After having my 1st block meltdown on me again (it's gotten to be something that happens twice a week), despite trying different approaches to try and stop it, I'm here to ask for advice. I'd appreciate any help you could give me. I'm a 1st year 9th grade English teacher. I have 4 classes: 2 of them are Inclusion English, 1 is General English (made up of the non-SPED kids who scored very low but were left out of the inclusion class), and a small "English Lab" that's just made up of the only 4 random kids in the school they didn't fit into the larger freshman Math labs. At first, it was a challenge just to figure out where my kids were at, academically, then find materials for it (I didn't get textbooks 8 weeks into the year). In the inclusion classes, they refuse to do anything but talk and goof off, and about 20% of those can barely read and write at all (2 can't). That led to a lot of false starts, and I've had a ton of discipline problems: 2 separate pairs of kids got restraining orders against each other in unrelated incidents because of family drama, 2 have already been sent to alternative school, and almost all of them have really horrible family situations involving abuse, drugs, etc. School is a very low priority in this community and the kids are used to not working, so that's been a struggle as well. My classroom management is godawful. My kids don't respect me. During first block, they get out of their seats and wander around the room, talk, and zone out when I'm trying to teach. I correct them and call for attention, only to have some of them get up and write on the board about how much I suck and how they hate my class. When I enforce any consequences (like even giving them a warning or moving them), the other students will rally to that one student's defense with "You can't do that! They're not the only one talking! It's not fair!" Then they ignore the command en masse and rebel as a group, refusing to do anything but argue, which causes the class to spiral further out of control. They'll threaten to have their parents come and scream at me. One student even told me today she'd have me fired and walked out of the room before dismissal. On the advice of some stuff I read on Michael Linsin's classroom management blog, I've tried just slowing stuff down and focusing on firm commitment to procedure, redoing things if they're not done correctly until the students do them properly, and on not on attacking anyone or arguing with students. This just drives them nuts and causes even more problems, as they say I'm being disrespectful of them and not being fair. It's a mess. At least 2-3 times a week, I'm dealing with kids screaming at me for not being fair if I tell them to stop an inappropriate or disruptive behavior kids storming out of the room to call their parents and complain about the horrible teacher they've got, the assistant principal (who never taught a single class) tells me how I suck and I need to get better but only gives vague advice, etc. One of our asst principals, who also never taught a single class (was hired in as a coach) tells me my problem is that I need to write kids up more, but not send every kid to the office. He says I'm too boring and that I "just don't have a personality that kids will to listen to and respect." I need to build relationships with them, but be strict and enforce rules on everybody equally--but when I enforce a rule, this is what happens! What am I supposed to do to fix this!?!?! What can I do!?!?!?!