Schools Report Acts Of Violence, Vandalism

Superintendent releases preliminary report for instances that occurred September - December 2011

As part of a state-mandated Electronic Violence and Vandalism Report, Mahwah Interim Superintendent Dr. Karen Lake reported on instances of violence, vandalism, weapons use and substance abuse in Mahwah schools. The report was given at last Wednesday’s meeting.

Between September and December 2011, Lake reported eight incidents of violence in Mahwah schools. The first semester also saw 18 acts of vandalism and four instances of substance abuse in district schools.

“Police were notified in three of the [substance abuse] incidents,” Lake said.

There were no weapons-related incidents in the district during the first semester, the report said.

All of the incidents were mitigated, Lake said, by disciplinary actions that included out of school suspensions, home assignments, and other methods to apprehend the total 17 student offenders.

According to Lake, she will elaborate more on the report at a future Board of Education meeting, and include the numbers of bullying incidents that occurred in Mahwah schools at the end of last year.

“There is an issue with the reporting paperwork at the state level, so we are waiting on the state to send that to us before we can give the full report,” Lake said at Wednesday’s meeting.

The report marks a change in the state’s system, Lake said.

“We used to give these out only once a year, in October,” she said. “Now, we are switching to a system whereby we report the incidents twice a year.”

Lake said she will update the report to include bullying numbers once the state paperwork issue has been corrected.

Andy Schmidt April 25, 2012 at 01:38 PM
Attending HSO meetings, I was very encouraged to learn how serious pro-active matters apparently are deal with at the Ridge. Rather than resisting the state regulations, they seem to be embracing them as a tool. Ultimately, the goal should be to diffuse situations BEFORE they get out of control and someone gets seriously hurt (physically or emotionally) - like was the case in Ramsey which just had to settle a multi-million dollar suit: http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/04/19/11289813-42-million-settlement-for-student-paralyzed-by-bully?lite (Many of us know "Commander Sawyer" from his involvement at the local Challenger Center where he's been an inspiration and source of competence and knowledge for adults and youths alike!)


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