I think what is disturbing about the Facebook post of the mom, Jenna (see www.my-third life.com/Jenna) whose 10 year old son she interrupted from hanging himself.. is the fact that he replied “Robin Williams hung himself” when she asked where he got the idea from.
That is chilling and I’m sure Robin Williams would be rolling over in his grave if he knew that. A ten year old contemplating suicide is also so sad and what are we accomplishing with all the ads about bullying and the talks going on? She also mentions her son being bullied by a teacher..
I read an article just today in Readers Digest.. October edition titled ‘The Outsiders’ by Glennon Doyle Melton from momastery.com.
In it she describes a teacher (now retired) that decided to make a difference after the Columbine shootings. She had her students write down a few times a year, names of four classmates they would like to team up with in the next semester, understanding that they may or may not get their request. Every Friday she also got her class to write on a piece of paper.. a ballot, if you will.. nominating someone in their class for special recognition. This was her way of finding out stuff she would otherwise never know.
When everyone left she pored over these informative pieces of paper and ballots to determine who was having problems, who was being ignored, who was having difficulties nominating anyone. It became a labor of love for her and she was better able to detect who the bullies were and who were being bullied and who was having special needs.. she was then able to direct her attention to where it was needed and what was needed.. pretty smart huh?
We should all have teachers like this. We need to recognize and nip in the bud situations in our schools early on. What do we need to do? Maybe we could have children nominate teachers at the end of every school year.. ones they like and ones they felt threatened by and ones that they didn’t like.. WHY NOT? Teachers getting consistent bad reviews need to be ‘retired’ or fired.. what the heck is wrong with that anyway?
Simple enough, we need to cultivate the good teachers and weed out the bad ones. Any business will tell you they have good employees and not so good employees and then there are the great employees. They also have fired employees! How do we weed out the bad teachers and how do we attract and keep the great ones?
Why not lets work on that as a beginning.. let the kids evaluate them. The great ones that are retiring can be consultants for the up and coming future great ones? Life should be so simple.. but we as adults just make up more rules and regulations and protocols.. the message gets lost in all the red tape.
Just think about this.. we only needed that one good teacher that believed in us.. they ended up being the inspiration for us to get through school and sometimes life. I had that teacher in grade seven, a grade I was ‘repeating’ in yet another new school. Oh my .. I can certainly relate to new schools, I lost count of how many schools I was the new kid in.
As old as I am now I still cringe at the memory of going to school (I think grade three) with no socks .. it was so embarrassing .. I can still remember being teased (that’s what we called it back then) and the feelings. I don’t remember hardly any of my teachers except Mr Podiluck a principal (he gave me the strap .. grade four). Haven’t forgot that humiliation either. There is a lot of stuff that is flushed and gone but some just sticks with you I guess.
So you can imagine my total surprise and delight when Mr. Bill Loran ( I.. as did all the class.. called him sir ) my grade seven and eight teacher took an interest in me. He is the reason I never gave up.. he was probably the only person in my life that instilled in me the seeds of what I would later go on to accomplish. Under his direction I became the smartest kid in the class and you better believe I worked and studied hard to make him proud of me.. funny huh?
That’s what a teacher can do.. and get this.. you only need one! I was lucky.. I had him for two years (we had four grades in our classroom) I think he made an impact on all of us! I know he was respected by ALL OF US.
So maybe we should also be directing our attention to the teachers in our schools .. like Jenna said.. they can be bullies too .. and we NEED TO WEED THEM OUT so the good ones can grow !