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4048 4048 is offline
 
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Proper response to a defiant student
Old 10-23-2019, 08:40 PM
 
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Prior to sending him to the office, a student "gets in your face" and physically pushes you. If you interpret this as an assault, and you are capable of defending yourself, is it OK to do so? This actually happened. I smacked him and gave him a bloody nose. He then did what he was told. He was a high schooler about my size, perhaps bigger. Could this become an issue?



Last edited by 4048; 10-24-2019 at 05:23 PM..
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Old 10-23-2019, 08:56 PM
 
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Hitting students is never a good idea. You're the adult in the room and expected to keep your cool. One possible explanation is that you felt threatened by the student and acted impulsively.
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Old 10-23-2019, 11:44 PM
 
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In my district, subs have been fired over way less. If this happened where I work, that kid would probably tell an adult, conveniently omit the part where he struck you first, and you'd be let go -- no questions asked.
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Unfortunately
Old 10-24-2019, 05:03 AM
 
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My guess is that you will be let go and sadly it is possible that the parents will press charges. High schoolers run the school. I would speak with the principal right away.
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Old 10-24-2019, 05:06 AM
 
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I highly recommend finding a lawyer immediately. This student will likely attempt to sue. And like the comment above me mentioned, you'll need to speak to the principal immediately too and explain what happened in full detail.


Even if the student is in the wrong, and they frequently are, hitting a student typically results in termination and legal matters.


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Old 10-24-2019, 07:00 AM
 
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Dude, you’re f*cked. Get a lawyer today. Don’t go back to that school and don’t talk to anyone about anything that happened. I’m talking the school, the police, whoever. Don’t talk to anyone until you’ve consulted an attorney. They’ll tell you the same thing.

You can’t ever hit a student, ever!

In grad school, we took a legal class. You basically cannot ever hit a student, even in self defense. I know about a teacher who got jumped in the bathroom by a student he was having problems with and he fought back and got fired.

You can see a video of a music teacher from last year who got into a fight with his student. He got fired, even though he raised a lot of money through a go fund me for his legal fees.

I know stuff can get heated, but if you are going to hit a kid for just pushing you, get a new line of work. Don’t let stuff get to that point. Walk away or call security and just sit down until they come. Worst case, go outside and wait for them to come.
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Old 10-24-2019, 07:18 AM
 
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I agree with Fractured. You need to look out for yourself now. You shouldn’t have hit the student. We understand how hard teaching is. We’re put into impossible situations. This is your wake up call to find another type of work. Find a lawyer today.

The principal, teachers, school board - nobody will defend you. Be very careful who you talk to about this, even if you need to vent.
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Old 10-24-2019, 09:14 AM
 
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Whether something is considered an assault, or not, depends a lot on whether you had "fear.". Make sure to talk about how afraid you were. They should have called the police. Get a lawyer, like now, though, since you hit back. I wouldn't go back to that school, no matter what.
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Is this real?
Old 10-24-2019, 02:26 PM
 
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I'm really hoping this is an attempt to create outrage to a hypothetical situation. If this really did happen, you are in big trouble, and rightly so. In a world where we may not even (literally) touch them for restraint during a violent incident, why in the world would you be wondering if HITTING a student was okay? I echo the above... your employment working with children in any capacity at any location is over, and I would begin making plans for my legal defense.

Please let us know that this was a trolling post. I'm pretty sure that must be the case.
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Old 10-24-2019, 02:35 PM
 
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The lawyers have fixed it so that there are NO consequences for this type of behavior. Back in the day, we would have NEVER. . .because we knew we would be in the principal's office begging for our life. Somewhere along the line, the kids took charge. What to do?


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4048 4048 is offline
 
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defiant student.
Old 10-24-2019, 03:09 PM
 
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I immediately talked to the principal. Keep in mind, this is a small farming community where there is still some folks with old fashioned values. I wasted no time driving out the ranch where his parents lived. His dad was walking across the yard when I arrived. We shook hands. I told him the whole story. When the kid arrived home, he got a whipping from his father . . . and grounded. The parents had a good talk with the school administrators the following day. I'm still employed.
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Old 10-24-2019, 03:21 PM
 
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I call b.s., but your other posts don’t seem to be of the trolling nature. I’m thinking this is fake because the school would have fired you right away, no matter what. Even if I can suspend disbelief, you should not be around kids in any capacity. If you want a job where you can hit back, become a bouncer. If this is real and the school kept you employed, they are grossly incompetent. I still think this is all bull sh&t though.
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Old 10-24-2019, 03:22 PM
 
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I'm really glad to hear that
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Old 10-24-2019, 03:27 PM
 
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Also, if you are saying old fashioned values include beating your kid for no good reason, there is a reason those values are considered archaic.
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. . . . all b. s.
Old 10-24-2019, 03:46 PM
 
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Ok Mr. or Mrs self righteous,
You seem rather quick to judge. This is clearly a case of self defense. My boss agreed with me, as did the parents. A teacher in a neighboring community was stabbed to death by two school- age punks recently. The man happened to be a friend of mine.
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Um, What?!???
Old 10-24-2019, 04:19 PM
 
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Are you freaking kidding me? You hit a student???? What the hell were you thinking??? Obviously, you were NOT thinking. You are NOT allowed to hit a student, even in self defense. That is wrong on so many levels. If a child pushes you, you call the office for assistance.

Do what everyone else has said, have a lawyer on hand. Just because the principal isn't doing anything about it, chances are the school board will hear about this and you will still have trouble. Trust me, other students know what happened, parents will find out, and they will not want you around their child. In all honesty, it might be in your best interest to not sub at that school again (maybe even the district), even if the student's parents and principal are truly on your side.

We are all having trouble believing any of this because of the circumstances. Children have more rights. You violated the child's safety, which is something you are supposed to ensure--that all under you care are kept safe. There is just so much wrong with this situation that you got yourself into.

And, yes I know this is a high school student. Teens are still children.
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Old 10-24-2019, 04:29 PM
 
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Self defense is when you are being attacked. Getting pushed is not the same thing as being punched. Even then, you are not supposed to hit back. I donít think this is a very realistic approach to defending ourselves, but itís part of the professions we have chosen. I still canít tell if you are being real or not. If anyone is being self righteous, itís you. You deserve to be fired AND anything else that comes your way. I donít even know why youíre on this board. Also, you were looking for advice for being a dumbass and you got it. If you donít like it, donít do stupid things.
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Old 10-25-2019, 04:47 AM
 
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Is it okay to do so? Are you serious? Has no one introduced you to the educator code of ethics? Wow. Just wow.
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Old 10-25-2019, 11:47 PM
 
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Exactly. That's like asking if it's "ok" to bully a student because they aren't respectful. The answer is a strong resounding NEVER. And hands on a student, especially violently, is a no no. The assault of a minor is not an easy legal case to defend.



Yikes...
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Who's the grownup?
Old 10-26-2019, 07:21 AM
 
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I think most if not all of us who have subbed much have been both physically and verbally attacked by students. I sub younger elementary level (mainstream) and have had my share of unpleasant experiences even with the little ones (I've been pinched, punched, pushed, had items thrown at me, been screamed at, cussed at, etc.) It's unfortunately part of the job these days.

The one thing I and any sub should know is that you are expected to act professionally at ALL times. You are the ADULT. That means you keep a cool head and NEVER return in kind; certainly don't engage in physical assault!

As others have said, physically attacking a student is grounds for termination and a law suit to boot, not to mention an indication that you lack self control. If you can't control your reactions and temper, find another field of work!

Last edited by luv2teach2017; 10-26-2019 at 08:25 AM..
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Old 10-26-2019, 06:14 PM
 
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The best thing you can do in that situation is walk out and find a security guard. The kids are old enough to where they can take care of themselves if left in a classroom alone. They aren't 1st graders. After that, never ever step foot in that building again to sub in. There are plenty of school districts to apply at, no reason to bother with such a situation possibly happening again. Subs get paid way too little to put up with such nonsense.
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For me, it's believable...
Old 10-27-2019, 07:47 AM
 
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Quote:
Ok Mr. or Mrs self righteous,
You seem rather quick to judge. This is clearly a case of self defense. My boss agreed with me, as did the parents. A teacher in a neighboring community was stabbed to death by two school- age punks recently. The man happened to be a friend of mine.
While I can't/won't support the action of hitting a student, I find this story potentially credible, although admittedly an extreme exception and, to the original question "Could this become an issue?" I reply loudly "YES!" as others have. The odds of it NOT becoming an issue may be extremely small, but I think it's possible. (Another hypothetical question... would a teacher who is also a parent get in trouble for smacking their own child at/during school?)

Before I get jumped on, I'm not condoning hitting a student. I am merely suggesting that the story as told is credible. I too live in a rural area... and I can think of a few parents that would probably like me to whack their kid if he started pushing me around. Again, I'm not saying I would do it--even if given "permission." But I am going to be honest with myself and will admit that a circumstance might arise where a difficult decision has to be made and that decision might include whether or not to get physically involved in an altercation where somebody is going to get hurt. I would not, for example, stand idly by and watch an older kid stab a little one. Physical intervention wouldn't be my first choice but it might be a choice. If I lose my job for saving a kid's life, I'm okay with that even though it doesn't make sense to me. I don't think that action would mean I lack self-control.

Risk management is a big (but often not discussed) part of subbing--or for that matter, teaching in general. A contributing factor to many of the disciplinary problems we have in schools is the tendency to always take the "safest" path which too often boils down to avoidance. There really is no reason to wonder why it seems like the kids are in charge... and it's not just the lawyers' or parents' fault. It's because the system (with our tacit support) allows them to reach that conclusion. Fear is not a good substitute for risk management. You cannot be intimidated without your permission.

We can debate whether or not children have "more rights" but if they do have more rights, they don't get carte blanche. When we start using the word "rights" we might want to use the word "responsibilities" with equal frequency.

Not too many years ago, I experienced a situation where an older, quite large "kid" pushed me and some of my second graders around. I nearly fell because he snuck up behind me. After me, he started in on the second graders. Fortunately, I was able to stop him without touching him. I had my hands out to block him from touching the other kids and we "danced" as he tried to get by me. Because he was "special" I was later called on to explain MY behavior including why I had raised my voice at him. I was told he is "fragile" and I had upset him. There was very little hesitation before I replied: "...and so are my second graders." I also pointed out that the ed-tech who was supposed to be supervising him wasn't, so we might want to define the actual problem instead of focusing on the fact he was upset. I escaped unscathed unless you consider the fact that the ed-tech didn't speak to me for several months a negative consequence. I knew better than to expect a gold star for protecting the second graders but I did expect not to be punished for it. No, I demanded that I not be punished for it.

I don't usually vent on here, but we, collectively, need to start recognizing that the way we get treated is the way we teach people to treat us--kids and adults. No, I do not think we should start going around slapping kids. Personally, I don't think kids have more legal rights than adults. A safe school policy should mean safe for all. It's easy to blame the lawyers because laws are not the answer to every problem. It's easy to blame admin when admin listens to the lawyers and ignores the problems staff are facing. It's easy to blame parents who lack basic parenting skills and show no respect for anyone other than their child. In the meantime, we manage to avoid solving the problem.

End of vent--or maybe it's a rant. There's another thread discussing how certain students are destroying classrooms while we remove the rest of the students for their safety and watch. Don't get me started on that one.
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Old 10-27-2019, 08:44 AM
 
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I got grabbed by a student. The whole time I was terrified that he might start in on the other students. Luckily, admin supported me. He was "asked to leave;" otherwise, he would be expelled. Being a former teacher may have helped, I don't know. They interviewed other students, etc. I wrote the superintendent and told her how well it was handled by the VP. The only thing is that the p said she should have called the police. It is a rural school, but it is big, about 800 s's, I think. Just wanted to point out that subs don't ALWAYS get screwed.
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Old 10-27-2019, 09:29 AM
 
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Bodhimom, Iím glad you and the rest of the kids were safe. I hope there was a consequence to the student beyond leaving the school. Otherwise, the message sent was you can assault a teacher and then leave school. Yikes! You did a great job though!

Referring to the OPís situation, as a parent, I would not be okay with my child being in the care of a substitute or any teacher who couldnít refrain from hitting a student under the circumstances described.
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Thanks, Bodhimom!
Old 10-28-2019, 01:45 AM
 
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Quote:
Just wanted to point out that subs don't ALWAYS get screwed.
And thank you for doing that. It's easy to feel like the deck is stacked against us but my experience seems to be similar to yours.
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