Fighting on Campus Affecting School Reputation

I want to address something that’s happening at school way too often, which is fighting. The school has had an alarming amount of fights this year already, and it’s something that should never happen. 

Sometimes, fighting starts on social media, where students observe things like people saying they’re going to fight and don’t report it. Rancho Mirage High School Assistant Principal Ms. Ballard says that admins “used to get at least one report a day (on Sprigeo) and now we get less than that.” It helps if you report violence when you see it, whether it be bullying or some people planning on fighting. If students hear anything about fighting it is encouraged to report it so that our school can stay safe. Reporting fighting is not the same as snitching. 

There are around 88 staff members and 1550 students approximately, so the staff is there but there really is not enough to watch every single student, especially outside of the classroom. Staff try to be there for students who need support or they turn to fighting. Ms. Ballard says “funding is not enough to hire more staff,” and that they have requested more security per student, but they have not been able to hire more people.

Some think fighting isn’t a big deal, but there are serious safety issues; fighting can lead to lots of problems for many students, not only the ones involved directly in a fight. I asked Ms. Ballard why she thinks so many fights were happening in the first month or two. She explained to me that some kids coming to our campus come from a background where fighting is acceptable, and how they don’t know the proper way to deal with a conflict. When they have a difficult or challenging situation, their default is to turn to fighting. We sometimes want parents to get involved and help work with their child to show them that violence isn’t always the answer, especially on campus. But when it comes to the parents getting involved to help stop fighting behavior, it can be difficult. Many parents are so busy,and want their kids to make their own decisions, but I hope they can try to find the time to help their child. If a parent is concerned about their kid’s education and behavior, they should definitely try to help solve the problem. 

Fighting needs to stop at our school.  It is not only very dangerous, it is stopping our students from getting perks at the school, and is giving us a bad name. Attending Rancho Mirage High School could have value, but right now we are losing respect for all this. 

A solution I have for fighting, or at least slowing it down, is maybe have clubs or a staff group that walk round outside so the students can connect with them, know that someone is there for them. I think that this can all be stopped if students understand more than one fight can ruin your life. First, you can get suspended for 3-5 days (depending on if this is your first fight, and there are laws the school looks at as well). You’re missing school, you could fall behind on your work, and you won’t get to see your friends. If you have a fight that goes on your permanent record, colleges or jobs that want your record will see that you’ve been violent in the past. 

Most importantly, do you want that for yourself? To be labeled as a kid who only knows how to fight, not how to fix things without resorting to that? Some kids fight for attention, and as their peers we should pay them NO attention when they try that, because watching makes them think they’re doing a good thing and they want that attention. It also helps the problem grow, if we stand around and film it or cheer it on.

We should want to set an example for future students; there are going to be new kids on campus, do you really want people to not want to come here because of our shady reputation? The fighting situation is so frequent it’s making us look bad. That is my opinion on fights and why they should not happen.