Monday, 20 April 2009

The School Violence Conspiracy

I'm doing a project at the course about youth gangs in schools. My section of the project - (cause I've gotta do a group thing.....pfffft) - is statistics of violence. Patterns and shit. I got hold of the Queensland Police Annual Statistical Review for 2007/2008 - (website, not the report) - which makes for some scary reading when you look at the 15 - 19 year old age bracket - (offenders). By FAR the most frightening.....ANYWAY, the bit that I've been struggling with is finding actual figures and breakdowns of incidents on the school grounds. I.JUST.CAN'T.FIND.EM.

I got on to my missus' sister who works for a school and she said even THEY can't get access to other schools figures. We've all been to school, we ALL know shit happens, so why is it SO difficult to find transparency?. Are we afraid of the truth as a society?.

Anyway, back to it.


  1. I dont know so much that as a society we are afraid of the facts and truth, its more that the powers that be, ie, school boards, principles etc, are scared of acknowledging just how out of control some youths are. To publicly show the numbers of violent offenders and the level to which they decend, would be paramount to admitting they totally suck at providing a safe haven for learning.

  2. I actually feel for principles. They are answerable to the education department, the board, the teachers, and the fricken parents. Not an enviable job.

    I can see the board and the education department, AND the principle in a way, I ' reflects on them...not wanting to advertise. Without students you don't have a job. With bad reports you don't get another job.

    It's a tricky one.

  3. Actually, now that I think of it, the shopping centre I worked for didn't like us advertising incidents either. The only ones they couldn't deny were when the coppers turned up. They did their own reports, but ours usually vanished.

  4. None likes bad publicity, the fact is.. its everywhere, and to downplay just how much there actually is,is in effect, promoting a false impression of safety, control and effective policing.

    Yes a certain amount of distancing self from trouble is warrented, but to deny most of it?? i find that immensly dishonest and immoral.

  5. Gets off high horse now... lol..sorry seems i may be a troll today..
    Braces for the toss to the dogs that may follow..lmfao

  6. lol Nah, yap all you like, I don't mind.

    Yeah, it's dishonest. To themselves and the kids heading for that school.

  7. Moko, Chef-to-be left grade 12 last year, if you want I can organise for him to have a chat with you at least about one school and the gang problems in his area. I am sure he would be happy to help you.

  8. Obviously I can't speak for the situation in Queensland but here in NZ, I believe it's more about there not being a clear reporting programme set up to facilitate the collection of information. In my (somewhat limited as I only have one teenager) experience principals are exceptionally honest about what goes on but they have to be careful about publicly painting their school as having a 'problem' when it's not clear that other schools are doing the same. I would consider it's not up to boards or school leaders to set up reporting systems - that should surely be the responsibility of the Ministry of Education (or Queensland equiv) to ensure an open, honest, transparent and consistent collection of information from all schools. They would certainly though hold all information about stand down and removals (or whatever euphemisms they use up your way) but they probably guard it pretty closely. In NZ you'd be able to get it under our Official Information Act (1982) don't know about there though.

    I would suggest another place worth checking would be the teachers union - they seem to be the ones here who are privy to most of the collective information. Very much anecdotal though probably.

  9. Another option of course is to pay a few young thugs to spark up some schoolyard fights and record them yourself. Instant in-depth analysis! Then auction the vids.

  10. Transpanrency? from a government body?'Avin a larf ain't you?

    You'll probably find it all linked up with the privacy act. However you could try the smart thing and say "look I need this for a project if you want I'll make an FoI request which will take forever..or I can talk to this journo I know" the later threat is going a bit far but if you're nice and polite who knows what may happen!

  11. I dunno if we're afraid, but we are very litigious. Say your kid goes to ABC high, it's close to home and you can't afford a school with boater hats. He's a fantastic child, spends his time on A's not e's, graduates and is branded by the good jobs/uni's because he happened to go to to the school with the 1st, 2nd or 3rd worst level of crime on the city. Not the kids fault. not the teachers fault (i have an uncle who had a breakdown over the student and parent thuggery at a PRIMARY school - never taught again) but we need to blame someone.
    guess who we blame


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