Thomas 2 student stated: “If there were no discipline, the school would not be distinguished from the street.” (Bowen) Why are kids so disruptive these days and what can be done to remedy the situation? According to Bowen, several reasons given for the bad behavior include:
Enforcement—Because of internal administrative problems or lack of procedures, many school officials fail to enforce the rules or punish students for infractions. Some fear lawsuits from parents; others just do not care, or they are “burned out.”
Self-Esteem—Many schools have emphasized self-esteem over and above everything else. Some teachers are afraid to discipline or demand good behavior because it will hurt the child’s self-esteem. The result? Now we have ill-behaved, rude kids—but they feel good about themselves.
Legal Procedures—Because of the raised awareness of the civil rights of children, the law requires adults to go through expensive, time-consuming and confusing procedures in regards to school discipline. These legal procedures do protect the rights of children, but make it very difficult to stop school discipline problems. According to The Master Teacher, a leading provider of continuous professional development for teachers, the primary causes of misbehavior are Attention, Power, Revenge, and Self-Confidence. Teachers are expected to identify the type of misbehavior an unruly student is exhibiting and be trained and prepared to intervene before it becomes a classroom distraction. (Discipline Help) Teachers are being asked to take care of a problem that really should be addressed at the administrative level and reinforced at home. Long ago, students were fearful of being sent to the “principal’s office,” where the administrator made it perfectly clear that misbehavior would not be tolerated. The students were usually even more fearful of facing their
Thomas 3 parents afterwards. Not so today when parents are more likely to question a teacher on discipline issues rather than support her/him. No wonder kids act up! Standardized Testing—Teachers are facing increased pressure to “teach to the test” these days. High-stakes standardized tests are becoming the main, if not sole, indicator of not only a student’s capability, but also a teacher’s effectiveness. This is just crazy. We are the