City schools address gangs

While I appreciate the effort to address this growing problem, this policy seems destined to not have much impact besides affirming for teenagers that gangs are really cool. Why else would The Man be trying to shut 'em down?

The Board of Education is slated to discuss -- but not vote on -- the policy during a 7 p.m. meeting Thursday at Lincoln Center in Chapel Hill. ...

Chapel Hill-Carrboro's proposed policy, however, lays out some possible consequences in instances where students are "suspected of displaying gang affiliation."

The steps include a verbal or written warning, photographs, the removal or covering of gang-related clothing or markings, and the removal of any identifying signs of belonging to a gang.
- Schools consider new policy on gangs

I'd like to see some policies that try to better understand and validate student voices and do more to let students air the frustrations that make them consider violence and violent culture.


I had so much to say about this subject that I wrote a whole post of my own on my blog.

The jist is we need to listen to kids more, belive that helping one child at a time is a good goal, that we can not profile kids as gang members by what they wear, and that helping teens create a video blog could address some community issues with gangs.

Seriously read my blog post. Its much more detailed. :)

The best way to combat gang violence is to prevent children from joining gangs in the first place. Teenaged males, especially, like to belong to something. The community has to have afterschool activities to keep the kids busy. These activities should also involve the parents. Parental involvement is crucial.

Churches can be a positive influence in this area. Churches frequently have activities but they're closed to outsiders. Many churches have basketball courts which sits idle 99% of the time. If the Church opens its doors to everyone, a year-round basketball league in which everyone is involved would be helpful. Also, churches have classrooms in which they hold Sunday school. These classrooms can be used as computer labs and for remedial education for those students were behind.

The whole community needs to think outside of the box in order to combat this scourge on our society.

Where's the Outrage?

I think this is not an "either/or" situation, but a "both/and". I think that most of us who work with youth in this community believe that more adults need to listen to kids. And from a school district perspective, we have to minimize the impact of gangs on a learning environment.

Any disciplinary actions in the district have to be based in policy. Thus the need for a policy specifically targeting behaviors associated with gang affiliation.

The additional approaches and services can be happening at the same time.

As always, we're always looking for people willing to help over here at Blue Ribbon Mentor-Advocate. Check out


I agree completely that it is a "both/and" situation. We need to reach out to at risk children and we need a policy in place to enable school administrators to take action when necessary.

Thanks for all of your work for the children in this community!



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