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Stopping School Violence Before it Starts

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By Fox 40 Staff.
On the heels of a massive brawl last week at Elmira High School in the Town of Southport which resulted in 19 arrests local school officials and law enforcement learned how to avoid such incidents at a Broome-Tioga safety summit.

The message from safety consultants: open communication between school officials and the community at large, including students and parents. They said students themselves are more likely to snuff out issues if they have an adult they trust that they can go to. With social media allowing information, including threats, to be spread in an instant, this is especially important.

"When we're looking at evaluating threats today and looking at potential violence we focus on the physical security measures when in reality you can have all the security equipment at the front door that you can get, it's still about the people inside," said Ken Trump, President of National School Safety and Security Services.

"It's being proactive. So if you have students who are empowered, they feel a part of the community, a part of the school. They want to keep their school environment safe. It's if you see something, you say something, you report it and taking that threat seriously," said Dr. Asia Jones, School Safety Consultant.

One presenter says there are three types of school shooters: psychopaths, who lack conscience, psychotics, who have a poor grasp with reality, and the depressed.

He said the last two types have a greater chance of being treated successfully. That's because it's possible to treat depression and give people a better grasp on reality.