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Houston Newsmakers March 18: March for Our Lives, using empathy against school violence

HOUSTON – March 24 is the “March for Our Lives” in Washington, where students from all over the country are expected to rally for stricter gun control laws. KPRC2 reporter Rose Ann Aragon will be covering that event and is a guest this week on Houston Newsmakers to talk about what to expect.

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For 20 years, Glenn Wilkerson, D-Min, has been working to improve the self-esteem of children. For the past seven years, the ARKGroup, which he founded 20 years ago, has been working with teachers and administrators of Aldine ISD.

“Kids who feel loved perform better, behave better and they don’t shoot up schools,” he said. The research shows the solution is to get every child connected with at least one adult who’s primary to that child’s life in a relationship of unconditional love.”

Rebecca Sanford, the principal of Hambrick Middle School in Aldine Independent School District, said letters she receives from students about teachers have a common theme.

“'My teacher cares about me.' 'My teacher loves me.' 'When I’m not at school my teacher worries about me,'” she said of the letters.

They're just some of the benefits her school has seen as a result of participation in the ArkGroup program. Out-of-school suspensions have dropped by 49 percent throughout the district.

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Dr. Kristin Anderson, a psychology professor at the University of Houston downtown, explains why mental health is not the biggest issue to be dealt with concerning making gun laws more strict.

“The United States is the only country with this problem of mass shootings,” she said. “There’s no other country like it. So if it’s a mental health issue, are we the craziest people on Earth? Probably not. What’s the other thing that distinguishes us from every other country? Guns.”

Anderson also ponders why white men are most often behind mass shootings in this country.

Details are on this week’s program. 

"Houston Newsmakers" airs Sunday mornings at 10:30 a.m.

·     B. Glenn Wilkerson, D.Min, founder of the ArkGroup, 281-537-1301 or 888-275-0744, www.TheArkGroup.com; email: ark@thearkgroup.com; Twitter:@ArkLovesKids  

·     Rebecca Sanford, Ed.D, Principal, Hambrick Middle School, 281-985-6570   http://hambrickms.aldineisd.org/about/principals email: rsanford@aldineisd.org Twitter: @AldineISD

·     Rose-Ann Aragon, 713-222-2222, www.click2houston.com Email: raragon@kprc.com Twitter: @kprc2RoseAnn

·     Kristin Anderson, Ph.D., UH Downtown Psychology Professor, 713-221-8510, www.uhd.edu   Andersonk@uhd.edu Twitter: @UHDowntown