Friday, October 21, 2005
We see yet again the challenges our schools are facing. A tenth grader in Maryland attacked his biology teacher with a baseball bat on Wednesday. I'd be willing to bet that administrators tried to avoid spreading the news around to the students, but that the whole school knew about it within one hour, and that little to no real learning took place anywhere in that building for the rest of the day. How are teachers supposed to teach in those kinds of environments? No wonder schools are having a hard time finding teachers these days. When I taught I always had a mental plan of what to do if faced with a classroom intruder or attacker. I didn't feel that paranoid, but the thought was present all the same. The kid "faces expulsion and possible criminal prosecution." Possible? Come on. If you commit an adult crime, you should face some adult criminal prosecution."Jerald Newberry, a health expert at the National Education Association, said cash-strapped schools across the country have been forced to cut health and counseling services for students, weakening an important line of defense against students with violent tendencies. Newberry said veteran teachers also report "more aggressive" student behavior than was the norm 15 or 20 years ago." A lack of health and counseling services is not the real cause here. We cannot let our children continually immerse themselves in violent video games and movies and expect it not to have some kind of effect on them. Additionally I'd be curious to see what the young man's family and home life were like. I bet it wasn't very good, but will the news media have the courage to report on it?