CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. — A local superintendent went into the audience during a violence prevention forum and told students behavior that disrupts learning will lead to severe consequences this school year.
Clayton County Superintendent Dr. Anthony Smith said students will have to learn from home if they bring guns to school or fight on campus.
“Cause we’re not gonna put up with mess,” he lectured.
Channel 2′s Tom Jones was at the Back to School Violence Prevention forum at the Clayton County Performing Arts Center on Tuesday when Smith made it crystal clear to students that violence would not be tolerated.
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He told students identified as having discipline issues that the district will no longer tolerate those who disrupt learning.
“We gonna be tough if you do stupid stuff. We gonna show you love when you do right. It’s that simple,” he pointed out.
School leaders who were a part of a panel told the students the district will have zero tolerance for weapons.
Last year, the district instituted a clear book bag policy after finding more than 100 weapons on school property. That number is down now and the district wants to keep it that way.
“Zero tolerance on weapons,” said Melvin Blocker, Executive Director of Student Discipline, Prevention and Intervention.
The district is also cracking down on drugs, bullying, gangs and violence.
“Starting today if you get into a fight and you put your hands on someone, you will be suspended from school,” Blocked added.
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Board member Ben Straker told students the purpose of the forum is simple.
“That you are making decisions that’s going to keep you alive,” he said.
Smith says there is too much progress in the district for students to mess it up.
“You act a fool in Clayton County Public School System moving forward, you will be virtual,” he said after he left the stage and walked the aisles to be closer to students.
One student says the message here convinced him to be a better leader with his friends.
“Telling them what not to do. Showing them what’s good to do and stuff to avoid and not getting into any trouble,” Christopher Larraga said.
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School leaders say students will be learning about conflict resolution in class throughout the school year. They will also learn how to forgive each other without resorting to violence. Parents will also be a part of conflict resolution as well.
Smith says the district is trying to teach students how to be leaders and prepare for the future.
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