Thursday, April 20, 2017
Chancellor Carmen Farina Announces The Virtual Elimination Of Suspensions For Grades K-2 While Educators Are In Danger Of Arrest And Termination.
Starting yesterday, and over the vocal objections of school safety officers, the teachers, and Principal unions, disappointing Chancellor, Carmen Farina, announced the virtual elimination of suspensions for students in grades K to 2 and further limiting suspensions for the rest of the student body That's right, all those wonderful little darlings that repeatedly disrupt the classroom, assault other children, and disrespect authority, will be getting a free pass to continue their negative behaviors without any real consequences. Instead the little darlings will get a "warning card", restorative justice, or simple mediation. Good luck to that.
Oh yes, there are consequences for a child's negative behavior, its just not to the child but to the educators that dare physically confront these out of control children. Just in the last month we had a teacher receive a 30 day jail term for attempting to keep a student who left his classroom without permission and tried to keep him from reentering the classroom who then proceeded to kick the door and scream in the hallways. Now we have a Principal who defended a teacher who was attacked and slapped by a child and was arrested for his discipline.
How many educators have been removed from the New York City classroom and their schools for alleged corporal punishment or verbal abuse over the last year or so? Two hundred? Three hundred? More? How many of these reassignments of educators are due to the negative actions of the child? I don't mean simple insubordination (not doing what the teacher requested). I'm talking about violent incidents like assault, throwing chairs, menacing, and inappropriate touching of a sexual nature. Yet, we treat all these students like their porcelain dolls marked fragile when some of these children are really on the path of being a menace to society. Instead, of isolating the "worst of the worst" in small self-contained classes and give them and their family the professional help they need to become a better person, we dump these children on the educator to correct the problem in large class sizes, without providing them the tools necessary to help the child. The result is when the educator tries to discipline the child for his or her negative behavior it can easily escalate to a physical confutation with negative consequences for the educator.
While I am not defending an educator who physically hurts or threatens with force a misbehaving student and they should be terminated if the child suffered a serious injury that resulted from the physical altercation. Most educators are simply trying to defuse the explosive situation by restraining the child and holding them till the child calms down. Unfortunately, sometimes the educator's best of intentions backfires and we have a teacher given a 30 day jail sentence and a Principal arrested.
My best advice? Be careful, be very careful when confronting a misbehaving student since the only suspension resulting in the interaction is your livelihood as an educator in the New York City Public School system.