How pressured to do you feel to force kids to succeed?

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by Peregrin5, Jun 6, 2017.

  1. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Jun 6, 2017

    I had a student today who started off the period whining about how she was too tired to do anything (I ignored), and then started to veer into disrespect (giving me a "suggestion" to stop moving while I talk, and rolling her eyes and groaning at every other word I said when giving instructions to the class which she obviously didn't want to carry out), and then outright refusal to dress safely for the lab. She had open-toed shoes and refused to wear the options provided (I have a series of boots and shoes, and I even gave her the option to borrow someone else's shoes or get her own out of her locker). I simply told her that she would lose participation for the day if she refused to participate. She didn't care, so I didn't care. I let her lose participation, and I wasn't going to follow her around and harangue her about it.

    Anyway, she goes to her next class and complains to her teacher about it who decides to talk to me about how we can work together to get the student to succeed, and make up her participation points and yadda yadda. And I eventually said she can come talk to me to make it up because this is not a battle I want to fight but to be honest... I don't really see why I should even bother helping this student make up her lost points. I was very tempted to say no. All that really teaches her is that she can be a brat in my class with no consequences.

    But we feel a lot of pressure to bend over backwards and force our students over the next level even when they're doing everything in their power not to succeed.

    I have a few students in my classroom that will simply do nothing. I've harrassed, harangued, invited, begged them to participate, but they just don't want to do the work. They are only here because legally they have to be. But if I ever for a day decide to just leave them be because if I engage them, it just starts a power struggle and behavior usually worsens and they don't get the work done anyway, then my admin is on my back about why this student isn't passing, and what am I doing to get this student to pass, etc. Why isn't responsibility on the students anymore?
     
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  3. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    Jun 6, 2017

    With some admin, no, it's not the student's job to be responsible, and is on the teachers to motivate and force students to want to learn.
     
  4. Rockguykev

    Rockguykev Connoisseur

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    Jun 6, 2017

    Because we live in a world that says everything is okay except telling people what the right thing to do is. When nothing is wrong then nothing is wrong.
     
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  5. GPC0321

    GPC0321 Companion

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    Jun 6, 2017

    Ugh. I feel for ya. I'm lucky to have administrators who don't believe in coddling high school students. They both taught in our high school, and they both have children who are current students at our school. They're very "real" and sensible administrators and parents, so that's helpful.

    I weep for the future if this bass-ackwards way of "educating" children continues down the slippery slope it has been coasting along. I am a firm believer in helping every child reach his or her potential, but if that child refuses to put forth any effort, I'm done. We're creating the people who will be responsible for running this world in the not-too-distant future. I don't want a bunch of lazy, entitled, spoiled, uneducated people running the world. (Ooops! Too late! LOL!)
     
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  6. rpan

    rpan Cohort

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    Jun 7, 2017

    I think you made the right call. You gave the student every opportunity to participate. You gave her a choice - participate and get participation or don't participate and lose participation - and she made her choice. Now it's time for you to follow through. I would consider letting her borrow boots or shoes or get shoes from her locker bending over backwards to give her the opportunity. She didn't want to wear the boots so now she should wear the consequences. I mean this is science, the closed toe shoes are for her safety not yours. It's not personal - any science teacher would make the same call.
     
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  7. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    Jun 7, 2017

    Luckily, at our school, the kid would have gotten a zero, and be sent to the behavior room for the hour with an assignment to do. Any time a kid just refuses to do work, or is causing a disruption, we can send them there to work. It's no a formal write up, just a time out for the class period. I am so thankful for that!
     
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  8. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Jun 7, 2017

    In this particular case, it wasn't a "I'm failing this student because she's undermining herself" (which she was). It was a liability issue. You did the right thing, and if your current teammates are giving you a hard time, they can deal with the school culture they'll have going forward. You're a short-timer. Be like Kermit.[​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
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