Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Mar 04 2011

Looters after a natural disaster

I’m not kidding that the kids are crazy lately. There were 2 fights on my floor of the middle school building today. Kids get In School Suspension (ISS) for misbehaving terribly (telling teachers to “Fuck off, bitch” is becoming a classic example), and then get sent to Out of School Suspension (OSS) for mocking and cussing at the woman who runs ISS. Of course, they don’t mind OSS because they get to chill at home while their parents work. “You can’t tell me what to do! I don’t have to listen to you” is not an uncommon sentence anymore.

The classroom next door to me hasn’t had a teacher in weeks and has become a revolving door for substitutes. By this point, they’re so crazy that I regularly hear kids shrieking, see them climbing on furniture, or catch them going through the teacher’s desk. “Out of control” would be an understatement.

I’m thankful to all my lucky stars (or whatever you’re supposed to be thankful to) that my kids within the doors of my classroom have actually been pretty good lately (or maybe I should just say “relatively good”… I have a funny feeling I’m losing my perspective in the insanity). They’ve been working hard and most of the big behavior problems are in ISS or OSS anyway. There’s a long-term substitute in the other math class, so I don’t have to run back and forth anymore, and I think my kids are feeling less abandoned and behaving accordingly. I don’t know what I’d do if my classes were acting like looters after  a natural disaster too… it’s already exhausting enough just walking through the halls.

2 Responses

  1. Rebecca Anne

    Though your class seems much much worse, than mine (I teach Early Head Start, Infants), we did have a child, age 3, tell my supervisor “Shut your mouth, you F*ing B****… Where are they learning this @ this age?… and if they are repeating these phrases at such a young age, and in very appropriate context, then how are they going to act when they get to middle school?

    • TFA Parent

      Now THAT’s what I call precocity!

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