News

Community Notebook: Violence-prevention expert to visit schools

Jackson Katz also to give public talk on Wednesday

Jackson Katz, who is nationally known for his work on gender violence, will visit Palo Alto this week to work with high school students and give a public talk. The event is part of the district's efforts to address sexual misconduct in its schools.

Katz is the co-founder of national prevention and education program Mentors in Violence Prevention, or MVP Strategies. He is well-known for a 2013 TED Talk titled "Violence against women — it's a men's issue."

A new district-level task force, formed this fall in part to research and develop a prevention program for Palo Alto and Gunn high schools, is bringing Katz to Palo Alto Unified. The Responsive Inclusive Safe Environment (RISE) task force is expected to make districtwide recommendations to the interim superintendent on how to improve legal compliance and reporting procedures; increase education; and empower students to stand up against and report sexual assault, violence and harassment. The group was convened after community concern about the district's handling of student sexual-assault cases at Paly.

In sessions with high school students and a public presentation for parents and community members this week, Katz will discuss how to respond to not only gender violence but also youth violence, gang violence, mass incarceration, school shootings, homelessness, substance abuse, depression and suicide, according to an event description.

"His work focuses on activating 'bystanders' with the leadership skills to challenge all forms of abuse," the description reads. "Dr. Katz offers practical strategies for intervention and prevention while focusing on changing the social norms that often underlie acts of harassment, abuse, or violence." 

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Katz will meet with Gunn and Paly students from each grade level in hourlong sessions on Wednesday and Thursday. The RISE task force is determining how students can debrief afterwards with teachers, according to task force member and parent John Fitton. Both Katz and Anea Bogue, an expert who spoke to students about healthy relationships and consent in February, have provided district teachers with electronic materials they can use with students, Fitton said.

Katz's public talk will take place on Wednesday, April 11, from 7-8:30 p.m. at Paly's Performing Arts Center, 50 Embarcadero Road. Child care will be provided and Spanish and Mandarin interpretation will be available.

To register, go to eventbrite.com.

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Community Notebook: Violence-prevention expert to visit schools

Jackson Katz also to give public talk on Wednesday

by / Palo Alto Weekly

Uploaded: Mon, Apr 9, 2018, 2:37 pm

Jackson Katz, who is nationally known for his work on gender violence, will visit Palo Alto this week to work with high school students and give a public talk. The event is part of the district's efforts to address sexual misconduct in its schools.

Katz is the co-founder of national prevention and education program Mentors in Violence Prevention, or MVP Strategies. He is well-known for a 2013 TED Talk titled "Violence against women — it's a men's issue."

A new district-level task force, formed this fall in part to research and develop a prevention program for Palo Alto and Gunn high schools, is bringing Katz to Palo Alto Unified. The Responsive Inclusive Safe Environment (RISE) task force is expected to make districtwide recommendations to the interim superintendent on how to improve legal compliance and reporting procedures; increase education; and empower students to stand up against and report sexual assault, violence and harassment. The group was convened after community concern about the district's handling of student sexual-assault cases at Paly.

In sessions with high school students and a public presentation for parents and community members this week, Katz will discuss how to respond to not only gender violence but also youth violence, gang violence, mass incarceration, school shootings, homelessness, substance abuse, depression and suicide, according to an event description.

"His work focuses on activating 'bystanders' with the leadership skills to challenge all forms of abuse," the description reads. "Dr. Katz offers practical strategies for intervention and prevention while focusing on changing the social norms that often underlie acts of harassment, abuse, or violence." 

Katz will meet with Gunn and Paly students from each grade level in hourlong sessions on Wednesday and Thursday. The RISE task force is determining how students can debrief afterwards with teachers, according to task force member and parent John Fitton. Both Katz and Anea Bogue, an expert who spoke to students about healthy relationships and consent in February, have provided district teachers with electronic materials they can use with students, Fitton said.

Katz's public talk will take place on Wednesday, April 11, from 7-8:30 p.m. at Paly's Performing Arts Center, 50 Embarcadero Road. Child care will be provided and Spanish and Mandarin interpretation will be available.

To register, go to eventbrite.com.

Comments

Anonymous
Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 9, 2018 at 6:25 pm
Anonymous, Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 9, 2018 at 6:25 pm
27 people like this

Oh yes, please more nannygate on how to raise my kids. Make sure he has a stand of his books to sell outside the door. Ugh.


Samuel L.
Registered user
Duveneck/St. Francis
on Apr 9, 2018 at 8:33 pm
Samuel L., Duveneck/St. Francis
Registered user
on Apr 9, 2018 at 8:33 pm
14 people like this

The sentence in the story, "The group was convened after community concern about the district's handling of student sexual-assault cases at Paly." should be changed to, "The group was convened after Palo Alto HS Administrators, along with district officials, failed to follow federal and state laws in addition to their own internal policies. As a result, the community became concerned for the safety of the district's students."

Sadly, the RISE "taskforce" is mainly a way for PAUSD to put on some lipstick and try to put on a pretty face when the reality is that no meaningful changes have occurred.


CYA?
Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 10, 2018 at 12:51 am
CYA?, Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 10, 2018 at 12:51 am
12 people like this

This sounds encouraging but is it just more CYA?

I really hope it addresses the issues and makes improvements as opposed to just lessening the chances of additional future lawsuits against the school district.

Do we just care about our administrators or do we care about our students? I guess we shall soon see.


kids
Registered user
another community
on Apr 10, 2018 at 7:53 am
kids, another community
Registered user
on Apr 10, 2018 at 7:53 am
18 people like this



Just because he is "famous" does not mean he is an expert or will be required to follow district guidelines. I am not impressed with fame. Not sure why this is so valued. I would much rather see a person the kids knew and respected give this talk and then look them in the eye and say hello to them in the hallways for 4 years all knowing what was said. That said.. maybe it will be a really good conversation to start. I would love to see the kids have a presentation on their own privacy rights and how to protect them-That is getting more difficult daily. "He is giving them electonic materials to use" should raise red flags. Kids... do not use free electronic materials! Do not think because he is famous he is what you should follow or think, and do not share your personal life or your friends personal life with anyone online.


Old Timer
Professorville
on Apr 10, 2018 at 8:44 am
Old Timer, Professorville
on Apr 10, 2018 at 8:44 am
20 people like this

"Katz will discuss how to respond to not only gender violence but also youth violence, gang violence, mass incarceration, school shootings, homelessness, substance abuse, depression and suicide..."

Are Palo Alto students joining gangs and being mass incarcerted? It seems to me that our problems are overstressed, overacheiving kids being driven to depression, and violent elements from outside the community predating upon them [portion removed.]


kids
Registered user
another community
on Apr 10, 2018 at 9:14 am
kids, another community
Registered user
on Apr 10, 2018 at 9:14 am
9 people like this

@ old timer.

Sometimes do you think putting these topics in child's daily thinking when they would rather just be kids, do their homework and have friends is contributing to depression. I like knowing what is going in the world, but have to shut the news down sometimes to recover from hearing it. I would like for them to have the information but give kids the choice to attend. Some kids with recent death in their family or whatever just do not need to look at the darkest part of life.


Downtown Parent
Downtown North
on Apr 10, 2018 at 1:04 pm
Downtown Parent, Downtown North
on Apr 10, 2018 at 1:04 pm
23 people like this

I initially was interested in this presentation. But when I saw the title "Violence against women: it is a men's issue".
Really? BTW,I'm a woman.


realist
Greenmeadow
on Apr 10, 2018 at 1:15 pm
realist, Greenmeadow
on Apr 10, 2018 at 1:15 pm
6 people like this

I'm with Downtown Parent on this. Sure, violence against women is a men's issue. But it is also a women's issue. Men do bad things to women sometimes. And bad things are done toward women. Is it as simple as blaming the men and only trying to work on their issues? Or should women work to be prepared to deal with the violence from their end? Learn what you can do to help yourself instead of hoping someone else will fix the problem from the source. Take a self defense class.


stanhutchings
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Apr 10, 2018 at 2:02 pm
stanhutchings, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Apr 10, 2018 at 2:02 pm
3 people like this

I hope someone asks how much the school name has on violence, bullying, discrimination, harrassment, etc. that school names were changed to correct.


Stop victim blaming
Crescent Park
on Apr 10, 2018 at 3:51 pm
Stop victim blaming , Crescent Park
on Apr 10, 2018 at 3:51 pm
5 people like this

@realist:
Your comment "take a self defense class" is incredibly condescending and victim blaming. I am a victim of sexual assault, and I can tell you first hand that no amount of self defense classes can prepare a person for that type of trauma... Victims of trauma often FREEZE, rendering self defense useless as they are unable to carry out what they have learned in the moment. There are also other reasons, such as blackmail and threats of retaliation, as to why a victim might not be able to fight back in the moment.
Fighting the PERPETRATORS is the way to go. Women already worry about running alone, going out alone, etc. It's not on us to prevent our own attacks. That also doesn't do much about the fact that by taking that approach, there are still attackers on the loose, looking for women who ARE NOT prepared.


Yuri
another community
on Apr 10, 2018 at 5:01 pm
Yuri, another community
on Apr 10, 2018 at 5:01 pm
6 people like this

One hopes that Mr. Katz is working pro-bono for our "financially strapped" district. If not, what fees will he charge for his surrogate parenting? That should be disclosed up front without any stakeholder having to comb the board minutes to see where his emoluments.


Yuri
another community
on Apr 10, 2018 at 5:02 pm
Yuri, another community
on Apr 10, 2018 at 5:02 pm
8 people like this

One hopes that Mr. Katz is working pro-bono for our "financially strapped" district. If not, what fees will he charge for his surrogate parenting? That should be disclosed up front without any stakeholder having to comb the board minutes to see where his emoluments are embedded.


Anonymous
Charleston Gardens
on Apr 10, 2018 at 7:26 pm
Anonymous, Charleston Gardens
on Apr 10, 2018 at 7:26 pm
8 people like this

@Stop Victim Blaming
"It's not on us to prevent our own attacks". How about NOT blaming victims but at the same time use COMMON SENSE, like LEARNING from this most unfortunate horrific episode in your BACKYARD? Good luck milennials.


PAUSD Parent
Community Center
on Apr 11, 2018 at 4:05 pm
PAUSD Parent, Community Center
on Apr 11, 2018 at 4:05 pm
5 people like this

Wow! The negative comments are quite something. Bringing in experts to help our community address real issues that are impacting our kids is not “nannygate” but the right thing to do.
This presentation is just part of overall prevention programming that is being implemented across the district. If we want to change the culture so that rates of sexual harassment, assault and rape are reduced significantly, even eliminated, then we need to be willing to look to experts in the field. If we want to send our students out into the world beyond school equipped to have healthy and ethical intimate relationships (surely we think that is important) then we should support positive initiatives.



Anonymous
Charleston Gardens
on Apr 11, 2018 at 4:36 pm
Anonymous, Charleston Gardens
on Apr 11, 2018 at 4:36 pm
6 people like this

@PAUSD parent
The right thing to do is to parent your kids. Experts who sell books and conference halls I have a wary eye on. If PAUSD wants more lawsuits then have this programming encroach more and more into the classrooms where some SJW teachers don't stay in their lanes and instead expose their bias on what should be private family matters. Just wait.


Resident
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 11, 2018 at 4:52 pm
Resident, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 11, 2018 at 4:52 pm
10 people like this

Domestic violence is not just a "man issue". It is a people issue. Too often an argument turns physical.

I personally know of one couple where the wife (a very small, petite lady) is always throwing things at her downtrodden husband who just meekly accepts it. He has needed stitches on his forehead when being hit by a flying stapler.

As amusing as it may be, the old cartoon of the wife being at home with a rolling pin waiting for the errant husband to return home having had a night out with his buddies, is still something that happens.

When a man arrives at the ER with a black eye and a bloody face and says he walked into a door, he is never questioned. If a woman arrived at the ER with the same injury there would be many more questions asked.


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