Seventy students at Joliet Township High School have been suspended since the beginning of the school year due to fights and physical altercations. This is more than usual for this time of year according to superintendent Dr. Karla Guseman who says contributing factors include being out of school for 18 months.
No additional security guards will be added at this point but going forward, additional training will begin for staff. Joliet West High School and Joliet Central have a student body of about 6,800 and one thousand staff members.
To hear the entire interview click here.
Read the email sent to parents and students this week below.
Dear Parents and Students,
At JTHS, we believe in open, honest, and transparent communication, which is why we are sending this message today.
We have experienced an increase in the number of physical altercations this school year. We understand that many students are reacclimating to in-person interactions after participating in remote learning for 18 months
We know that our students are dealing with a lot, but students need to follow school rules, and we will continue to enforce all school rules. It is unacceptable to fight and to react in ways that disrupt the learning environment. It is also inappropriate to record or share photos or videos of fighting as this is considered instigation and further disrupts learning.
Another disruption this school year is students not getting to class on time. This was understandable at the beginning of the school year as most of our 9th and 10th graders were new to our buildings and needed time to find the best pathway to their classes. However, we have been in school for a month; therefore, this is no longer acceptable. Students need to be in class on time.
We will not tolerate this continued behavior in our schools, and here is how you can help:
*The Student Handbook contains our school rules and discipline procedures. Parents and guardians – please review this document with your student and let them know that fighting is not tolerated at JTHS.
* If you are a student who needs support, if you know of a student who needs support, or if you are a parent/guardian whose student needs support, complete the Request for Support Form that is posted on our website HERE. Completion of this form initiates a request, and a team of school support personnel will review the situation to assign appropriate supports. Concerns may be related to issues that include, but are not limited to, the following: mental health, poor attendance, addiction, academic difficulties, poor relations with peers or adults, health, and environmental issues.
* Parents/guardians can contact our deans, counselors, social workers, school psychologists, family engagement liaisons, or any staff member if they have a concern. The staff directory and contact information are posted to our website.
* Reports or concerns regarding school violence or school safety can be reported via the 24-hour School Violence Tip Line at 1-800-477-0024. This will anonymously alert school officials of threats of violence in school.
* Instances or concerns of school bullying can be reported through the Online Bullying Report. This report can be submitted anonymously, or you can choose to give your name.
* If you do not know who to contact, you can email [email protected]. This is our ” Contact Us” email and it is monitored regularly.
* And finally, if you see something, always say something. We have listed many ways to report concerns. Please use these. We rely on our students, parents, and community to let us know when there is a problem. We need your help, and we can only take action if we know about it.
Thank You For Your Support
We know that our parents, guardians, students, and community want what is best for our students and that they take great pride in our schools. While we know that most of our students make good decisions every day, it is important that we raise these concerns to our entire school community. Thank you for your support.