Shoved by a student

Discussion in 'General Education' started by BeckyPie7, Oct 1, 2009.

  1. BeckyPie7

    BeckyPie7 Companion

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    I'm torn. I don't know whether to press charges and I need some advice.
    Today in my third bell class I was getting the students quieted down at the beginning of class when I noticed a student was not in his assigned seat. I asked him to move to his seat. He ignored me. I asked him a few more times. When he continued to ignore me I moved from the front of the classroom to the back so that I was closer to him. I wasn't anywhere near his desk, I was a whole row away from him, standing near the desk he was SUPPOSED to be at. I asked him again to move to his assigned seat. He said "F*** man, get out of my face!" He then continued to curse and got up. He started moving toward his assigned seat; however, he had to pass behind me to get to it. As he approached me he started saying "Watch your back. Watch your back." As he went around me he used his arm against my back to shove me. I felt his whole arm against my back shoving me with enough force to cause me to stumble into the desk in front of me and catch myself against it. I wasn't hurt but I had him removed from my class and informed the administrators about what happened. I also wrote up a statement about what happened.
    I just don't know if I press charges. This is the third time I've been pushed or grabbed in this school district in the four years I've been here. The other times I didn't press charges and the students spent 5 days at home and then came back.
    I want to press charges because this student is dangerous and detrimental to the classroom environment. However, i'm worried that, if I do, I will cause problems for myself at the school and in the community. It's a very small, rural community. I don't know if I've ever heard of a teacher pressing charges against a student here. I'm trying to weigh both sides. I can press charges but it might hurt my career here and might cause the community to see me in a bad light. Then again, if I don't press charges...how much worse will it be next time it happens? Any suggestions?
     
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  3. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Wow. Do you have union backing at your school? You need to contact them for legal immediately. You've been the victim of assault and battery (I'm adding in the threats and profanities).

    I can't believe the school district lets these kids back into the school! My mother was punched in the arm by a student (Mom was blocking the door out and was socked hard enough that she instinctively recoiled and the student bolted) and the girl was sent to Alternative School for the rest of the year.
     
  4. Catcherman22

    Catcherman22 Companion

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    If it was me, I would press charges..... especially if it was seen by others.

    You need to teach them a lesson that it is not acceptable.
     
  5. DizneeTeachR

    DizneeTeachR Virtuoso

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    I was pushed by an elem student while pg. I did not press charges, but we did contact the police & it was on file if there were any more problems. Maybe this is a route you could go as well. We did this because this was a problem child & if there were more problems at least their would be a record other than school to show it.
     
  6. 3Sons

    3Sons Enthusiast

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    I don't really have any advice, except good luck with whichever you choose. Maybe the other teachers in the school would have more insight on any affect on your career or community relations?
     
  7. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    I would press charges. First because of the threats and language used beforehand, and second because him getting expelled and being at home is not going to teach him any type of lesson that he desparately needs taught.
     
  8. Mamacita

    Mamacita Aficionado

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    Press charges. I trusted the middle school principal to handle mine for me and the woman was back in the building the next day. "She said she was sorry," I was told.

    Press charges. If not for yourself, to protect the other students and teachers. If you don't press charges, it will only get worse.
     
  9. Major

    Major Connoisseur

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    I agree with Mamacita.... If you don't press charges, it will only get worse. This student is a thug. Good luck to you.....:hugs:
     
  10. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    I would definitely press charges. They all need to get the message that this abuse won't be tolerated.
     
  11. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    If I were you, I would press charges.
     
  12. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Press charges. Please.
     
  13. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    If you press charges, will the student be removed from your class? Either way, I sure hope he is!
     
  14. MissNikki

    MissNikki Comrade

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    I'm sorry, but you'd be crazy to NOT press charges.
     
  15. oldfashioned

    oldfashioned Comrade

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    I don't think you'd be doing anyone a favor (including the offender) by NOT pressing charges.
     
  16. fantasticfirst

    fantasticfirst Rookie

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    This student needs help. If you just let it pass will he get the help he needs? Your other students will also think that it is okay to treat another person this way. Press charges.
     
  17. Emily Bronte

    Emily Bronte Groupie

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    Go for it. Has the student done this before to anyone else?
     
  18. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    I don't know what you mean by press charges but if you mean with the school you should have done it that second. Demanded he leave your class, go straight to the phone and ask for campus supervision to get him, and file a report with admin. Sounds like an automatic expulsion case to me.

    You will gain no credibility with high school students if you let stuff like that go. I know my heading says preschool but I used to teach high school. Trust me - do not let it go - you should do it before you leave today or email from home if you already left.
     
  19. Shanoo

    Shanoo Habitué

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    Not only did he physically assault you, he threatened you.

    Press charges.
     
  20. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Press charges = Filing a criminal complaint with the police.
     
  21. Bumble

    Bumble Groupie

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    I was jacked up against a door by an 8th grader last year. The kid was sent home and marked present for 5 days before returning. I left that school and am at a school that is way better. If a kid even threatens me or curses me out he/she is removed and sent to the accommodation room for at least 2 days. What I've noticed is if EVERYONE is working together kids like this won't get away with it. I would press charges and suggest that he goes to some sort of therapy. I had a kid threaten to shoot me this week and that kid is on his way to a different school. This child's new placement happened so fast because we have a great administration and staff that work together. Good luck!
     
  22. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    I work in a school for elementary students with severe emotional/behavioral disabilities. They all know that once they turn 12 years old, that charges will be layed against them if they are violent towards anyone.
     
  23. Hoot Owl

    Hoot Owl Aficionado

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    That's awful! I know you feel like you have to protect your career, but you have to protect yourself and the other students too. Your principal should press charges for you but if he/she doesn't take responsiblity for yourself. This kid is angry. Your responsiblity is to teach kids, not deal with you being physically abused.

    I'm so sorry you're dealing with this.

    Hugs....
     
  24. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    The kid needs help. As a parent of a willful child, I would appreciate the school working with me to find a solution. Sometimes a solution involves bringing in other agences.
     
  25. ebrillblaiddes

    ebrillblaiddes Companion

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    I didn't press charges in a similar circumstance about a year ago and I regret it...although it probably wouldn't have worked in my case; most of the rest of the class was just about as bad so there would have been plenty of "witnesses" saying nothing happened...but I still wish I'd tried.
     
  26. rachaelski

    rachaelski Habitué

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    I had a kid kick a desk at me. My principal responded with, "Well, you weren't hurt." He was later put on a behavior plan, he acted up in my class again, punching walls, etc. He was kicked out of the school.

    Press charges, have formal paperwork filed.
     
  27. Ross

    Ross Comrade

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    Notify the police, not just school security.
     
  28. gottagoodgig

    gottagoodgig Companion

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    So sorry that you are having this difficult time. Good luck!
     
  29. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Ross, I think she needs to go through the process of going through the admin. In our district you would get in trouble skipping that step. I am not sure I would want it to go on a child's legal record for one bad day. I would really need to look at myself and make sure my management wasn't partly at fault. Maybe he needs to go to a continuation school to get his mind right.
     
  30. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Start with administration first thing in the morning. Ask what they are going to do. If feasible, tell them that he should be placed in alternative school or another school. If there isn't one available, ask to have him placed in another classroom after suspension. In other words, you are asking the administration to take this seriously. He should not, in any way, be allowed back into your classroom.

    If it doesn't look like it is going to be handled seriously, then tell them that you feel that your next step will be to press charges against him. That should make them jump.

    If he comes into your room tomorrow, call the administration and have him removed. Hopefully the kid would be standing right there while you explain, out in the hallway, to the administration, that you'll speak to them during your planning time, but that you will press charges if he is not removed from your class. He can sit in the office if they want to wait for you to talk to them. Hopefully that will make him think and sweat a bit...and make the administration understand that you are serious as all get out about this.

    Stay calm yet insistent. Above all, this is where you can't appear wishy washy, either to the student or to the administration.
     
  31. krysmorgsu

    krysmorgsu Cohort

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    I would press charges, but your school should help you do that. Definitely let your union know. They need to be aware, because your school probably has a policy on this, and the union will help make sure it's followed. A student cannot get away with it.

    At my school, if a student lays a hand on a teacher, it's considered "aggravated assault", because it is interfering with your duties. We have 2 police officers, and they take the student out in handcuffs, and AUTOMATICALLY begin the process of filing charges. Last year, a fight started out around me (I'm not dumb enough to purposefully break up a fight - I'm not exactly Xena), and I got stuck in the middle, trying to break it up. In the process, one of the girls decided my face was a punching bag AND knocked me onto my butt. I don't think she actually meant to hit a teacher, but was just punching whoever was in her way. My school automatically pressed charges. She got a suspension and was allowed to graduate (a month later), but I recently got a notice that she is on probation and on a year of court-mandated anger management classes - which is probably what she needs.
    Honestly, these kids need to learn that it is not ok to try to harm an authority figure (what if you were the kid's boss?), and that it is not acceptable to try to hurt ANYONE. If schools don't take a hard line with this, more fighting occurs, people can get seriously hurt, and in the end, the kid suffers, because they never learn that it's not ok to do things like this. In my opinion, not only should you press charges, especially since this kid made it obvious that he intended to hurt you (and threatened you!), but also because sometimes life's lessons are tough, but part of our job as teachers is to teach students how to become good citizens and members of the community, NOT to allow them to do whatever they want and to become thugs. Good luck!
     
  32. mommyre

    mommyre Comrade

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    Press charges, I worked with a student who was bipolar once, and he had a situation where he ended up hitting a paraprofessional. He was going after another kid, but the paraprofessional was in his way. Most of us knew the kid he was going after deserved it, but because violence is unacceptable he was trying to keep the bipolar kid out of trouble. That certainly didn't work.

    The MOTHER requested they press charges against her son so that she could qualify for additional help with his disorder. One of the agencies she was trying to work with said that he needed criminal charges to be pressed before they could help him. She had exhausted the other avenues for help with his condition. She knew he needed this agency, and told the school that pressing criminal charges would do more good than harm in his case.
     
  33. BeckyPie7

    BeckyPie7 Companion

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    Thanks for all your advice.
    Believe me, I sometimes wonder if it's my management of the classroom that is at fault but this is the oly class I have problems with. I am able to easily manage my other classes without any incident.
    I've yet to see the administrators but I was planning on asking them what the student's punishment is after I see them. I'm pretty sure I know what their answer will be; anywhere from 5-10 days at home. I will be pressing charges. I looked up online last night and found information about how to do it. I'm not the sort of teacher who is afraid of their students. I'm pretty tough. However, this student frightens me. He is highly aggressive. He has invaded my personal space before when I have asked him to do something. He has used profanity with me on numerous occasions. I have spoken with him one-on-one more times than I can count. I have called the parents. I have written him up and informed administration about his behavior at least 4 times and it's only the fourth week here. His behavior has simply escalated to the point where he would shove me. If he's allowed in my classroom further I'm worried that next time he'll punch me instead of shoving me. He's just a highly angry and aggressive student.
     
  34. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    I am sorry you are going through this. I hope your administration is supportive and this young man learns more appropriate ways or he will have a hard life.
     
  35. Carmen13

    Carmen13 Groupie

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    What a horrible thing to happen to you! Not acceptable!
    Press charges!
     
  36. Jenstc2003

    Jenstc2003 Companion

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    I'm so sorry that you have so much trouble with this student, but I'm glad to hear that you're pressing charges. I'm presuming the other students in the room will be able/willing to testify if it comes to a trial. He can't be allowed to continue this. Unfortunately, some students simply do not realize the consequences of their actions, or do not care. Hopefully this student will get the help he so obviously needs before he does something worse. His parents and everyone else should realize the need for this.
     
  37. BeckyPie7

    BeckyPie7 Companion

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    I really hope some students will back me up but he is friends with most of the students in the class. This is a particularly rough class and all of the students like him. In fact, when this class came in today without him many made comments like "I better stop or Mrs. Homan will say I punched her." I don't know how they heard that I was going to press charges. I only told the administration. However, somehow they know. I hate to be negative but I can't stand working at this school any longer. I've been here for four years with no support and that's enough.
     
  38. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Hang in there. You've documented your case well.
     
  39. DizneeTeachR

    DizneeTeachR Virtuoso

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    So sorry that you have no support from anyone...It sounds like a bad situation all around!!!

    I'll be thinking of you & pray it gets better.
     
  40. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    It sounds like a nightmare class. Do you have resource officers at your school. Perhaps one can come in and speak to them about respect of others and self. I don't know. I'm guessing that not much will help.

    I think I'd leave, too. I wouldn't want to feel that I was being verbally bullied every day.

    Sometimes I wish the old days were here. Make the kid leave the school if they can't be respectful.
     

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