Venice High School Safety Survey 2019

Destiny Clark, Staff Writer

At Venice High, 63% of students reported feeling safe and 80% also reported feeling safe in the surrounding neighborhood, according to results from parent/student surveys that were sent out at the beginning of the school year that is available on lausd.net.

“Venice High is safe due to our dedicated school police,” said senior Ricky Vargas.

The numbers for this year are slightly down. Last year, 86% reported feeling safe in school and 91% reported feeling safe in the neighborhood. In between the two surveys, the Parkland shooting that killed 17 students and staff members took place. Venice High School is one of the very few LAUSD schools that has an open campus. These factors may have influenced the decline in the number of students who feel safe.

“Because of the school shooting, we are feeling less safe in school,” said school coordinator Monica Studer.

Venice High strives to embody the principles of being a safe school for better learning by being prepared in five areas: prevention, protection, mitigation, response, and recovery, according to the Safe School Plan on the Venice High School website.

“Our school is open, but the police do a great job in ensuring we stay safe,” said senior Geovanna Ordonez. “Our after-school programs are also great at keeping us safe.”

According to this year’s student poll results, 70% reported that if they were to tell their teachers that they were being bullied, they believe they would be helped,  46% reported that they were advised by their teachers on how to act in an uncomfortable situation and 55% of students reported to have problems they could comfortably share with their teachers.

“People may feel as though Venice High isn’t safe because of the neighborhood,” said Vargas.

For prevention and protection,  the School Safety Plan states a school must be prepared for any crime that may occur. Mitigation deals with reducing the loss of life and property, response involves having the skills to act in case of an emergency and recovery deals with the ability of a school to restore a healthy learning environment.

Due to these goals, Venice High incorporates the work of school nurses, security guards, a health clinic, and psychological support.

“The feeling of unsafety doesn’t have anything to deal with what anything we’re doing. It’s a societal thing,” said Ms. Studer.

The Venice High after-school program has activities for students. With sports, dancing, science, and the Boys and Girls Club made available on campus, students have the opportunity to engage in a fun and safe environment under the watchful care of after-school staff and coaches.

Although Venice has all of these resources, the numbers on the current poll of students who feel safe aren’t A+ quality.

“It feels like our school is very competitive, and people feel like they need to have the best GPA when they can be in one club and have average GPAs. Being the best is engraved in our minds and that makes the learning environment toxic,” said Ordonez, referring to factors that may affect a student’s feelings of safety. “I feel as though the construction also plays a big part in the unsafety.”

With the incorporation of more programs and people on campus after school, these resources can further promote the feeling of safety among Venice students.

“There should be more clubs that spread awareness and promote everyone’s safety,” said Ordonez.

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