To avoid trouble, kids must be taught law
As a former school resource officer, I am astounded at the positive impact that the teaching of laws, especially laws that pertain to assault, theft and substance abuse, contributes toward reducing violence in school.
Schools teach rules but not enough law. Without knowledge of the law, students rely on street rules. Elementary and middle school students have not been instructed in the basic rules that guide behavior but are still being held responsible for knowing proper conduct in high school. As a result, too many graduating seniors lack a basic understanding of the law. It isn’t enough to post police officers and security guards in our schools. Although these types of measures and the participation of parents offer deterrents to illegal activity, our laws need to be taught as part of the curriculum.
The United States has the highest rate of incarceration and homicide of all industrialized nations. Teaching children behaviors and habits based upon our laws is a robust intervention strategy that will go a long way toward reducing crime, elevating school safety and enhancing learning environments.
As a police officer, I can think of no better investment or crime-fighting policy than teaching legal behaviors to children. NOAH WATERS Upper Marlboro