Bear, DE (PRWEB) February 21, 2008
How can a perfectly normal boy who has been raised in a good home walk into his house and kill his entire family, then go hang out with his friends without any remorse? Why would a kid who was respected and honored on his college campus choose to walk into a classroom and kill several students? Why are schools all over the country concerned with students who are becoming increasingly problematic, dangerous and challenging?
Darrell "Coach D" Andrews, an education consultant and developer of the nationally acclaimed "HYPE" Helping Youth Pursue Excellence Program, has seen a disturbing pattern take place with youth all over the country, they are synerizing around negative behaviors. "The problem with this is good kids are being ostracized for not accepting this behavior. This is not a new phenomenon, however, with an increase in television shows, music and Internet programs that support this type of behavior, it has proliferated to mass levels," states Andrews. "This places tremendous pressure on good kids to conform to this negative subliminal expectation. Because of the gregarious nature of youth, many times good kids will hide their pressure to conform to negative behaviors because it is not tolerated or accepted by their families and loved ones. On the flip side you have kids who do not kowtow and as a result are bullied by the kids who do. Good kids get pushed to the edge and the end result is some type of destructive behavior" proclaims Coach D.
Andrews notices that the climate in schools and communities is changing. "At many of the school assemblies and community events I conducted in past years, kids showed high levels of respect and honor. That is not the case anymore. Youth will say anything to you that comes to their minds and respect for adults and others is going out of the window." Reflecting on students' attitudes in the past Andrews states, "At one time, I was called Mr. Andrews by the students. Today I am frequently addressed as Yo Dude or What the #@%&* are you here for? The good kids still show respect but are immediately placed in check by the subliminal expectations of the masses." This highlights the fact that we have a serious problem in this country and it seems that many are placing their heads in the sand hoping it will go away. If we do not do something about this soon, we will become a nation where violence and disrespect for human life becomes the norm. The war in Iraq will pale in comparison to the war we will fight at home!
According to Coach D, parents, schools and communities can do something about this increasing problem with our youth. Listed below are four specific strategies that can be used by the aforementioned group to help our youth make better life, academic and personal choices:
1. Partner with the goal of mentoring every child within your sphere of influence-Too many kids slip through the cracks and every kid needs attention. It is easier to detect behavioral problems early if someone is paying regular attention to the youth. By overcoming differences and focusing on reaching all of their children, parents, schools and communities can minimize negative and risky behavior in youth through daily motivation and early detection.
2. Help youth get a sense of purpose for their lives- A student with a dream is a student with a future. Too many of our kids are meandering through life so it becomes easy to desire the attention of the larger group. If parents do not help their children get a sense of identity, someone else will. I have found in my travels that less than 10% of students have a focus for their lives. We need to significantly increase this number.
3. Conduct student forums-Students who are bullied, pushed around and ostracized often do not have a voice. Schools and organizations should regularly conduct forums or schedule meetings to discuss the organizational climate and what can be done to improve student-student relations. Too many adults sit in meetings discussing this problem, however, there is little to no student input. A student with a voice feels empowered and hence begins to feel as though their input and more importantly life--counts.
4. Highlight the positives often as possible-I was recently reading an article that was honoring an educator who had great success motivating his students. They asked him specifically what are you doing to connect with your students in such a special way? He responded by saying "I find something good to point out in all of my students-everyday." Youth today are regularly plagued with the problems they face, a daily word of encouragement may be the medicine needed to heal the hurts of our students.
In conclusion, we can help our good kids remain good by being proactive instead of reactive. Communities must return to the "village concept" where every child mattered. We are living in a nation where violence is now considered entertainment. Many of our children have not accepted this societal shift and we must do whatever it takes to help them maintain their good values. Good leadership through community collaboration can help make this goal a reality.
For more information or to schedule an interview, you can reach Coach D directly on his cell phone at (302) 559-4092 or call the office (302) 834-1040 ext. 104. For more information about Coach D and his work helping youth all over the USA visit his website at
This document can be used by media outlets only if Darrell "Coach D" Andrews is highlighted as the source.