We must discipline more in schools
We MUST discipline more in schools.
This includes the following legal and policy areas:
- state laws must allow more
- principals and superintendents must support teachers 100% in disciplining students.
- public view of discipline should return to discipline as a good thing.
- state laws, school policies focus more on disciplining the bad behavior of student, not disciplining the teacher for trying to do his/her job.
Discipline is a good thing.
For thousands of years, people have known that appropriate discipline helps to raise a child properly.
The children actually become more respectful and well behaved when there is punishment for their acts.
To read more, go to my section on corporal punishment. Details Corporal Punishment
Young people are more violent and disrespectful than ever before.
The cause is clear: No consequences for their actions.
A student can hit another violently, and yet teachers are not supposed to even set a hand on a student.
A student can carry a knife, threatening a student, even threatening a teacher, and yet a teacher is not supposed to touch that student.
Even if a student is sent to the principals office, or the teacher files complaints on the students, often the principal does nothing.
Principals have even been known to take the side of students, who were disruptive, violent, and lie, rather that support the teacher, who is an adult and an educated professional.
Even if the principal takes action, what are the consequences really? The student gets detention. No big deal. The student gets suspended. Hey, he never wanted to be in class anyway.
The students KNOW their game. They KNOW the rules. They know clearly that they can get away with just about anything, and know that there are no serious consequences.
Is it any wonder we have such violence from youth, such disruptive behavior in classes, such disrespect for others not just in the class but on the street - is it any wonder?
We must provide serious consequences for their bad actions.
Principals do not support their teachers.
Every few months I hear yet another story from one of my teacher friends.
About once a year or so I see a story on local or national news.
These stories are one of two related types:
The story is on violence in schools (a knifing, a killing), and they wonder "what happened"
OR, the story is one of the teacher trying to do his/her job and the administration not supporting them.
And these are just the ones that make the news or I hear about from my friends. There are thousands more daily I am sure.
The latest one, as I write this, is a teacher in Florida who had to sue her own school district so that they would follow the law that was already on the books.
(In this case, it was a young elementary student being a real problem, with a long list of real offenses. By law he must be removed. The administration did not do it. Only when she sued did it happen. As the lawyers said, this is a state law, it is mandatory, it is not an option for the principal to say no.)
Another recent event was killing at a local school here. People wonder "what happened?" "How could this be?" And they'll have summer conferences to "discuss" the issue, I am sure.
The answer is simple, but it is not something the administration wants to hear: Discipline the students.
Let the teachers have a lot more force, a lot more authority in taking control of their classrooms, and of curtailing bad behavior. Support the teachers for punishing students. We should not be punishing teachers for doing a little discipline, and in effect let students run the schools.
If you do this discipline all along, from kindergarten upward, then youth will have been forced to behave, and thus it will become more of a habit. You will have fewer behavioral problems later on, and those you do have will be less serious than they currently are.
What happened to this common sense? This used to be an obvious concept.
This is one of the worst, the absolute worst things that have happened to education in recent years.
As such, I put it as one of the things on the top of my list that I urge citizens to push in their own communities.
Give teachers more discipline options. Teachers must discipline students. It is important for education, it is important to reducing violence in our society, it is important for the safety of others.
What kind of discipline?
This is difficult to say, because we are not allowed to talk about it publicly.
I have, however, been in many discussions with teachers in the teachers lounge and elsewhere in private, where discipline has come up. Many teachers talk of the old days, when punishment was allowed, and can cite many specific examples of discipline that teachers used, and that were effective.
Only one type of teacher is allowed physical punishment these days: the coach.
These coaches are allowed quite a license. I'll admit, even I am not thrilled with the way coaches insult, harass, and abuse their students on a regular basis. But I do like that they will punish their students through types of running and difficult stretching. This physical punishment hurts far more than just a detention, and I think is very effective.
We can have effective physical punishments. These are not limited to corporal punishment. Standing in the corner used to be a favorite option. Stand on a square in the floor for a long time is another I've heard - those who experienced it say it is tiring, and effective.
But, we cannot realistically talk about all the discipline options unless we, the teachers, can have no fear of talking in publicly. If we are not afraid of losing our job by talking about discipline, then the teachers can open up with their ideas and a true discussion will come about.
Parents first, but schools second
Discipline used to be taken care of by the parents. And many parents were serious in their punishment.
I will cite television shows as a common reference... I cite television shows only because many people may have no idea how this actually worked. Parents have not disciplined their kids in so long, the concept almost forgotten...
The Andy Griffith Show - he was kind, moral, and all those nice things. But when it came time for discipline, he would not hesitate to give his son a whipping. Even the Bill Cosby, who I admire, talks of it (though he exaggerates for humor)... "I brought you into this world, and I can take you out!"
Parents should be the first line of discipline.
But, if the parents don't do their job, then the schools must step in.
It should be as it is with the police.
Police: "I'll leave him to your custody, but if it ever happens again..."
Parent: "It wont officer, I promise."
If the child gets arrested again - they wont go so easy on him.
Well, the same should be in place for schools with students. Get the parents involved first. They can punish most effectively, and they should punish. But, there is a second part to this... if the parents don't discipline their own child, or, if even after punishment the child still is a problem, then the schools should have full authority to take over punishment.
We MUST discipline more in our schools.
State laws should be changed so teachers can discipline more.
Administrators must support teachers.
We must discipline all of a child's life so that he will behave in a more well-mannered fashion.
The violence in our society, particularly the violence caused by young people, is a direct result of not having serious consequences for their actions as they were growing up.
Students know the game, and use it well. They know they can get by with just about anything, and so they do.
That is why we must change the rules so that teachers can do whatever they need. Students must not get away with anything anymore.