During the summer, do Las Vegas students really know what happens if they break the law?
This school year was rough emotionally on a lot of kids as they struggled to adjust to schedules, classes and social circles. Some took out those frustrations on other classmates, or even on their teachers.
But what happens in the summer, when there won’t be as much adult supervision? Do kids know what can happen if they get caught breaking the law?
Project REAL wants parents and anyone who works with kids to have these conversations now, before summer break starts in just a few days.
Mike Kamer is the program’s senior director, and said they anticipated what's happening now.
"So we came up with an intervention to acknowledge that kids would have a higher tolerance for risk-taking," he said.
Students are now taking more risks outside of the classroom, he said. Looking ahead at the summer, "we're looking at what we've already seen," referencing an incident last year involving dozens of teens at Meadows Mall in Las Vegas.
Those Las Vegas-area teens engaging in pranks can face real criminal consequences.
"That for us is a concern … it's really easy to go online and say something, and that trash talk" can lead to criminal charges with hate crime enhancements, he said.
“It takes so little for a life-changing decision to take place. It’s our belief that this conversation is very important,” he said. “We encourage the parents to clarify that if you just pause before you prank, and make it a habit to think within the law, you can stay safe.”
The group has provided a 16-page guide for parents on how to deal with risk-taking children.
"How to think within the law is the ultimate goal of the conversation," he said. The guide, free and available for anyone, can be accessed below or here: projectrealnv.org/realready.
Mike Kamer, senior director, Project REAL