Teacher's Union speaks out on escalating violence

By Tracy Clemons – bio|email

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA)- The Caddo Federation of Teachers and Support Personnel held a press conference Thursday to address concerns at Broadmoor Middle Lab School.

The union says Caddo Schools' administrators are not holding the students at Broadmoor accountable for their violent actions.

"I do not feel safe at this school," says seventh grader Sherilyn Wright.

"There have been a lot more fights than usual. Last Friday there was like six or five," Wright says.

Caddo Federation president Jackie Lansdale says the number is a little higher-"We can account for at least 10 in the last two weeks."

One was Thursday morning, and brought out Shreveport police.

"I looked up at about 7:20 and two kids were into it," says Doug Marrs.

He broke the fight up.

"In the process of doing that, I got thrown to the floor. I already had a bad back."

One other teacher says she got a black eye when she broke up a fight recently. Doug Marrs says this is the worst he's seen in his 20 years of teaching.

"If it's happening here, my goodness, what else is happening in this district," Jackie Lansdale chides.

She believes the administration has downplayed the violence at Broadmoor, and has failed to hold the students accountable for their violent actions with proper discipline."

"Instead of doing the right thing so you won't have the suspension to begin with...if you would make an example out of 1,2,3, instead of that, what they're doing is ignoring what the teachers are saying, blaming it on the teachers, and putting the students back in school."

In a statement released Thursday afternoon, Caddo Schools says to say the school is unsafe and or that administrators are not dealing with discipline issues is inaccurate and a gross misrepresentation of the facts.

For Sherilyn Wright, it's real.

"I would not recommend anyone going to this school, personally. My schools are getting changed because of all the fighting and recent activities."

Communications Director Tricia Grayson says some of the slight increase lately stems from conflicts in the neighborhoods. In the schools' statement, she says the schools are not immune to those issues.

They ask parents and community members to support their efforts to guide children towards alternatives to violence.

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