The answer is obvious, isn’t it? You force the student to transfer to a new school and make sure the teacher doesn’t miss a day of work.
At least that’s what happened in Howard County, writes a frustrated parent to Jay Mathews’ Extra Credit column in the Washington Post:
Our son is a seventh-grader in Howard County. In January of his sixth-grade year, he accidentally knocked a binder off of his teacher’s desk. He attempted to reassemble the papers but was not able to do so, so he reported this to the teacher (despite his classmates encouraging him to keep it quiet). When he told the teacher, she expressed frustration, and he thought that was the end of it.
Unfortunately, she was still upset the next day and made the following announcement to another math class, “Tell K. not to come near me if I have a knife, because I will kill him!” As soon as class was dismissed, the students ran up to him, excitedly reporting what she had said.
That evening we called the police, who took reports from the kids who witnessed this, and then met with the teacher and principal. We said we would not allow our son to return to the school as long as this teacher remained. We were informed that removing her was not an option. We applied for a transfer, which was granted. Our son missed three weeks of school in the process. The teacher did not miss a day of work (imagine what would have happened to a student if he or she made such a remark!). We requested an apology and have not received one.
The school’s not talking – they never do, citing privacy issues. We’re only getting one side of the story here, but I think you’ll find it as convincing as I did. The teacher probably just has an awful sense of humor; even so, I think this one warrants some discipline. I have a feeling that the student, the family and the offending teacher are all being put in very difficult positions unnecessarily.
You might be surprised at Jay’s advice to the parents who want their son to rejoin his friends when they’re channeled into high school. This one’s worth a read – make sure you scroll down a couple paragraphs past the “Advanced Courses for Everyone” section. It starts under Dear Extra Credit.