On 6/04/11, VET wrote:
> We were fortunate that disrespectful students were a rarity.
> Ah! The good old days!
> Once we had a student come in from out of state from what
> he said was a tough school. The school had armed guards in
> the halls and needed them, we found out later for sure, so
> he was not exaggerating.
> In the 8th grade English class taught by a fabulous, no
> nonsense veteran teacher, that first day, he tried to be
> cool and misbehave in class. She would just LOOK at him,
> realizing that "we had not raised him" and this was his
> first day in a different school environment.
> After class, the boys in the class took him aside and
> explained to him that students did not act as he had done.
> They also advised him not to mess with(misbehave and be
> disrespectful with) that English teacher, who had a well-
> earned reputation for no nonsense. They also explained it
> would be to his advantage not to mess with ANY teachers at
> the school.
> This new kid got with the program and became an achieving,
> well-behaved student. Our kids usually had the new students
> up to speed by the second day.
> Our kids were the ones who usually let newcomers know what
> was acceptable and unacceptable at the school. Peer
> pressure can be a good thing.
> I will never forget the day, 4 football players "escorted" a
> new student into the office and told the principal, "He spit
> on OUR carpet!". The whole school was carpeted and kept
> nice, and the students took pride in it. The school,
> parents and community provided nice things that most of the
> other schools in the county did not have.
> Once a younger student was pulling blooms from the flower
> beds that our kids willingly maintained at their free
> period. A student told the kid, "Do NOT do that again. I
> planted that azalea." Word got around the lower grades not
> to pull blooms and the older student did not touch the
> flower puller. I saw it all.
> There was a rule in our school that if a student was
> disruptive s/he was put just outside the classroom facing
> the teacher's desk with his/her desk and all materials. The
> door was left open so the student would not really miss any
> class time.
> This was done quickly, quietly and efficiently with minimum
> disruption to the class in session.
> The rule also was that if the principal saw anyone sitting
> in the hall, he asked no questions and efficiently took care
> of the situation. Sometimes, the principal came down the
> halls and sometimes he didn't, but the kid in the hall had a
> long period of time to "wonder" and worry. One class in the
> hall was usually enough for most students.
> I loved teaching in this school because it was a family
> atmosphere and a culture conducive for learning.
> It had the reputation for being the best school in the
> county. Lots of parents brought their kids to our school
> because of its reputation. The school had a tradition for
> achievement and had been on the same sight for a century.
> No one wanted to disrespect this tradition. Most of the new
> hires were former students.
> We were very fortunate, I know, that we had the support of
> families and the community.
> I realize that I would not have functioned well in a
> situation where disrespect for authority was the norm. I
> would not have had a 30 year teaching career in a less
> organized, well-run school situation.
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