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Home Schools Rye Youth Council Plans Community Discussion in September in Wake of Hazing

Rye Youth Council Plans Community Discussion in September in Wake of Hazing

In an email sent to its listserve Friday, the Rye Youth Council reported it has begun speaking with various community leaders with the goal of holding a community forum in early September: "we have reached out to community leaders, parent representatives, clergy, police and school personnel. We have begun a dialogue about our shared values and vision and are developing the framework for positive initiatives, which will be both responsive and proactive. We will continue to work on this over the summer and are planning a more extensive community discussion in early September with the aforementioned participants, led by the RYC…"

The full email:

"From: Rye Youth Council <ryeyouthcouncil@listserve.com>
Date: June 15, 2012 11:15:56 AM EDT
To: ryeyouthcouncil@listserve.com
Subject: [Rye Youth Council] Message to the Community
Reply-To: ryeyouthcouncil@listserve.com

 
The Rye Youth Council, as an organization committed to building character in our young people, is ready to support the entire community in the wake of the recent hazing incident in Rye. These past few weeks have been an emotional and anguished time, and the breathless media coverage has only served to escalate the discussion. Lives have been forever changed, and our children are looking to us to handle this crisis. Unfortunately, there is no road map to follow to "fix" this issue. We are all called to take responsibility for the just and ethical treatment of each other.

This is a time to work together to find ways to strengthen the character and emotional well being of all kids in our community. The Rye Youth Council is actively working to facilitate that conversation. To that end, we have reached out to community leaders, parent representatives, clergy, police and school personnel. We have begun a dialogue about our shared values and vision and are developing the framework for positive initiatives, which will be both responsive and proactive. We will continue to work on this over the summer and are planning a more extensive community discussion in early September with the aforementioned participants, led by the RYC . Our youth advocates are also formulating fall programs that will include parent forums to solicit their input.

In the meantime, our three youth advocates Casey DeCola (decolac@yahoo.com), Sara Braun (sbraunryc@optonline.net) and Stephanie Low (stephlowryc@optonline.net) are available for a confidential conversation to anyone who seeks it. We also refer you to our website www.ryeyouthcouncil.org, which has some pertinent articles that our advocates have written in the past.

For more information please contact our office at 967-3838 or email us at ryeyouthcouncil@aol.com."

  1. Peer pressure is effective as a behavioral deterrent among young people. I can personally attest to it. This timeless technique was used sparingly but effectively at Rye High and Rye Middle School in my days. It was fully supported by the school administration and the Rye Board of Education. And it didn’t require public forums, parent consensus or talk therapy. It was applied by administrators exercising their existing authority to educate and protect. And nobody got hurt. Everybody suffered and everybody learned to change their behavior. He’s how it worked –

    If even the hint of an unauthorized “hazing” session or some other inappropriate organized behavior was in the air, the principal and his or her assistants would call the entire class that the miscreants matriculated in (here it was the 11th grade) into the auditorium and tell them what was suspected and tell them it wasn’t going to happen. They’d be told that if anyone caught doing the inappropriate thing would be expelled and the Rye police would prosecute them as criminals (whether they ultimately did or not) and their parents would be involved, very involved. And then they’d dismiss the session and monitor the situation through their network of relationships built over time with class leaders and regular students and see if the warning had been obeyed.

    If the directive was not obeyed and an inappropriate incident was believed to have occurred then a search for the miscreants would ensue beginning with another mass auditorium session using a variety of non corporal intelligence gathering techniques honed over the centuries beginning with the Inquisition and if no one confessed then every single member of that class (especially the obviously innocent) would attend study hall/detention with no talking allowed until someone or someone’s parents squealed. Sometimes it took 5 miserable days of 6 hour mass detentions. But ultimately PEER PRESURE would assert itself and everyone suffering for the stupidity of others would ultimately turn on the miscreants and their confessions would be obtained and their punishment regimen instituted.

    The rest of the school would see the whole sorry drama and it would stand as a deterrent for many years to any similar recurrence. It was very effective. And extremely educational – one of the most valuable lessons ever to be learned.

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