Listen to teachers on violence.
...if Toronto trustees are serious about tackling school violence, they can start by looking in the mirror.

National Post - Folly to tar all public schools:
...and the blame says the panel lies largely with the former Ontario Conservative government of Mike Harris, a profoundly partisan shot at a government long out of office. This dig calls the motives and solutions proposed in the report into question....

Even the 'Red Star' seems to be urging the trustees to pull their heads out of the sand! - Ensure schools are safe for students.

Globe - Fears of career suicide stopped educators from reporting violence.


Saturday Post - One-third of pupils at T.O. native school suspended.

Post - A distorted portrait of Toronto's schools.

Schools are places to learn, not to launch sentimental social experiments conceived by politically correct human rights luminaries.


tori said...

just finished listening to it.

nothing will change.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Sadly, I fear you are right, Tori.

Anonymous said...

It's no wonder we have a culture of fear due to immigrant violence because we had a culture of fear before this due to political correctness. (real conservative)

Anonymous said...

Assaults on children go unreported because the left wing radicals that run the schools want to demonstrate how 'sensitive' they are to 'minorities'. That's disgusting.

The Board, the schools, the entire system should be dismantled in favour of a privately run competitive system where the operators must reach real benchmarks - not inane fuzzy 'feel good' parameters dreamed up by those morons at OISE.

Young people's lives and futures are at stake - leaving them at the mercy of stupid people is atrocious.

Anonymous said...

the culture of "cover-up" is more like it.

Do surprise that the call is form more money, more programs, more, more ,more,more and not one mention of the screw-up principals who abused and mis-used the Safe Schools Act, as set up by the conservatives.

Nothing in this report surprises me. Parents and students have known about all of this for a long, long time.

Not only will nothing change, but what parents and students need most , a rapid response to concerns and a staff and board that doesn't work to cover its own ass and ignore even the most minor of concerns, hasn't been considered....and never will be.

This report is scathing and I believe just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to competence, culture of neglect and communities turning a blind eye.

tori said...

I'm researching private schools as we speak

SUZANNE said...

I'm wondering if this is all an exaggeration. They said that 33% of students had experienced some form of "sexual harrasssment." That could mean anything from being called a slut to co-erced sexual activity. Being called a "slut" is not real "violence".

They survey kids on how many had seen guns at school. I forget the exact number, but what if they'd all seen the same few kids with guns?

I'm not saying there's no violence, but I have a hunch this is being overblown.

Anonymous said...

Joanne - now that Ontario job numbers are in and they're really bad, I think we need to resurrect the thread about how the McGuinty liberals over estimated things financially...the sooner the better.

The questions that need to be dropped at McGuinty's feet are:

a) did his gov't know of the manufacturing crisis, and what did he do about it?

b) why did they underestimate things so badly...are they just bad fiscal managers, or did they purposely manage to increase spending so much?

c)is the whine and cry routine at the first minister's conference more of what Ontarians can look forward to instead of any actual plan of the gov't's making?

d)why after the Harris tories got us out of the last recession, has McGuinty managed to put Ontario back into a risky position, what with mega promises at election time and no way to pay for them.

e) why should a responsible federal gov't bail Ontario out of the McGuinty promises?

Anonymous said...

it would appear that the education premier is moving Ontario to a culture of the naive and stupid given the economic outlook.

Let's send Dalton back to basic accounting 101.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

now that Ontario job numbers are in and they're really bad, I think we need to resurrect the thread about how the McGuinty liberals over estimated things financially...the sooner the better.

And yet, we can still supposedly afford "Family Day".

I see a big financial crunch coming at all levels, and politicians are panicking.

When it comes to Mcguinty passing the buck, you ain't seen nothin' yet.

Anonymous said...

Falconer's report coined this "culture of fear" thing, which I think is a bit dramatic, but it got the attention didn't it?

I'd say that rather than a culture of fear, our public education system suffers from a "culture of....blame, finger-pointing, excuses, pass-the buck and the trash, turning the other cheek, circling of wagons, territorialism, protectionism, in-action".

Not to mention a culture of political correctness and failed young offeners act.