Thursday, May 10, 2007

Buzz Words

Nothing like a buzz word to set off an administrative investigation that leads to a teacher firing. For instance, if a student ran through the hallway and a teacher put out his hand to stop the student how could the student get the teacher in trouble instead? "He grabbed me."
Or, if a student tried to walk out of an assembly without a pass and with no where to go and a teacher grasped the students arm to get his attention how could the student get the teacher in trouble instead? "He grabbed me."
Grab is a buzz word. Teachers can't grab a student because the word grab is violent. The poor teacher. But I like this student:
"Meghan Johnson, the captain of the varsity softball team, said it's 'unbelievable' a teacher can lose his job for enforcing a school rule while students who break rules go unpunished."

Again from Connecticut, another teacher is in trouble for "targeting," anothe buzz word to get teachers in trouble. Tough call. Class assignment or silent protest? But in contrast to Ms. Johnson in the quote above, one of the moms who is quoted gets the Why Parents Should Be Held Accountable in NCLB award for this stupid remark:
"I’m pleased that there is an investigation but whether I’m satisfied depends on how it ends."

WAIT. STOP THE TRAIN. This mom is pleased that an investigation is happening, but will only be satisfied if the result of the investigation are to her liking. But, what if the investigation finds that her daugther was in the wrong. What if the investigation uncovers nothing improper by the teacher and nothing improper by her daughter? She's still going to be mad.
Those statement reflect everything that is wrong with public education.

4 Comments:

At 8:56 AM , Anonymous Betty said...

This is such a serious problem. I have seen students group up against a teacher and do and say things to make the teacher miserable. Students routinely threaten to have teachers fired if they don't like them or decisions they make. I have even heard parents say, "My child would never lie." My response was always, "Gee, that's funny. Mine sure do."

 
At 3:44 AM , Blogger Dennis Fermoyle said...

Mr. McNamar, you have had some outstanding posts lately. Congratulations!

I think you know that I had two incidents in which kids did something blatantly wrong, then they turned to me and said, "If you hit me, I'll sue you."

It's no accident that this happened in my early years at my present school and it hasn't happened since. The worst kids have a sense about which teachers are the most vulnerable--new teachers, substitutes, or any teacher who seems to have any weakness. The worst kids are also the best kids at knowing how much they can get away with, because they've spent their school careers pushing the limits. In the process, they've learned that the limits are mush.

 
At 8:29 AM , Blogger Mr. McNamar said...

I once had a student go straight to the race card. He was talking in class, I asked him to not talk in class--nothing out of the ordinary--his response "You're picking on me because I'm black." How does one respond to that statement when the student is absolutely serious? "Yes, you're right?" Race is certainly another buzz word.

 
At 12:51 PM , Blogger Ben Wilkoff said...

Thanks for posting on my blog (Discourse about Discourse). I think that you are right about looking to the parents for their purpose in inciting or increasing panic. It is hard for me to imagine a parent being completely malicious, but when it comes to their children, their instincts can be right when the methods are all wrong.

 

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