Advice? May be long....

Discussion in 'General Education' started by pwhatley, May 2, 2013.

  1. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    May 2, 2013

    I received a new student on Monday. I've been that kid (transferring in at the end of a school year), and I know it's hard, so I try to make it a smooth transition. Monday seems to go normally.

    After school on Monday, I actually received the paperwork she entered our school with. Turns out she was kicked out of her previous school for assaulting an adult school employee. Ooookkkaayyy. I can deal with that. Perhaps there were extenuating circumstances. I do NOT let that change the way I interact with her.

    Tuesday morning, somehow, on our computerized grading system, a notice comes up (I honestly don't know how - not sure I was supposed to see it) with a list of her TWELVE disciplinary referrals from her previous school - infractions ranging from extreme classroom disturbance to assault on a child to assault on an adult to theft, etc. Okay. I'm concerned, but I still do not change my attitude toward her.

    Today our school was DIBELs testing, so I was in the library and had a sub in my classroom. According to the sub, this child not only slapped one of my students in the face when he attempted to help her clean up a mess that she had created, but also deliberately slammed the head of one of my girls into a brick wall, because she wouldn't let her "cut" in line (cutting is against school/class policy)!

    When I learned of this behavior, I caught up with the sub, and we informed my P, who stated that she would create the (online) discipline referral document. I just entered the conduct grades for today, and the referral has yet to be entered.

    What would you do in these circumstances? What should I do? I'm currently planning on:
    1. checking in with my P about the referral and consequences in the morning
    2. going over the school & classroom rules with the entire class
    3. having a private chat with the child, and "reteaching" that we keep our hands to ourselves
    4. trying to keep my affect neutral and warm.

    Thoughts??? Personally, if I were the parent of one of these children, I would be having a fit!
     
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  3. iteachbx

    iteachbx Enthusiast

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    I feel like telling the child to keep her hands to herself really isn't going to do anything. Of course you'll stay neutral, warm (and calm helps too) but I don't think that will stop it either. I would start coming up with some sort of individual behavior plan with this child. (Is there a school psychologist or guidance counselor that can maybe offer advice on this?)

    You'd think the parents would be having a fit- I'm STILL waiting for one of my students' parents to have a fit over some of the things that have happened to them at the hands of another student this year. Yet it never does!
     
  4. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    May 2, 2013

    I didn't see where in your list that you notified the parents of the assaulted children. That would be the first on my list.

    I would hit the floor running, and hard, with this child. I would not let a day go by where I did not document every little thing this child did. She does not need to be around other students/victims.
     
  5. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    May 2, 2013

    Because I didn't witness the assaults, I am not allowed to contact the parents. If their children tell them and they contact me, it's a different matter entirely. I already have a clipboard set up with a MS Word table ready for documentation (I'm a Word geek).

    The sub DID complete an "accident" report for the head slamming incident. Personally, I'm not sure that that is the correct form, but that's what she was told to do.

    For some reason, the district seems to think that our small, neighborhood school is the perfect place to relocate kids with behavioral issues (i.e., have been kicked out of one or more schools). I had a boy last year, who was on his fourth school in two years... he cursed, spit, poked himself with pencils. disrupted class like crazy, and of course, I had to document everything, and reward him for NOT doing 3 specific things (listed on his official behavior plan). Luckily, our P last year had a zero tolerance policy for certain things, and the day he hit me, he was gone. Honestly, I kind of feel sorry for him - home is a drug filled zoo, he has 4 older brothers who teach him all the wrong things while mom works all night. I just hope they found the right place for him.

    My husband is proactively livid. He's already threatening "if she hits you...." I told him to let me do my job, and let my P (this is her first year as a P, but seems to be doing great so far) do hers. If that doesn't work, I'll call our union president (I have her cell phone number).

    :dizzy:
     
  6. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    May 2, 2013

    I would definitely document everything that you can, but I wouldn't start a behavior plan just yet (unless the child has an IEP). Both incidents happened with a sub in the classroom. I would continue to teach as you have (and reinforce the rules) for now. See how the student acts tomorrow or next week before creating a behavior plan. You need to allow yourself some time to collect baseline data (usually about 1-2 weeks) and get to know the child.
     
  7. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    That is absolutely ridiculous. Having your head slammed into bricks could actually cause damage. Damage that may not rear its ugly head until later. I cannot believe that you can't mention this to a parent. Even to give them a slight heads-up to look for something medically. It is downright shameful.

    That poor little baby is probably too scared to mention anything to her parents. My own child was threatened for weeks before she had the guts to let me know that a classmate told her he'd gut her like a deer if she ever looked at another boy in the classroom again. She was five :( If I knew the staff was aware of this and did not notify me, I would have been furious.

    It is one thing to avoid spreading rumors about an innocent child. Another to say "I didn't witness anything personally today, but please ask your daughter to tell you what she shared with me this afternoon." Especially if an adult in charge witnessed it!

    I hope this doesn't end up being a long month for you!

    Another question - did the sub at least have the sense to send the victim to the nurse to get checked out?
     
  8. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    May 2, 2013

    The nurse wasn't on campus today (she's split between 3). I saw the child, and she seemed okay - no lump or anything. She's a very verbal, intelligent young lady, and I'm sure she'll tell her mom about the incident.

    mopar - I'm not sure I have that much time - I have a child in my class who has cerebral palsy and hydrocephalus. She has a shunt in her brain, and is already having some problems with that (it was changed out over the summer, and she's getting lots of headaches). Luckily right now, she doesn't have any mental deficits (she's the best reader in first grade :wub:). There is no way I can let this other child near her if she's violent, though. That would be a disaster for everyone!

    I think I will mention my disabled child to the principal tomorrow - she may not remember that situation... We even considered having her wear a helmet on field day, but just ended up being circumspect in our choices of her activities.
     
  9. Mr.history

    Mr.history Cohort

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    May 2, 2013

    I thought once a kid was expelled they had to go to alternative school or homeschool? I had a student enroll when I was student teaching that had been expelled in another district. He was in my class for about a day before he was kicked out and put in the alternative school once the admin caught his record.

    This sounds like a rough situation.
    Good luck and I hope it doesn't ruin the end of your year.
     
  10. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Unfortunately, first graders aren't placed in alternative school. I think the lowest grade to do so in our district may be 3rd.

    When do the rights of the other children become at least as important as those of this child???
     
  11. Mr.history

    Mr.history Cohort

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    May 2, 2013

    I'm surprised this student wasn't put in special ed/self contained classroom then. Emotional Behavior Disturbance(I think it used to be called?) I don't really have any experience with elementary but both of my sisters are 1st grade teachers. I know it can be frustrating to get students like this.

    Again, I wish you luck with this situation. Maybe your principle will come around and take this student out of your room.
     
  12. bros

    bros Phenom

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    May 2, 2013

    The sped records might've not caught up with the student yet.

    But I would honestly refer the student ASAP, or at least get a guidance counselor/district psychologist/therapist in there whenever you can.
     
  13. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    May 3, 2013

    I would definitely remind your P about your other student (or any other student that you can think of) with a disability or other factors.

    Then I would begin the documentation process. So it's hard and not fun for the other students, but unless your P is willing to move faster, it's the only way. At least until you see the student doing something dangerous (or the P does).

    When you write your log, keep track of what worked and what doesn't. Maybe this students loves math, or enjoys working with manipulatives...
     
  14. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    May 3, 2013

    I hate the way schools are being treated with the emergence of children like this. We have had a couple of completely disruptive kids this year. All the teachers hear is document document document. An idiot can see these kids belong in a different setting. So all the other children lose important instructional time while the teachers and others deal with nonsense.
     
  15. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    StephenPE - I agree with you - I always wonder when the other 17 or so students' rights to an education outweigh those of the disruptive child. No one has been able to answer that question!

    Well, apparently my little angel can control herself! Today she was, while not perfect (who is?), not violent! I had a firm talk with her first thing this morning. Before school, my P texted me, stating that the "angel's" dad was sending a letter giving permission to be paddled by my (also female) P. If he had done so (he didn't), that would have been fine, except that my P had scheduled a vacation day for her son's K graduation, so she was off campus all day, and she is the only person allowed to paddle (I wouldn't want to).

    Luckily, there were no issues... unless you count the normal jabbering, not listening, craziness that always occurs when we have very few (14) school days left! :dizzy:
     
  16. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

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    Definitely agree that a strong behavior plan needs to be put in place ASAP. Until then, I'd modify your procedures so that you have a very close eye on her - never with a sub, never alone in the lunch line, supervised during bathroom breaks (and goes by herself), etc.
     
  17. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

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    Wow, sad that paddling is still allowed, and makes especially more sense for someone that may likely have social/emotional issues which could very well be made worse by paddling. Glad today was better though. May still be honeymoon, but hopefully this is more than that!
     
  18. iteachbx

    iteachbx Enthusiast

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    It seems crazy to me that they can just be shuffling these kids who obviously seem to have emotional disturbances from school to school without actually doing anything about it. Have any of them seen a guidance counselor, school psychologist or had a psychiatric evaluation? What happens when they run out of schools to shuffle these kids to? It doesn't seem like they're looking to attempt to fix any of these issues. How frustrating it must be.

    If a student gets "kicked out" of my school they'd be sent to a specialized school that would meet their needs whether it be for emotional disturbed children or those moderately and severely intellectually disabled.
     
  19. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Unfortunately, counselors in my district tend to be test administrators who do a little counseling on the side. Even more unfortunate, our specific counselor is totally useless - he can barely read (seriously)! I have no idea how he made it through college, much less anything else.
     
  20. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    May 6, 2013

    I iknow we have beatend this subject to death but I cannot help myself. Sadder even are children that seemingly have no accountability and
    do what they want because they never got a little swat on the behind.
    It worked fine before lawyers and some parents saw a way make money off of children being abused and beaten.:rolleyes: I went through a local school district and the teachers and principal never hesitated to give you a swat if you behaved badly. I can promise you
    that 80% of the kids WOULD not cross that behavior line because they wanted no part of it. 10-15% of us would forget and do it sometimes with consequences and that last 5% you could spank them everyday with no results. Those guys you needed to get more creative with. Spanking a child is just another way to get their attention. When I was growing up you DID not see all these insane crimes and behaviors because kids and young teens KNEW their were repercussions and not just words. Our jails are full of people that never learned societal rules or were held accountable. I keep up with LOTS Of people in my peer group that were spanked in school and all are productive members of society that did not go crazy from being given a swat in school. :2cents: Or my 27 cents I guess.
     
  21. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    May 6, 2013

    I'm going to have to disagree that the lack of spanking is the cause of the society we see today.

    There is so much that has changed in society. The fundamental ways we view authorities changed in the 60s and 70s. We went from a society that did not question authority to a society that questions everything. We went from a society where people were embarrassed by poor choices to a society where poor choices are looked at as nothing to be really concerned with. No more embarrassment, no more social stigmas for behaviors, and no more worrying about how what one does impacts others.

    A spanking will never counteract the change in society's philosophy.
     
  22. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

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    27 cents always welcome :). If a behavior problem is easy enough to correct with a swat on the rear, it's probably easy enough to correct with another consequence. On the other hand, if it's more complicated, a swat on the rear probably isn't going to fix it.

    Don't get me wrong - the research doesn't suggest that paddling/spanking is just the end of the world, but if I had a dollar every time I worked with a kid with behavioral issues who had had the snot beaten out of him for disciplinary purposes, I'd have more than a few dollars.

    So, I guess what I'm saying is this: I'm not saying spanking can't work or be a part of an effective plan, but there's just no support that it's the "only way" to fix a situation. Would be like saying that M&Ms are the only reward out there.
     
  23. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    May 6, 2013

    I certainly agree that you are right. And much of the paddling was the shame of it for some. Back then it was immediate, in front of the class and you knew why it happened. Now there seems to be little shame for many children.
    I agree with you too, Edd. I think it is just something that really works for some kids and I do not see as any kind of real abuse. But I understand how it works best. If parents love their kids and show it but spank sometimes the kid realizes they are loved no matter what. If the school cares about children the kids know. My problem now days is the good kids suffer because we document document document while the looney tunes keep disrupting classes. Not everyone has great management skills like you and I.:whistle: THey need all the tools in the box to manage kids even if it is threat of the PRINCIPAL"S OFFICE AND THE PADDLE.
     
  24. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    There is HUGE difference between a spanking and a beating. That being said, I do know that some people have problems knowing the difference (my own mother didn't). However, I have seen several 3rd grade boys change their behavior/attitude this year BECAUSE they were finally held accountable for their actions (and their parents allowed my female P to paddle). It usually took 1 paddling for most (2 for one) for them to realize the "error of their ways," and to see that there would be consequences for their actions.

    I spanked my daughter when she was young. My husband and I also gave her (an extremely ADHD child) a very structured and loving home. She is now a healthy and productive adult mother of 3. Did I spank for all offenses? No, I tried to find a logical way to deal with them. Sometimes, though (in the words of my grandmother), there is a short between the butt and the brain, and it needs to be jiggled!

    I know, I know - we can all provide tons and tons of anecdotal evidence for both sides of the question. I also agree that our societal views of authority changed probably forever in the 60s & 70s. My final view on the subject is that kids NEED structure, limits, and consequences (good or bad) for their actions in order to navigate this vast and scary world in a positive and productive way.
     
  25. EdEd

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    pwhatley, I think we can all agree on those fundamentals. In the grand scheme of things I don't think spanking is a big deal, when done in a limited way and in the context of a much more broad, loving relationship. We could certain debate the particulars, but in the end there are probably a lot of other things that would first derail healthy child development.
     
  26. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    May 6, 2013

    I may have missed this, but is the child in special ed? If not, has she gone through the referral process? She definitely sounds like she may have ADHD (the compulsiveness), ODD, and/or EBD. There are many ODD/EBD students in my school, and they work with aides and SPED teachers quite often. There are also plans in place to have them removed from the classroom if they become violent.

    That behavior would have earned the child an out of school suspension at my school. They may have also called the district liaison officer and filed a report, documenting the violent behavior.
     

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