Justice for Our Generals!


Janel Paredes

Photo credits: Janel Paredes

Sofia Chen, Managing Editor

Imagine someone running up to you while you are on your way to class. Do you choose to defend yourself or just sit and take the punches? If you choose option one, it’s an automatic suspension. If you choose option two, you put yourself at risk. It only happens at UACHS, where the victims get punished along with the bullies. 

Violence is a recurring theme throughout our school. It starts with personal grudges that shouldn’t have been on school grounds. This causes new fights and now it’s becoming a significant issue. Many students are scared for their safety whenever a fight occurs, and they can also hurt the teacher trying to break up the fight. 

Our school has a zero-tolerance policy, which does nothing but victimizes students twice. It fails to keep the students safe and instead punishes that child for being harmed by the bully. Not only that, but the one who bullies receives the same consequences as the one who suffered the punches.

The student handbook states that the people who bully could face a 10-day suspension or expulsion from school and the victim is supposed to receive medical and psychological assistance. However, that does not stop the victim from being harassed on social media and continuing to be tormented at home. 

There is no definite solution to this issue, however, one thing is for sure, punishment alone won’t stop the bully. 

According to Education Week, “The effects of punishment do matter, and where bullying is concerned, they suggest a painful irony: Punishing kids who bully not only fails to address the source of the problem, but actually makes things worse. Decades’ worth of research shows that punishment—even when it doesn’t include physical force—promotes aggression.” 

We need to restructure the school social environment. Rather than punishing victims along with their aggressors, we can encourage advice to them, and properly reprimand those involved. We can also provide support for potential victims and even help those that may feel the need to victimize others. The reality is that right now the ones that win are those that leave a trail of victims behind.