A teacher’s aide in Athens, GA got her 15 minutes of fame recently for taping one of her student’s mouth shut to prevent the kid from talking. If you ask me, that aide should never be allowed to become a full fledged teacher. No, not because she taped the kid’s mouth shut, but becaused she used clear packaging tape — everyone knows duct tape is way better. She’s clearly an amateur and doesn’t deserve to climb the academic ladder!
Anyhow, my initial reaction was
Bwahahahahaha! that’s just plain brilliant! wrong. I can’t believe there haven’t been a million stories like this already that an adult in charge of children’s welfare and education would do something this fucking awesome horrible.
Okay, okay… we all know that what she did is probably going too far. But rather than focusing on that particular action, most people are using this incident as a spring board for discussion about corporal punishment in schools — which the state of Georgia still allows. To sum up all the important, complicated, and intricate details/arguments of this issue: some people are for it, and some people aren’t. (I have a magical gift for making shit concise, yea?) Most of the arguments come down to who is responsible for disciplining children, parents or teachers? And most arguments blame one or the other when shit goes wrong.
Since I teach at the college level, I get to see the end product of children going through the primary school system, and frankly I’m scared. Most of them display behavior that I fully expect from years of magnificent parenting and education — and by “parenting and education,” I mean TV, video games, smart phones, drugs, and the internet! So there’s a duality within me: one half remains empathetic to these poor kids since they were deprived of discipline and morals, and the other half wants to mandate mouth taping as a prerequisite for all classes.
So what do you think?? What are appropriate and effective ways for teachers to enforce rules for those kids that aren’t getting proper parenting at home??
(P.S. – Yes I just ended a post with a conversation question. No I’m not terminally ill. And no I’m not going through menopause — I’m a man.)