Discouraged by a five-year spike in the number of violent fights occurring within the school system, officials agreed a solution had to be sought. After viewing firsthand similar programs in action, school administrators began to tool a model for St. Charles Parish.
The Violence Prevention Program is based on a few idioms:
- Children learn better in a safe environment
- Violence and fighting is disruptive to school climate
- Violence causes students to feel physically and psychologically threatened
Given these foundational beliefs, the St. Charles Parish Sheriff's Office, District Attorney's Office
, School Board
, and judges with the 29th Judicial District Court
agreed to institute a program that would aggressively target school violence.
Approach to the Problem
What makes the program unique is its approach to the problem. From the outset, all entities agreed simply arresting offenders and placing them in an already overburdened court system was not a solution. Instead, a program was developed that, upon complete compliance, allows all charges against the student to be dismissed.