Sergeant Vincent Masterson
Violence is a learned behavior that can be changed. Parents, students and school officials can take steps toward reducing violence in schools by responding to children’s emotional and psychological needs and by implementing violence prevention programs.
The purpose of A.M.P.S. is to educate the students in the Los Angeles Unified School District in regard to anger management and the control of this emotion. This would include threats and other negative behavior manifestations. The target group is 3rd grade students. Our testing period concluded that this program was most effective at that grade level. The focus on this grade level is important in order to set a foundation that can be carried through the rest of their childhood and on to adulthood.
In recent years there has been an upsurge in actions taken by angry youth that have made world-wide headlines. Columbine High School in Colorado and Santee High School in the San Diego area are two examples of tragic incidents fueled by anger.
Several schools have called requesting an officer from our department to address their students on this topic. After giving several presentations on this topic, LASPD realized the need for a more formalized structured course where we could be assured that all the presenters are giving the same message.
A.M.P.S. will focus on positive methods of handling anger and giving our students alternative solutions to dealing with their anger issues.
Included in this program will be:
-Criminal Threats and Battery, the definition and consequences
-What causes anger
-How do we handle the emotion of anger
-Role-playing exercises dealing with real life situations for youth
-How to report information related to anger
The presentation will last approximately one hour and will be presented to a group of children at their schools by trained police officers for the Los Angeles School Police Department. An officer will also schedule a follow-up visit to individual classrooms to make sure the information is retained.
There is a high demand for this type of proactive program in our schools. The officers of the Los Angeles School Police Department are the most identified law enforcement representatives to most of our children, therefore the logical choice to implement such a program.
The presentation will last approximately 45 minutes to on hour and will be presented to a group of children at their schools by trained Police Officers and School Safety officers from the Los Angeles School Police Department. It is most effective with three of four classes at a time in an auditorium setting.