Tensions high in Estonian schools more than month after shooting, says crisis trainer (1)

Mart Raukas. (ERR)
12/5/2014 3:15 PM
Category: News

Mart Raukas, who has organized crisis training for more than 100 schools over the years, says he senses high tension in schools and that the teaching profession has become less attractive following Estonia's first fatal school shooting, in which a 15-year-old targeted a teacher of German.

"What you see in schools is pretty stressful. Tension is high. Very many directors and teachers have written to me after the Viljandi incident and talked of psychoterror and threats, students saying they will a put 'pop a cap' in a teacher if he gives them a 2 [D]," Raukas told ERR radio.

"Teachers have also been asked whether they have already bought a bulletproof vest, and students pantomime trigger-pulling motions in hallways. These are only a couple boys who do this, but often the minority sets the tone."

But Raukas said teachers were still calm. Their profession, though, has gone downhill in perceptions, he added. And Viljandi's incident, was yet another blow to teachers' self-respect and confidence.

"Over the years, the rights of the child have been promoted, and modern trends taken from the West. Traditional attitudes on raising children have often been disparaged. We have been playing the ball into one court."

Raukas said teachers were vulnerable, and primarily due to their salary. He said there had to be an end to the tendency to view teachers as mere service people.


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