Principal’s Blog, Student Focus – Gangs, Friday 24th May 2019

This is the second in a series of blogs in which the views of a cross section of the student population are shared. The young people involved are a representative mix of students in terms of year group, gender, academic levels and ethnic back ground. They choose topic areas, crafted the questions and agreed the summary responses.

They provide an interesting insight into the views of our students and the responses of the academy to support these young people.

The second topic is one that seems to hit the media headlines on a weekly basis – Gangs.

This is what our students thought.

Why do people join gangs? The students suggested that the young people don’t have anything else to do, they think it looks cool. Sometimes they are running away from problems at home or their parents are not able to control them. Drugs, smoking, money and alcohol also seem to have a link.

Have you experienced any problems from gangs? – Some students had seen graffiti and groups of young people hanging out by the shops or in secluded places. None of the students had experienced any problems caused by gangs, but all of them worry by what they hear in the media about gangs in Milton Keynes. Social media can also make it feel worse.

How does this compare to what you see in the media? – All of the students agreed that it seems a bigger problem when you see it in the media than it feels through their own experiences. They thought that it makes exciting news stories and people would want to be told about things like this.

How should society deal with gangs? – Having police on the streets was a popular answer, students told us that this made them feel safe. Giving young people more things to do and parents being stricter, were other common response.

How could Hazeley deal with it more effectively? – There was real clarity form the students who suggested that we work with the police to see who is in gangs or who is at risk of joining and make sure that they are steered away from it. They also thought that trying to understand why children join gangs was important.

Finally, they thought that it was important to show the local community that most students from Hazeley are great and not involved in things like gangs.

We are going to share the thoughts of our students with the local community police team and use them to inform our own strategy to help reduce the problem associated with gangs in Milton Keynes.

If you have any concerns relating to gang involvement by students at the Hazeley Academy then please do not hesitate to contact the Deputy Principal, Mr Healy shealy@thehazeleyacademy.com

Mr Nelson