Don Shomette

People are the Prize

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Success: 2 Elements Students Must Have to be Truly Successful

50% success is good, but isn’t 100% better?

I think we fail our students (and make our schools less safe) when we don’t address both elements that are necessary for real student success. Without a doubt, academic success is critical but so is ethical success!

Starting today, never discuss academic success again without also reminding (encouraging, requiring, demanding!) your students that their goal is to achieve both academic and ethical success.

It’s the only way they can really enjoy 100% success!


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Introduction: How to Introduce Your SRO

You don’t do a great introduction of your SRO for the benefit of your SRO. You do a great introduction of your SRO to benefit your students!

Every person inside a public school has protective responsibility. Well, it’s more like an obligation. When you introduce your SRO as the person who is here to make our school safe, you inadvertently release everyone else of that obligation (or at least that’s what too many hear). Such an introduction doesn’t hurt the SRO, but it diminishes your overall safety efforts because it doesn’t reinforce the necessity that everyone has to play their part in preventing violence.

Use this example as a possible way to introduce your SRO (to benefit your students)!


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Subsidiarity: Do Less but Help More

How much should we help a student? Is it possible to do too much and can that help, if not sufficiently measured, actually be bad for the student?

Watch the video below to see how subsidiarity is the perfect principle to guide you when trying to decide how much or how little you should help a student.


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Pitch It: Stop Using the Phrase School

The phrase “school safety” has come to mean lots of things (and not all good) to lots of people. I think it’s time we pitch it and stop using it.

Instead, adopt the phrase “preventing violence” and use it whenever you discuss issues of safety and security. After all, isn’t that what we’re really trying to do—prevent violence?


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Response: Helping Students Choose the Right Response

Many students believe that a public humiliation warrants a public retaliation. When a public ‘putdown’ occurs, intervene immediately to prevent it from escalating into violence!

In this video I share a motto that you can use to help students remember that they are responsible not only for their actions, but also how they respond to the actions of others!


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Common Ground: How to Foster Agreement and Limit Internal Strife When Disciplining Students

Have you ever disciplined a student only to be told, “You’re ruining his life, you’re too hard, unreasonable, unfair, mean…a rotten no good #&%^#$…”

Hopefully you haven’t heard the last one, but when it comes to handing out discipline to students…it’s a tough business.

I think we make it harder on ourselves than it needs to be because we haven’t set a threshold or conditions for what must be achieved when handing out discipline.

Adopt this model for your school, community, and family and reduce your heartache, foster agreement, and limit internal strife.

All you have to do is just establish a common ground.



Today’s Word is Wompa-tu

This word comes from a true story that takes place during one of the toughest periods of the Korean war and proves that even in the absolute worst of times, people still have the capacity (love!) to start and maintain rumors.

Ending them of course is our job and it’s easy if we remember 4 little words…



Join us for the next 30 days as I post a short video that focuses on a word (or phrase) of the day. Most will be about preventing violence, some on leadership, a few on strategy, but all about personal growth. For the next 30 days, I’m going to post a short video that focuses on a word (or phrase) of the day. Most will be about preventing violence, some on leadership, a few on strategy, but all about personal growth.