Parenting can tough. Being a schoolteacher or administrator can be tough. Especially when dealing with children that can be, shall we say, high maintenance? Now my own kids are by no means perfect or anything, but I consider myself lucky that for the most part they are good kids. They don’t get in trouble at school and though that make me a little crazy sometimes, they’re loving and good kids.
Now in my experience as both a daycare provider provider, an assistant preschool teacher and as a parent volunteer at my own kid’s school I have seen some high maintenance kids. Kids that I know are not bad, but are troubled. I feel for the parents and teachers who struggle to handle these high maintenance kids.
When I observe these situations I often wonder what it is the child in question needs. A firmer hand or a loving ear.
That’s why my interest was peaked when I heard the recent story about a six year old that was arrested in Shelbyville, Indiana for kicking his principal. The boy had been suspended from school for hitting school employees. Upon his return from suspension he became violent and threatened to kill the vice-principal and then kicked the principal, according to police reports.
The local police were called and the boy was taken by police car, though not handcuffed. He was preliminary charged with battery and intimidation and released to his parents.
“Getting them [the police] involved was in hopes to make the situation better, and not to have a punitive situation,” said Principal Pat Lumbley. There are school rules in place to protect teachers and school employees from unruly students and possible lawsuits.
A similar incident occurred in Indianapolis when a 12-year-old , who was disciplined for running in the school hallway, was arrested after a teacher claimed he punched her. The boy had been sent o the school’s detention room after being caught running in the halls. When the teacher returned to the room to tell the boy it was time to go home for the day, the boy pushed her up against the wall and ran away. When the teacher found him, the boy punched her and police were called.
When police asked the boy why he didn’t just get on the bus to go home, the boy told police he would have hit the teacher anyway, according to the police report.
Now I have a hard time imagining my child “arrested” for anything or how scary that would be for them. But at the same time it seems (based on the news stories anyway) that the kids here are not exactly first time offenders. If parents and teachers are unable to control a child, even at age 6, is it OK for police to step in? It appears that in neither of these cases were the children hurt and it also appears that neither of them was showing much remorse (again, bases on the news stories).
Is the fear that a ride in a police car and a few hours in juvenile detention the push these kids need to straighten their attitudes or is it just another nudge in the wrong direction? What do you think?