Wednesday, September 23, 2015

OKC teacher says she fears for her safety

"A middle school counselor in the Oklahoma City district says she fears for her safety and that of teachers after a student who tried to hit her with a pole was suspended for only two days," Tim Willert reports in The Oklahoman.
Meanwhile, a veteran teacher who recently resigned says student conduct at Upper Greystone Elementary School is "worse than ever" because the district is reluctant to issue suspensions. 
"When students know they can do anything they want and not be suspended they're going to do it," the ex-teacher said. "We can't fault them for that because kids need parameters and guidance and consequences. I think it's very difficult for them to receive that given the current circumstances at Upper Greystone." 
The counselor, Regina Sims, said the incident occurred Wednesday when she was left alone with the boy, who she characterized as violent, in the office of Roosevelt Middle School Principal David Clark. She said Clark had just left to attend to another matter when Sims said the boy swung the metal pole at her. 
"To be honest, I was left in an unsafe situation," she said. "I don't want to go back to Roosevelt because what happened to me is very unsettling." 
In the other case, the former teacher, who requested anonymity because of fear of retribution, said several Upper Greystone teachers have resigned since school started Aug. 3. 
"The class sizes are very large and the behavior is the worst I've ever seen," the ex-teacher said. "There are some people who have worked there a lot longer than (I did) who feel very hopeless and helpless." 
The district said two teachers have resigned from Upper Greystone since the first day of school. The former teacher, who has since changed professions, accused Superintendent Rob Neu of "bullying principals into lowering suspension rates." 
"The kids know there are no ramifications for their behavior," the ex-teacher said. 
Oklahoma City Public Schools spokesman Mark Myers said the allegation made by the ex-teacher "is false."
You can read the entire article here.

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