IPS to talk safety, social media after fights recorded

IPS officials plan to discuss safety and social media at a meeting following two fights caught on camera at Northwest High School. (WISH Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Leaders at Indianapolis Public Schools will talk safety following fights caught on camera last week

IPS officials say a deputy superintendent and all of its high school principals will be at the meeting Monday. The district says it will be outlining “safety standards” for its middle and high schools.

This follows two fights caught on camera just last week at Northwest High School. In at least one of the situations, you can hear a teacher telling the students to stop. But according to the district’s policies, a teacher cannot physically try and break up a fight until another teacher is there to help.

Some students at Northwest High School say there are several fights a day. The principal of the school says the school is safe and that safety is the number one priority.

In addition to safety, officials also plan to talk about the recording and sharing of videos such as those that captured the fights last week.

Currently the IPS Student Services Team is working on creating a code of conduct for students. It includes a section that addresses social media and physical altercations. It suggests posting fight videos on social media could possibly result in suspension.

IMPD says posting video of a fight on social media is not illegal, but police warn that a student recording a fight could be charged with conspiracy if it’s later suggested that the fight was planned or staged.

District Positive Discipline Coordinator Dr. Cynthia Jackson says students need to be taught ‘digital citizenship.’ That includes educating students on the difference between documenting incidents for evidence and filming them for entertainment and explaining the possible long-term consequences for those involved in planned filming of a fight. There’s also a plan to launch peer-to-peer workshops on good social media use and counter-acting cyber-bullying.

Monday’s meeting is not open to the public, but 24-Hour News 8 will be following up to see what happens.

To read more about the meeting and the district’s safety plan, click here.

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