It is so important for schools in implement gang prevention programs. Often times, they are not present due to a wide array of issues such as insufficient budget and lack of knowledge. Of course, it is important to highlight that the individuals who are most likely to join or partake in gang related activities are those who have dropped out of school. Therefore, we believe it is of the utmost importance to implement these programs early i.e. 7th or 8th grade.
Below, we have outlined some simple steps to beginning a gang education program in your school or local community. Of course, there are many different methods to do so, but these steps are supported by government research.
Step 1: Administration Acknowledgement
Most of the time, principals and other administrators are hesitant to admitting that their school either has gang problems or is at a high risk of having them. Unless they recognize the problem, it is next to impossible to address it. If you are a parent or teachers who believes the school is exhibiting gang related problems, speak up. Take your concerns directly to the administration and work with them to create a solution. If everyone works together, the chances of creating an effective prevention and education program are substantially higher.
Step 2: Create Active Solutions
It is important to understand why young people join gangs. By getting to the root of their allure, communities can create clubs, facilities, and more to deter young people from joining their organizations. Often times, gangs appeal to young people because they offer a sense of community, belonging, and pride. By creating after school programs that focus on music, sports, academics, culture, and etc., the community can provide young people with a group who focus on positive activities. For deeper research on the subject, read more here.
Step 3: Talk About It
Regardless if you are a parent, teacher, or coach it is important for you to talk about the consequences associated with joining a gang. Often times, kids get in way over their head and don?t know exactly what illegal activities gangs are affiliated with. By explaining the dangers of gang activity (i.e. addiction, prison, and death), you are likely to deter kids from joining these organized groups. If they are looking for a community or group of friends to belong to, provide them!