Thursday, October 29, 2015

Classroom incident in S.C. makes me wonder if my own laid-back approach as a sub was right after all

There’s plenty of discussion of the incident in a Columbia SC high school that led to a female high school student’s being forcefully dragged out of the classroom by police, and CNN has opined that police shouldn’t do classroom discipline, rather incredible

As I’ve documented before, when I worked as a substitute teacher, particularly with a few incidents in 2005, I was criticized for “poor classroom management” in not being pro-active enough with discipline.  I indeed felt it was safer to lay back and not intervene in very small matter and take the chances for an incident.  An incident like this in the national media makes my own laid-back attitude in the past more justifiable.

There were a few times I was expected to enforce rules that were indeed unreasonable (like a limit on the number of bathroom visits per quarter).  On the other hand, I do recall a disturbing occasion where a female student wrote a note for the regular teacher that she could not concentrate in class because I did not stop a male student from being minimally disruptive

Update: Oct. 30

A fire in a high school chemistry lab class in northern VA this morning shows the exposure teachers can have in keeping kids safe.  There is no information now that a sub was involved, but many of my best classes back in 2005 were chemistry (although I never had lab).

I can remember high school demonstrations of putting sodium in water.  I actually got a small bromine burn on a finger in high school, and it took three months to heal completely.

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