The New 'Learning Normal’ for K-12 Students in the Wake of School Shootings and Other Violence
Updated: Nov 13, 2019
Administrator concerns in the wake of recent school violence have made school safety priority number one in K-12. One collaboration is delivering a safer learning environment for students through a scalable, highly secure, and innovative cloud services solution - Amazon Web Services and Kokomo 24/7® Solutions.
School safety allows children to look forward to being in an encouraging environment, promoting social and creative learning. Research shows that students who feel safe are more likely to be engaged at school and be more successful in all aspects of life, not just academics. Sadly, all too often, students across the country are dealing with the reality of today’s school “normalcy” – the aftermath of recent shootings or other incidents disruptive to learning. Students and educators are finding it more difficult these days to feel safe in our schools.
An unsafe school is also more likely to lead to students who have emotional problems, particularly the direct victims of school violence or bullying. A Concordia University report published in August of 2016 examined the link between school safety and increased academic success. The report found that students who feel unsafe at school or are a victim of violence reported more symptoms of depression. Being a victim of school violence and feeling unsafe collectively reduced student well-being, including symptoms of depression and aggressive behavior, furthering negative impact on students' learning potential. The report concluded that when students feel unsafe at school, they are at risk for decreased concentration, poor attendance, course failure, and dropout, as well as, anxiety and depression, in both school and home environments.
"We found that students who felt safer were more attentive and efficient in the classroom. These students also reported fewer symptoms of depression, such as feeling unhappy and having difficulty enjoying themselves. Making sure that students are engaged and attentive in the classroom can contribute to long-term success above and beyond intellectual capacities," said researcher Caroline Fitzpatrick, who is also a professor of psychology at Sainte-Anne's University.
Combating this ‘New Normal’ with Technology
Regrettably, K-12 schools are no longer the safe havens they used to be, allowing kids to be kids matriculating to a higher degree of student success. School safety has become the number-one priority among teachers and administrators where the ability to track incidences of bullying and violence in a centralized system has become paramount. The every-once-in-a-while safety drill in many school districts has been replaced with monthly school-shooter lockdowns that sidetrack learning and constantly remind both student and teacher alike of the new reality of learning and teaching. But there is hope.
Kokomo 24/7® has teamed up with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to provide tools for school administrators and safety resources to leverage and create safer K-12 learning environments. This new approach to school safety uses years of school safety data across thousands of incidents to provide a predictive score for the probability of unsafe school incidents. The TruScore™ incident scoring system in Kokomo24/7’s Safety Cloud™ turns the tables on the reactive approach administrators have used over the years to manage unsafe incidents. TruScore delivers to educators and safety resources pre-packaged intelligence about student safety so they have the decision support to potentially intervene before incidents occur. The software is built by Kokomo24/7 Solutions and delivered leveraging the power and simplicity of AWS services.
Most Student Information Systems, or SIS, today are merely data repositories to report (and sometimes document) incidents after they have happened. Kokomo24/7 Safety Cloud puts data to work proactively so faculty can intervene in real time, before an incident happens. Additionally, the workflows and logic built in the school safety platform provide measures to track, record and store compliance documents and other sensitive incident information needed for archiving and forensics.
Running on AWS, Kokomo24/7 Safety Cloud is a SaaS product licensed with school systems in mind, in an easy-to-install, cloud-based subscription model. Whether yours is a small school district with a dozen schools or a large district – as with our flagship deployment at Los Angeles Unified School District – Kokomo24/7 on AWS can scale to your school system size and facilitate your need now and in the years to come.
Our children and their educators’ school safety is paramount. Kokomo24/7 on AWS is a proven, innovative approach to helping school districts provide a safer environment for students, for parents and for the community. Kokomo24/7 Safety Cloud is available in a free trial, so take our solution for a test drive today at https://go.kokomo247.com/free-trial.
For more information on Kokomo24/7 Safety Cloud, visit https://kokomo247.com.