The New York City Department of Education has decided to further erode the classroom teacher's authorty by proposing to revise the student disciplinary code in allowing a parent to appeal the removal of their child from the classroom. Presently, the classroom teacher has the right to remove a disruptive student for three days from his/her classroom. Most administrators don't like this regulation and try to pressure the teacher from enforcing the regulation. The reason they don't like this regulation is that the disruptive student is usually assigned to the assistant principal's office and the AP must oversee the student.
In my school, the administration tried to set up a procedure to limit the removal of the disruptive student, First, you had to talk to the child at least twice about his/her behavior. Second, you contacted the parent (trying to contact the parent was not good enough) and let the parent know about their child's behavior. Third, if the first two fail you send the student to the AP for a lecture and is sent back to class. Finally, only after the three procedures failed to change the student's behavior can the teacher issue a 3-day "do not admit" order for the student. The result was a teacher outcry and the Administrators backed down. However, they still try to discourage teachers from removing the disruptive student.
The proposed DOE regulation allows the parent to appeal to the Regional administrators, who don't care about the classroom, and will, in many cases, allow these disruptive students to return to the classroom so they can cause more damage.
This propsed revision is another attack on the classroom teacher's authority. First, it was micromanagement, then it was the one-size-fits-all curriculum, and now limiting the rght of a teacher to have a peaceful classroom. What's next?
To the union's credit the president Randi Weingarten has objected to this change. However, objecting is one thing doing something about it is another. The union must be pro-active on this issue and take whatever action that is necessary to ensure the revised student disciplinary code is not implemented. Talk is cheap, we classroom teaches expect action from our union representatives.
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