An arresting presence in the classroom
Wednesday 30 July 2008
One of the first schools to have a police officer stationed on site was George Green, a 1,300-pupil comprehensive on the Isle of Dogs in Tower Hamlets, east London.
PC Duncan Evans became the first police officer in east London to work from an office in a school. He dealt with a range of issues and was adamant his presence helped improve relationships with the pupils – in an area which had been riven by rival gang warfare.
After the project had been going for a year, he had made 26 arrests – almost all for offences committed outside the school – and, more importantly, had helped encourage pupils to come forward and give evidence as witnesses to incidents they had seen.
"The attitude towards the police has definitely changed," he said. "The pupils can talk to me about things like drugs and sentencing." His role also led to encouraging pupils to take part in restorative justice schemes, where pupils were brought together with their victims to talk about what had happened.
He also tackled child protection cases. In a case where evidence of abuse emerged, collaboration between the school, the police and social services led to a child being removed from an unsafe environment within hours – when the problem may not have emerged if pupils had felt unable to talk to him.
The school also introduced a scheme whereby members of two rival gangs were taken on retreat to a Big Brother-style house in Northern Ireland from which they could not escape and had to talk to each other.
They were given talks by members of the Protestant and Roman Catholic communities who explained in graphic detail what being part of two warring communities in Northern Ireland meant.
It was a gamble, admitted the school's headteacher, Kenny Fredericks, but it worked. In the end, members of the two rival gangs became friends and the gang warfare ceased.
Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes
Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
Ian Thorpe gay: Olympic swimmer comes out in Parkinson interview
Pamplona bull run: Man who contributed to a survival guide for the festival falls foul of the raging beasts
Israel-Gaza conflict: William Hague calls for ceasefire but says Israel 'has the right to defend itself'
Supermoon 2014: When and why will the moon look bigger and brighter this summer?
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
War is war: Why I stand with Israel
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’
- 1 World Cup 2014: 20 things we learned in Brazil
- 2 Why I'm on the brink of burning my Israeli passport
- 3 War is war: Why I stand with Israel
- 4 L'Oreal cuts ties with Belgium supporter Axelle Despiegelaere after hunting trip photographs
- 5 World Cup 2014: Robin van Persie gives his bronze medal to eccentric Netherlands fan moments after being handed it by Sepp Blatter
£33000 per annum + pension, 25 days holiday: Ashdown Group: A highly successfu...
Competitive Salary: Randstad Education Group: Randstad urgently seeks a qualif...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Liverpool: We are looking for someone who can t...
£120 - £160 per day: Randstad Education Liverpool: **Science Teacher Urgently ...