The School Climate: Creating a Supportive Setting
America is a country of immigrants. While this has been acknowledged as
historical fact, many citizens fail to recognize the parallel truth: it
continues to be so. In fact, we are becoming so diverse a population that
the statistical meaning of the word "minority" is quickly losing its
significance. Consider that:
* Between 1980 and 1990, the white population grew by
only 7.7% nationally. The African American and Hispanic
populations grew by 15.8% and 34.5% respectively.
* The fastest growing group during that decade was Asians,
who make up about half of all new immigrants.
* Census projections indicate that by the middle of the 21st
Century, white Americans will become the nation's
* The population is intermarrying with increasing frequency.
By the middle of the 21st Century, the "average"
American citizen will trace his or her origins to Africa,
Asia, the Hispanic countries, the Pacific Islands --
anywhere but white Europe.
* The rapid shift in demographics is already evident among
our youth population. The number of linguistically
different children is quickly rising and our 25 largest city
school systems have minority student majorities.
* More than 150 languages are represented in schools
nationwide, and figures nearing this number occur in
single large districts already.
* Children of color currently make up 30% of America's
youth under age 18, and the percentage is increasing
* It is estimated that as many as five million children of
immigrants will have entered the K-12 education system
in the 1990's.
These demographic changes are real, immutable and accelerating. The
continuing influx of immigrants has reverberated through every social
institution in America, including our schools.
Making the equation more complex, ethnic identification is not the only
criterion that is commonly used to denote differences in culture. Indeed,
the term "culture" is increasingly a source of misunderstanding and
confusion. In addition to its common usage regarding race or ethnic
origins, the term is often used more generally to indicate a body of common
understandings. Used in this way, "culture" can include everything that is
a part of everyday living including customs, traditions, beliefs, morals,
art, law, knowledge and so on. For example, people who are poor share a
culture of poverty. It can be said that there is a culture of youth
because young people, by their nature, have many things in common.
Religion, gender, lifestyle, socioeconomic status all can, and should be
considered as having distinct cultural indicators.
In a country where one out of five children lives below the poverty line,
where huge numbers have been raised in non-English speaking homes, where
the characteristic of "otherness" can be applied to more children than not
in any given classroom, it is imperative that we understand the depth and
breadth of culture -- and the extent to which many groups of people have
been marginalized in this country -- and are aware of its implications as
it drives changes in our schools.
Who Fails and Who Succeeds?
Contemporary laws, combined with our social norms and sense of justice,
theoretically protect the educational rights of all children through equal
access to education. These concepts and laws can allow diversity among
students to be honored, their knowledge differences appreciated. Why,
then, is the drop-out rate for Hispanic students hovering at 45%, fully
twenty percentage points above the already-high national high school drop
out rate of 25%? Why are there startling disparities by gender, race and
national origin in disciplinary referrals and suspensions in public
schools? Why have minority students been suspended from school more often
for "subjective" offenses and for less serious offenses than their white
peers? Why are poor children more likely to fail than children from
economically advantaged homes? Why are these "at risk" students more
involved in unsafe activities either as victims or aggressors than their
One real answer is because American schools in general continue to both
perpetuate and communicate the values, power relationships and behavioral
standards of those for whom schools in this country were originally
intended: middle class Europeans. As a result, students whose cultures are
different from that of the school often feel alienated from and rejected by
their school system.
Our schools, whether by law or by moral commitment, are responsible for the
growth and development of all of our nation's children. To accomplish
this, our schools must create environments that are caring, safe and secure
for all children. Terms such as "ambience," "climate," "philosophy," and
even "school culture" all reflect a process of humanizing education to make
it more responsive to the needs of individuals and more affirming of the
intrinsic value of human diversity. The reluctance or inability of schools
to do so is at the heart of their failure to educate the racially,
culturally and otherwise "different" children of this country.
Why Keep Kids in School?
In addition to the legal and ethical imperatives for educating all
of our children, two seemingly disparate phenomena make it even more
critical to do so now: the increase in youth violence and the changing
Every day, quarrels among children that used to result in fist
fights and bloody noses now end in gun shots. Every day almost 135,000
students carry a gun to school. Every day nearly 200,000 children miss
school because of fear of attack by other students, and some 2,000 young
people are attacked in school. Every two days, 25 children -- an entire
classroom -- are killed by guns.
The reasons for this raging brutality are clear. Neglected, rejected
cast-off kids turn into bitter, gun-toting criminals more often than not.
Weaned on violent video games, toys and media programming, they are
desensitized to violence as never before. The presence of violence at
school breeds more violence. The fear of attack escalates, more weapons
are brought to school, and getting to the next class becomes a matter of
survival. The unthinkable has become normal behavior for many children,
and they see no functional alternatives.
This fear of violence -- and its resulting metal detectors, security
guards, locked doors, fenced-in school yards, locker searches and crisis
drills -- affects all children. The major consequences of violence and
fear of violence are depression and anxiety, but additional effects include
a sense of meaninglessness and emptiness; a loss of self-esteem and
feelings of humiliation; a sense of impotence because of a perceived loss
of control over various aspects of life; and a psychic numbing and
emotional lethargy. Many children are experiencing sleep disturbances,
irritability, and excessive aggression. For others, action and
decision-making seem difficult. For all children, the energy that is
spent on survival is lost to academics.
The Changing Workforce
Less than a generation ago, the term "workforce" conjured up
visions of white men dressed in either ties or blue shirts. By the turn of
the next century, white males will comprise only 15% of the net additions
to the labor force. The other 85% will be women and people from non-white
and immigrant groups. This trend is reshaping both the color and cultural
background of our workforce. Without training in learning to work
cooperatively to achieve common goals among diverse groups of people,
increasing linguistic and cultural problems between different ethnic and
racial groups, and resulting tensions, will be unavoidable.
At the same time, most companies face an extremely tight labor market as
the baby bust of the 1960's and 1970's dramatically reduced the number of
young people available to fill jobs. Yet that decreasing labor pool needs
to become more highly qualified as our businesses face growing competitive
pressures, an impossibility if our young people continue their path of
alienation and early exit from our schools.
It is economic suicide to let our children fail, for any reasons. They
cannot be allowed to leave school without adequate knowledge of both
academic and interpersonal skills. Whether or not educators have large
minority populations in their schools, they must think about the wide
diversity of people with whom their students will come into contact
throughout their lives and create school environments to retain their
students and which teach them how to build respectful partnerships with
those who are different from them.
Strategies to Improve School Culture
Children who stay in school, who feel good about it and good about their
classmates, do so because their school is a safe and receptive environment
for all children, both physically and psychologically. There are certainly
many factors in the lives of students over which the schools have little or
no control. But there are things educators can do to change the content
and processes within our schools, improving the school climate to better
serve this population. Adjusting the curriculum and other aspects of the
educational structure to reflect the newest shifts in classroom composition
are steps well taken toward assuring that students and families from all
cultures who are already in the system, and immigrants new to our country
and our social structures, will have the skills to function together to
build a peaceful future.
Just the mention of the term "multicultural education" immediately
raises the hackles of some people, educators and non-educators alike.
Those who question the validity or necessity of multicultural education
mistakenly purport that it is a curriculum which attempts to discount and
replace all things traditional, a cursory and largely ineffective nod
toward pluralism, an inappropriate outgrowth of the Civil Rights movement,
or simply a lame attempt at being "politically correct." Because of these
misguided and uninformed indictments, multicultural education has been
used, in some communities, as ammunition in the war between conservative
and liberal groups. But multicultural education is not faction-specific,
and regardless of one's affiliation, it is critically important to
understand the real goals of multicultural education, and the positive
effects it can have on race relations and effective teaching.
Significant multicultural education, that which is substantive in nature,
process-oriented, and integrated throughout all of the school curricula and
practices, is an approach through which children are prepared to live,
learn and work together to achieve common goals in a culturally diverse
world. Through this process, children can:
* learn about and value the diversity that exists in the United
States and the world;
* become aware of and affirmed in their own cultural roots;
* understand the social, historical and psychological
environments that cause people, including ourselves, to think
and behave as we do;
* become sensitive to other cultures, knowledgeable about other
viewpoints and accurately assess similarities and differences
among people of the world;
* understand their rights and responsibilities as citizens in a
culturally pluralistic society;
* become adequately prepared to live fruitful lives in an
increasingly global society with shifting and permeable borders.
Unfortunately, much of the current effort in multicultural education in the
United States is directed at teaching students bits and pieces of
information about other cultures -- "products" -- through monthly
celebrations, cultural posters and world fairs. This additive approach can
actually reinforce stereotypes by emphasizing exotic differences between
people, and seems to be most often used in school environments where there
are few minorities in the system, or in places where assertions are made
that "there are no problems here because everyone gets along." But true
multicultural education is not a product at all. It is not a field trip to
Taco Bell, the act of putting up a bulletin board about France, or a
conversation with a foreign student. This simplistic approach undervalues
the serious and complex social issues inherent in our pluralistic society.
As with all public education, the goal of multicultural education is to
maximize the potential for all students. This, of course, includes the
minority child, for whom education must be made relevant. But
multicultural education also benefits the majority child. Our schools
have, in the past, focused nearly exclusively on the needs of majority
students, propagating a monocultural view of society that is totally
inconsistent with the past, present and future realities of life in this
country. Through a well-planned multicultural program, schools may be able
to better prepare majority children for life in a pluralistic society while
offering children of diverse cultures a sense of belonging that can make
their school experiences more positive and give them hope for the future.
Multicultural education should address, but need not be limited to making
sure that the curriculum design, textbooks and curricular materials are
bias-free and include ethnic and cultural content; that there is a
commitment to inclusive in-school and extracurricular activities and
parent-teacher councils; that hiring practices insure diverse staffing
patterns and that there is continuing support for minority teachers and
staff; and that teachers receive adequate in-service training to provide
them with information on how to make education multicultural. According to
Carl Grant, a long-term proponent of multicultural education, true
multicultural education is visionary. Its objective is to help students
acquire the skills and conceptual frameworks to pursue their own concerns
while removing the barriers that prevent them from achieving the best life
has to offer. We have both an opportunity and an obligation to use the
wealth of our diversity -- our stories, folk literature, art, music, as
well as our experiences of our poverty, discrimination and conflicts -- to
teach our children. Multicultural education is that type of education,
and it can ultimately help all children develop the competencies they will
need throughout their lives.
Human Rights Policies
On July 4, 1776, a document was signed by the Continental Congress
that declared the United States an independent country. This statement of
principles, the Declaration of Independence, subsequently became one of the
most important legal and moral foundations for our country.
The second paragraph reads, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that
all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with
certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the
pursuit of Happiness." These rights are alleged to be universal, to be
held by people simply as people. This view implies that characteristics
such as race, gender, religion, and nationality are irrelevant to whether
one has human rights. Nowhere in this document does it say, "...but not
for those people."
That we all display an enormous diversity is inescapable. A visible
commitment to human rights within the school, however -- a posted human
rights policy statement , for example -- is one of the most proactive
approaches that a school can take to begin to insure that the diversity of
the school community is not ignored, devalued or degraded. By making
public a concise statement of policy, indicating that these rights are
rooted in the dignity and worth of human beings and that adherence to these
rights is the requirement of peace and security within the school,
attention is focused on the intended good.
Human rights policies need to state clear guidelines against any form of
infringement upon the rights of others, such as racism, sexism, etc. The
policy must be well publicized not only to students and staff but to the
parents, too. Most important, the leadership of the school must be willing
to follow through on their policies. They must be able to punish behaviors
that are counter to the policy as well as reward those in the school who
actively promote the principles inherent within the policy. Too often acts
of racism and other infringements of human rights are addressed only after
the school staff has been asked repeatedly to take action. Reasons for not
wanting to face these sensitive issues head-on include not wanting to take
time away from academic subject matter; not wanting to "rock the boat" and
possibly incur the wrath of a wider spectrum of students and community
members; lack of knowledge about how to intervene in a positive and
effective way; not thinking that there is a need to address the issues in a
school system that is predominantly monocultural; and even having a complex
psychological need to maintain the conflict.
But avoidance of human rights issues holds damaging consequences for
students. First, because violations of human rights are strong, negative
experiences for children, they draw students' attention from academic
pursuits as the children respond to them in non-constructive ways. Second,
evasion of the issues sends signals to all students that racism and other
forms of human rights violations are trivial concerns or, worse, that they
are acceptable forms of behavior.
Ignoring ethnic, racial, gender and other differences and their potential
for negative impact on children today, or even merely tolerating them is no
longer an adequate response for schools wishing to create safe and
receptive environments for all children. A decent life, protected by basic
human rights, is a modest standard. These rights do not supply everything
that could contribute to making people's lives good or even wonderful, but
they are an acceptable beginning. Educators would be wise to do more than
simply acknowledge that human rights exist, and conjecture about what they
might mean in the lives of children. Proactively proclaiming a policy
which supports basic human rights could go a long way toward counteracting
the racism, bigotry and other human rights violations, including physical
violence, on the rise in today's schools.
Conflict Resolution Programs
Conflict is a daily reality for everyone. Whether at home or at
school, the needs and values of people constantly and invariably come into
opposition with those of others. Some conflicts are relatively minor, easy
to handle, or capable of being overlooked. Others are not so easy to
resolve. But it is a central fact of life that society is structured so
that some individuals have more power and control than others, and that the
conflict that results is a natural phenomenon.
Children, too, need to work out their feelings about power and control, and
many adults are concerned about the increasing levels of aggression they
use with one another when conflicts occur between them. There should be
little wonder about their predilection toward violence when they are
bombarded with images of good triumphing over evil, often in violent ways,
and when there are relatively few versions of power represented to them in
the mass media and toy markets other than the idea of power over, rather
than power with, others.
Based on what they see and learn, children develop their own personal
strategies for dealing with conflict. Given their general lack of
awareness of non-violent alternatives for resolving conflicts, how do we
help them swap an combative attitude with a cooperative one? The Centers
for Disease Control in Atlanta, Georgia has declared that violence has
reached epidemic proportions, and urges that non-violent conflict
resolution be taught to all student from preschool through twelfth grade as
a response to that violence.
Conflict resolution training, included as a legitimate part of their
curriculum, can offer children a significant opportunity for developing
some of the most important social skills that an individual can possessin
today's climate -- on the cognitive level, the understanding that conflict
is a normal part of everyday life, and on the behavioral level, the ability
to resolve conflict non-violently.
A meaningful program to teach children how to mitigate discord allows them
to study the causes of conflict, the different styles that people use to
deal with anger and conflict, the process through which conflict escalates,
and the skills needed to manage and resolve conflict creatively and
non-violently. They can explore conflict in a nurturing and cooperative
classroom environment, through a number of different situations and
perspectives. Through this type of program, they learn valuable life
skills -- verbal and non-verbal communication, listening, problem solving,
critical thinking, decision-making and negotiation -- and ultimately
develop a productive response to conflict that helps build peaceful
relationships in their classrooms, schools, and communities.
In the contentious world climate we face today, we have come to think of
these techniques as chiefly useful to adults. But it is essential that we
redirect our efforts toward children for several reasons. First, our
eagerness as adults to intercede in children's fights sends an implied
message to them that we see them as fundamentally incompetent to settle
their own disputes, and that this whole business of conflict resolution is
simply too difficult for children. But even the smallest children can
understand many elements of arriving at outcomes where both sides win.
Second, children take into their adulthood the sense of self that they
create in their childhood. It is during childhood that they form their
world views, as well as their methods of dealing with frustration and
conflict. If they learn as children that dealing with conflict in violent,
combative ways is the prevalent, if not the only method, they will prolong
that choice into their adulthood. At that point, it won't matter what
types of arrangements our elder statespersons and gifted diplomats make to
negotiate truces between warring factions both overseas and in our own
communities. There will be several generations of people who, by virtue of
their training as children, will be willing, and more than able, to
perpetuate the violence. If, instead, they learn as children a wide range
of positive methods to resolve conflict peacefully in ways that are
appealing and matched to their level of development, they can spend less of
their time as adults undoing destructive habits and more time contributing
fully to society.
As our schools address their urgent mission of helping prepare
every child for life in a diverse society, the school counselor can be one
of the most important links in the system. And as much as anyone in that
system, counselors need to be aware of both the present reality and the
direction of the future if they are to help children move more easily into
a world filled with ever increasing change.
The current concern for counseling the culturally different is, as is much
of the recent focus on multiculturalism and equity in education, a response
to changing demographics. But counseling was not initially designed to
treat students as individuals and help them maximize their capacity for
growth. At the turn of the century, when the Industrial Revolution was in
full swing, the aim of the fledgling counseling movement was, in fact, to
assist in vocational training by matching a potential worker with a
suitable vocation. Formal psychoanalytic methods were introduced into the
United States in 1909, but counseling did not begin receiving widespread
recognition until the 1940's.
By the 1950's, the aim of the profession evolved to be one of assimilation.
Group differences were minimized and the goal of guidance and counseling
was to assist various racial and cultural groups to become members of the
larger society. Professionals were, for the most part, ethnocentric in
their orientation, using the dominant culture as the standard to which all
othergroups were to aspire. It wasn't until the 1954 Supreme Court
decision of Brown V. Kansas Board of Education, and the civil rights
movement that followed nearly a decade later, that the profession began to
recognize the diverse counseling needs of various groups in our population.
No longer was assimilation the desired goal. A recognition of and
appreciation for cultural differences became major objectives.
But counseling is still primarily a white middle class activity. And its
practitioners, most of whom are white, are trained in Euro-centered
counseling programs which encompass western-oriented philosophical
assumptions. For example, the dominant culture of most schools values
being "up front" about counseling issues, and the students are expected to
take a major role in the sessions. The traditions of most Asian Americans,
Hispanics and Native Americans, however, may preclude this pattern, their
children having been raised to assume their positions within clearly
defined traditional roles which include deference to their elders.
Therefore, a minority student who is asked to initiate conversation may
become uneasy and tense, and respond with only short phrases or statements.
The counselor may interpret this behavior as negative when it may actually
be a sign of respect.
In order to successfully work with minority students, counselors must take
into account each student's world view, show respect for his or her history
and be as unbiased as possible. This requires them to learn new techniques
and acquire new skills for understanding, motivating, and empowering each
individual student regardless of race, gender, religion or creed. At the
same time, counselors must also be aware of the fact that the parameters of
culture extend far beyond racial and ethnic categories.
To guide students effectively in a multicultural environment, a culturally
sensitive counselor will consider, at a minimum, these major points:
* The historical perspectives and the social support
systems of diverse families;
* The unique characteristics of the value systems of diverse
* Any cultural communication barriers, either verbal or non-
verbal, that may hinder the level of trust between the
diverse student and the counselor;
* The development of innovative treatment strategies based
on cultural considerations and which place a high
priority on building a sense of personal worth in students,
empowering them as both individuals within their
particular cultural context and as an integral part of the
larger school/community culture.
The degree to which counseling contributes to the development of a
student's concept of his or her human potential is clear. All children in
our schools today must receive the support and motivation that they need to
identify and achieve their goals, regardless of their past histories, their
present situations, or the sometimes limited expectations we hold for their
The "melting pot" analogy that has been so prevalent in this country for
generations is no longer appropriate. We are, in fact, in a superb
position to benefit from the knowledge that comes from experiencing a
confluence of cultures. After all, throughout our history we have had
representatives from most parts of the world living within our borders.
Without a doubt, future generations will be faced with living in an
increasingly multicultural society, and our schools must play an essential
role in the preparation of our children for life in this diverse, complex
and interdependent world.
Although cultures may commingle in the classrooms of our schools, it is
not, however, an indication that there is harmony in the hallways. If we
change the culture of our schools to reflect and legitimize our human and
cultural diversity, to respect and value each other regardless of our human
or social differences, our children will be better prepared to live
peacefully in this increasingly pluralistic world.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
* Develop and implement board or school policy that improves the
district's or school's multicultural perspective.
* Check district and school procedures, practices, curriculum guides, and
lesson plans to be sure they are free of bias.
* Review textbooks now in use in terms of the criteria presented by the
policy. Discontinue the use of those publications that fall short of these
* Overcome in part the multicultural inadequacies of some texts by using
other instructional materials that more nearly meet the standards stated in
* Limit the adoption period for social studies texts so that students will
be using more recent editions.
* Encourage the development of better texts by submitting to textbook
publishing companies copies of your standards, with a specific request that
your findings be used in preparing new textbooks.
* Develop strategies to increase the number of minority teachers in your
school or district.
* Integrate minority- and racism-related content into the curriculum
throughout the school year rather than setting aside a "Black History Week"
or Women's History Week." Make sure that the contributions, feelings, and
lifestyles of minorities are represented throughout the curriculum all year
Multicultural education should start with a child's earliest school
experiences. In the early grades:
* Listen for opportunities to confront students' misconceptions such as
misinformation about skin color, respecting the child's limited level of
* Because colors such as black and brown are often associated with
darkness or evil, counteract negative associations with positive
* Introduce children to multicultural children's books in story hours, in
book discussion groups, and in developing curriculum for whole language
reading. Look for authentic literature.
* Seek hands-on variety by diversify play props such as chopsticks, woks,
and clay pots in the housekeeping area, tangrams and abacuses in math area
and integrating the doll collection.
* If your school is diverse in its population, experience the excitement
of your multiculturalism, the pleasures of looking out over a classroom of
many-colored hands and faces, varieties of hair textures and styles and
numerous ways of expressing individuality.
Positive School Climate
* Make sure that the school is student-centered -- that students are the
primary focus in the school. Promote and sustain social, teaching and
learning structures in which all children experience success regardless of
race, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status, or other areas of difference.
* Have the culture of the school reflect and value the cultures of the
students. Legitimize and affirm the history, contributions, values and
perspectives of the cultural groups to which students belong by integrating
them into the school.
* Show organizational health and that the school is being "led" and not
simply "managed." Encourage a strong belief on the part of everyone in the
school that they can and do make a difference in the lives of their
students. Some researchers call this is "sense of efficacy" and stress
that it projects a contagious spirit of optimism which can spell the
difference between mediocrity and high levels of physical and intellectual
energy among both teachers and students.
* Encourage your teachers to identify and modify those techniques that are
not working, and stress the utilization of a variety of instructional
* Provide opportunities for teacher and student dialogue, and allow input
from both teachers and students to the development and maintenance of
academic and social goals and procedures.
* Actively recruit, support and retain minority administrators, teachers
* Maintain high expectations for all teachers and all students.
* Provide opportunities for children to discuss openly why they react
positively or negatively toward a particular cultural group.
* Teach children about the processes by which humans develop stereotypes
and have them identify ways in which they have seen themselves follow those
* Address the multiple components that reinforce each other across the
students' everyday social contexts: family, school, peer groups, exposure
to media and community.
* Establish a personal relationship with each student. Learn what special
needs each of your students has and make sure that the students know you
care enough to help them in any way that you can.
* Teach your students to set up a personal support network. Have them
write down three favorite teachers and three favorite friends in the school
whom they would trust if they needed them. Have them research community
resources that are there to assist them such as hot lines, teen health
clinics and youth service centers. Have them each complete a personal
support network chart with names and phone numbers of resources that appeal
to them. Make sure both you and they keep a copy.
* Try to meet individually with each of your most at-risk students at
least once a week. It may mean chatting for a few minutes at the end of a
class, meeting for a few quick moments in the hall, or getting together
during their lunch period.
* Understand your students' vocabulary and do not be afraid to ask for
definitions and explanations.
* The resources of your school and community should be used to supplement
and enhance the efforts of the other. Actively cooperate with -- and
initiate if you have to -- local community support services for children.
* Find our which of your most at-risk students are participating in
extracurricular activities and if their families are attending. If you
sense the need, attend one or two of their events.
* Talk with students and other members of culturally diverse communities
to expand your own knowledge of different cultures. Spend time as a
participant and observer at their events and in their homes.
* Consider the value and cultural differences between non-white Americans
and other ethnic groups and how your own personal values influence the way
you guide students. Consider the ways your personal values influence the
way you view both the presenting problem and the goals for your counseling
* Understand how ineffective verbal and non-verbal communication due to
cultural variations can lead to discomfort in your students and may cause
them, in some cases, to actively resist guidance from you.
* Be aware that in the event of a tragedy as a result of community or
school violence, children will need grief counseling. They will need to
know what happened quietly, simply and directly. Avoid using platitudes or
religious symbolism. Answer all questions directly and honestly, but avoid
unnecessary details. Remember that there is no one "correct" response to
grief and validate all feelings.
* Remember that you are a model. Students will often follow your lead,
and the ambience in the classroom is determined in part by the way you
handle the relationships between them. Assess how you interpret the
behavior of both minority and white students. One way to do this is to
invite a friendly and honest colleague to observe your classroom
interaction and give you informal feedback.
* Formalize a program that includes human rights training for students and
staff; standardizing procedures for handling infractions of human rights;
providing leadership and coordination of all human rights matters in the
* Infuse the curriculum and instructional program with a human rights
* Do not tolerate the telling of racist or ethnic jokes. Be mindful that
many local, state and federal laws covering workplace discrimination
consider the telling of racial or ethnic jokes to be proof of
discrimination because it creates a hostile climate in which the members of
an ethnic or racial group must work.
NOTE: The text above is from the recent book, Teaching Peace: How to Raise Children to Live in Harmony -- Without Fear, Without Prejudice, Without Violence_ by Jan Arnow (Perigee/Berkley, © 1995 Jan Arnow, ISBN #0-399-52155-0, $12.00). In each chapter there are additional charts, quotes and sidebar sections that have not been uploaded. If you are interested in seeing these additions, please contact the author directly (email: firstname.lastname@example.org); (snail mail: 2025 Maryland Avenue, Louisville, KY, 40205); (telephone: 502-454-0607); or buy the book!
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