Student hitting teachers

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by SCTeacher23, Dec 2, 2010.

  1. SCTeacher23

    SCTeacher23 Comrade

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    Hi,
    I am a first grade teacher. I have a student in my class who is physically hurting me and other students on a daily basis. He hits students at LEAST 10 times a day and at least 1 or 2 times a week he will seriously beat other children up. And by that, he will choke students, put them in a head lock, punch them in the head face repeatedly, etc.. like full blown serious assaulting fights. I know last year when this student was in Kindergarten he kicked a classmate in stomach so hard that the child was out of school for a week. He beat up the teacher's aide so bad, that she was in the hospital and out for several weeks! He hit his teacher several times and he beat up a male teacher as well.

    This year, in addition to seriously hurting students, he is hurting me. It started with him just pushing me or hitting me or slapping me, but lately he has been grabbing me by both my arms and physically restraining me. Today, he grabbed me, pushed me, and took his bookbag and hit me over the head repeatedly. I have a large bump on my head as a result. It is getting ridiculous. I have talked to the principal regularly and he is aware and concerned, but hasn't really done anything. I have talked to his parents almost daily and they aren't very supportive. They don't offer much help and they seem to be in denial and often blame what he does on myself or other teachers.

    Is there anything else I can do? Last year, he was even evaluated by the district's psychologist and they didn't do anything. I am seriously concerned for myself and my students. He never does his work either and he is pretty much just a constant disruptness. He isn't learning and I know he is going to fall far behind as well. Nothing seems to work. He will be suspended and the day he comes back, he will go right back to what he is doing. I am constantly stopping class every 2 or 3 minutes to address a behavioral issue with him. My behavioral management plan does not work for him and anytime he is scolded or anything he just says "so what" or "who cares". I really feel like he should be in some sort of alternative setting, but I'm not getting much support and I don't know what to do. Any advice at all???
     
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  3. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    A student who is intentionally hurting others cannot remain in your classroom. Let the principal know that the next time it happens, you will be calling for someone to remove the student to the office. Document every incident and every time you request help (and the result of your request).
     
  4. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    Document, document, document.

    I would definitely fill out a work-related injury form every time he hurts you. If you need to seek medical attention, file a police report. If you aren't already, I would notify parents every time he hurts a child, just in case a parent sees bruises, bumps, or scratches. Parents are eventually going to become frustrated that their children are being hurt, and then you can document every parent complaint and take it to your principal.

    This child needs help, and you need help in managing his behavior.

    I don't have any experience with a student like this, so I'm totally looking at it from a legal perspective...
     
  5. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    My first thought is, "where did he learn such behavior?"
     
  6. MsMar

    MsMar Fanatic

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    If that child was in either of my children's classes I'd be FURIOUS that the child would be allowed to continually beat up students. The moment it happens he needs to be removed. He's a danger to you and others. What on earth is the principal's reasoning for not doing anything? In my opinion this child should not be in a regular classroom setting.
     
  7. David Brown

    David Brown Rookie

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    You really need the support of the parents and management, if this behavior continues he isn't going to have much of a chance. Not to mention his victims, how old is he at the moment?
     
  8. SCTeacher23

    SCTeacher23 Comrade

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    He is 6 years old. He is written up and sent to the office almost daily. I call for the principal and he will take him in his office. Occasionally, he has been suspended, but usually the principal will keep him for a short time and then send him back to class. It isn't fair to myself or the other students in the class. Several parents have complained and are aware of what he is doing, but nothing has been done. I'm honestly at the point of where I don't know what to do anymore.
     
  9. cruiserteacher

    cruiserteacher Comrade

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    Do you have a union that can help you? I cannot see how this child has not been removed from your class yet. He clearly needs to be in a different educational setting. I would almost go as far as telling the parents of the other children to start complaining. Have them start at the principal and work up to the district superintendent. Being physically hurt and school and work is not acceptable.
     
  10. Em_Catz

    Em_Catz Devotee

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    :yeahthat: I AGREE! Since you complaining is not working and your P is being a...well JERK (to be kind because believe me I wantd to say a much dirtier word) for not addressing the situation and letting you suffer, get the parents involved! If they complain enough, it will hopefully force the P's hand.

    Also, how strong is this kid?! The fact that he can grab your arms to restrain you is frightening :eek: I do think he has seen this abusive behavior somewhere, probably at home either used on himself or another
     
  11. EMonkey

    EMonkey Connoisseur

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    The child needs to be evaluated for severe emotional disturbance or some other behavioral issue. I would file incident report for every time he attacks another child or adult. This covers you if he legally hurts someone severely in the future. I would document every incident and every time you send the kid to the office. Every time a parent comes to you about this child encourage them to go to the office and make clear their concerns. I would consider reporting the next severe injuries he has causes to the police if you are getting no support. I also would consider contacting CPS because if the parents are ignoring his actions then he is being neglected by his parents, he will end up in jail eventually if the actions continue at the rate they are going. I also would insist on day suspension every time he injures students. I would go to my union and tell them I am being endangered by the child. I would bring my union in to fight until the district figures out a better solution than me harassing them. If this child put a staff person out on medical leave for a week this child is not being safe and not having his needs met by his school.
     
  12. TeacherApr

    TeacherApr Groupie

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    At my school, we call the police.
     
  13. TiffanyL

    TiffanyL Cohort

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    Wow! You call the police on a first grader?
     
  14. TiffanyL

    TiffanyL Cohort

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    The behavior you describe is VERY severe. I'm surprised your P is not suspending each and every time....very strange.

    Nonetheless, it sounds like your school just doesn't have a plan. That's why the issue is being avoided. Here's a typical plan that I'd develop with a first grade teacher at my site.

    1. Daily Behavior Contract with ONE goal only: The goal would be to not physically hurt anyone. On the contract (typically a half sheet), you would break your day into blocks based on your schedule/content areas. Example: writing, morning meeting, math, language arts. Each block, he could earn a happy face or a sad face. Then, set a goal for him such as 3/5 blocks will be happy each day. He won't make all of them (5/5) as he drastically needs to make some changes and this won't happen overnight so set a realistic goal.

    2. The second step would be helping parents know that he will be suspended for physical aggression. So, if he pokes someone, maybe he gets a sad face for the block. But, if he chokes someone, then that is an automatic suspension. In addition, the plan should indicate that even with minor physical aggression (poking, stepping on someone's foot, etc.), that there is a boundary such as 3 minor offenses in one week equals suspension (choking, tackling, punching, etc.).

    3. The third step would be moral letters. I use moral letters to keep parents informed every step of the way. Moral letter ONE: your child is at risk for suspension. Moral Letter TWO: you are invited to a special meeting to discuss your child's behavior progress. Moral Letter THREE: your child has received 3 suspensions and is now at risk for expulsion. The letters all have a very supportive feel and even have inspirational quotes included. Nonetheless, the message is the same....you are headed for deep trouble.

    All of this leads to guilt-free disciplining because it is a clear cut plan. It sounds like you P buries his head in the sand. Maybe if you outlined the steps you'd like to take....I know you shouldn't have to. But if you outlined some awareness steps you'd like to take with the parents, maybe your P would get on board and even help develop the plan.

    Its all about no surprises for the parents, giving them ample opportunity to realize an expulsion is coming. That is, if you P is brave enough to expel.
     
  15. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Our princiapl contacted the resource officer for a 1st grader at our school who was physically hurting others and throwing furniture. He had been in the office daily, been suspended, and grandparents (who were his guardians) called in.

    The child was sent to the elementary alternative school for our district. We have one for our 19 elementary schools. It's staffed by a trained Special Ed teacher and several parapros. Kids stay in there until they meet their behavioral goals. I haven't seen this little guy back yet. It's a last resort sort of place.

    I'm sorry you don't have something like this for your district. I believe I would insist that the principal, counselor, school psychologist, and parents be involved in coming up with a plan with clear steps and consequences.

    Be very careful about having the child labeled Behavior Disordered. There are certain rights that come with that label, at least in Georgia. For example, my little BD guy can't be suspended from school for more than 10 days. (Luckily, he doesn't need to be.)
     
  16. TiffanyL

    TiffanyL Cohort

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    Oh, yes, the resource officer. That we do. But we don't call the police....even though its basically the exact same thing....LOL! I guess the school resource officer just sounds a bit milder.
     
  17. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Calling th police isn't necessarily a bad thing. They called the police on my 1st grader (my child, with hubby's permission). Basically what happened is it got him a ride to the hospital where he was in an emergency crisis state. We were called to the hospital and procedures were put in place for us to place our child in a behavioral health clinic for observation (for a week). This was the best thing that could have happened because it got him the documentation that was needed to have him IEP referred to another school with an ED program. There, in my opinion, was an 180 degree difference almost immediately in how my child responded to school. He needed a trained staff to help him cope with school. Now h is being mainstreamed part of the day and the therapist comes in to teach him strategies he needs to cope in that environment. I couldn't be more pleased with the results. It was frustrating t have my chil suspended a lot and so forth but in the end, it worked out for the best.

    I highly recommend that you start looking for ED program resources in the area. One of the reasons that you may not have much support from the parents is they may feel powerless and clueless as what to do to help their child in a environment that they are not there to supervise. They too don't have a plan. One thing that threw me off as a parent was that my child wasn't displaying the same behaviors at home in quite the same way. It took a while to understand that contradiction.
     
  18. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    I am impressed that you have been able to hang in so long with a child with such severe needs.

    I agree with cut. If a child like that child can be assessed and approved for services, my class would be the one he would be placed in. We are trained to root out the causes of those behaviors and develop behavior modification strategies to help the child become more successful. I feel so bad for that child because he is crying out for help and there is no one at your school (other than you!)who recognizes that and is willing to help that little guy. Your hands are being tied because of the ineptness of your administration.

    Unfortunately(for the child), your responsibility right now is to protect the other children in your class so you need to continue to have that child removed at the slightest sign of violence.

    On a positive note, I encourage you to continue to try to find a way to provide some positive interactions with this child. Children like that can be helped. A few years ago we had a child placed with us who could have been the twin to yours. He had more than 70 suspensions in his first three years of school and had been placed in a treatment facility several times. He is now in 8th grade and is doing well in a special class for children with autism and is happy.

    Don't give up trying to get some help for this child.
     
  19. Pisces_Fish

    Pisces_Fish Fanatic

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    I can't believe he's not in a Behavior Room. Keep documenting. I would feel so stressed in that environment, and I can only imagine how the kids feel - after all, he's their size :( :hugs:
     
  20. bros

    bros Phenom

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    That is very.... strange behavior.

    Refer for a sped evaluation. They can evaluate every year.

    Talk to the parents.

    Document every time an incident occurs.

    Take pictures of the injuries the student inflicts on you.

    Consider calling Child Protective Services. I also wonder where did this child learn this atypical behavior.

    Try to get the district psychologist to observe instead of just evaluating.
     
  21. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    We called on a Kindergartner last year...

    not something to be proud of, but something that isn't unusual...
     
  22. bros

    bros Phenom

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    It is unusual to call the police on such a young child, but it can be warranted in certain circumstances (Such as an autistic child has a violent meltdown and parents cannot be contacted)
     
  23. MissNikki

    MissNikki Comrade

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    You need to talk to your union.

    You then need to call the police the next time you are assaulted.
     
  24. TeacherApr

    TeacherApr Groupie

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    not really. When you have a school population that warrants calling the cops, then you do. It is not unusual in my school whatsoever. We are talking about EXTREME behaviors though such as constant stealing and this type of situation.
     
  25. UVAgrl928

    UVAgrl928 Habitué

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    We have called the cops on students in the past. It's definitely not unusual to see the police up at our school.
     
  26. bros

    bros Phenom

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    Ah.

    My school is rather tame. No stealing or anything of that nature.

    Only place that has a police officer is the high school, and he helps with the health classes
     
  27. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    OMG, how horrendous for you! :eek: Hopefully, you've been documenting all this since day 1. You should be filing assault charges, incident reports, taking pictures of your injuries & what he's done to school property, police reports, etc., etc., etc....since he's actually injured you, I don't care how young he is. Maybe his stupid parents will wake up then. It's a real shame & disgrace that the P & this terror's parents are blowing all this off! :mad:

    The parents may be hitting, slapping him and/or siblings, so of course he sees it as OK to do to others. Also, he's probably watching some physcially violent things on TV/movies. And yes, I'd screen many cartoons these days too.

    If taking pictures to serve as evidence means that I have to buy a camera w/ my own money so I can have proof of how he's injured me, inflicted cuts/bruises on other kids, torn up books, ripped up this & that, put holes in this & that, etc., then that's what I'll do!


    Why the heck not! If their behavior is bad enough. That "being too young & cute" stuff doesn't fly w/ me if they aren't doing what they're supposed to.
     
  28. TiffanyL

    TiffanyL Cohort

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    Oh it completely flies with me....in fact, if they are under the age of 8, I don't discipline at all.......:lol:

    Seriously, though, we have a VERY rough clientele at my school and the heart and soul of our school is a character education program called Peacebuilders.

    I can't say I've never had to call our resource officer but it is extremely far and few between. It would take a lot for me to just say, "Hey, just call the cops. That'll teach em'."

    But then again, our Peacebuilder way of life really works and we get a great deal of respect from these kiddos who come from very difficult backgrounds. In fact, we have two 6th graders who are giving speeches at an event at our school this week. These kids could have easily been on their way to expulsion and they will be speaking with regards to how the program changed their path. We also get quite a bit of respect from their parents too, who trust us and know we have their child's best interest at heart.

    I'm not sure what is happening at the OP's school. Something is seriously wrong for it to get to this extreme.
     
  29. TeacherApr

    TeacherApr Groupie

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    I've heard of that program but never experienced it. I wish we had something at our school.
    Not sure if the OP has a school like mine but we have NO character education or Peacemakers or ANYTHING BECAUSE "we don't have any problems at our school." uh huh...it's called being pro active....drives me crazy!!!! You are right, that is probably why it's gotten to this point because there is no programs to help students get along with others.
     
  30. SCTeacher23

    SCTeacher23 Comrade

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    Thanks for all the advice. I have been documenting everything and all, but when the P isn't as on board, it's hard to do anything with all my documentation. And I took a picture of the bump on my head that I received as a result of this child.

    On Friday, I went into the P's office and basically demanded that something had to be done. He scheduled an emergency Student Intervention Meeting, which is where the district psycholgist, Special Ed. department, the parent, the guidance counselor, and the P all meet to try to devise a plan. I'm not sure how promising this is or not. Something drastic could be done, but often in these meetings, it's documented that we had a meeting, but not much happens and it's a long process. I really hope the meeting does work in my favor.

    I actually did call the police just to inquire but they said that since he is under 12, no charge could be filed. I also called my union and I am waiting to hear back from them.

    I just really hope that if something is done, that the process does not take forever because I really don't know how much more I can take. I have 30 students in my class to watch and teach on top of this, which is extremely difficult as it is, and having to deal with his behavioral issues makes it a lot harder. I am at the point where I am so close to quitting, but I am afraid to because I don't want to jeopardize my chances of ever getting a teaching job again in another district. That is really the only thing that is keeping me here. I really want to stay for the other kids, but it's just really hard when I am being assaulted on a regular basis.
     
  31. bros

    bros Phenom

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    If the P is not cooperating, you may want to point them out to the child find regulations that the district is bound to under IDEA
     
  32. TeacherApr

    TeacherApr Groupie

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    Don't be afraid.... if you are asked about it you could share what happened to you and that you were in fear for your life. In fact, that could be something you could say to your P at this point. You are in fear for your life if this child either does not get help immediately and/or receive consequences. Not sure how comfortable you are doing this but if I were in your shoes, if that child did it again, I would call the parents MYSELF and tell them they need to take their child with them. You do not have to put up with abuse from anyone and should not be forced to "deal with it". I highly doubt anyone would argue with you about calling the kid's parents and if they do then they have a major screw loose.

     
  33. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Great, so this kid's got another 6 yrs to wreak havoc on countless others! If I was a parent of a child in his class, I'd want my child out of that class NOW!

    Just out of curiosity, have you ever observed him out at recess? I wonder exactly how he acts & instigates these fights.

    It's a shame it's gotten to this, but I WOULD NOT, I repeat WOULD NOT turn my back on this kid & I mean that literally. No one knows what's going on in his mind. He could take his pencil, scissors in the blink of an eye & stab somebody! I'm serious! I'd keep my eye on him. When you have the class lined up to walk out to recess or lunch. I'd have a responsible student be the line leader & walk behind the whole class, so you can see everybody, especially him.

    I know it's kind fo hard to not have this kid have a pencil because a kid has to write on his paper at some point, but is there any way possible you can keep long, sharp items out of his reach?

    Can't you ask the parents of the other kids in the class to support you more. It would be great if they could all come down to the P's office & demand that their kid be taken out of that class or else! I bet the P would do even more then.

    Keep us posted on how this situation goes!
     
  34. bros

    bros Phenom

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    If it is caused by a disability, the child cannot be removed unless it is a decision that is legal. It was mentioned that essentially a child study team meeting has been convened once. so the path to sped has begun.

    And charges not being able to be pressed does not mean they have to put up with the kid for 6 years
     
  35. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    I agree to keep documenting, contacting the parents (and that's ALL parents, even his) when this child does something harmful to you or another student. Eventually you would think the parents would get tired of hearing how their child has hit yet another student. Is he always like this? or are there particular times when he starts becoming violence. Maybe something is setting him off. If you could find what it is and stop it before it escalates, then maybe the number of incidents will drop. Just a thought! I hope that something is done about this child: for your safety, the safety of the kids in your class, and for his own safety.
     
  36. bros

    bros Phenom

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    If the principal isn't supporting you, you may want to try to do your own little unofficial FBA.

    See what activities set the student off.

    Have them avoid those activities for a bit. Find something the student likes.

    "Johnny, if you work on the math for ten minutes without getting angry, you get to go on the computer for 5 minutes"

    Something along those lines.
     
  37. 123456now

    123456now Rookie

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    Has a letter gone home to all parents in the class (or classes if recess is with others) informing them that their small child is in class with a ticking time bomb that the teacher fears? Before someone answers some garbage about privacy, this is just one reason that parents can't trust schools. This isn't an attack. It's just frustrating to hear about and knowing all the protections are in place for the wrong people.
     
  38. The Substitute

    The Substitute Rookie

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    Dec 7, 2010

    Dear SC Teacher,

    I apologize if someone else has covered this (a real possibility) as I did not read the other responses - I'm replying directly to your original post.

    You have the unassailable RIGHT to work and teach in a SAFE environment – safe for you, safe for the children in your care. Period. There are no “Ya but’s…” when it comes to safety in your classroom.

    Assuming that you have been formally documenting these events (and you better be documenting every single thing), you, your principal and the school district must take a hard line stance on this right NOW. This child is doing this and he is only in grade 1??? What will this be like left unchecked when he gets to grade 7 and is physically bigger than many of his male teachers???

    If you have a professional teaching organization you get them on the phone today and have this child removed from your class. If you do not, you inform your principal that you will not accept this child back in your class without a full time aide and if he continues to physically endanger staff or students that he won’t be allowed back in your class for safety reasons.

    Look to the school and district safety policies and hold them to the letter. I’m not the type of teacher that tends to try to make my classroom management issues other people’s business, but this is way off of the charts. This is not your job. Not even close. This child needs a type of help and assistance that you are not qualified to offer.

    You wouldn’t leave an exposed sparking wire sticking out the wall of your classroom where your students would touch it. To do so would be a gross dereliction of your duty to keep your students safe. How then is keeping this explosive child in your classroom any different?

    This is a safety issue. Treat it as such.
     
  39. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    Dec 7, 2010

    The principal is guilty of gross negligence. To let a child
    with those actions to continue in a regular classroom
    is beyond belief. Like Spock said, The needs of the many
    out weight the needs of the few.
     

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