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The role of a school has always been to educate. They accomplish this by teaching students how to analyze, think critically, find information (ie where to find it), and to instigate discussion. The role of a school has never been and should not be to mollycoddle students. Keeping students physically safe is a secondary mission of schools but is not the sole reason for a schools existence. In a school it should be safe to learn and to push boundaries within reason.
The world is harsh and while a school must protect students from that harsh reality it must also balance that protection with exposure so that students are prepared for real life. Too many schools try to set up artificial utopian societies that do little to prepare students for the realities of life. One great way to avoid this is to expose students to service outside of the school in controlled settings.
Schools should help support the morals of the society that are really within the parents purview to instill. This is difficult because of the vast diversity we have in our country. In order to support all the different values any one student might be exposed to, schools should help to expose children to different values systems but should not push an agenda.
Schooling should move along a continuum that begins with very structured constructs and slowly increase student autonomy while guiding them to learning. By the end of high school, students should be free to make decisions and control the majority of their own lives. Post secondary schools should be designed to breed discussion, both comfortable and uncomfortable to make student contemplate issues in new ways.
The security of students while at school is mainly in the hands of school security staff. *MAKING* teachers deal with security is just adding to a teachers workload. With that said, I also believe that restricting teachers who wish to be able to keep themselves and their students safe is its own form of torture (for both students and instructors). Everyone should have the ability to keep themselves and those they love as safe as physically safe as they see fit. If a teacher does not love his students, that teacher should contemplate a different career.
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