Teacher Liability (Educating Our Children Book 11)

A Violent Education

What should i do?

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We are going through this with my fifth grader. He has been bullied by a teacher. She makes him sit facing a wall for hours and sometimes days at a time. He has to sit in second grade for weeks at a time. This is their discipline policy, BIST. It is very bizzarre, prison like environment.

I have asked the teacher and principal what he has done? Tlking or getting out of his seat. There is alot more to this story, to much to write here. I am in Missouri would like to know if anybody else has had these problems. My daughter is in middle school and she came to me about her teacher picking on several boys and one more than the others saying he has ADD, that his parents should beat him. My daughter told her stop dont touch me, your not suppose to touch kids, pushed the woman to run to the office.

The woman laughed after my daughter and hollered call the police. My daughter was cited and nothing happened to the para. During the meeting she would ask my child questions and then repeatedly interrupt her while she was trying to answer. The teacher was argumentative and sarcastic to my child and myself, and the school principal sat and did nothing.

The principal did not acknowledge us at the start of or at the end of the meeting and even slammed the door to the conference room when he left. My child is in high school and has had a very difficult time for the last two years. We have filed a state complaint against our district and won. I think my daughter is being bullied and retaliated against because we filed a complaint.

Is there anything we can do?

We had this problem when my son was in 6th grade. I actually found out from parents of other children who reported what this teacher was doing to my son. THIS finally got their attention. The teacher abruptly stopped all bullying tactics in the classroom — at least for that year! As a parent of an autistic child and a member of the autism community, I am trying to educate myself and others on all things that involve … autism and disabilities. If I can learn that and maybe even more, I intend to give back as often and as much as I possibly can. Much love and respect to each and every one of you!!!

I do agree that kids need to learn how to handle obnoxious ppl, they are everywhere!! But i disagree when it comes to a special needs child, mine are severe autistics and would never understand that it was not literal. They take everything at face value,and do not understand the meaning of just the little things. There is your difference.

The special child would think they really are stupid or worse about themselves. If you already know that kids are struggling with self image why take it upon yourself to toughen them up , that will come later. My initial reaction to this was to tell the teacher, in as nice a way as possible, that it was inappropriate. What do you do if the bullying is at aimed parents by educators.

I found this out over the last 5 years as I advocated for my son. Janie, the bullying you speak of can result in a denial of FAPE. If you are not documenting the bullying in writing to the school, you should be, in as non threatening way as possible. I had a similar issue. He was not allowed to walk down a certain side of the hall, drink out of a certain water fountain, use a certain bathroom.

I also had 17 emails I had saved over a 3 year period, documenting what a fine upstanding youn man he was. This gave me all the data I needed to put the building administrator on notice. I know we should not have to do this but it is better than fighing all of the time with the school. I understand what happened to your daughter and how a miscommunication with a teacher can get escalated and it always comes down on the student. I ended up requesting a behavior assessment and got one and we added it to the IEP.

This held the teachers accountable for some of the triggers that cause escalation. What a difference it made. Carolyn, I take a proactive approach. On back to school night, I take a copy of the IEP to the teacher. I tell her how much I am looking forward to working with her.

I tell her I know she must be terribly busy getting her classroom ready and she has many kids to get to know. I tell her I am giving her a copy of the IEP so she will have one less thing to do, something I want to take off her plate. The next day I send a thank you note, telling her how much I enjoyed meeting her; again stressing I am looking forward to working with her.

I keep a copy of my note. Teachers always appreciate this. It goes a long way in building that relationship. You also have documentation she has seen the IEP. She had an incident where she did not hear the teacher request to get off of the computer. The teacher just came up and unplug the computer and started to yell at her. She did this serveral times. My daughter got upset and start to yell at her.

Make a long story short my daughter received two tickets for assault. And she fail her class. Many teacher never read the IEP or say they never get them or just never follow them. Setting an example is not the main means of influencing another, it is the only means. He's mad at the teacher now. Corporal punishment can leave students disengaged in school, less likely to succeed, and more likely to drop out.

A Save the Children survey of children in South Asia found that regular beatings resulted in a loss of interest in studies and a drop in academic performance. Corporal punishment teaches both boys and girls that violence is acceptable when used against a weaker person.

Psychologists argue there is a connection between corporal punishment and accepting or perpetrating domestic violence later in life. We're saying that it's okay for a man to beat a woman. I just don't get that at all. It's a little too close to … something that we don't want in our families-men beating on women. Parents of both girls and boys were concerned about the messages their children received in school. A Texas mother explained her reasons for opting out of corporal punishment for her now year-old daughter: I mean domestic violence.

Nevertheless, some parents and students support corporal punishment because they see it as an expression of concern for the child, through which the paddler is "acting like family. There is an understanding that the teachers are almost like a part of the kid's family. They know the kid's family, and they give swats almost as a parent would. Corporal punishment should be abolished not only because it causes pain, injury, humiliation, and anger, and not only because it is contrary to international law and evolving US standards.

It should be abolished because it is an ineffective form of school discipline. Better, proven methods of discipline are available. Best practices for school discipline, as discussed below, focus on creating inclusive, consistent school cultures in which misbehavior has clear and immediate consequences but students are valued and respected. By using corporal punishment, educators debase the school culture, emphasizing humiliation of students and use of violence above positive, reinforcing discipline. There are many alternatives to corporal punishment that respond better to students' educational and psychological needs.

The National Education Association opposes corporal punishment in schools, recommending instead disciplinary procedures that "enhance high expectations and quality instruction, thereby promoting self-control and responsible behavior in students. Nationwide, educators are moving toward positive discipline practices-those that respond to the underlying reasons for the child's misbehavior, and are consistent with the school's mission of education [] -as a way of creating effective school cultures.

In , the US Department of Education and US Department of Justice produced a joint guide on school discipline and school safety, aimed at addressing "violence and other troubling behaviors in schools. Formal evaluations of School-Wide PBS have found significant reductions in discipline referrals to the principal's office and increased satisfaction among teachers because they feel more effective in their teaching and management of student behavior. A Harvard University study in concluded that schools can implement a wide range of programs to bring about positive discipline models, "including peer courts, conflict resolution programs, early interventions, mentoring, mediations, and character education programs that promote a mutually respectful and collaborative school climate and teach students and teachers how to handle and resolve conflict in appropriate ways.

One high-poverty elementary school in Chicago, for example, was able to drastically reduce its suspension rate and increase its attendance and reading achievements after incorporating positive discipline. Supervised study halls are used in place of almost all out-of-school suspension. This is just one of many examples of how positive discipline can help students succeed.

These methods can also be successful in rural schools with mentoring, school-wide commitment, and professional development for teachers. Educational experts have also turned to positive discipline models as a way of redressing racial and special education disparities in school discipline. The federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act IDEA encourages the use of positive behavior support systems to respond better to the needs of students with disabilities. Likewise, positive behavior support systems can respond to racial disparities.

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A Justice Matters Institute report from the year on preventing racial bias in school discipline observes that effective schools, "rather than striving to shape students' behavior solely through a discipline policy … create a community based on the mission or guiding principles, shaping the larger context of relationships which, in turn, influence student behavior. Corporal punishment has no place in these positive discipline structures.

When the Jackson, Mississippi, public schools banned corporal punishment in , the school board's decision was "intended to maintain a sound, productive, healthy and safe environment in the schools. Many educators we spoke with said that corporal punishment is ineffective in addressing students' underlying misbehavior. Children, depending on their age, have a very short memory. Educators we spoke with believe that some students become immune to paddling.

A former high school teacher in a school that used corporal punishment regularly felt the practice became like "water off the duck's back for the kids. It doesn't address their core issues. Some educators support corporal punishment in schools, even though research demonstrates that it is ineffective in addressing student misbehavior. One teacher pointed out that corporal punishment can be considered "cost-effective.

You don't have to be organized. All you need is a paddle. Some proponents of corporal punishment argue that the Old Testament references to "spare the rod, spoil the child" give support for corporal punishment. Tutu who responds, "Violence begets violence, and [through corporal punishment] we shall reap a whirlwind. Children can be disciplined without violence that instills fear and misery, and I look forward to church communities working in solidarity with others … towards ending all forms of violence against children.

Corporal punishment also negates a child's capacity to respond to reason. The Society for Adolescent Medicine argues that corporal punishment may respond more to the teacher's needs than to the child's, and is likely to be administered under conditions of emotional distress on the part of the teacher triggered by the misbehavior of the child.

One recent high school graduate argued that reason would work better for older students: There are other ways to discipline children besides hitting them…. My brain is in my head, not in my butt. In some school districts in Mississippi, logistical or financial obstacles prevented the use of after-school detention as an alternative punishment, thereby increasing the use of corporal punishment. One year-old who was critical of the corporal punishment regime in his rural school district stated that "we couldn't have after-school detention.

There was no busing. Kids who got detention would have to find another way home. We had lunch duty so we couldn't bring them in during lunch. Positive behavior support systems, as well as other more traditional methods, can be effective alternatives to corporal punishment. The superintendent of a major Mississippi school district noted that "[c]hildren will correct themselves if you engage in positive reinforcement.

Corporal punishment is used disproportionately against certain groups of students, including boys, African-American students, and special education students. For instance, African-American students make up Some might argue that this discrepancy exists because there is a higher percentage of African-American students in states that paddle heavily, and so they are overrepresented in national statistics on corporal punishment. Yet when we examine data from only the 13 states that paddle more than 1, students per year, [] disproportionality of paddling of African-American students persists.

Among those 13 states, African-American students are 1. Likewise, among those 13 states, Native American students make up 1. These disproportionalities impinge on students' right to non-discrimination in access to education. In addition, they further undermine the learning environment of the school, and create a hostile environment in which minority groups may struggle to succeed.

Boys are subjected to corporal punishment at much higher rates than girls: For instance, in Mississippi, One high school teacher suggested one possible reason for the gender disparity in paddling, noting that at her school it was common practice to "stay away from hitting the girls.

I guess they're more fragile, and a lot of them could be pregnant and we wouldn't know it. He explained, "My little girl-don't you put your hands on her…. As far as my boys, I am super hard on them. For one, they are young black men and they are faced with different obstacles in life. I get on them every day, and I know they say, 'Man, my dad is tough.

Many interviewees reported that boys were beaten more harshly than girls. A middle school boy in Mississippi observed that one of his teachers "paddle the boys real hard and when he paddle the girls he don't really hit them. When they be trying to feel other girls. Nationwide, African-American and Native American students are beaten in public schools at disproportionate rates, violating their rights to be free from physical violence and to equal protection under the law. While the use of corporal punishment has declined overall in the past 30 years, the disproportionate rate at which African-American students are corporally punished has stayed the same or increased.

African-American students make up As mentioned above, the discrepancy in the rates of paddling of African-American students cannot be explained merely because there is a higher percentage of African-American students in states that paddle heavily, and so they are overrepresented in national statistics on corporal punishment.

Looking at data from only the 13 states that paddle more than 1, students per year, [] in order to compare accurately the proportion of students punished to the overall student body, disproportionality of paddling of African-American students persists.

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Among those 13 states, African-American students make up Likewise, among those 13 states, Native American students are paddled at more than two times the rate that would be expected given their proportion of the student body. The disparate use of corporal punishment against African-American students was noted by some of our interviewees. One high school girl in a racially diverse school in Mississippi observed that "every time you walk down the hall you see a black kid getting whupped. I would say out of the whole school year there's only about three white kids who have gotten paddled.

Because boys are beaten more often than girls, this disproportionality is even more stark when one separates out the data for boys. When looking at the 13 states with high rates of paddling, African-American boys are 2. The disparities for African-American boys are not uniform across states. In Mississippi, one of the two states focused on in this report, white boys are 1. While girls are paddled less than boys as a group, [] African-American girls are more than twice as likely to be subjected to paddling than their white counterparts.

In the 13 states that paddle more than 1, students per year, African-American girls are 2. In Texas, African-American girls are 1. A former member of the Jackson Mississippi Public School Board of Trustees cited the disproportionate treatment of black girls as one of the reasons for abolishing corporal punishment in Jackson: If they could spank black girls, then why couldn't they spank white girls?

So that was another issue. It was not being executed fairly. We have to have the same policy for everybody. Some might argue that African-American students are punished more because they commit more serious disciplinary infractions, or because they commit a higher number of minor disciplinary infractions. The US Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, the main source for information on rates of corporal punishment, does not collect data on the underlying infraction; the question of whether black students commit more serious infractions that would explain their disproportionate punishment cannot be answered in this report.

Neither can we determine whether black students commit more as opposed to more serious infractions than white students, and therefore receive corporal punishment more frequently.

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The disparate use of corporal punishment creates a hostile school environment in which students of color may struggle to succeed; students, teachers, and administrators are conscious of these discriminatory patterns in their day-to-day lives. A year-old girl spoke of the atmosphere produced by the disparate use of corporal punishment at the high school she used to attend in rural Mississippi: Some of our interviewees believe corporal punishment was administered with discriminatory motives.

A teacher in a rural Mississippi school described how, even among African-American students, darker-skinned students were punished more severely, in part because of the belief that there was less risk that heavy bruising would be visible:. One father and one guardian in separate Mississippi towns voiced their concerns that their African-American sons "needed" corporal punishment because of the discriminatory environment they would face as adults.

The guardian stated, "For young black males, if you can't listen to authority, you're headed to jail. Discipline needs to come from people they love to prevent that. In interviews with Human Rights Watch, students and parents repeatedly linked the use of corporal punishment in schools to slavery, characterizing hitting young African Americans as classroom discipline as a dehumanizing reminder of techniques used to control slaves on plantations.

They used to tie a black slave up and make another slave beat him. Experienced educators also see links between corporal punishment and submissiveness, which in turn they relate to domination by whites over blacks. One superintendent observed that corporal punishment "has its origins in the times of slavery when slaves were tied up and whipped as a means of control.

But because you get compliance does not mean you have control. While girls are paddled less than boys, many teachers and parents we spoke with said they had particular concerns about the sexual overtones of subjecting teenage girls to corporal punishment. In addition, as already noted, some interviewees expressed unease over the link between corporal punishment and domestic violence. These interviewees argued that it was wrong to teach children in school that it is permissible for someone in authority to strike a weaker person who cannot hit back.

Allison Guthrie, a recent high school graduate in the Dallas area, was paddled when she was She was sent to detention three times in one week for being late, and was given the choice of in-school suspension or "swats":. I think he used to be the athletic director, he was maybe pounds…. I had to get parental consent, my mom had to sign off on the swats. She actually came up to the school to sign off on that. She decided to leave it up to me, I guess she figured I could decide for myself….

He gave me a chair and said hold onto the chair. The paddle had holes in it. Then he just did three swats … I was hit on my buttocks…. There were holes in the paddle to make it go faster. There was a bit of a pause in between each swat. The whole thing was a minute. The principal didn't say anything to me…. It hurt very much. There were definitely red marks and then swelling. It didn't last for more than a couple days….

It was like, 'Wow, you were a year-old girl and got hit? It left me feeling very humiliated. I think there were several levels of emotion. Physical pain, mental humiliation. One, it felt a little unjustified-just for being late? And being a female at that age, it was like there was this older man hitting me on the butt. Very strange at that age. Even at that age I knew it was inappropriate, this being a man that I don't know. It was this instinctual knowing that it was inappropriate….

I think it took me a while to realize why I was so ashamed by it and how inappropriate it was. One twelfth-grade Texas girl told us she had been paddled in eleventh grade for being tardy: Well that's just what I thought was supposed to happen. Weird to look back on it, though. It was for little stuff, like talking out loud. It was just a tap on my behind. But why does a man have to tap a girl? That's why I think he's a pervert. While no child should ever be beaten in school, special education students [] are exceptionally vulnerable to harm from corporal punishment.

OCR data show that nationwide, 41, special education students received corporal punishment in the school year. In Mississippi, 5, special education students were recorded as being physically punished in the school year; while in Texas, the figure was 10, Special education students are beaten in disproportionate numbers when compared to the general student population, according to data from OCR. Paddling and other forms of physical punishment can be particularly harsh for special education students.

Johnny McPhail, the father of a girl with autism in north Mississippi, described a combination of aggressive techniques used to control his daughter: They'd pop her on the hand first. I didn't find out until later. His mother described the situation:. The police came and handcuffed the fifth grader. The experience of the R.

Incidents such as these-in which force is used to punish special education students-may occur because teachers lack understanding of the student's condition. A couple of them have told us that, that he just needs a good spanking. Maybe that will help you remember. The child with a discipline problem may not be acting out of his behavior problems but rather out of his disability.

Corporal punishment can be particularly harmful for special education students, as it can exacerbate the student's underlying condition. Johnny McPhail, the father of a Mississippi girl with autism, felt paddling was extremely detrimental: They have total recall, programming needs to be the same. If you hit her, she'd be hitting, it's hard to talk her out of it. He wouldn't know why they were doing it. In addition to causing extensive physical and mental harm, corporal punishment can create further barriers to education for this already disadvantaged group of students.

They'd universally miss first period, they'd be in the office, waiting for their licks. That would harm their education. Depending on the teacher, they'd try and make up the lesson…. But the same kids would be hard to get in after school … [and] it was hard to get them to graduate. Regulations in states that permit corporal punishment do not adequately protect children from abusive disciplinary measures in school or offer necessary support for alternative methods of discipline.

Mississippi law does not affirmatively call for corporal punishment in schools; rather, it states that such treatment does not constitute negligence or child abuse.

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Provisions in both Mississippi and Texas law provide for governmental immunity from civil and criminal liability in corporal punishment cases. Both states recognize that corporal punishment is inappropriate for children in contexts other than the public schools. Texas law prohibits corporal punishment against youth in correctional facilities, [] in residential treatment centers, [] and for children in the custody of the Department of Family and Protective Services.

While most states do offer extensive teacher training, not all train their teachers in appropriate, non-violent disciplinary practices. Anybody can just grab my child at school? In some instances, teachers and administrators who object to the use of corporal punishment find themselves without recourse or alternative resources. One teacher in a district that does not permit corporal punishment did not know what to do after he witnessed an incident of paddling on a school bus, and was asked to keep the incident to himself: This sort of cowboy justice … preempting my discomfort and my whistle blowing….

I wouldn't know who to take it to. So much, I regret it. Teachers who have students who seriously misbehave sometimes find they have exhausted in-class remedies but do not want to send the child to the office as they know the child will be beaten there. I didn't want to send my kids to him; I wouldn't send my kids to him. Some teachers, reluctant to endorse corporal punishment, lacked alternative resources for dealing with particularly difficult students. One teacher described the dilemma: I didn't want to send them to get paddled. I tried to handle it within my own classroom.

But I didn't have the option of requesting a different form of punishment. McLaney was receiving paddling referrals of children to his office every day. In schools where he had worked previously, paddling was rarely used. He noted, "In Meridian, though, it was clear that most teachers resorted to paddling pretty fast. If the kid said anything they didn't like, they were sent to the disciplinary office … I would end up with a backlog of students in my disciplinary office. The principal would pull them out, and whack 'em…. We were supposed to have a witness, but the principal didn't have that.

McLaney grew increasingly uncomfortable, in part because of the racial disparity between the majority African-American student body and the largely white staff: If I did get a hold of them, the parents would often just authorize the procedure, or say 'just beat that boy's butt. They felt I wasn't backing them up, it was that kind of mentality…. To have earned a second master's degree, to have that lead to a position where the primary activity of each day would be hitting children, now, that's ludicrous.

He sought legal advice from a local chapter of the National Education Association NEA where he was warned of the risks of insubordination. I ended up resigning, at the time, the pressure, and the whole bit. In many school districts, parents are given ways to opt out of the use of corporal punishment on their children, [] but those mechanisms are hard to access and difficult to enforce.

In some cases, parents' preferences are ignored and the student is beaten anyway; the parents may then be without redress. Even if the child is not beaten, he or she is still aware of the violence meted out against his or her peers. Parents say they choose to opt out for fear that corporal punishment will injure their children or because they do not "think anybody should be hitting anybody else's children. There are too many variables. You don't know their intent, their temperament. One former Mississippi teacher explained, "There were a couple of parents that didn't want their kids to get corporal punishment; it wasn't that they were against corporal punishment but that they were distrustful of how the school was using it.

If a school district has a policy for opting out-and not all school districts do-the policy usually falls into one of three categories. First, in some districts, all parents must sign a "yes or no" form, specifying whether or not their child can receive corporal punishment. If the form is not returned, corporal punishment is typically not administered. One superintendent in a small Mississippi district noted that in this situation, the principals usually would speak with the parent before administering corporal punishment.

The second way of expressing preference starts from an assumption that all students will receive corporal punishment. Those who do not want their child to be punished "opt out" by submitting a form to the school or by writing a letter. In the MidlandIndependentSchool District in west Texas, for instance, the policy specifies that "[c]orporal punishment shall not be used in instances where the student's parent or guardian has filed a written statement with the school principal indicating that the parent does not approve of corporal punishment.

These written statements should be in the form of a letter, mailed or delivered to the school principal, and submitted annually. A former Mississippi elementary school teacher explained that on the first day of school, the parents could tell the teacher if they did not want their children to be hit: Third, in Texas in particular, some districts have policies under which parents are called after the infraction but before corporal punishment is administered.

In the TylerIndependentSchool District in Texas, for instance, "a parent or legal guardian of the student must be contacted and approve of the use of corporal punishment prior to each administration. Some school districts do not provide any mention of opt-out methods or parental notification in their official policies or student handbooks. For example, among districts we investigated, Texas school districts Rosebud-Lott, Quinlan, Marshall, and Paris contain no description of opt-out policies. Some parents feel the opt-out methods are underpublicized and difficult to comply with.

One Texas mother told us that she "turned [an opt-out form] in this year, but not last year because I wasn't aware of it and it's kind of hidden. If the student didn't bring it back, then they didn't opt out. I don't know if the students ever showed their parents or not. In addition, parents of special education students have had to fight repeatedly to opt out of corporal punishment for their children. Each special education student has a yearly Individualized Education Plan IEP that is devised by the parents, teachers, and administrators; this IEP includes a discipline plan.

Parents in Mississippi described problems having corporal punishment expressly prohibited in the IEP. Beverly Shields, a northeast Mississippi mother of an autistic boy who is now 16, stated that she had to "forcibly have this [a ban on corporal punishment] put in his IEP, because corporal punishment to an autistic person is just not acceptable in any fashion. She noted that another advantage of fighting to get a ban on corporal punishment placed in the IEP is that, unlike with the opt-out forms in her district, the ban does not have to be renewed every year.

Johnny McPhail, the father of the autistic girl in north Mississippi, also had difficulties securing appropriate discipline for his daughter. At an IEP meeting during his daughter's second-grade year, the school sought permission to paddle her. They were from the 'old school,' [meaning] 'if you cry, they'll whip your butt. Several parents reported to Human Rights Watch that their expressed preferences were ignored, and that their children were paddled in violation of written or verbal opt outs. For instance, Janet Y. Janet renewed the no-paddle request in twelfth grade, but her daughter was subsequently paddled, by the same perpetrator, for "disrespect.

A seventh-grade boy in rural west Texas was paddled even though his mother had followed school procedure by submitting a letter stating her opposition to paddling at the beginning of the school year. She commented, "I made it a point to do this each year, and they didn't even check the files. They automatically smacked him without checking the files. His mother maintains that she had two in-person conversations with his principal in the weeks prior to her son's paddling, expressing her opposition to corporal punishment. One former elementary school teacher in rural Mississippi noted that students were discouraged from enforcing their parents' preferences:.

One high school girl in Mississippi tried to assert her right not to be paddled when her principal was swinging his paddle to threaten her: He said, 'I see you standing on your soapbox this morning, bitch. Even students whose parents' no-paddle preferences were honored find themselves in a coercive environment. A sixth-grade boy on the opt-out list "came home crying … basically scared to death" after his principal threatened the school with paddling during an assembly.

It is a recognized principle of human rights that children, by reason of their physical and mental immaturity, are exceptionally vulnerable and therefore in need of special safeguards and legal protections. When schools paddle a student in violation of parental preferences, they not only impinge on the child's fundamental rights, they directly contradict parents' attempts to protect the best interest of their own children to be free from humiliating and degrading treatment. Parents find that they have few, if any, methods of redress when their children are beaten.

Parents we interviewed who sought redress did so primarily because their child either sustained bruising or other serious injury or was paddled in violation of their express wishes to the contrary. State laws provide considerable legal protection for educators who physically punish children. We spoke with eight separate sets of parents who had extreme difficulties pursuing legal action or obtaining adequate responses from school district officials after their children were paddled.

The parents we spoke with found educational authorities to be unresponsive to complaints that their children had been subjected to force against their wishes, or that they had been seriously injured in the course of paddling. This was true for parents whether they raised the incident with the principal, superintendent, school board, or even state-wide educational authorities.

Some parents were told not to question the school authority's decision to discipline their child. There, he was paddled and severely bruised. When Rhonda subsequently tried to opt out of paddling, she was told there was no opt-out policy in the new district, even though there had been one in her home district, and her son's transfer was involuntary. She spoke to the principal in the home district: School districts were also unresponsive to parents who complained that their children had been subjected to excessive or disproportionate force.

School authorities told him he had to take his complaint to the school board, as it is responsible for making policy changes. The school board said it wasn't their concern, because they don't oversee the day-to-day issues at the school. Both Texas and Mississippi protect perpetrators from legal responsibility for assaulting children with or without opt outs from parents, and fail to provide parents with appropriate redress.

In school districts that have opt-out policies, our research has failed to reveal any administrative or regulatory remedies for parents when opt-out preferences are not followed. The parents who raised concerns that their children were paddled in violation of opt-out forms did so either by approaching the superintendent or the school board, as discussed above.

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This is a general remedy for any school-based complaint, as opposed to a specific procedure to be followed when the opt-out preferences are violated. Teaching Strategies to Make Students Accountable To foster student accountability within your classroom, and help your students Teaching Strategies to Connect Literacy, Classroom, Community A short list of random teaching strategies related to creative promotions of You are expected to exercise the same degree of care as fellow teachers would exercise under similar conditions.

The standard of care will vary based on the age, maturity, experience and mental capacity of students in your classes and the type of activities in which they are involved. Similarly, if you were teaching P. Be mindful that you are obligated to anticipate that certain situations may prove harmful to students. Once determined, you must take steps to prevent avoidable injuries. For example, it may be all too common for one of your students to tell you that he has been threatened by another group of students. Most liability cases involve teacher negligence where teachers fail to exercise the degree of care that is necessary which results in physical injury to a student.

For example, you may be negligent if your class is left unsupervised for a period of time while you chat with a fellow teacher in the hallway. What could make this worse is that if you are aware that some of your students tend to bully other students on a regular basis. Then, it is conceivable that a student may be injured by another if left unsupervised.

If it is necessary to be away from your class, simply ask a fellow teacher to check on your students. Make sure that a discussion is held with your students about your rules that apply to them while you are out of the room as well as the consequences involved if they violate them. Intentional acts committed against students such as assault and battery in corporal punishment cases can occur if students are punished excessively because of disruptive behavior. Libel can occur when you write a letter of reference for a student and include negative opinions not based on facts that can prove harmful to the student.