New student vent

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out Archives' started by ChristyF, Feb 13, 2004.

  1. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    Mar 20, 2004

    He had to take the LEAP anyway even though he hasn't been in a structured school setting where he's learned anything?

    I hate these new standardized testing rules! aargh!
     
  2. jenniatek

    jenniatek Companion

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    Mar 20, 2004

    Hang in there Christy!!! Could the counsellor spend some quality class time with him? Can anyone take this child out for periods of time?! Would he be helpful in a Kindergarten class? I'm trying to think of any reason to have him out of your room for awhile each day....it's almost past the point now of worrying about the work he doesn't do, isn't it?
     
  3. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    Mar 20, 2004

    From personal experience as the parent of a paranoid schizophrenic, I have faced far too many obstacles getting my son’s needs met. He is 27 years old now and stable on medications and therapy. It was a long uphill battle that started for him in middle school.

    The burden on the parents is to fix the behavior. Yet this isn’t a behavior problem. In fact, his strange behavior made sense given the world he was trapped in. The burden on the teacher is to control the behavior in the classroom so education can occur. And that is hard enough to do in a normal environment. But with this type of illness it is impossible. This is not a behavior problem.

    Our society doesn’t deal well with schizophrenia or mental illness in general. If the child were deaf, or blind, I am sure the school system would provide the assistance needed for this child’s education. But the mentally ill child who is equally disabled, is just thrown into a classroom where the teacher is ill equipped to handle the situation.

    Although my son never physically harmed anyone, he used to do whatever it took to get a day of suspension. Why wouldn’t he? In his mind teachers and students were conspiring to do him harm. He felt safe at home.

    As a medical professional, I often felt helpless in seeking appropriate help for my son. I can imagine the mother with a 9th grade education, would not know how to get her son the help he needs, or worse, believe that the medical care he has been given is enough.

    Yet your student’s medical needs have not been met, whether this is due to inappropriate dosing of his medications, lack of appropriate counseling, or significant side effects from the medication. And until his medical needs are met, he doesn’t belong in your classroom, at least not without a personal aide. And even then, I don’t see much learning happening.

    I admire your dedication to your profession and my heart goes out to you in this situation. I pray that this little boy will find the help he needs to lead a normal life. May your efforts be rewarded.
     
  4. HannahB2

    HannahB2 Companion

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    Mar 31, 2004

    Christy,

    Wow. I could of never deal with a child like that. I read everything about him. Some things I read about him in your posts would just cross the line for me. If he bit, kicked, and talked like that I would loose my patience. But, I have one thing to say. Your a really good techer to do that and how you handled that. I really apprecaite you for that.


    Thanks.
     
  5. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    Mar 31, 2004

    Home schooler mom

    Wow! Aren't we just a little bit full of oneself! I don't what I found most offensive in your remarks. The fact that you said " You choose to teach in a public school where these kinds of students are bound to show up" or the entire air of smugness!
    Christy, please may no attention "Homeschooler" for we all have had some of these homeschoolers in our classrooms when the " Differentiated learning" failed and we had to pick up the pieces of derailed learning.
    Christy, I feel your frusration and your concern for your new student and the welfare of your other students. I think that finding and getting help for studnets such as this one is one of the hardest challenges we face as teachers. This is just reason why the " No Child Left Behind" is destined to fail. We can't teach the child if we can teach the whole child. Keep the reason you became a teacher as the central focus and do what you can for him and know that your fellow teachers are praying for you and your students.
    Emma
     
  6. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    Mar 31, 2004

    Emma and Hannah, thanks for the support. S is doing better, or atleast not as angry now that they have him off some of his medication. He has lots of problems, we are trying to evaluate him for special education services, but mom doesn't have custody. Grandmother said she would sign him over, but we are still waiting.
    Christy
     
  7. dawnm74

    dawnm74 New Member

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    Apr 7, 2004

    "Who says teachers have to be good at a whole slew of jobs?"

    I think that being good at a whole slew of jobs is actually part of the job description. We have to be part social worker,nurse,disciplinarian,mother,father,preacher,psychiatrist . . . the list goes on. We are dealing with children who live in a world that is not our own happy existance when we go home. Our job is to teach each one of them to the best of our God-given ability AND to do so in the least restrictive environment. Unfortunately that means that sometimes we have a child in our classroom that far exceeds the talents that we have as educators and tests our patience to the very limits. But I believe that part of the equal education act also says that we cannot allow disruptive students to continually disrupt the learning of a whole class just so that his/her needs are met. If we spend all of our time on that one troublesome student we sometimes sacrifice the good of the whole class for the one child we may not be able to make a difference to. I think that you are doing all of the right things by getting family services involved. Unfortunately, I know that in my community they are sometimes of very little help.
     
  8. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    Apr 7, 2004

    I use to work with children exactly like your student. I taught social skills in a group therapy setting to K-5 graders. I would have a whole room full of students that were in BD classrooms or had one-on-one teachers at school. Each child had at least one clinical diagnosis. Most had 3 or 4. Sometimes the actions of the child can be reactions from the medicine or because the medicine isn't strong enough. The doctors should be asking whoever takes the child in for meds the behaviors at home and school. Sometimes they get releases to speak with the teachers. I'm sure the child acts differently in different settings, like home and school. Does your AEA offer you any help? Isn't there an interdisiplinary team where you can get help from other professionals? Sounds like your principal gave you this student because they knew he would be in good hands. Many teachers refuse to do the work you've done already. My best friend is a special ed teacher and if she had half your hard work spread out among all the teachers she works with, she'd be one happy camper. Check out the programs in your area, are there any day treament programs that he could attend after school or part of the day. The parents of the kids I worked with loved the program because they had 4 more hours without their kid, so it wasn't hard to get them to sign the kid up. One thing we did with kids was use the Choices program. Write CHOICES on a paper. When the student does something good. (even the little things! like raising their hand instead of blurting out the answer, or saying please or thank you) you wrote a star on the paper and what they did. If you asked them to do something, the second time you ask them to do that same thing you cross out a letter. The third time put an X over the letter. Each circle and X were negative 5 points. Each star was 5. Start with a low target number, like +25 and then move it up when they are ready. Each student can have a different target number. Then if they reach their target or above and beyond their target you can do some type of reward. They can pick something to do for 10-15 minuets or put a sticker on a chart and when they reach 3 stickers they get a prize, or whatever type of reward system you want. The best is if the parents do get involved and the child can pick something to do with a parent at home. Like watch tv together or play a game. But getting parents involved when they don't have the skills to is so hard. Another thing we did with the kids was to have a time out ticket. If a child was getting upset they could take their time out ticket and sit in a quiet area for a few minuets to calm down enough to talk about why they were upset. We had them write or draw a picture of what they were feeling and why. Provide posters or books about feelings in this area. Many kids don't know the difference between the different emotions. They are mad even when we know they could be sad or frustrated or anxious.
    I don't know if this would help, but it never hurts to try it once!
     
  9. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    Apr 7, 2004

    This is where we stand with S right now. He is smart, actually very smart. If you can get him to work, he does really well. There is just so much in his background, though, that I don't know what we can really do for him. He has no concept of personal boundaries. (One of our aides was working with him yesterday and as she would point things out to her he would sit there and tap or play with her fingernail, he'll reach out and touch my shirt collar, things like that. I don't think for a minute that he would actually do anything, I just think that too much has gone on in his world. Academically he functions on a high 3rd to 4th grade level easily. In science he is probably at a jr high level. Maturity wise though, and social skills, he is 1st grade tops. He's not getting angry any more, at least not as badly as he used to, I just don't know what to do with him.

    Christy
     
  10. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    Apr 8, 2004

    QUOTE]Originally posted by ChristyF
    I am a teacher because I want to help children. I grew up in the public education system and never gave a thought to teaching in any other system. My anger is not with child, but with administration who doesn't back me and chooses to punish me because I don't push the situation. This child came to school today with bullets. He has already made physical threats to my students (as well as other students in the school). He is being suspended 1 day for this. I agree that the suspension doesn't help him, but for one day I don't have to worry about what he is going to do to my other kids. I am very concerned over him and his well being. I am trying to find out what is going on with him and his home situation. I am calling in FINS and CPS. We have no placement for a behavior disorder at our school, so he would stay in the room. My principal told me today that there was no way he would ever write the child up as that because then he couldn't be suspended or expelled. As for worrying about this child, I have gone home every night since he entered my room and cried and prayed over doing the right thing with him. I know that I am fortunate to have a small class size. I am very grateful for that. I have taught much larger classes than this so I know who lucky I am. This situation is eating me up, because I don't know what I can do to help him. He has been passed back and forth between mom and grandmom like an unwanted puppy. If he could be in a stable situation I think that he could do better. Underneath all that anger and hatred is a lost little boy. You have no idea how hard it is on me to know that I can't do anything for him. I have to weigh my worries about him with my justifiable concern over the safety of my other students.
    "Take the time to remember why you choose to teach and use that to help this child." If I didn't care I would let him sit at that back of the room, draw pictures all day and go home happy. If I didn't care I wouldn't sit with him and work even as he is telling me how much he hates me and refusing to do anything. If I didn't care I wouldn't be upset over the fact that I was relieved when he was suspended. I appreciate the offer of advice, but, no offense, you don't know me, you don't know what type of teacher I am. I'm the single teacher who goes broke because I teach in a poverty level school and spend a huge chunk of my salary buying clothing for my students. I am the teacher who refuses to give up on, and therefore gets through to some of the toughest and worst because they know that no matter what I am on their side. I teach in a public school becuase most of them don't have anyone else who cares enough about them to be concerned. I am that person for them, because I choose to be. I don't choose to stick my head in the sand and hope for someone else to fix the problems.
    Sorry about the length.
    Christy
    [/QUOTE]

    First of all I applaud you for what you are doing. I am a pre-service special ed. teacher and it always amazes me to hear the stories of the children who have hard lives and the things teachers go through to try and reach them. Anyway, I just have a question. EBD is served under special ed, right? By law don't they have to provide and IEP in the LRE? I know he is not in the program yet, and you made the comment that the principal would not qualify him as that b/c he could not expel him. This decision is not up to the pricipal, it is up to the psychologist. If the only reason that the student cannot receive the services that he needs is because the principal doesn't want to classify him as EBD then something is wrong because unless by some chance that he has a learning disability too, then that may be his only chance. I may be way off base, but just a thought!Good Luck
     
  11. Imabean

    Imabean New Member

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    Nov 3, 2004

    :tired: :love: You only have one child like that?

    I have...at minimum...23 out of 150 kids that I teach, with severe mental and behavior issues.

    Count your blessings
     
  12. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    Nov 3, 2004

    I count my blessings every day.
     

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