Go Small to Make a Safer School
School safety and violence prevention is one of the fastest growing budget categories in western schools. It has been extremely rare to find major incidents of violence reported in small (as we define them) US schools. Large schools are characterized by institutional, less personal climates. Such a climate does not instill feelings of acceptance, safety or security in the student body regardless of the amount of safety officers and technological advancements that monitor and control behaviors. However, the growing body of research indicates going small can make a safer school environment, physically and emotionally. Small schools generally face fewer issues with discipline based on a marked increase in meaningful student engagement and responsible ownership in respect to violence and vandalism.
By going small to make a safer, more inclusive school, we are actively working to stamp out violent acts committed both on school campuses, as well as in our communities when disaffected youth act out in violent ways against society….
The value of small school culture on societal cohesion cannot be overvalued or stated if we are committed to creating safer communities for ourselves and our children. This data is consistent across geographic, socioeconomic and cultural demographics. You can learn more about going small to make a safer school by reading these articles:
Articles and Research
- Are Small Schools Safer? Edutopia, George Lucas Educational Foundation, 2001.
- Small Schools vs. Big Schools. Institute for Local Self-Reliance.
- How Safe Are the Public Schools: What Do Teachers Say? National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Department of Education, 1996.
- Safe Schools: A Best Practices Guide. Council of Educational Facilities Planners International, 2013.