Violence in our Schools


Safety within schools has been on a constant decline. And in the past couple of years, it has slid at an unprecidented pace. Why? Why are the schools we attend less safe than they were when I was in first grade? An increase in gang involvement, everyone being in social media? Or just plain animosity and resentment towards a certain group or people we don’t know? This feeling of hatred towards classmates/cohorts is seen as being caused from differences. Differences in sexual preference, social class, race/skin color, class or political view. Thats the outside observation. but looking inward is all this animosity caused by other factors, such as stress and depression. We don’t know people as well as we used to. Normal school activities, things involving homework, projects, interactions, are more difficult, and annoying teachers while in class creates an atmosphere of choas. Are these difficulties from trauma at home? Trauma due to abuse from relatives, physical or mental. Sexual abuse, or simply not having enough food to eat. Just to show up at school the next day in a bad mood, depressed, exhausted. How many people walk the halls of Westside in this state on the daily?

As of December, there have been 257 school shootings across the United States in 2022. An increase from 2021. Safety within  many schools has practically remained the same, or even deteriorated in the past few years. Even after events such as the Parkland, Florida and closer to home, Santa Fe, Texas. This for many people, should have been the green light for  supervisors to change certain precautions and to add more security to our school campuses. Sadly however this hasn’t been the case for a lot of schools and districts. There is always a lot of talk. But for those of us who go to school, things have remained the same. Or it seems that way.

School shootings get all the attention, and they should, but what about the bullying. Bullying and fighting exposes students to violence on campus all the time.  A frightening statistic shows that “approximately 20% of students aged 12-18 have experienced some sort of bullying, while they are at school.” When referring to bullying there are many ways in which bullying and violence get entangled with some of those  being kids getting their things taken away from them in a not so friendly way, bullys pressuring victims to do things for them using their fists, kids getting harmed due to not wanting to comply, and more commonly than not kids getting pushed around while just trying to mind their own business due to how defenseless they may seem. I’ve seen this happen.

The sad thing about this whole topic is that no matter how many times these events happen practically nothing helpful is ever done and the few things that are actually somewhat helpful have such a minute effect that everything just remains the same. Westside’s answer to campus security is to have an extensive camera system, resource officers who are visible, regular school safety drills, administrative and faculty presence, and student uniforms and IDs. Simply adding extra police/security presence is helpful, but is it enough. Westside is a big spread out campus, design alone makes campus security  a challenge. What changes in the system could we do to actually make us safer while we are here?

Westside encourages students to participate in campus safety.  “See something Say something” has been taught in Guidance, or PAC time, classes during this school year. We appreciate your involvement in making Westside a productive learning enviroment.

HISD “See Something Say Something” information:

Crime Stoppers of Houston:

Westside High School: