School Take Unique Approach In Stopping Fights - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

3/4/03 - Longview

School Take Unique Approach In Stopping Fights

In every school there are tensions among students.

Sometimes those tensions erupt into fights.

One east Texas school is trying to solve this problem by letting the students discover their own solution.

Foster middle school sometimes has to deal with students fighting.

"Fights were breaking out on school campus. But wasn't anything major 'cause it was only a couple of fights but those fights was just very bad," says student Al Pryor.

Typically schools would simply expel students for fighting.

But principal Mike McFarland looked to his students for help.

"You all have a voice. The easiest thing to do is to sit back and complain about a problem," McFarland tells his students during a student council meeting.

Student council officers began to brainstorm on ways to prevent fights before they happen.

Once the student council developed their plan of action it was time to share it with the other students.

"Student council has just met and we have come up with some rules and regulations that will begin with in the next week," Elizabeth Turruviarets delivers the news to fellow students.

Foster middle school students are required to wear uniforms, if they stay fight free for one full month, their first reward is being able to wear regular clothes for one day.

"Another one, beginning today, each grade level with no fights will receive a pizza party at the end of the school year," says Elizabeth.

"Any student involved in the fight will be issued a ticket between $500 and $1000 and will be automatically sent to JDC," Elizabeth finishes explaining the rules to the other students.

The plan has been in place for two weeks and so far so good.

Principal McFarland says he's not surprised.

He says kids are capable of solving their own problems if adults would only listen.

Principal McFarland says the plan student council members came up with has been well received by other students.

He says at least 85% of the student body signed a petition in support.

Amy Tatum, reporting.

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