Threatened and Attacked by Students: When Work Hurts

Discussion in 'General Education' started by whizkid, Jul 18, 2019.

  1. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    http://neatoday.org/2019/06/20/stud...&utm_campaign=20190717&utm_content=work_hurts

    Earlier this year, a female senior student ripped up a quiz in dramatic fashion in one of Macaulay’s classes. After that, she removed a shoe and tossed it at the teacher.

    “She reached into her backpack for another shoe and then threw that one at me,” says Macaulay. “It escalated with her kicking a trash can and threatening me.”

    After Macaulay called the front office, two security guards restrained the student until the police showed up. The student was handcuffed and driven away.

    This student comes to us with a lot of anger,” Macaulay says. “I have sent emails to administrators out of concern, not blame. But nothing is done.”

    How many times have I heard that before?
     
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  3. kellzy

    kellzy Comrade

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    Four years ago, I had two sixth graders put me in the hospital they beat me so bad. My crime? Telling them to not throw snowballs at the school windows.
    Nothing happened to them. Didn't even get an in-school suspension. They were not even required to apologize to me.
     
  4. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Connoisseur

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    What?? Did you press charges?
     
  5. TnKinder

    TnKinder Companion

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    Why not press charges? That's assault.
     
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  6. kellzy

    kellzy Comrade

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    I tried. Police wouldn't do anything. Just making the comment that this is unfortunately the kind of crap we are unfairly expected to deal with in the profession.
     
  7. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Connoisseur

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    Wow. I am so sorry.
     
  8. TnKinder

    TnKinder Companion

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    Oh wow. Sorry that happened to you.
     
  9. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Wow. That's awful.
     
  10. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    Bu bu bu but we can't find teachers!
     
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  11. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    That's because we can't anger the mamas! Woooooooooooo!
     
  12. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    Administrators will recommend you back in a heartbeat for no other reason than "you're willing to put up with it" and not involve them, your performance be damned.
     
  13. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Some years ago I was teaching in a SPED classroom. The first week of school my assistant received a concussion and I had a knee dislocated. We did file charges and the police said that even though they couldn't do anything about the present injuries, they wanted us to continue to file charges as needed, so they could get documentation in order to do something when the child got older...she was 7 years old then.
    I demanded a transfer out of that classroom...and received one immediately.
     
  14. Missy

    Missy Aficionado

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    Not just moms!
     
  15. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    I’ve said it before and I will say it a thousand times more, I am SO glad that I work at my private school. We actually discipline students who strike other people, staff included, and have no qualms in prosecuting students to the full extent of the law. And we actually have a backbone and wouldn’t think twice about expelling a dangerous student.

    Also, I am so grateful to have multiple ARMED security guards at my school and I frequently let them know how much they are appreciated.

    I have peace of mind that if a student ever gets physical that up to 16 security guards will come running and tackle them to the ground if need be. They aren’t afraid to go toe to toe with students and that is exactly how it should be. If a student wants to act like a criminal, then they should be treated like one. Age shouldn’t matter. That’ll show the little cretins.
     
  16. Obadiah

    Obadiah Groupie

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    In most cases, the children are only behaving according to how they've been taught. Unbelievably, I've heard people fault teachers for teaching children to grow up violent; I heard someone say that again just last month! The truth, however, asks the parents, what are they teaching or not teaching their children?

    Some parents ignore their children until they do something that annoys them. Then they yell, swear, and whatever until they get out of their hair. Some parents physically attack their children. Some parents are bossy rather than explaining proper behavior. Some parents rarely converse with their children. Interactive languaging builds up brain connections that provide creativity in dealing with encountered situations; reading also provides this advantage, and many children are not encouraged to read, and some or many children are even discouraged from going to a library or purchasing books. Conversation and reading also teach empathy. Some parents do not actively teach proper social behavior.
     
  17. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    But what about the poor, downtrodden parents who have no time to spend with their kids because they have to work 9 minimum wage jobs? They can't feed or clothe them, never mind teach them anything. It's the job of the school to do everything and it's their right to have as many kids as they want even though they have no business having any. Sob <insert sarcastic emoji>
     
  18. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    [​IMG]

    That’s America for you. And cue the person who defends these “parents”.
     
  19. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    You have up to 16 armed guards on duty at one time at a private school? That sounds excessive. However, I agree that every school should have a security guard.
     
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  20. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    OH, i'm just waiting for a certain member here to chime in lol
     
  21. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Well, to be fair we’ve had far too many incidences involving dangerous people in the past five years, so that is why we hired more armed guards. I mean, we literally had criminals who were chased by police try to forcefully enter our campus and then a bunch of police officers rush the campus — it almost became a hostage situation; we’ve had homeless people with needles try to break in, we’ve had vandals try to gain entrance, bicycles have been stolen, etc. We finally had enough of riffraff causing trouble and so we quadrupled our security personnel and erected sturdy barriers around the entire campus — the latter entailed us removing all of the chain-link fencing and putting up thick metal gates that you would be extremely hard pressed to scale. We also had a security checkpoint added in the parking lots for events and security cameras put up pretty much everywhere except the bathrooms. We had cameras before, but now we have so many it’s like a government-run facility. Not to mention, we put in a panic room in the front office (in the event of a school shooter) and secretive alarm buttons that notify the police and armed security guards on campus. Finally, we doubly reinforced the classroom doors and all main entrances and exits.

    I can almost guarantee that an active shooter would fail miserably if they tried to force entry into our campus. They would quickly be riddled with bullets and the armed guards would exercise impunity. And we have school shooter drills where the armed guards get involved. It’s pretty cool.

    My motto is that it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

    And we have ~ 2,800 students, on average, and so the campus has a lot of places to cover. We have roughly $65 million in reserves (and we started to invest some of it and so it should grow pretty rapidly) and our budget is ~$20-$25 million per year with an annual surplus of $1-2 million. We can easily afford it and so we don’t take any chances. After all, if you have the money than why not?
     
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  22. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    You are very fortunate! That's a giant size for a private school, I was assuming much smaller numbers.
     
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  23. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Yep, we have built a name for ourselves over the years and our numbers have ballooned over the past decade and a half.
     
  24. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    We have also built a name for ourselves............

    So much so until teachers keep leaving, parents take their kids out of the district, and the state threatens take over annually.
     
  25. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    :(
     
  26. Obadiah

    Obadiah Groupie

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    Good point! Sad but true, many parents are overworked. I do want to clarify one of my points; I agree that schools play a major role in teaching proper social behavior and good citizenship. Unfortunately, I've heard propaganda stating just the opposite, that the ultimate result of specific teachings in today's schools promote selfish, anti-social behavior. I disagree with such propaganda.
     
  27. GPC0321

    GPC0321 Companion

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    To each his/her own, I guess. This doesn't sound like a place I'd enjoy working. I love my small, rural, PUBLIC high school that doesn't require armed guards and a fortress built around it in order to feel safe. I've been teaching for almost 18 years, and I've never had a student threaten me or assault me. Heck, I don't think I've ever even had one curse at me (maybe about me, lol). Now, there are some who have threatened and cursed at other teachers, but that happens very rarely. To my knowledge, no teachers on our campus...or heck, in our district...have ever been assaulted by a student.

    Our school is big about making connections and building relationships with our students. It's our belief that doing this vastly reduces our chances of having a violent incident. And we've certainly had some students capable of becoming violent. When we notice a kid getting close to the edge like that, and we know he/she has a troubling home life and history of issues, we spend our time and effort working with that kid and trying to help him/her. It's not unusual for teachers in our school to buy clothes and school supplies for students who cannot afford them. We offer free breakfast and lunch. We have programs in place to send home backpacks of food and basic hygiene products to those in need. Heck, we've even had teachers who have taken kids into their own homes when they've got no place else to go (parents in prison, etc).

    All of that said, because we're a smaller school we can also hold their feet to the fire more on discipline. Our administrators are very supportive of us, and make it clear that if a student is misbehaving and/or breaking school rules, we should write that student up. If the behavior is such that it's disrupting class, we are to call the office and either an admin or the SRO will be there in about two minutes or less to remove the student. Our kids know this. They know that we are genuinely in their corner and want them to succeed, but they also know that we will not tolerate disrespectful and disruptive behavior. And they mostly respect this.

    It's funny. Our students do whine sometimes that our school is "like a prison" because they have to follow rules and are held accountable for their behavior. But at least we don't need 16 armed guards and an impenetrable wall around our campus. That sounds like a prison to me.
     
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  28. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    I hate to break it to you, but your experience is not the norm in public schools these days, unfortunately. I live in California and high-school students curse all the time — they curse somewhat at my private school — but you work in a small, rural school and that is probably why. The dynamic is very different. Also, I live in a city and there are way more people than that.

    With that said, my school is an amazing place to work in. I make great money, I have 100% supportive admin, my admin treat us to lunch and gifts all the time, I have complete classroom autonomy, I get supplies and equipment whenever I ask, my hardware gets upgraded every other year (I presently have an Apple iMac Pro with Retina display), my classroom is incredibly spacious and has a connected room for storage purposes, my students are awesome and have a willingness to learn generally speaking, and I never have to worry about there not being money for something (we’ve never had a meeting about insufficient funds and cutting everything). (Also, I find it amazing that the public district near ours has a budget that is over five times ours and they still can’t get it together, but I digress. SMH)

    Yes, we’ve had bad experiences in the past, but we don’t any longer. Why? Because of the updated security. The outer wall is nigh impenetrable, as you’ve said, and trespassing incidents have dropped by 100% as a result. Hmm. Walls keep undesirables out. Who would have thought? (Could that be why gated communities are surrounded by walls?)

    And by the way, Disney World has more security and walls than you would believe. I’ve visited there dozens and dozens of times and have discovered just how many security measures are in place. It doesn’t make it a prison and it is still one of the best places to visit. Thus, I don’t get why you think having safety features to prevent undesirables from getting in is a bad thing. Should we just let these people wander onto our campus willy nilly? And in an age where shootings happen more and more and crimes involving schools happen more and more, I think it is ridiculous (no offense) to just say, “Well, nothing ever happened in MY community and so everything is fine.” Did you know that more and more public schools are putting walls around their school and installing bullet-proof doors and such? This is especially the case in larger cities and suburban municipalities.

    My private school is situated in an affluent area, but on the other side of town is the non-affluent side (the side I never go to). It’s just the way it is. We can’t prevent shady individuals from coming on that side of town as it is illegal to restrict their travel to where we are located, but we can keep them out of our campus. Hence, the beefed-up security.
     
  29. GPC0321

    GPC0321 Companion

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    Yeah, I know. I'm very lucky.

    I'm just going to say you and I have different worldviews and we'll have to agree to disagree here. I'm glad you love your school, I wish you could do so without feeling the need to insult public schools. I'm a product of public education and have taught public school my entire 18 years. And I teach "the undesirables" who come from the "non-affluent side of town" that you never go to.

    For the record, I go to Disney World every year. Was just there in June. It's my favorite place in the world.
     
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  30. Pisces

    Pisces Rookie

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    I totally agree with you. I teach at an independent school and am the product of public education. Where I live in Atlanta, there are also excellent public schools with great working conditions that serve a diverse population.
    Yeah that other post was sort of condescending. :(
     
  31. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    I never said undesirables are public-school students. I used the word “undesirables” to reference the dangerous people who kept coming on our campus before the security upgrades. I even said, “we can’t prevent shady individuals coming from that side of town.”

    We actually get a lot of transfers from public schools and they are great. I’m not sure what you mean. And 40% of our student body is comprised of students from working-class or lower middle-class households. I think there might have been a miscommunication here.
     

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