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Violence in Swedish Schools on the rise

Violence in Swedish Schools on the rise

Over the last five years, violence perpetrated by primary and secondary school students in Sweden have more than doubled. The Chairman of the Teacher’s Association (lärarnas riksförbund) Åsa Fahlén, in a interview, commented that she wasn’t surprised at the dramatic increase in crime and she is very worried. Fahlén told SVT Nyheter that the dramatic increase of threats and violence reflect society in general which is evident in the schools. 

By – Brünnhilde

Perhaps, Fahlén should be very worried as there appears to be no end in sight as threats and physical violence in schools continue to increase. The evident per a report published by the Labor Environment Authority (Arbetsmiljöverket) and reported by SVT Nyhetter.

The number of reported incidents of physical violence in primary and secondary schools rose to 95 percent between 2012 – 2017 with the trend continuing for 2018. So far, there have been 544 incidents reported to the Labor Environment Authority compared to 474 incidents reported for all of 2017. This is already a 14.8 percent increase and 2018 is still ongoing. Reported threats have increased 46 percent over the same time period.

However, one must keep in mind the numbers do not paint an accurate picture because it appears incidents are potentially under reported. This could be because the “will to report such incidents may vary over time.”

In addition, there may be many students who decide to remain silent and not report such incidents as well as the schools’ faculty and staff who refuse to report such incidents to the Labor Environment Authority. According to Sweden’s labor law, the employer is responsible for alerting the Labor Environment Authority when serious events occur. There is a notification signaling system in place that would allow the Labor Environment Authority to act on individual cases.

In short, government various governmental agencies in Sweden just do not communicate with each other. This makes it increasingly difficult to have accurate statistics to paint a real picture when it comes to school violence. So of course the position of the Labor Environmental authority is that they are unable to confirm that violence is increasing in primary and secondary schools.

According to Kjell Blom, an investigator at the Labor Environment Agency, told SVT Nyheter that he doesn’t know if threats or violence are increasing because they only have the reported incidents from the schools.

SVT even attempted to reach out to other agencies such as the police’s National Media Center (polisens nationella mediecenter), the Crime Prevention Council (Brottsförebyggande rådet aka Brå), the National Agency for Education (Skolverket), and the School Inspectorate (Skolinspektionen). None of these departments have been able to report the current statistics on the development of threats and violence in schools. 

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Why is violence in schools on the rise?

SVT interviewed Åsa Fahlén, the chairman of the Teachers’ Association. According to Fahlén the violence and threats mirror that of an increase in violence in society. Fahlén explained to SVT:

Today you express yourself in a way that is more threatening and it is apparent in schools, clearly, it’s not just how to talk. You look at the numbers that there are more blows and kicks. There is more physical violence.”

Fahlén also believes that the lack of teachers is a contributing factor. Schools with high faculty turnover can be particularly vulnerable to violence and threats. Fahlén told SVT:

When the student’s situation becomes tougher, teacher shortage plays a greater role. If you change teachers often, you can not build trustworthy relationships. In addition the level of teacher education is of major importance for development. There are also many unqualified people who do not have adequate education to handle such situations. I’m not surprised, but worried.”

It simply appears no one will address the correlation between threats and violence in schools and the extreme change in demographic since the migrant crisis of 2015. Sweden had taken in more asylum seekers per capita than any other European country that year.

There is an increase in gang violence on the streets, especially in the biggest cities. We have the leaked reports from former employee of the Swedish Migration agency in addition to photo evidence of these so-called unaccompanied minors, claiming to be secondary school children, when in reality they appear to be well over 18 years of age. One would objectively and logically conclude that those two factors alone may play a large role. Crimes committed by those of a foreign background, especially those from Muslim countries, are just simply not recorded.

How can the various government authorities get a handle and crack down on school violence if they have no idea how to address the problem and don’t even communicate with each other? Instead they rely on employers to report incidents to the appropriate agency which produce inaccurate reports with numbers just being flung around with no understanding.

It’s apparent that the extreme political correctness is more important than putting an end to threats and physical violence in schools. Because in Sweden, it’s considered racist. 

Sources: SVT Nyheter

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Read more: From  2018/10/01

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