Putting Dads In Schools Proposed As A School Violence Solution

By Erika Hanson | Published

dads in schools

You may have seen or heard of the heartwarming story that went viral on CBS regarding Dads on Duty. The innovative initiative was first reported on the evening news last October, but the Dads in School initiative has roots all around the nation. Fundamentally, the momentous Dads on Duty efforts are being adopted as a solution to the growing school violence concern threatening schools. 

School districts everywhere are forming their own types of Dad’s on Duty groups. A group of fathers at Idaho’s Rigby Middle School launched the program this school year following a tragic school shooting that took place in the middle school over the summer. One Louisiana high school claims the violence has stopped since some 40 Dads formed the group at Shreveport high school. And in Las Vegas where public schools are afflicted by constant violence, a group of Dads is looking to start their own Dads in Schools program as well.

In Las Vegas, Troy Martinez is hoping to launch “Dads in Schools” with similar goals to the nationwide Dads on Duty movement. If approved by the Clark County School District board, Martinez and other volunteer fathers will roam the school’s halls in an effort to deter violent situations in schools. But how exactly does this program work?

According to Martinez, Dads in School groups like this one focus on being neutral figures in the hallways. “We are not the police, we are not the school administration.” Martinez also said the group is not there to punish or lecture students. Instead, they are simply there to lend a smile and “a few laughs”. Furthermore, volunteers who wish to participate in the program will be required to go through thorough background checks, a vetting process, and training. Martinez’s Dads in School was set to be a topic for approval at the education board meeting last night.

dads in schools

School violence perpetually has plagued school districts across the nation and the issue only seems to get worse. The problem is an issue that groups like Dads in Schools want to combat, regardless of how small, or big, the issues may be. According to the CDC, about 1 in 5 students report being bullied on school property. More than 7% of students also report being threatened or injured with a weapon on school property, and almost 9% of high school students say they have missed school because of feeling unsafe inside school walls.

As school districts already have rigorous school violence prevention initiatives in place, the escalating problem inside school buildings obviously isn’t getting better, and maybe Dads in Schools can open the door for more innovative ways to keep our children safe. As it stands, it is up to both the parents and school employees to aid in preventing school violence. But as dire news stories often show, counting on school authorities to de-escalate situations isn’t always enough.

Cristian Garcia, a Las Vegas dad hoping to join the Dads in School movement didn’t have a father figure growing up. “My dad was never in the picture,” Garcia said when he discussed coming from a broken household. “But now I’m able to become the solution towards that problem.” Fathers like Garcia and Martinez are taking matters into their own hands to find a solution to the growing school violence issue. 
“For those students that don’t have two parents, those students that don’t have the support at home, they’ll at least have some opportunity to have that when they go to school,” Martinez said. Fathers play a huge role in the lives of their children, especially through education. Studies show that children tend to not only learn more but also exhibit healthier behaviors with a fatherly figure present. Maybe Dads like Martinez are on to something. And while no one likely sees the initiative as a thorough solution to end all school violence, it’s a step in the right direction.