Charter Schools a step forward in Ending Violence Against Women
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), roughly one in three women worldwide have experienced either physical and/or sexual intimate partner or non-partner sexual violence in their lifetimes. In the U.S., this costs society more than $5.8 billion a year, with $4.1 billion of that total being spent on direct medical and mental health services.
Needless to say, efforts have been underway to change this, including stepped-up funding for organizations, programs and directives oriented toward ending violence against women. Unfortunately, most have come up short. Instead of reducing the numbers of such incidents or the economic and other damage they cause, the various initiatives have largely served to promote the interests of those organizations that have fostered the dangerous illusion that significant progress is being made.
Thankfully, one group of scholars, including Dr. Edward Stephens, Marianne J Legato, MD, Ona Robinson Phd, Richard Elfebien and others, have been working on this. Over the past three years, they have been developing and gaining support for an approach designed to attack the problem at its roots. They have sought to address the needs of males in kindergarten through sixth grade and reduce the attractiveness of and pressure to acquire a “street education,” where boys sling drugs and commit crimes of passion without regard for the victims–or themselves.
Anecdotal and other evidence suggests that many violent crimes are carried out by once innocent boys who were essentially abandoned by the system, leading them to fall behind and eventually, drop out of school and divorce themselves from parental authority. Experts have warned about the fact that our public schools have failed as a safety net for these vulnerable members of society. Instead of taking pains to understand and adapt to their natural behavior, they punish boys and “treat” them with drugs.
Unfortunately, they are most likely to become marginalized–society’s weaker members, preyed upon at a high cost to all concerned. Research indicates that males who have been arrested for acts of domestic violence range in age from 19 to 24 on average, had numerous discipline problems in school, and likely did not complete their secondary education. If it takes a village to raise our children and help them become productive members of society, then we must ensure all of them are included.
Our Children are the Future
Protecting our young is the duty of each and every one of us. This includes ensuring that they are educated in environments that inspire passion and where contact with violence is minimal. Right now, this is not the case. Our educational system, notably our public schools, is exposing them to a minefield of conflicts–and worse. In 2013-2014 for example, about 58 percent of public schools reported one or more incidents of a physical attack or fight without a weapon. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, this translates to approximately 453,000 incidents at a rate of about nine crimes per 1,000 students.
Against this backdrop, Drs. Stephens and the Foundation of Male Studies (FMS) has been working to create a framework that alters the current dynamic, which has disproportionately affected certain groups. They are seeking to create an environment where all young male lives, regardless of race or circumstances, matter. More specifically, they want to ensure that, contrary to now, a third of young boys of color do not end up in detention centers and indoctrinated into the underbelly of criminal behavior.
Under the auspices of the Foundation of Male Studies (FMS) these scholars have formulated an educational approach based on years of rigorous and groundbreaking research on the state of males around the world, and which incorporates findings from seventeen hard science disciplines including biology, sociology, literature, economics, psychology and medicine. The result is the Charter Schools for the Engagement of Boys, targeting primary school-age children.
Charter School for the Engagement of Boys
By incorporating an innovative curriculum that is relevant to, entices and inspires boys, especially those at risk, based on the United Nations Risk Factors for violence, a males well-being and lack of educational and socioeconomic attainment and the FMS scholars believe their cutting-edge teaching facility is hope for dramatically reducing the numbers of young boys–currently 6,000, most of whom are Hispanic and black–who drop out of school each day. The program is dedicated to improving opportunity for those who struggle in more traditional settings by emphasizing an instinctual masculine approach focused on reading and STEM–science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
The Science of the Male
Specifically, the new school’s foundations will rest on the “science of the male,” with a syllabus that addresses traditional male learning difficulties at all levels within a well-defined learner-learning pedagogy. It combines standard elementary school classwork with boy-specific tools, molded into a flexible and empathetic curriculum aligned to the highest standards at age-appropriate stages. The learning environment will integrate the science of male concepts in all areas of study, as follows:
- Embrace mathematical modeling of various brain aspects using interactions and assumptions that encourage the classic recognition principal.
- Employ techniques that manage the naturally hyperactive and restless nature of young males through processes and physical activities oriented toward discovering physical boundaries.
- Take account of how male brains rely on unique hearing and sight cues.
- Integrate training efforts that address underlying issues and embrace individual aggression and anger, helping to transform the conflict resolution process and improve social skills.
- Emphasize structuring, setting and respecting boundaries.
- Incorporate debate and discussion drills that teach students how to navigate opposing arguments that feature diametrical opinions.
- Employ personal management programs that improve inner security and change the core beliefs of insecurity, helping to dissolve emotions such as anger and jealousy.
- Teach and enhance problem-solving techniques.
- Adapt and embrace masculine characteristics such as integrity, courage, creativity, innovation, adaptability and compassion.
- Employ proven educational principles and best practices for promoting male learning.
Such efforts represent a revolutionary way of stimulating and assisting young boys to become productive and successful adults. When they no longer fall victim to societal neglect or slip through the cracks of an inadequate educational system, criminality and violence against women is likely to decline. “We plan to roll out more schools with this initiative to change the life course trajectory for boys into men and men in society,” said Dr. Edward Stephen, the founder of FMS.
Concerned individuals and organizations such as The California Endowment Health Foundation, are very interested in raising their children in the right ways and making decisions and investments that are in their interest. They also understand that to impact the cycle of violence against women that they must ensure that all young people have the opportunity to have a satisfying and productive role in society. By helping FMS in its mission to bring innovative charter school programs to those who need it most, communities can improve everyone’s quality of life.
To support a well overdue change in the current narrative for little boys and to help empower them in their lives, consider joining with the many companies, institutions, donors, alumni and ordinary individuals in every community who are already doing their part. Partner with FMS as a donor or sponsor, or lend a hand in some other way. Contact FMS online and offer active encouragement. The time to act is now.
Contact the FMS:
Dr. Edward Stephen’s
About the Author
Tim Patten has published the handy investment guide: MGTOW, Building Wealth and Power. He also wrote WHY I CHEAT – 11 campfire stories for men’s ears only. Both books are a celebration of masculinity and pay homage to the modern men’s liberation movement. Patten previously published a novel about establishing gender equality in professional sports, Roller Babes: 1950s Women of Roller Derby.