Effective Communication Between Counselors in Patient Health Care Term Paper

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Resource Officer Data Collection

The Data Collection process for our study on the responsibilities and concerns of those functioning the resource officer capacity on high school campuses would prove very effective. Using the open ended interview process to create transcripts recounting the experiences of those resource officers selected -- chosen through existing contacts with available schools -- the data would be collected on school premise in the office of each interviewee.

The data yielded is a wealth of qualitative information which allows us to draw several conclusions. Chief among them, we find that key preoccupations for resource officers concern the protection of the student body through prevention of fighting, bullying, assault or the threat of internal or external violence. We also find that resource officers work in close concert with law enforcement groups to craft policy, inform procedure and address emergency situations. We also find that resource officers may benefit from improved financial resource availability, expanded facilities and staff sizes commensurate with student bodies.

These findings are reported and exemplified in the following interview response transcript:

Interview Transcript:

1. How would you describe the responsibilities of the resource officer in general and in the context of this school?

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Our school is based in a middle class and upper middle class suburban neighborhood. Typically, violent crimes are not a daily threat, but in this era where school shootings have occurred with greater frequency in these types of schools, this is something we have to be aware of. Still, our regular responsibilities are focused on ensuring that the school is safe, secure and free from threats to our students, teachers and faculties.

Term Paper on Effective Communication Between Counselors in Patient Health Care Assignment

This means that we must establish a clear presence and engage programs and policies to ensure that students are aware of the rules and limitations of the school. Beyond this, we are responsible for incident management. This means that we are the first line of defense for students in the event of an assault by a member of the student body or by an outsider on school premises. We maintain a close coordination and an open line of communication with local law enforcement for fast response in the most dire of cases.

But we are more likely to contend with the types of daily concerns which arise in schools. We are attentive to the possibility of fighting between students, of bullying, of sexual assault or with respect to drugs, weapons, illicit sexual materials or other contraband on school grounds. It is our responsibility to ensure that policy is taken seriously and that swift action is taken where policies are violated.

a. Are these responsibilities standardized?

The responsibilities to which we are beholden are standardized insofar as policy exists concerning student behavior and we do have printed codes of procedure for addressing the contingencies relating to these policies.

b. Are responsibilities described and issued by the school?

To this extent, our responsibilities are not issued by the school, and are driven by policy development internal to our resource officer department. These policies are, however, directly informed by the behavior policies and penalties codes designed by school, district and state.

c. " by an outside agency?

Though our procedures are internally developed, they are a direct reflection of the responsibilities and procedural demands imposed by state and federal legal provisions.

2. How would you describe the safety scenario at your school?

In general, our school is extremely safe. The student body has been made fully aware of the standards to which they are being held and they tend to response with respect to these standards. Severely violent incidences are a rarity. And except in cases where I or my staff has confiscated illegal drugs -- more often than not marijuana or prescription pills -- we do not often have to call the police.

We do take general security measures to maintain safety. With a student body of about 800 students, I maintain a staff of 6 people including myself. We are all armed with various non-lethal enforcement weapons. The school also has closed circuit cameras in hallways, courtyards and other areas of heavy traffic or student volume. These are monitored from our office, which is located next to the main cafeteria, also often a point of heavy student interaction.

a. Is violence a regular day-to-day concern?

Though we do not face violent incidences everyday, this is an ongoing and prominent concern that defines our work. On a day-to-day basis, we also make ourselves widely available to those who wish to report violence, bullying or assault.

b. How often are there incidences of violence?

Of course, we cannot be everywhere at once. So it's hard to say how successful we are in preventing all the forms of violence which we have set out to address. But I would say that we do have to break up a fight, intervene where systematic bullying or assault has occurred or otherwise invoke our authority once or twice a month.

c. What demographic or cultural patterns do you observe to be an issue?

I'm not certain if I have observed any relationship between cultural patterns and violence. Our school has a somewhat ethnically diverse population but I don't see much tension, especially not to the point of violence. There is, of course, always a lot of clique forming in high school, and popularity or a lack thereof do play into some problematic interactions, especially where bullying is concerned.

3. What procedures are in place to allow you to prevent violence or effect conduct issues in the school?

The main procedure in place is our close contact with local law enforcement. This means that we will invoke the authority to involve such groups when this is deemed necessary. Additionally though, we are authorized to physically engage students if an immediate threat deems this necessary. This is something which, for obvious reasons, we do not do lightly. However, we do have the authorization to appeal to such intervention to protect the safety of other students.

a. What resources are available to you?

Resources available to us include state of the art communication technology, allowing for my staff to coordinate on the campus as well as with outside assistance agencies. Likewise, we maintain resources specific to school needs, such as an on-staff counselor and access to support and counseling groups for all manner of situation.

b. How are emergency situations handled?

In situations deemed emergencies, the local police are contacted immediately for support.

c. How much freedom/restraint do you have in conduct situations?

My staff and I are all full officers of the law. As such, we are authorized to use our discretion and, where necessary, our force, in order to enforce the rules of the school as well as state and local laws.

4. What are the most pressing challenges which limit or prevent your ability to do your job?

The greatest challenge to my job is the ratio of officers to students. My staff, like most, is modestly sized. In the event of a very serious incident, we truly do rely on the fast response of outside agencies. We are not resources for major crowd control or combat situations. Of course, this is not a daily concern, but it does manifest as a daily concern in that we cannot be everywhere at once. We rely on the student body to a large degree to govern itself or to take the initiative to involve us where necessary.

a. Are there pressures from outside groups or authorities which restrain functionality?

External restraints are less political than they are economic. We lack the financial resources to bring about more officers to or to house ourselves in larger or more sophisticated on campus facilities.

b. Do student conduct issues make the job harder?

The student body makes our job harder only to… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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