Giving Compass’ Take:
• Johns Hopkins University is creating a new center that will bring together interdisciplinary researchers to find a holistic approach to improving school safety and security.
• How can donors become involved with improving school safety? How is this research different from others?
As the toll of mass school shootings confounds the nation, the response has focused largely on heightened school security, from metal detectors to armed teachers. But a more comprehensive approach is crucial, Johns Hopkins University officials argued as the institution announced on Monday the creation of a new center focused on student safety and health.
The Center for Safe and Healthy Schools brings together researchers from across disciplines at the Baltimore-based institution to tackle student well-being with a holistic approach — reaching far beyond high-profile but low-probability mass school shootings. Through research and education, the center aims to incorporate a range of issues — like youth suicide, trauma and bullying — into a broader conversation about how to foster safe and healthy school climates.
The comprehensive approach is crucial, School of Education Dean Christopher Morphew said, because a hyper-focus on school shootings and campus security is inadequate. Through the collaboration, university officials will explore issues including students’ physical and mental health, their relationships with school staff and neighborhood safety.
“It’s certainly not clear that our response to these mass tragedies has done anything to make schools comprehensively safer places,” Morphew said.
Sheldon Greenberg, professor of management in the School of Education, said he’s witnessed parent fear of school shootings firsthand.
Beyond research, the new center will recommend best practices to school leaders, said Greenberg, a former police officer who has spent decades researching school safety. In one recent paper, Greenberg challenged efforts to arm teachers. Given that trained police officers shoot firearms with less than 30 percent accuracy, he wrote, it’s unlikely educators would perform better.
“Research is great, but if it’s not getting to the hands of practitioners and making a difference in the classrooms and in the areas around schools, it’s problematic,” he said.
Read the full article about center on school safety by Mark Keierleber at The 74.
Learning and benchmarking are key steps towards becoming an impact giver. If you are interested in giving with impact on North America take a look at these selections from Giving Compass.
Looking for a way to get involved?
If you are looking for opportunities to learn and connect with others interested in the topic of North America, take a look at these events, galas, conferences and volunteering opportunities aggregated by Giving Compass.
Are you ready to give?
If you are interested in North America, please see these relevant Issue Funds, Charitable Organizations or Projects where you can get involved.