Making schools a safe haven;Leading Article;Opinion
No doubt Musselburgh, like some of the schools fingered south of the border, is unlucky in the amount of publicity it has attracted. For their part, establishments exhibiting positive qualities, like those featured by the Scottish Schools Ethos Network, are not without problems. But there is good work in schools aimed at reducing conflict and promoting positive behaviour.
Conflict resolution classes in Inverclyde (page 15) are an example. Children from their earliest years tend to resolve problems by physical intervention and response. Neither the resulting nursery tears nor the more serious consequences later of real physical damage and mental intimidation can be allowed to go unchecked.
Among the counter-strategies are the "care and welfare" inspections. So are attempts to show youngsters how to address problems without resorting to violence. And the promotion of a positive school ethos across many fronts is another way to enhance relationships among groups and boost individuals' self-esteem.