Volumes have been written about school security in the last 4 years offering guidance. Much of this literature, however, focuses on what should happen once a security event is already in progress.
In early , Sandy Hook Elementary School was demolished. After some deliberation, Newtown officials elected to construct a new, modern school on the existing grounds.
Spring 2018 | Volume 38 | Issue 3
The new school promised to honor those who perished by providing a nurturing environment for generations of children to learn and flourish. From its inception, the school design was the subject of much public curiosity. In order to help garner consensus on the direction of the design, the design team met regularly with a group of local stakeholders, including educators, town officials, board of education members, and parents of local students.
These meetings helped to move the design forward by incorporating the thoughts and ideas of those who would eventually use the school, as well as the voices of those in Newtown who were still healing from the tragedy.
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Every phase of the project design prompted meaningful dialogue on the role of security in schools. As part of the design process, DVS convened a subcommittee consisting of town officials, first responders, and school security staff in order to evaluate all aspects of the security design as they evolved. The early perception of the goal of EFA was that all children should have access to education-every child should be able to exercise the right to go to school. This limited goal soon broadened to address the quality of the education that a child received at school and the factors that ensured the child was able to stay in school long enough to learn enough.
Rethinking School Feeding : Social Safety Nets, Child Development, and the Education Sector
These additional objectives have expanded the goal of EFA, so that it now aims to ensure that every child has the opportunity to complete an education of good quality, although definitions of quality and completeness remain under discussion. The question now is not whether school health and school feeding programs are necessary to EFA, but how they can be implemented at meaningful scale in the poorest countries, which need them the most.
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Continuing education in the family health strategy: rethinking educational groups
This view assumes that it is the responsibility of early years services to prepare children for school, rather than the collective responsibility of families, early years services, communities, and schools themselves CCCH, Policy Brief 10, The more transition activities that schools conduct, the better children adjust to the school environment Margetts, , ; Schulting et al, Such activities are particularly beneficial for children from disadvantaged backgrounds Schulting et al, , but should be available universally.
Successful transition depends in part upon how well the school culture is understood by the parents and family, and how trusting and respectful families are of the school Clancy et al, Parents and caregivers whose own experiences of school were poor may have little understanding of or support for the school. Special efforts to reach the families of children not attending early childhood services may be needed.
- The New Sandy Hook School – Rethinking School Security | DVS Security;
- Rethinking school health : a key component of education for all (English) | The World Bank;
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Greater alignment of early years services and school curricula can be achieved at the classroom level, by introducing more play-based approaches in the early stages of primary school eg, Walker, ; Fabian, , and by developing a common curriculum framework across early years services and the initial primary school years Neuman, At the administrative level, greater alignment between the teaching environments and approaches used in early years services and schools can be promoted through the administrative integration of early years services into the education system Neuman, ; this has recently occurred in Victoria with the merging of early childhood and education sectors into a single government department.
Transition strategies may not be enough, and the links between early years services and schools need to be strengthened in more substantive ways Emig et al, ; Gonzalez, ; Shore, In Australia and overseas, a number of models have been trialled to strengthen the link between schools, early years services and local communities. Other models have been developed to create school environments that are more supportive and inclusive of families, provide a wider range of family and community services, and establish stronger links with other relevant child and family services Zigler et al, The implications for policy and programs are clear.
First, ways to ensure early childhood and school curricula and teaching strategies are brought into greater alignment should be explored. This may include developing common curriculum frameworks, strengthening administrative links, and co-teaching arrangements. Integrated programs that share staff, curricula and premises should be developed and evaluated, and should be supported by policy and funding at all levels of government.
Adelman, H and Taylor, L New directions for school and community initiatives to address barriers to learning: two examples of concept papers to inform and guide policy makers.
Related Rethinking School Health (Directions in Development)
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