“Attack a Teacher Day:” Are we raising idiots?

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As an avid news reader, I always think I have read the most outrageous story of the month and then another one pops up on my screen.

Here is the latest article that makes me think we’re raising a generation of kids with no sense, no impulse control and no boundaries. I also don’t understand why so many parents allow their young kids to be on Facebook. It is a larger arena for them to make dumb decisions.

I think adolescence has always been a time of dubious choices, but the web magnifies those bad decisions and creates audiences for them.  What surprises me is that these students did not consider that the web also makes it easy to track such plots/jokes and the architects of them. Most kids I know in middle school are aware that the web offers little privacy and that one indiscreet message can end up being viewed by 100 people.

I am also surprised by the light suspensions that these girls earned; their actions strike me as deserving of more severe responses. I admire the restraint of the teachers quoted in this story. But then again, they have chosen to teach in middle schools so they understand this challenging age group better than most of us.

This kids-gone-wild story is out of Nevada:

According to the AJC:

Six girls have been arrested after students were invited on Facebook to take part in “Attack a Teacher Day” at two middle schools.

One girl was accused of inviting about 100 students on the social networking website to participate in the event Friday, and the other five were accused of responding with online threats against specific teachers, Carson Middle School Principal Dan Sadler said.

The Nevada Appeal in Carson City reported the girls were booked Wednesday at juvenile hall on a misdemeanor charge of communicating threats. Their names were not released.

While the students insisted it was a joke, Sadler noted they were arrested on the same day a suspended 17-year-old student in Omaha, Neb., fatally shot an assistant principal and wounded his principal before fleeing the campus and taking his own life.

“School shootings really happen. That’s why we took it seriously,” Sadler told The Associated Press on Friday. “It’s not OK, and it’s not funny in this day and age if you’re going to make a threat against a teacher.”

Five of the students attend Sadler’s school and the other attends Eagle Valley Middle School. Both schools are in Carson City.

Eighteen students accepted the invitation to participate in the attacks at the two schools, which had been set to take place from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. Friday. A parent brought the posting to the attention of authorities, Sadler said.

Classes took place Friday without incident at both schools after students were earlier notified of the arrests and parents of the students who were arrested or accepted the invitations were contacted by authorities.

The 12- and 13-year-old students were arrested after allegedly posting threatening statements against six teachers at the two schools. One student used the word “die” before a teacher’s name, while others wrote that they would “attack” certain teachers, Sadler said.

No specifics, such as weapons or how the attacks would be carried out, were mentioned, said Carson City sheriff’s Deputy Jessica Rivera, the school district’s resource officer. “Even if the six girls meant it as a joke, there’s no way to know if the other students who accepted the invitation weren’t going to carry out the attacks in some fashion,” Rivera said. “The school shooting in Nebraska is just another thing that shows us you can’t take this kind of situation lightly.”

The girls were released to the custody of their parents after their arrests. They were suspended from school for between three and five days.

The Facebook posting was removed by the parent of the girl who sent out the invitation to join the attacks.

Sadler said the teachers targeted by the threatening comments were shocked by the arrests because the six girls were good students. Some held leadership positions while others had top grades.

“I would say their reaction was ‘Are you serious? Is this really happening?’” Sadler said. “The more they thought about it, they said they were not OK with it. This is kind of disheartening to an educator.”

Kathy Haas, a Carson Middle School teacher who taught two of the students who were arrested, said she was surprised because they seemed normal.

“It shows you just don’t know what’s going on in their minds,” she said. “I don’t understand their motivation. I don’t think they think about the consequences because they’re young. They’re pretty immature then.”

The arrests gave teachers at the schools a chance for classroom discussions about online communications with students, Haas added.

“It’s a teachable moment and hopefully it prevents it from happening in the future,” she said. “Most students know it was wrong. A lot of students said they knew about it (Facebook posting) and deleted it.”

Carson City Sheriff Ken Furlong said the case demonstrates the need for parents to monitor their children’s online activities.

“They made some pretty violent comments about some teachers, and this isn’t even close to a joke,” he said. “Children’s stresses are so great that they can act out on their frustrations. Parents need to monitor what their kids are doing on communication devices.”

– From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

252 comments Add your comment

Surprised?

January 8th, 2011
9:26 am

Maureen, on a daily basis student actions are overlooked or handled inappropriately. The sad part is that if one of the teachers had reacted to a student attack with force, that teacher would lose her job immediately. In a time where students are plotting to harm teachers, what is the teacher supposed to do? Press the call the call button for the office so that the administrators can come? Right.

The lighweight consequence to the students only encourages other students to behave badly. School administrators are afraid to truly act on behalf of the teachers for fear of being perceived as being too harsh by the parents.

Teach2Learn

January 8th, 2011
9:32 am

@ Maureen … Love the title of this thread. Just cut to the chase. I think history shows idiot offspring is always a possibility.

Veteran teacher, 2

January 8th, 2011
9:36 am

And yet, our politicians and some of the publid choose to believe that all students are giving their best effort in their studies at all times, and all students give their best effort in the taking of the many standardized tests that are offerent. Our politicians continue to choose to believe that the teacher is at fault for all lack of achievement. How focused do you think these students were on their classwork??

Write Your Board Members

January 8th, 2011
9:37 am

Many of them have trashy idiots as parents.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Ms. D. Ms. D said: RT @AJCGetSchooled: “Attack a Teacher Day:” Are we raising idiots? http://bit.ly/hFCe68 [...]

Echo

January 8th, 2011
9:41 am

A teacher acting in self defense would not lose their job. It’s called a “lawsuit” and any school with a history of not protecting teachers and students with light punishment for violent students is setting the school district up for one. No job is worth getting physically attacked. I worked at a school where a student punched a pregnant teacher and that teacher flat out leveled the student (high school). The teacher wasn’t even reprimanded.

What's best for kids?

January 8th, 2011
9:51 am

Suspended between three and five days? THAT’S IT???? That, in and of itself, says more than the ridiculous nature of the FB posting.

NWGA teacher

January 8th, 2011
10:07 am

Three to five days is a lightweight response to physical threat. This sends an obvious message: do whatever you please — there are no consequences.

Hey Teacher

January 8th, 2011
10:25 am

I’m lucky enough to work for a very supportive administration in terms of discipline — we have all kinds of checks in place (detention, ISS, Saturday School, work detail) for the run-of-the-mill kid that cuts class, talks back to the teacher, is tardy too many times or decides to go to Burger King for lunch instead of the cafeteria. That said, it is nearly IMPOSSIBLE to do anything about the truly disruptive kids — we spend 90% of our time trying to contain/control/counsel the same 15 students (even one of that group will wreck havoc on your class) when really we need to find another alternative for them. I even have one that keeps coming back from jail, but because he’s never done anything here at school to warrant expulsion, we can’t get him out of here. We need better alternative programs (night school, summer school,trade school) for those students that can’t hack the regular environment. That group of students doesn’t care how many times they get suspended.

Happy Teacher

January 8th, 2011
10:27 am

I did a lot of really stupid things when I was a kid…there just wasn’t a broad social network to take it viral back then. Thank goodness.

I think it’s easy to overblow something like this, and to make dangerous generalizations, which can damage the already perilous relationship between schools and some families.

Angry Teacher

January 8th, 2011
10:32 am

Sadly, this news article and most of the responses are from the reality of public education. I wish more of those who make ridiculously impossible mandates on education should have to experience such abusive behavior from a classroom for at least nine weeks before making these impossible laws with stipulations demanding higher test scores. The word “Survival” for a classroom teacher is not an abstract idea in education; it’s a daily living reality in public education

HS Math Teacher

January 8th, 2011
10:40 am

With each passing generation, kids are losing more and more respect for adults. I think adults have to share in the responsibility. You have idiots raising idiots. Some parents drink in front of their kids, screw around on their spouses, use profanity in the house, let kids watch any program they want on cable or on the internet, unsupervised, and a good deal of them allow their kids to have parties in the boathouse, and don’t care if they drink alcohol. It’s a mess.

For the parents who try to raise their kids right, a good many are spoiling the hell out of them. They buy them anything they want, and ALLOW kids to talk back to them. These same kids are filling our classrooms, and if they don’t respect their parents, they sure as heck are not going to respect their teachers.

I have NEVER allowed kids to back-talk me at school. I’m not beneath giving them a verbal scalding right in front of their peers – not in a crude way, but nonetheless a sanitized version of shoveling the manure right back in their lap.

More to the point, what do we expect from these kids if our nation allows them to listen to some of the worst vile music ever created (devil rock & thug rap)? Kids are surfing the internet and are being exposed to hard pornography, graphic videos of “beatdowns”, where some poor kid is getting his teeth kick out, video games that glorify violence and murder. Simply put, we have allowed Satan to flourish in our homes across this nation. The genie is out of the bottle, and we won’t be able to get him back in again.

I feel fortunate to work for a very small high school in a rural area. If our school ever gets bad, then I know the rest of the world has gone to hell in a hand-basket.

ScienceTeacher671

January 8th, 2011
10:43 am

Well, here’s the thing: “Sadler said the teachers targeted by the threatening comments were shocked by the arrests because the six girls were good students. Some held leadership positions while others had top grades.”

They were probably also the daughters of leaders in the community. Do you really think the school will expel those children? If they’d been poor children with poor grades, I would argue that the discipline would have been different.

Of course, there is always the age to consider. A friend of mine who lives in another county told me a couple of years ago that they had one elementary student threaten another with a very large kitchen knife. IIRC, the knife-wielding student was not expelled, but just suspended for a few days, due to the age of the children involved. I’d be really upset if my small child were attending school with such a student.

Truth Is

January 8th, 2011
10:45 am

…and you want the students and parents to evaluate the teacher and base his or her salary on their responses ..utterly ridiciulous!!

No Teacher Left Behind

January 8th, 2011
11:03 am

Maureen, we have been raising a generation of idiots ever since a child can sit in your class each day, do absolutely nothing but be a major disruption, fail tests and quizzes, not turn in homework and you (the teacher) are held accountable for his failure.

ScienceTeacher671

January 8th, 2011
11:04 am

HS Math Teacher, I agree with the lack of respect for adults, and I would add for authority in general.

Shortly after the tragic death of GSP Trooper LeCroy, I read an article about deaths of law enforcement officers being much higher than usual in 2010, and that same lack of respect was hypothesized as a factor in those deaths.

Some days I fear for our country, and Maureen, on those days I am sure that the answer to your question is a resounding, “YES!”

teacher&mom

January 8th, 2011
11:14 am

My kids (ages 14 and older) have a facebook account. All wall postings, messages, etc. come through my email. I also have their passwords and I prowl around their pages… they don’t like it but tough, I’m the parent.

I also check their computer history and we have a web filter that notifies us anytime a “questionable” site has been viewed. They do not have internet access on their phones.

While I can’t say I know absolutely everything that takes place, I’ve certainly put as many safety checks into place as possible.

Those girls deserved alternative school for the posting. A dangerous generalization would be to assume the light punishment sent the “right” message to the student body. I suspect it didn’t quite work out that way. In fact, there’s a strong chance those girls will return to school as “heroes.” This coming from a former middle school teacher who understands the nature and mindset of that age group.

Teach2Learn

January 8th, 2011
11:37 am

@ HS Math Teacher
I too do not allow backtalk in my classroom and don’t hesitate to give them a verbal scalding. For most that’s usually enough to convey my expectations because of the strong teacher/student relationships I build. Of course there are repeat offenders where eventually some escalated form of punishment is next. Those adults who don’t try to discipline are missing a wanted opportunity from their children/students.

@ teacher&mom
I appreciate your parenting; always a help for the teacher in the classroom.

HStchr

January 8th, 2011
11:44 am

I have to agree that the punishments were light considering the threats that were posted. I also agree that these girls would have gotten much worse punishments if they had been poor or from a less acceptable group. These were popular kids who got caught up in the popularity of Facebook to air their grievances. As some have mentioned, we all complained about teachers growing up, but we didn’t have a public forum to post those complaints and get encouragement from peers. This only proves the need for careful monitoring of Facebook and other social network pages of children. If the parents won’t do it, then the site sponsors need to.

If I were one of the teachers, I think I’d be looking into an independent lawsuit against specific students for their threats if the school system continues with its slap-on-the-wrist punishment.

teacher&mom

January 8th, 2011
11:48 am

Watch MTV for a few hours and you’ll understand. Next time you are around a group of middle schoolers, ask them what they watch on TV.

Teenagers are upstairs in their rooms watching…Jersey Shore, Bully Beatdown, Teen Moms,etc.
While downstairs The Real Housewives of Stupidity is blasting in the living room.

I love teaching. I hate what it is becoming.

January 8th, 2011
11:49 am

Does not surprise me at all. I know of several teachers who have been verbally and physically abused, and nothing was done – not even a suspension. The students learn quickly – I can mistreat you and your hands are tied.

catlady

January 8th, 2011
11:49 am

“Are we raising idiots?” Yes. And kids with no discipline. And very angry, vengeful kids. And kids who have experienced little true parenting or supervision.

And we reward it. We put them on TV, give them minimal consequences for their actions, defend their behavior, BLAME THE TEACHERS, or anyone else we can think of.

atlmom

January 8th, 2011
11:53 am

hey teacher: that’s a big problem in the schools today. There used to be schools where ‘problem’ kids would go. most schools don’t have that ability to handle the disruptive students, and as you said, there aren’t necessarily that many of them. But if the school could kick them out – and they could go to another school where there would be lots of discipline – we could do something about the problem. But it’s not politically correct to do that anymore. It’s a crying shame – the other kids want to learn, and the disruptive kids are making that impossible. You can bet those kids know the power they have – and that may be the only power they have in their lives – so they use it to their full advantage.

Me2

January 8th, 2011
12:06 pm

A student in my school (but not my class) threatened to kill me after I wrote him up for cheating on the CRCT and the administration did nothing except interfere with a police report. That’s how Alvin does it – he won’t let the serious crimes be reported to the police because it would make his schools be listed as “persistently dangerous.”

catlady

January 8th, 2011
12:08 pm

After all, many kids hear threats against the teachers from their parents: “I’m going to go down there and straighten that teacher out.” When I have had a child say, “I’m going to tell my mom” I laugh and say, “Please do. I look forward to talking to her.” Now the child gets that attitude from their parents.

Glad to see that you have had a bit of an epiphany, Ms. Downey. You really have no clue about the kinds of things teachers deal with day in and day out from many students and their parents, not to mention the administrators, and the state-and federal-level “geniuses” that dictate policies that are counterproductive or not based in reality at all.

I am sure some will argue that these teachers “did” something to deserve this.

Tony

January 8th, 2011
12:24 pm

How do we get to this point? Here are a few examples that I deal with on a regular basis.

1. Parents do not expect the best from their children. Whether it is school work, behavior at school, or other matters, I see parents regularly excuse their children’s inappropriate actions and blame others. Homework, for instance, is often a nuisance to children and parents. Many times parents will blame the teachers who assign homework for “expecting too much.” Schools have (unfortunately) responded by also excusing homework. Schools do this by not allowing teachers to count homework in the grade or by placing severe limits on amounts and kinds of homework. Alfie Kohn has done extensive research about homework and has often published articles claiming the negative and ineffective results of homework. However, what he has failed to do is to scratch deeper into the issue to look at the attitudes from home that undermine the importance of routine practice. Work ethic is an important trait and parents are destroying this vital characteristic.

2. Parents excuse inappropriate behavior of their children and blame others instead of holding their own child accountable. As I investigate behavior incidents, I gather as many details as possible. I have high expectations and am not afraid to let parents know. These excuses begin with relatively minor infractions, but grow increasingly more major as children get older. When children learn (and they learn quickly) that the parents will defend their actions, they will take advantage of that.

3. Too much idle time and too little supervision at home give ample opportunity for children to get into mischief. There has been plenty of evidence of this over time. It is surprising that so many parents still get caught up in the idea that other children may do things like this, but my child would never ….. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve met with parents who declare, “My child would never lie to me.” or “I can tell when my child is lying.” The truth is they will lie and no you can’t tell when they are. Many parents have deceived themselves into believing this crap.

4. Finally, the blame game has become too common place. We tend to blame others, television, rap music, video games, teachers, or whatever. The point is that parents MUST assert their role as PARENT. Limit access to these things. Cut off the Internet and cell phone. Keep your child at home. Make them do their homework. Read to them and with them. Play board games together. Have chores for them and expect them to be done well.

These ideas are not inteded to be portrayed as cure-alls for these ailments, but if more parents expected more from their children and held them accountable we could make progress. If we would stop blaming others for the things our children do, they will be better persons. Instilling values including a strong work ethic will do more for our children than anything else.

TopSchool

January 8th, 2011
12:29 pm

The system is set up to ATTACK teachers. The politicians want a TEACHER REPORT card based on Standardized TEST SCORES…

It takes the Governor of Georgia to call for a GBI investigation to halt the attacks ATLANTA PUBLIC SCHOOLS have made on their teachers and administrators in their attempts to cover-up CHEATING on tests and the criminal misuse of public funds in their schools.

I think the ATTACK is a reflection of our society.
The “right thing to do” comes from within.

Our children have been molded by a corrupt society of adults that have modeled this behavior through the media.

The internal voice to “do the right thing” has slowly died in our society. When computers, cameras, video-tapes, and tape-recorders are the only means of regulating the illegal vile actions of the human race our society is doomed to fail. We must make sure as parents and teachers the internal voices of honesty and integrity are never erased. The “internal voice and camera” is the “saving grace” of our future.

Yet, still the psychopathic minds society has created in this MEDIA WAR continue to find ways justify and believe they won’t get caught.

Atlanta Public Schools ADMINISTRATION attacks their TEACHERS through falsified PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT PLANS…and by not providing a “GRIEVANCE PROCESS”
that protects the “WHISTLE-BLOWER”

On December 22nd, in the face of seemingly unanimous bipartisan support, the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act was killed at the last minute when a mystery Senator placed what’s called an anonymous hold on the bill. This bill had already been passed by the Senate earlier in December and by the House earlier that same day, but in the final vote on the reconciled bill, which is designed to protect government workers from being punished – as they usually are – for exposing illegality, waste and corruption – it was shut down by a lone anonymous hold.

AND SOMEONE IN THE SENATE WANTS TO MAKE SURE THE CAMERA IS NOT ON THEM WHEN THEY VOTE…

http://www.wnyc.org/blowthewhistle/

Rick a Teacher

January 8th, 2011
12:31 pm

Why shouldn’t students be allowed to attack teachers? Politicians,reporters,and parents do it all the time.

TopSchool

January 8th, 2011
12:37 pm

ATLANTA PUBLIC SCHOOLS…will ATTACK a TEACHER and use the taxpayers money to fight in the court system to support the attack…

It has taken the Governor’s actions to CRACK THE BACKS OF THE ATTACKERS…
are they going to clean house or sweep this dirt under the rug.

Are the cameras rolling?…What will happen behind closed doors?

http://www.TopPublicSchoolCorruptionAtlanta.com

TopSchool

January 8th, 2011
12:39 pm

This is a systemic problem in our SOCIETY…

justbrowsing

January 8th, 2011
12:44 pm

Everybody else does it- students are not stupid and they notice this. How could we expect them to know any better? Poor performance and behavior are routinely excused and the culprit has always been the teacher. I stay in the hot seat because I refuse to EVER accept it.

The Anti-Wooten

January 8th, 2011
12:45 pm

Oh, ok. I read the headline and assumed that this op-ed was about the soon to be sworn in Governor of Georgia and his planned attacks on teachers and education in general.

Carry on.

ellie

January 8th, 2011
12:55 pm

I’m also really surprised these students got off so easily….3-5 days suspension..that’s nothing. I’m glad to see the vast majority of posters feel the same. I taught middle school for many, many years and no I don’t think these students are too young to begin to see that there are serious consequences attached to actions. And especially if these children have the potential to be leaders.

They need to be out of school at least long enough for the “excitement” of this to die down. As it is it’s likely they will return right into the hub bub of it and become “heroes”. I certainly think keeping them out 2 weeks at least and/or placing them in an alternative school for at least a semester.

Ted Striker

January 8th, 2011
1:00 pm

Kids today are no more “idiots” than were kids of 20-30-40 years ago.

It’s merely that there were no bloggers 20-30-40 years ago to talk about the kids.

Really??

January 8th, 2011
1:01 pm

@The Anti-Wooten- hilarious!

@everyone else- You’re all correct; when I was in elementary and middle school, corporal punishment was the norm; your parents had to send a note to the Principal if you were NOT to be spanked/paddled. Sadly, now, parents allow their children to disrespect them at home and in public, so the same terrible attitude and bad behavior carries over to teachers, to administrators, and eventually, towards law enforcement. While I do not necessarily condone physical punishment for children, I do believe that if you spare the rod (or any other serious punishment), you spoil the child, and then we end up with this mess.

My siblings and I did our best to stay out of trouble in school because we knew that there was absolutely NO WAY we were going to get away with it; if a note was sent home, or a phone call was made to our parents, the teacher/principal was assumed to be right, and we got punished six ways from Sunday with no room for argument. Behavior issues were never the teacher’s fault- my parents (one is an educator) knew that we were almost certainly to blame for any classroom or behavior issues, and they punished us accordingly. What (if any) punishment did the parents of these students level upon their children?? A light school suspension is certainly not enough to dissuade these students from similar disgraces in the future. Parents need to not only monitor their children online, but in PERSON. We need to spend more time setting a good example, and then we’ll see what happens…

Math Maestro

January 8th, 2011
1:08 pm

“Are we raising idiots?”

So if China and India score better than the US in education, then it can be concluded that Chinese and Indian parents do a better job of parenting their children than US parents?

Try convincing Michelle Rhee of StudentFirst of that
http://www.studentfirst.org

Math Maestro

January 8th, 2011
1:19 pm

TopSchool says, “Are the cameras rolling?…What will happen behind closed doors?”

Now there is a solution–put cameras in every classroom.

The technology mean is there, and it has proven to deter behavior.

But the question is will the teachers allow the cameras in their classrooms?

EnoughAlready

January 8th, 2011
1:21 pm

Facebook and social sites are not the problem; lack of respect for themselves and others is the number one issue with children. Their parents do not teach them respect, discipline or to stay in their place when in the presence of an adult.

Lack of respect crosses all income levels, race and cultures. Our kids are watching shows like “Pretty Little Liars” and they think the actors are cute, cool and great role models.

fedup

January 8th, 2011
1:28 pm

Trotter….where are you – on vacation? I would have thought you would have had a great time with this blog…..

Georgia Coach

January 8th, 2011
1:29 pm

I am a school administrator. I can assure that the majority of administrators I have worked with in a 22 year career would take swift, punitive action. In my district it would have triggered an administrative hearing with a 10 day suspension.

Teachers (I did it for 20 years) need to realize that there are things they can do to become better classroom managers. Instead many teachers would rather complain and point fingers rather than improve their skill set. You cannot change the parents or the child’s environment. We should focus on what is within our locus of control, our performance in the school building.

Veteran teacher, 2

January 8th, 2011
1:30 pm

Preach on Tony!!

Veteran teacher, 2

January 8th, 2011
1:34 pm

Math Maestro-I have also said they need to put cameras with sound in every classroom. However, since no one in charge wants to be confused with the facts, it is not likely. They would then be “shocked” to see that most teachers use every minute for instruction and that most kids do not actively participate in instructional activities.

Happy Teacher

January 8th, 2011
1:37 pm

Great points Coach.

ScienceTeacher671

January 8th, 2011
1:38 pm

@Math Maestro: But the question is will the teachers allow the cameras in their classrooms?

Are you sure that is the question? Teachers in our district suggested live streaming video from the classrooms, and were told that it was illegal because minor children would be visible to adults who were not their parents. (Tony, if he reads this, might be better able to address the legalities of the issue)

I do know that in the case of discipline incidents on the buses, where we do have video, parents aren’t allowed to view the video if other students are visible on the tape, because it might be a violation of the other students’ privacy.

Math Maestro

January 8th, 2011
1:42 pm

Georgia Coach: “Teachers (I did it for 20 years) need to realize that there are things they can do to become better classroom managers.”

Why not remove all doubts and put cameras in every classroom and see if teachers are doing their jobs in classroom management? If the teachers prove on cameras that they are doing their job in classroom management, and they still flood the administrators with referrals, will the administrators still blame the teachers?

Tony: “How do we get to this point? Here are a few examples that I deal with on a regular basis.”

Anyone who has been in the classrooms at a Title 1 school already knows all that. The question is will the teachers allow the only means to protect/prove themselves with cameras in the classrooms?

Right now, the Teacher Unions are against it. Because in the old days, the cameras would have been used as evidence against teacher bullying. But the times have changed, and we need cameras to prove that the students are bullying the teachers. Footages need to get out to the parents and news media before there will be public support for the teachers. Otherwise, teachers will continue to be blamed for everything.

EnoughAlready

January 8th, 2011
1:44 pm

ScienceTeacher671

January 8th, 2011
1:38 pm

They could easy fix the privacy issue by requiring parents to login through a secure network and to a specific classroom for the live streaming video. No one outside of the school system or who do not have children should be allowed to view the classrooom activity and this can be done securely.

Teacher for Life

January 8th, 2011
2:00 pm

So I finally met my kids. Six made all F’s last quarter and have long discipline records, 4 can’t read period, 3 cursed me so I put them out to call their parents. Four others were the only ones to finish their diagnostic test. The rest were staring at the ceiling and/or plotting my downfall. I guess I have Children of the Corn.

On the bright side, it is not as bad as last year when I had 37 in one class. 8 were PEC with 3 of those behavior disorder. 6 others were on probation and had blue cards. One threatened to kill me so I put her out and called the administrator. The administrator wouldn’t do anything. I told her that the child was too disruptive and I couldn’t teach with her in there and I was not used to children threatening my life. Later that night, this juvenile delinquent went home and beat up her pregnant mother and was put in jail. End of story.

No, this was not an alternative school in APS.

Math Maestro

January 8th, 2011
2:00 pm

Veteran teacher, 2: “However, since no one in charge wants to be confused with the facts, it is not likely.”

Well let’s keep the “camera in the classroom” movement going. Advocate it with your Teacher Unions. Write the local board. Say you want cameras in your classrooms here. Say you want cameras in your classrooms anywhere and everywhere. Like someone mentioned before, it may take an act from the Governor, but let the Governor know what we want him to act–cameras in the classroom!

Veteran teacher, 2 and EnoughAlready: “They could easy fix the privacy issue…”

There are software available already for facial recognition that can automatically blur or block out the faces. So if administrators tell you that “privacy may be an issue”, it just means they don’t want to deal with the public stir that will ensue from putting cameras in the classrooms. But after all the stir calms down, the cameras will be the teachers best friend. I will even consider returning to the classrooms if I had cameras in the classrooms.

NWGA teacher

January 8th, 2011
2:10 pm

@ Math Maestro: Teachers’ unions?

schlmarm

January 8th, 2011
2:11 pm

A friend of mine who is now retired from the NYC school system was assaulted by an 8th grader wielding a combination lock. My friend suffered partial hearing loss and permanent eye damage. NOTHING was done to the student, my friend was transferred to another school with the recommendation that he learn to be more understanding of the “issues” minority students have. Another spineless administrator. Oh, and by the way, the student’s reason for the assault–”I felt like it, so what?”