Establish a violence prevention program in public high schools

  • Posted on: 4 April 2018
  • By: Alison Cedarbaum
Primary Chamber: 
Secondary Sponsor: 
Selam Ambaw
An Act Relating to Violence Prevention
Enactment Clause: 
Be it enacted by the Youth Model Legislature of the State of New Jersey that a Violence Prevention Program be established in all New Jersey public high schools.
Defining Violence Prevention Program as an elective class for any student at any grade of public high school to replace the standard physical education program for a full year. This program shall teach students about ways to prevent violence in their future lives.
This program shall include a self defense unit, a CPR unit and certification, an abuse identification and prevention unit, a hate crime prevention unit including basic psychology, and an anger and stress management unit.
A committee entitled Violence Prevention by Education Committee (VPE), of experts of economics, psychology, and education shall be appointed by the New Jersey government education department. This committee shall be put into place to write the curriculum for the program as well as regulate the finances and successes of the program and aid the schools for three years. The committee shall be constructed of five executive leaders who shall write the curriculum and delegate responsibilities to the approximate fifty experts working under them. After the three years, the committee shall be dissolved and any issues shall be delegated to experts in the general education department.
Any schools that declare that their physical education and health departments, as well as any other department they deem fit, shall be able to fulfil the program, will be allowed to do so, with tri-monthly observation classes for three years from the VPE to ensure that the program is effective.
Any school district that declares that they are unable to fulfill the program, following an evaluation of their financial competency, shall be financially aided by the VPE and a member of the VPE will be responsible for the management and supervision of the program at that individual school district for a term of two years, during which time they will be aiding teachers in the course itself while aiding management with financial and overall management of the program. The program’s status will then be evaluated upon its ability to run the program independently.
In the case that a school does not have a staff capable to teach this class, representatives from the VPE shall be sent to train existing teachers how to teach the program effectively over the summer of 2020, and shall continue aiding the teachers as mentioned above.
The VPE shall provide each school district with one expert in martial arts or any other form of self defense deemed fit by the VPE. These experts shall be certified as teachers by the state of New Jersey and shall teach the self defense portion of this course.
Effective Date: 
This bill shall come into effect on July 1st of 2018 in order to establish a well planned educational course at the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year. From July 1st 2018 to July 1st 2020, the VPE shall be performing the aforementioned duties and shall train teachers over the summer of 2020.
Statement of Intent: 
The purpose of this Bill is to interrupt the development and progression of violent ideas in the minds of youths, and to inform students of how to avoid and deal with violence of others, thus preventing violence in the future as these students transition into adulthood.
Author's Note: 
The finances for this bill to pay the salaries of VPE members and teachers as well as any materials needed for the course itself shall be covered by the School Improvement subsection of the New Jersey education budget, coming from a 1% tax on cigarettes of the citizens of New Jersey.
Fund Summary: 
Funds necessary for the implementation of this law will come from the School Improvement subsection of the Education department of the New Jersey State Government.
Speedpass Consideration: