Tyranny of the Majority

One more reminder, in this election season, that democracy has a dark side:

Melissa Barton said she is considering legal action after her son's kindergarten teacher led his classmates to vote him out of class.

After each classmate was allowed to say what they didn't like about Barton's 5-year-old son, Alex, his Morningside Elementary teacher said they were going to take a vote, Barton said. By a 14 to 2 margin, the class voted him out of the class.

Apparently, the poor kid has Aspergers, a less severe form of autism, and his classmates found him "disgusting."

Alex's response to the vote:

"I feel sad."

And speaking of skepticism of the rule by the masses, take a minute to enjoy some of these defenses of elitism, a word that has taken a beating recent days of the campaign.

Via Instapundit

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  • kinnath||

    Survivor -- Classroom Edition.

    You are so off the island dude.

  • ||

    By a 14 to 2 margin, the class voted him out of the class.

    Are the two dissenting votes from girls who have crushes on the rebellious Asbergers kid....or future libertarians?

  • J||

    Asperger's

    No b.

  • ed||

    Just wait...in 30 years they'll be calling him Senator Barton.

  • GG||

  • J||

    Also, arguably a related disorder that is similar to autism, rather than a mild form. A mild form is more commonly called high-functioning autism (HFA). Not that the definitions aren't in flux as the disorders are increasingly studied.

  • ||

    That teacher should have been fired on the spot.

  • Fluffy||

    I read about this incident, and after getting past the "OMZG she did what?" reaction, I started to think about it a little more.

    Apparrently the kid is a difficult discipline case and has been removed from class for disrupting it several times.

    If a classroom is a community of sorts, one way to socialize someone who is disrupting that community is to create communication where the other members of that community tell the disrupter how their behavior makes them feel.

    It's kind of funny to me that 30 years ago, holding an "encounter group session" where the other students told the misbehaving student how they felt about him would have been considered unforgivably "touchy-feely" compared to the traditional discipline of just belting the kid in the head. But now what would once have been "touchy-feely" is considered too harsh!

    Invoking the magic word of Asperger's isn't that impressive to me, because I'm sure I would be diagnosed as borderline Asperger's if you shrunk me back to 5 years old and put me in the public school system. Borderline Asperger's - and a colossal dick. A mean little bastard who disrupted classes and was brutal to teachers who showed even the slightest bit of weakness and who never considered the other students around me for even a second. There really would have been nothing wrong with having my classmates tell me I was a dick. I might actually have benefitted from it.

  • ||

    In a tangentially related story, another kindergarten student's parents had him secretly record his teacher because the parents suspected that the teacher was being verbally abusive.

    Story here

  • J||

    Thank you for the correction, but to be even more of a pain, if you use Asperger's instead of Asperger Syndrome, you want the '.

  • ||

    That teacher should have been fired on the spot.

    C'mon Warren, you know that "teacher" and "fired" don't go in the same sentence...with a public school anyway. Or if the context is along the lines of "A teacher fired a warning shot into the playground before rounding the class up for fifth period."

  • BakedPenguin||

    Fluffy - yes, but perhaps the kid in question is not a dick.

  • J||

    And from the sound of it, no they wouldn't have said you were borderline Asperger's, from your description Fluffy. The description is closer to the definition of anti-social personality disorder or just plain ADHD. Not that those are likely from a simple description either.

  • ||

    Fluffy :

    That's all well and good, but to hold a vote to have him removed from class is not the proper way to handle him. If his behavior is so bad then he should be moved into a classes with the other kids with behavior problems/disorders.

    That's how my school did it. They didn't "hold a vote" to publicly shame someone and then kick them out of class.

  • ||

    The teacher disgusts me. What a pathetic asshole. The kids are to young to make any mature decisions like that and the teacher should have taken responsibility but instead was such a wretched coward she asked a bunch of 6 year olds to make the decision for her.

  • Episiarch||

    I am mystified as to why, if he was so unpopular, he hadn't had a few beatdowns from his fellow students to give him the message. I mean, that's the way kids do things.

  • ||

    Fluffy,

    The Kid is five. Get a fucking clue. If the kid were 16 maybe. But he is five for God's sake. Our tax dollars go to pay this dumb bitch to work with him. It may be true that the kid should not be in a mainstream class. But that is a decision that the adults make, not the other five year olds.

  • Kolohe||

    Since everyone's precious little snowflakes can't do no wrong no more, I'm almost inclined to give the teacher the benefit of the doubt. I'm pretty certain the kid was a royal pain in the ass.

    But, if the elementary school teacher can't handle it, she should be in different line of work.

    I wonder how Detective John Kimble would have handled it?

  • Episiarch||

    IT'S NOT A TUMOR

  • ||

    Fluffy,

    You post belongs in the Onion. Once again, the KID IS FIVE!!! If "Teacher Finds that Kindergartners Are Immature, Self Absorbed Dicks" isn't an Onion headline, it should be.

  • Taktix&#174||

    Apparently, the poor kid has Aspergers, a less severe form of autism, and his classmates found him "disgusting."

    Alex's response to the vote:

    "I feel sad."


    Bullshit! You don't even know what "feeling sad" means!

    *ducks*

  • ||

    My step-son has Asperger's, and if one of his teachers did this to him, I'd fucking take a gun and blow her gamy cunt off.

  • ||

    Since everyone's precious little snowflakes can't do no wrong no more, I'm almost inclined to give the teacher the benefit of the doubt.

    Then you're inclined to be a fucking asshole.

  • ||

    When schools can't choose the kids they are willing to teach and parents can't choose the schools they would like to send their kids to...

  • ||

    Okay, I'll be the one to ask.

    fluffy, is there any medical evidence to suggest you may grow out of it in the future?


    j/k

  • ed||

    Jamie needs a time out.

  • ||

    If "Teacher Finds that Kindergartners Are Immature, Self Absorbed Dicks" isn't an Onion headline, it should be.

    QFMFT.

  • Guy Montag||

    K M-W,

    And speaking of skepticism of the rule by the dumbasses

    Fixed ;)

    BTW, I take it this is a public school? AKA a gun school?

    You get what you pay for does not apply to government enterprises.

  • h-dawg||

    I think it was a brilliant lesson in the value of democracy. Genius.

    And anyone who says there's a difference between a bunch of six year olds and adult voters completely misses the boat.

  • ||

    Jamie needs a time out.

    Ed needs a Dave's Insanity Sauce-covered Louisville Slugger shoved up his colon so hard, he'll taste his own hot-sauce-flavored shit.

  • Fluffy||

    Brotherben wins the thread.

    Seriously, I think you people hate public school teachers so much that you refuse to think even simple situations through. I hate 'em too, but I also hate the tendency of modern parents to try to find ways to medicalize the fact that their kids are dicks, so they can use the ADA to prevent them from ever being disciplined.

    It's appropriate even with toddlers who hit / act out / scream / misbehave in play settings with their peers to confront the kid with the consequences of their misbehavior [i.e. that the other kids won't like them] and to attempt to induce empathy by making the kid listen to how his behavior makes other kids feel. "If this is how you are going to treat us, you can't be our friend and you can't play with us," is a socializing message to hear.

    You guys want to focus on the no-good public school teacher you can't fire, but I want to focus on the no-good public school student parent who wants to use a therapeutic diagnosis to make sure her kid can hit the other kids and no one can "shame" him about it. Because you don't have to feel "shame" about a disability, right? Even if your disability is that you're a dick.

  • Dormouse||

    What the fuck? Seriously, if the teacher decides that the kid doesn't belong in the class that's one thing. But letting his 5-year old classmates decide is just messed up.

  • billhilly||

    I've got an idea! Lets have these people run our healthcare.

  • Guy Montag||

    I think it was a brilliant lesson in the value of democracy. Genius.

    Too bad they did not have a Kindergarden Republic, with limits on power and some other good stuff.

  • Bingo||

    Haha, the retarded kid got his feelings hurt.

  • ||

    While the teacher actions are pretty much indefensible, there's probably a lot of blame to go around here.

    We don't enough about this kid and what he did in class. We don't know if it was suggested that he be transferred to a special needs class earlier? We don't know whether he was diagnosed with behavioral problems before entering kindergarten.

    The only thing we do know is that he was disrupting class and the other kids.

    None of that should be read to mean that the teacher's action were anything less than monstrous.

  • ||

    With the ADA in place now, is it even possible to force a kid into a special needs class?

  • Episiarch||

    Haha, the retarded kid got his feelings hurt.

    "Hi. This is Wilford Brimley. Welcome to Retardation: A Celebration. Now, hopefully with this book, I'm gonna dispel a few myths, a few rumors. First off, the retarded don't rule the night. They don't rule it. Nobody does. And they don't run in packs. And while they may not be as strong as apes, don't lock eyes with 'em, don't do it. Puts 'em on edge. They might go into berzerker mode; come at you like a whirling dervish, all fists and elbows. You might be screaming 'no, no, no' and all they hear is 'Who wants cake?' Let me tell you something: they all do. They all want cake."

  • ||

    Wow, fluffy, I didn't know you were familiar with all the nuances and the complete history of this case.
    Tell me, what kind of underwear does this little boy wear?
    And you're right! Socialization in the form of shame -- standing him up in front of the class while his classmates are free to insult and degrade him -- is totally appropriate.
    Go sniff your mom's fish-slit, you piece of shit.

  • ||

    Yet another reason to homeschool.

  • ||

    Fluffy, do you even known what Asperger's Disorder is? It's not just his parents "medicalizing" him.

    And to have an authority figure organize his "socialization", as you call it, is beyond ridiculous.

    My guess is you were an asshole in school.

  • ||

    Bingo, go fuck yourself, you ignorant twat.

  • Guy Montag||

    The teacher sounds liek a hater and should be eliminated.

  • Taktix&#174||

    Kindergarten is a German word.

    Coincidence?

  • Guy Montag||

    Fluffy too, for that matter.

  • Bingo||

    I'm an asshole right now. Retards should be aborted in the womb.

  • Guy Montag||

    And Bingo.

  • ||

    Kindergarten is a German word.

    Coincidence?

    Best implied Godwin ever?

  • Neu Mejican||

    Fluffy,

    Finding an appropriate way for the child and his peers to communicate about his behavior is one thing...

    Voting him out of the class survivor style is inappropriate for many, many, many reasons. Some legal, some pedagogical, some just plain common sense.

    As for the difference between ASD diagnoses and "being a dick": If diagnosis is done properly there is no danger of confusion between the conditions.

    Bingo,

    Who hurt your feelings?

  • ||

    And Bingo.


    QFUT.

  • ||

    Jamie - We appreciate that you found your dad's book of naughty words and phrases. Why don't you go teach some of them to your little sister and let the adults talk?

  • Bingo||

    For everyone that talks about how blessed they are with God's "special gift" or whatever euphemism they want to give their retard kid; just imagine how much more "blessed" you would feel if your child could actually grow up and be a functioning adult.

  • ||

    mike,
    I'm inflamed because of the level of bigotry displayed by some of the commenters here. When you can take your righteous annoyance and point it at fuckheads like fluffy and Bingo, then maybe I'll have some respect for you.
    Until then, you're just another cunt.

  • Guy Montag||

    Wow, this has turned into Maddox's e-mail box quite quickly.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Brotherben,

    With the ADA in place now, is it even possible to force a kid into a special needs class?

    Special Needs Classrooms are not typically forced on anyone (they are, afterall, additional services that you have to meet a high bar to qualify for), but there is a procedural mechanism whereby this can happen.

    ADA btw is not the primary law involved.
    That would be IDEA.

    You can find info here
    http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/osers/osep/index.html

  • ||

    Bingo,
    Please tell me how badly niggers stink.
    You fucking bigot.
    My step-son is not "special" and I don't use euphemisms for his condition. He is trying, with the help of his parents and medication, to live as normal a life as possible.
    Trouble is, he constantly has to deal with fuckheads like you.

  • Bingo||

    mike: But thats why we love Jamie Kelly!

  • ||

    Bingo,
    If you were in the same room as me, I'd beat your fucking head into the ground.

  • ||

    Don't get me wrong Jamie. I think you're funny. You're like a magic 8-ball of filthy phrases or a MadLib filled out by a 10 year old boy.

  • There is a disconnect||

    I am constantly amazed at the difference between the great writing posted on this site and the asinine comments posted after the articles. The reason staff writers use logic to persuade while the reason readers (who have nothing better than to post to the internet all day) merely throw names around and act out like a five year old with asperger's syndrome. I think I will stop wasting my time looking for insightful comments.

    The reason writers make me proud to be libertarian. The reason readers make me not want to throw my lot in with a bunch of inarticulate assholes who seem to just hate all things government. Perhaps you need to join an anarchist website.

    Anyway, while the teacher could have handled the situation better by not calling for a vote on his expulsion, there is nothing wrong with teaching kids about empathy and how their actions affect other humans.

  • ||

    Bingo, I find your antipathy toward the handicapped troubling.

  • ||

    Neu Mejican,
    I was thinking about a case here in Alabama a few years ago where a mentally disabled 16 or 17 year old boy, with a long history of disruptive behaviour, had assaulted a busdriver and grabbed the steering wheel. The boy's parents were arguing that he was legally entitled to stay in school because of his disability. If I recall, the school district was being forced by the courts to allow him to remain in regular (not special needs) classes. That is why I mentioned the ADA.

    btw, thanks for the link

  • Guy Montag||

    And people think I am joking when I advocate for the execution of haters.

    With me now Jamie?

  • tarran||

  • ||

    Ok ok children, lets all point out why Fluffy is a twat and then take a vote on wether he should remain in this thread.



    ---------------------------------------------
    Should fluffy continue to be a member of this thread?
    yes[ ] no[X]

    Comments:
    fluffy is a dick who thinks five year olds can actually be 'brutal to teachers'

  • Cool Cal||

    As I imagine I am not the first to posit, Asperger's, mild as it can be in some cases, tends not to mesh well within the confines of collectivist values. I, myself was a child with some of these traits, but before the preponderance of such diagnoses, and so was referred to as "weird", "introverted", "dick", etc. I had an especially intense aversion to authority figures. I think the point here is that bad behavior is to be punished, whereas what shouldn't be preached or practiced is a mindless slavishness to "community values". Children should learn on their own whether it is worth it for them to fit in or not, whether the costs of not conforming to social norms outweigh the benefits of individuality.

    On an aside I am disheartened that so many misinterpret the word "elitism", in the particular context of Obama-rama. While I'm certain most who criticize elitism as such would almost certainly uphold the value of individual achievement in excellence and competition, what is being looked down upon is not excellence, or even elitism per se. It is the fact that a POLITICIAN, in the unique role of government superior, suggests that the lumpenproletariat suffers from false consciousness, and furthermore has no clue about his own economic situation. This is condescension, and in lieu of calling it out as that, it might well be reactionary in language to label as "elitist", but the fault is no less Mr. Obama's.

    I don't think anyone would consciously desire a dullard for chief magistrate. But it is quite off-putting when a politician constantly refers to "the working class", "the middle class", even (perish the thought) "the wealthiest" in third person. Americans typically like to be spoken to, man to man. They are, after all, the ones whose votes he needs.

  • ||

    I think I will stop wasting my time looking for insightful comments.

    drink? And FWIW, I'm proud to post on the same forums as people like Neu Mexican, TWC, and many others I'm not even going to point out.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Saw that on Joanne Jacobs site last week, Reynolds is way behind the curve.

    The teacher is a bitch and should be fired.

    If the kid is a discipline problem then that should be handled in a traditional way not by having his classmates do the equivalent of dance around him in a circle pointing fingers and saying you're a little dickhead

    My nephew has a mild form of Aspeberger's as well. He can kick your ass at chess or any computer game and he's 7. Although he's a bit of a handful sometimes I can't imagine him deserving this kind of humiliation.

    For another idea, my 6th grade son and two of his friends took the class Aspberger kid and treated him like a human being. Like a friend. It made all the difference in the world, to the kid and to the classroom.

  • ||

    merely throw names around and act out like a five year old with asperger's syndrome.

    Yeah, that was insightful. Asperger's Syndrome, you goddamn queef, doesn't make you prone to hyperactivity. It tends to make you anti-social and lacking of empathy.
    Another fucking idiot displaying his bigotry for all to see.
    Congratulations, you loser.

  • ed||

    I want to know who the two kids are who voted against the purge.
    My guess is a closet lesbian and that exchange student, Akbar, whom everyone hates.

  • ||

    It's kind of funny to me that 30 years ago, holding an "encounter group session" where the other students told the misbehaving student how they felt about him would have been considered unforgivably "touchy-feely" compared to the traditional discipline of just belting the kid in the head. But now what would once have been "touchy-feely" is considered too harsh!


    Fluffy,

    You've got to be kidding. Ostracism by peers is way harsh at any time in a person's life, but I think it would have the potential to be really scarring to a person that young. Kindergarteners shouldn't be put on trials. When kids were that disruptive back in my day, we were sent to increasingly higher levels of authority (teacher would send child to principle's office, then a conference with the parents, repeat as necessary; if if gets that bad, possible conference with Supernintendo or possible expulsion.)

    I feel sad, too. Now would someone please kick that incompetent teacher in the taco for me. Hard.

  • ||

    Guy --
    I'm with ya. Always have been. :-)

  • Guy Montag||

    Should fluffy continue to be a member of this thread?
    yes[x] no[ ]

    Comment:

    Unrestricted free speech is the best method of identifying the people who should be ignored or eliminated.

  • ||

    Now would someone please kick that incompetent teacher in the taco for me. Hard.

    Im pretty sure Jamie Kelly is on that case. It wont be long now.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    http://joannejacobs.com/2008/05/26/voted-out-of-kindergarten/

    Okay, I guess it was only three days ago, not last week.

  • ||

    Thanks, smacky.
    I'm so worked up I can't even think straight, so I appreciate your cool-headedness.

  • ||

    Montag, you will support me or be next on the chopping block.

  • ||

    What this teach did was give her class a careful methodical lesson in how to discriminate.

    1) Find someone different
    2) Be inconvenience by their difference
    3) Find solidarity with others similarly inconvenienced
    4) Promote intolerance of the minority as precondition for acceptance by the majority
    5) Get a rope

    That woman David Duke evil.

  • ||

    Im pretty sure Jamie Kelly is on that case. It wont be long now.

    Let's put it this way: That smegma-encrusted twat has severely tested my own, personal non-aggression principle.

  • ||

    Warren wins the thread.

  • ||

    To "There is a Disconnect": It's not unthinkable that many of the posters here are simply personae, who comment as they do to "liven up" the reader part of the forum. I wouldn't be surprised to learn that several personae belong to a single individual, or a even a single dog.

    That said, even some posters, whom I suspect of being fictional, have posted many an insightful comment. So keep reading. The reason guys get paid to persuade, so their signal-to-noise ratio had better be a LOT higher than we find in the reader comment section. Unless some of the personae are shills, all except the Reason staffers are just here for the entertainment.

  • ||

    No problem, Jamie. Thank you for being probably one of the few people who make me appear cool-headed. :)

  • Guy Montag||

    val,

    Beware the AttackCrows.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Art-P.O.G.,

    Gracias!

    Now, step right over here and let me buy you a drink, my man.

    :-)

  • Douglas Gray||

    This really shows some of the bankruptcy inherent in the public school system. In a privatized system, this school would quickly get a reputation as a lousey school, with crummy teachers and students without a sense of decency.

  • ||

    I'd just like to add that I agree with Jamie Kelly, 100%

  • ||

    I would like to know what happens after the kid gets voted out.

    Does he get sent off to work in a coal mine? Does he get traded to another classroom for two girls, and a dead goldfish to be named later?
    What?

  • ||

    Jamie, I just wanted to let you know that my disgust was at the same level as yours, if not voiced as colorfully.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Warren makes excellent sense and I'll go you one further. This whole incident came to fruition as a result of America's fetish with democracy.

    From Kindergarten on we teach our kids that if they got a problem they should call their Congressman, because the government can solve every problem. Lesson two is all you got to do is vote. Vote. Vote. Vote. On anything and everything. Majority wins.

  • ||

    The article didn't make it clear if the teacher actually had the student removed as a result of the vote. The student may have simply left class after being publicly embarrassed. That's a crucial detail.

    If this was simply an exercise in public humiliation, I kinda agree with fluffy. It can have it's place.

    Besides, I suspect the kids were making their preferences known on the playground anyhow.

  • Episiarch||

    Jamie, lighten up. This may be somewhat personal for you but Bingo is yanking your chain, and hard, mainly because you let him.

    I am one of those who believes that everything, no matter how sad or depressing, can and should be made fun of. That includes me and things that are personal for me as well.

    So, in that vein:

    Sara Blank: What I'd like to know is, why are there retarded people in school with my daughter?

    Principal Onyx Blackman: Mrs. Blank, we're doing our best to weed them out, but some of these retards are extremely clever.

  • Guy Montag||

    Does he get sent off to work in a coal mine?

    That is what happens if they get cancer and have to go to the Don Imus ranch.

  • ||

    I don't know how a 5-year-old would feel, but I don't think I'd want to remain in a class after 90% of them just explained why they hate me...

    The voting, while silly, is hardly the worst part.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Marcvs, Jamie never fails me. :-) Funny stuff, indeed.

    James Anderson Merritt

    I long suspected some of these guys to be one in the same. Actually was quite sure that three or four of them were one guy. I was quite surprised to learn that they were all different people.

    That said, there ARE some ringers hanging around here. Caught a couple of them.....

    :-)

  • ||

    The real question, though, is did the votes of the kids in the densely-populated parts of the classroom count as much as those in the sparsely-populated areas?

  • ||

    Epi,
    I've calmed down now.
    And trust me, we joke about our son's condition all the time. Helps lighten the load.
    Q: What do you get an Asperger's child for his birthday?
    A: A friend who can be bought.

  • ||

    The real question, though, is did the votes of the kids in the densely-populated parts of the classroom count as much as those in the sparsely-populated areas?

    The votes in crayon weren't counted. Only #2 pencil.

  • ||

    Jamie says Aspergers causes kids to be anti-social and lacking in empathy. By that yardstick, wouldn't all the little shitters that voted him out qualify?

  • DJ Voton||

    It was bound to happen: the fusion of reality TV and reality.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    The article didn't make it clear if the teacher actually had the student removed as a result of the vote. The student may have simply left class after being publicly embarrassed. That's a crucial detail.

    The crucial detail is that the child was so traumatized by the ordeal that when his parents tried driving him to school he went into hysterics at the sight of the school.

    [turns and spits]

    As I said upthread, if the child needed discipline he should have been disciplined.

    [Insert any of Jaime's colorful phrases right here]

    As I also said up thread, my 11 year old son has a problem Aspergers kid in his class. They took a different tack. It was called treating him like a HUMAN BEING. It worked out pretty well.

  • ||

    "...is this the kinda retard that drools a lot and rubs shit in his hair? Cause if it is, I'm gonna have a hard time eatin around that..."

  • ||

    TWC is correct.
    The one thing that has really helped our son is more socialization, not ostracism.
    Voting this particular boy out of the classroom and allowing his peers to publicly humiliate him is child abuse, and should be treated as such.
    My sentence for the teacher unfortunately un-aborted hog dick: Fired immediately, hung up by the clit in a public square and beaten with farm equipment like a pinata until her innards spill out.

  • ||

    The crucial detail is that the child was so traumatized by the ordeal that when his parents tried driving him to school he went into hysterics at the sight of the school.

    He's five. He'll get over it.

    Or he'll go all UVA in college.

    The only reason this makes the paper is that the parent threatened a (baseless) lawsuit. Maybe public humiliation isn't the best approach. But I'm failing to see where all the invectiveness against the teacher is justified. Big friggin' deal.

  • ||

    Voting this particular boy out of the classroom and allowing his peers to publicly humiliate him is child abuse, and should be treated as such.

    Rhetoric alert!

  • ||

    The real lesson here, which was doubtless not lost on his classmates:

    Conform, at all costs- you might be next!

  • ||

    I suggest Jamie Kelly change his handle to The Fine Commonswearer.

  • ||

    From wikipedia:

    Anxiety may stem from ... concern with failing in social encounters;the resulting stress may manifest as inattention, withdrawal, reliance on obsessions, hyperactivity, or aggressive or oppositional behavior. Depression is often the result of chronic frustration from repeated failure to engage others socially, and mood disorders requiring treatment may develop.



    MP: So tell me again how the teacher's actions don't constitute child abuse?

  • ||

    Constantly amazed: While I tend to agree with your dislike of the tone of comments here, you really should be careful. Praising the Reason staff for using logic and then making a sweeping generalization about Reason readers based on the comments section of H&R just makes you look silly.

    The teacher's actions are repugnant. Children, even more than adults, tend to form herds and do ugly things to outsiders. Encouraging that sort of behavior is disgusting.

  • Mike||

    democracy *is* the dark side..

  • James J. B.||

    The Teacher is a clown. If you are the adult in a room full of children, you must remain the adult. Just because life is tough sometimes, you don't get a license to be a dick.

    Lastly, even if the child, key word here CHILD, is a jerk - you as the adult must lead by example - by not getting emotional, irrational, etc.

    Case Closed.

  • ||

    MP: So tell me again how the teacher's actions don't constitute child abuse?

    From the NH state statutes:

    "Abused child'' means any child who has been:
    (a) Sexually abused; or
    (b) Intentionally physically injured; or
    (c) Psychologically injured so that said child exhibits symptoms of emotional problems generally recognized to result from consistent mistreatment or neglect; or
    (d) Physically injured by other than accidental means.


    So tell he how the teacher's actions are "consistent mistreatment or neglect".

    Unless, of course, you're claiming that the kid is getting fucked. Then maybe (a) applies.

  • ||

    5 years old. The poor child is 5 friggin' years old. Maybe his parents are assholes. So what? Maybe the child disrupts class. So what?
    5 years old is tough enough. 5 years old with a disability is even tougher. 5 years old with a disability being made an outcast by an authority figure is unconscionable. The woman is morally unfit to be teaching children. She not only harmed the Aspergers child, she harmed every other child in the room.

    5 friggin' years old.

  • OO====D||

    "And FWIW, I'm proud to post on the same forums as people like Neu Mexican, TWC, and many others I'm not even going to point out."

    Thanks!

  • ||

    MP-A case could be made for C.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    The kid needs to learn to change his behavior to conform to other people.

  • ||

    But I'm failing to see where all the invectiveness against the teacher is justified. Big friggin' deal.

    It's a compassion for those who are unfortunate thingee. I got mine included with the basic humanity package. You opted out?

  • ||

    Besides, I suspect the kids were making their preferences known on the playground anyhow.
    In what way does that justify the teacher's actions?

  • Jim||

    Smacky,


    Are you still as pretty as ever?

  • ||

    But I'm failing to see where all the invectiveness against the teacher is justified. Big friggin' deal.

    It is a big deal to me because as a Florida resident I am forced to pay for the public school system. She is in no way empowered to act the way she did, and the system and the union exist to make sure she will not be held accountable for her actions. That and I sympathize with any 5 year-old who is mistreated, regardless of the circumstances.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    MP, trotting out the LAW to define whether or not the teacher's behavior constitutes child abuse? The Law? The same law that says gays can't marry? The same law that says 19 year olds can fire M-60's at the enemy but can't get a beer when it's Miller Time? The same law that says you can get laid for money on camera but you can't buy sex from a street vendor?

    The technicality of any law, whether poorly written or not is largely irrelevant to the question of abusive behavior.

    When Jamie threatens to beat your face into a bloody pulp, that is pretty clearly abusive, but it certainly isn't illegal unless he shows up at your door with a baseball bat and starts yelling. That then becomes Assault. After he breaks down the door and beats your face in, it has morphed into Battery.

  • ||

    The only reason this makes the paper is that the parent threatened a (baseless) lawsuit.

    Is this lawsuit worthy? No. Should this [insert jamiekellyism here] be fired? Yep. And hard.

    Maybe public humiliation isn't the best approach. But I'm failing to see where all the invectiveness against the teacher is justified. Big friggin' deal.

    You must have had a much better childhood than most of us did. I have very vivid memories of how cruel kids can be and how growing up is bad enough without shit-addled teachers playing pile-on to a kid who can't really control his behavior.

    My daughter, while she doesn't have Asperger's, has a lot of the same traits and is juuuuuust this far from a full-on diagnosis. Let me tell you, it's worse than any other behavioral disorder a kid can have. You seem perfectly normal, except for the very hard to define behavioral issues. One of the hallmarks of Asperger's are socialization issues and having a very hard time making and keeping friends.

    There's no test, no cure. Everyone assumes you just have some fucking brat for a kid and that you suck as a parent. No and no. It's fucking exhausting for the parent and a fairly shitty ride for the kid too.

    And "being a dick" isn't a disorder; it's just a personality quirk. That said, all hail Maddox.

  • Fluffy||

    The one thing that has really helped our son is more socialization, not ostracism.
    Voting this particular boy out of the classroom and allowing his peers to publicly humiliate him is child abuse, and should be treated as such.


    Jamie, let me ask you something: if the classroom discussion had not included the "vote of removal", but had simply consisted of a time period where the other students told a student who had been disruptive how his behavior made them feel, would you still consider this "child abuse"?

    Even for kids with a developmental disability, I don't see how you expect a kid to learn empathy or appropriate social reactions if the other kids aren't allowed to express their feelings to them in a controlled setting.

    Your own link indicates that the "social stress" may manifest itself as aggressive or oppositional behavior. I don't know the kid's underwear size, but if he behaves aggressively because he doesn't have the proper social skills or empathy for his age, why is it child abuse for the teacher to have his peers interact with him about it? [In a non-physical way, of course.]

    Sorry, it sounds like you have a difficult personal situation that you're dealing with, but you're having exactly the reaction I thought I divined in this kid's parents - because their son's behavioral and personality problems have been labelled a syndrome, now they're everyone else's problem, and heaven forbid the other kids who have to deal with it be encouraged to say something about it. Because after all, emotional expression is for the disabled only, and social adjustment consists of non-disabled kids learning that if some kid with a syndrome hits or bites them, they should just shut up and endure it.

  • Russ 2000||

    Haven't read all the posts but...

    one way to socialize someone who is disrupting that community is to create communication where the other members of that community tell the disrupter how their behavior makes them feel

    ... is not going to make one bit of a difference to someone with Asperger's.

  • ||

    A case could be made for C.

    I specifically referred to (c), which requires more than a single incident (thus the word "consistent").

    In what way does that justify the teacher's actions?

    It doesn't justify the actions. But it does say that the sum total of this child's frustration with school is unlikely to be attributed to this particular act.

    I got mine included with the basic humanity package. You opted out?

    They were offering a no-frills reduced rate package.

    She is in no way empowered to act the way she did

    Oh really? Did she kick the child out of her class, or did she just embarrass him out of her class? What exactly is she "empowered" to do?

    I'm still not seeing why making a child aware that his peers have an issue with his behavior makes the teacher Satan. Sure, there's probably better ways to go about it. But the "hang the bitch by the toenails" sentiment is something I'm not connecting with.

  • ||

    because their son's behavioral and personality problems have been labelled a syndrome, now they're everyone else's problem, and heaven forbid the other kids who have to deal with it be encouraged to say something about it.

    Where did anyone say that? Fluffy, it's pretty clear to me: what this teacher did is unacceptable to ANY 5 year old, let alone one with Asperger's. Don't conflate an objection to this instance with a blank check.

    Because after all, emotional expression is for the disabled only, and social adjustment consists of non-disabled kids learning that if some kid with a syndrome hits or bites them, they should just shut up and endure it.

    Nope. But traumatizing a 5 year old kid is not the answer either.

  • ||

    MP, trotting out the LAW to define whether or not the teacher's behavior constitutes child abuse?

    Yes, because the phrase "child abuse" implies a legal construct, particularly when the commenter who used the phrase says "should be treated as such", which clearly implies legal action.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    MP, the fact that human beings have the capacity to get over trauma is a remarkable testament to character or biology or both.

    And, as Akira Mackenzie has mentioned a time or two on these pages, not everyone is 100% successful at "getting over it".

    Although there are legions of folks who need to take Henley's advice and GET OVER IT, the fact that they can GET OVER IT is not an excuse to treat them badly or to overlook nasty behavior on the part of tax-paid public servant whose job it is to educate students.

  • ||

    I'm still not seeing why making a child aware that his peers have an issue with his behavior makes the teacher Satan. Sure, there's probably better ways to go about it. But the "hang the bitch by the toenails" sentiment is something I'm not connecting with.

    Have a kid, especially one with a hard-to-define behavioral disorder. Then watch a first class fuckhead of a teacher fry his undeveloped psyche, leaving you to clean up the mess. You'll get it then.

  • ||

    Nope. But traumatizing a 5 year old kid is not the answer either.

    Yes, cause clearly, having your peers be honest about their feelings is always "traumatizing". I mean, to think that the kid might stop, listen, and change their behavior?

    No, that's just crazy talk.

    From fluffy's original comment, this bears repeating:

    It's kind of funny to me that 30 years ago, holding an "encounter group session" where the other students told the misbehaving student how they felt about him would have been considered unforgivably "touchy-feely" compared to the traditional discipline of just belting the kid in the head. But now what would once have been "touchy-feely" is considered too harsh!

  • ||

    the part of tax-paid public servant whose job it is to educate students.

    So when they're spending all of their time dealing with the disruptive behavior of one student, and neglecting to educate the other 16, are they doing their job?

  • ||

    Oh really? Did she kick the child out of her class, or did she just embarrass him out of her class? What exactly is she "empowered" to do?

    Here is the Florida Department of Education Code of Ethics for Educators:

    http://www.fldoe.org/edstandards/code_of_ethics.asp

    If you don't think she violated 6B-1.001 1, 2 and 3 then this conversation is pointless.

  • ||

    Yes, cause clearly, having your peers be honest about their feelings is always "traumatizing". I mean, to think that the kid might stop, listen, and change their behavior?

    Yes, because we all know that public humiliation and authority-led ostrasization is always the way to go with 5 year olds. Works every time. Works so well that he screams bloody hell at the thought of going to school. Mission accomplished!

    So, with this logic, Radley's no-knock, paramilitary raids to capture non-violent drug offenders are A-OK with you? I mean, it seems that with you the method isn't important, just the message.

  • Fluffy||

    Where did anyone say that? Fluffy, it's pretty clear to me: what this teacher did is unacceptable to ANY 5 year old, let alone one with Asperger's. Don't conflate an objection to this instance with a blank check.

    Wow. You have to be kidding me. Remove the element of disability here, and I won't even make the half-hearted efforts to meet you halfway that I have made so far.

    Let's contemplate how a similar scene might actually look:

    A group of 5 students are playing in a kindergarten setting. One of the kids repeatedly becomes frustrated when the other kids interfere with the pattern he's arranging toys into, or when they don't respond to statements he makes to them that are in an extremely idiosyncratic speech pattern. In his frustration, he engages in a pattern of hitting or biting the other students.

    After one outburst, the teacher is trying to decide whether to send the [non-disabled] kid to the principal's office yet again. Before doing so, she sits all the kids down in a circle, and asks the four "behaving" students to tell the "misbehaving" [non-disabled] student how they feel about him and about the way he acts. She then asks the four "behaving" students, "Do you think this sort of behavior should get you sent to the principal's office?" and 3 of the 4 kids say "yes".

    The teacher then sends the kid to the principal's office, having added some communication to the tired routine of sending the kid out of class.

    Child abuse?

    I don't think it's child abuse, sorry.

  • ||

    If you don't think she violated 6B-1.001 1, 2 and 3 then this conversation is pointless.

    I missed the part in the original news article where the teacher explained her reasoning for all of the world to evaluate. If she felt that it was in the best interest of this student to expose him to the feelings of his peers, how is it she violated the code of ethics?

    Works so well that he screams bloody hell at the thought of going to school.

    'cause clearly every single child will react to the situation in an identical manner as this one.

  • ||

    Lord of the Flies comes to Suburbia...atleast he wasn't eaten...

  • ||

    Oh really? Did she kick the child out of her class, or did she just embarrass him out of her class? What exactly is she "empowered" to do?

    Here is the Florida Department of Education Code of Ethics for Educators:

    http://www.fldoe.org/edstandards/code_of_ethics.asp

    If you don't think she violated 6B-1.001 1, 2 and 3 then this conversation is pointless.



    Screw that. If you don't think the woman violated the norms of compassionate civilized behavior, this discussion is pointless.

    He's 5 friggin' years old. She's a college educated credentialed educator. She is allegedly an adult as well.

  • ||

    Yes, cause clearly, having your peers be honest about their feelings is always "traumatizing". I mean, to think that the kid might stop, listen, and change their behavior?

    Damn dude, he has fuckin Asperger's, is that so difficult to comprehed. He wont stop, listen and change his behavior. He especially wont stop where he is put in a social confrontation which pits him against 14 classmates (who he already has a hard time dealing with 1 on 1) and a twat of a teacher. Also he is fuckin FIVE. Thats a bit too early to try any kind of confrontational group therapy even on a normal child of that age.

    'cause clearly every single child will react to the situation in an identical manner as this one.

    No, but pretty much every child with Asperger's will react in a similar manner. Infact that's how they are diagnosed and grouped into disorders, by the similarity of their symptoms.

    I think you might as well come out and say that you do not beleive that this child has Aperger's or that Asperger's is not a 'real' disorder. Maybe you beleive that this five year old is truly just being an asshole, cause thats the only way I can see your arguments making sense.

  • ||

    Wow. You have to be kidding me. Remove the element of disability here, and I won't even make the half-hearted efforts to meet you halfway that I have made so far.

    Well, then all I can say is thank god you're not a teacher. The complete lack of empathy that you are demonstrating is just fucking cold.

    He'S FUCKING FIVE. Do you really know what that means? Think about that and get back to us.

    Let's contemplate how a similar scene might actually look:

    That's all fine and well and if you did that as my kid's teacher, we'd be having a very different conversation.

    If you did what this teacher did? Fuck the lawyers. I'd bring Jamie with me and a pair of pliers.

  • Fluffy||

    But val, that contradicts everything the "mainstreaming" movement in education says. The only reason "mainstreaming" would make any sense is if the kid is going to benefit from being socialized with - and by - his peers.

    Why in fuck are we mainstreaming kids with developmental disabilities, if we don't believe that encountering normally-abled kids will help them overcome those disabilities, at least a little?

    Why would a kid with Asperger's or HFA benefit from being in a class with "normal" kids, if social interaction with those kids isn't supposed to help "normalize" their behavior?

    What's the point?

    The teacher didn't have the other kids beat this kid with a pipe for being different. She had them talk to him. If that's a trauma and a horror, what the fuck was the point of him being there in the first place?

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    So when they're spending all of their time dealing with the disruptive behavior of one student, and neglecting to educate the other 16, are they doing their job?

    For the THIRD time today, if there is a behavior or a discipline problem than it should be dealt with using ordinary channels provided for in the rulebook on the principal's desk.

    Got a problem with the kid? Send the kid to the office.

  • Fluffy||

    That's all fine and well and if you did that as my kid's teacher, we'd be having a very different conversation.

    My point is that the scene I described could very easily be reported in the press as "Kindergarten teacher has students vote child out of class". That headline would be a completely accurate description of what took place.

    And if the kid had a psycho parent, that's exactly how the headline would read.

  • ||

    'cause clearly every single child will react to the situation in an identical manner as this one.

    What val said. QTF.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Fluff, Kindergarten is not a participatory democracy and the students should not be running the asylum.

  • ||

    Fluff, Kindergarten is not a participatory democracy and the students should not be running the asylum.

    And again, you're assuming that the child was ejected from the classroom as a result of his peers revealing their preference.

    What if he simply left?

    Oh, I know...she was out of line by having a public forum where the classmates revealed their feelings. So then it doesn't matter about this Democracy angle, does it.

    Is the issue that she kicked the child out of her classroom (which is completely unsubstantiated) or that she hurt his feelings by making him aware that the other kids felt he was a pain in the ass?

  • ||

    My point is that the scene I described could very easily be reported in the press as "Kindergarten teacher has students vote child out of class". That headline would be a completely accurate description of what took place.

    But, that's not what happened and wishing it doesn't make it so.

    This teacher pretty much fucked up as much as a Kindergarten teacher could, short of physical abuse. She didn't recognize the signs of a well known behsvioral disorder and it's fairly obvious she (is it a she?) didn't consult the parents for their assistance with their kid. That's standard these days.

  • ||

    Is the issue that she kicked the child out of her classroom (which is completely unsubstantiated) or that she hurt his feelings by making him aware that the other kids felt he was a pain in the ass?

    Do you really not understand the problem yet? Seriously?

    I think a number of us have explained it fairly clearly by now.

  • ||

    MP,

    In one of your previous statements, you mentioned the original article. Did you perhaps catch the part the parents were already working with the school on the child's issues. They had had meetings, which were attended by the teacher, about creating a plan to deal with the kid.

    Do you agree that, given these circumstances, that the teacher was out of line to do this without involving the parents, principal, others involved in the meeting?

  • ||

    I think a number of us have explained it fairly clearly by now.

    Sure. You've made your case. And I don't think much of it.

  • Famous Mortimer||

    It's always fun to read responses to stories like this on Libertarian sites. It really brings out the typical IT, sociopathic traits in people.

    I'm actually surprised by the number of people believe that what the teacher did was wrong. There may be hope. Although, the fact that this involves a public school teacher might explain the source of the support.

    You know, kind of like Libertarians who suddenly develop a social conscience about war because it involves tax dollars.

    As much as I love this site, it really is full of bitter cranks who wouldn't know a logical fallacy if it jumped up and offered to take their virginity.

    But you ladies entertain me.

  • ||

    It's kind of funny to me that 30 years ago, holding an "encounter group session" where the other students told the misbehaving student how they felt about him would have been considered unforgivably "touchy-feely" compared to the traditional discipline of just belting the kid in the head. But now what would once have been "touchy-feely" is considered too harsh!

    I really don't think ostracism is "touchy-feely". Is the pillory "touchy-feely" because people are encouraged to express their displeasure toward the offender? Is tar and feathering "touchy-feely" because it similarly encourages people to express themselves and show that behavior the majority dislikes is not appropriate? I am in no way suggesting that this situation rises to that level, however, I don't think you can, without more information, say was merely "touchy-feely".

    Btw, I think at issue is how many adults were present at the time. The answer was apparently zero (ie: number of people acting like adults) It is the teacher's responsibility to maintain order, not steer the "rabble" to do their dirty work.

  • ||

    Do you agree that, given these circumstances, that the teacher was out of line to do this without involving the parents, principal, others involved in the meeting?

    I think it's unrealistic to believe that the principal and the parents are going to be able to participate in every action that occurs in the classroom. The teacher most likely responded to a situation on the fly. It's not like she had ballots printed.

  • ||

    Jamie kelly,

    I just want to say that you displayed superb foul penned invective today. Take a bow.

  • ||

    Wow - some people are downright steadfast in their ignorance.

    Good post at Daily Kos:

    Wendy Portillo's crime was not that she had a student with whom she could not cope. That is no crime. It was not punishing him for his behavior. That is no crime. It was foregoing the clearly enumerated process in order to take matters into her own hands and incite her students to subject a young boy to the schoolyard equivalent of a jeering mob.

    For that, there should be severe consequences.


    http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2008/5/26/0832/37333/902/522855

  • ||

    NB: I used my examples with some hyperbole, but the tar and feather example probably detracts from the argument. I was looking for an analogue to "running out of town".

  • ||

    I'm amused by the fact that Daily Kos's primary beef was that she didn't follow the manual.

  • ||

    I think you're amused by belittling the problem.

    KMW, can we take a vote on MP and his friends? They're loud, they smell bad, and they wear really old clothes.

  • Fluffy||

    But, that's not what happened and wishing it doesn't make it so.

    With all due respect, JW, you have absolutely no fucking way of knowing that my scenario isn't EXACTLY what happened, only with 15 kids instead of 5.

    When I read the description of the event in the paper, and try to actually place it in a modern kindergarten class in my head, my scenario is what I see.

    You and Jamie, OTOH, see the last ten minutes of Carrie.

    Frankly, I think my version is eminently plausible, and fits what we have been told about the incident just as much as yours. If anything, mine is more plausible, because it doesn't require us to imagine that a kindergarten teacher would dump a bucket of pig's blood on some kid's head.

  • ||

    MP | May 29, 2008, 6:39pm | #

    Do you agree that, given these circumstances, that the teacher was out of line to do this without involving the parents, principal, others involved in the meeting?

    I think it's unrealistic to believe that the principal and the parents are going to be able to participate in every action that occurs in the classroom. The teacher most likely responded to a situation on the fly. It's not like she had ballots printed.



    I agree that it is unrealistic to believe that the parents and principal can participate in every classroom situation. I also agree that, based upon the standards for emotional abuse that you provided, this does not merit a lawsuit for that.

    However, based on the fact that steps were being taken, which the teacher was involved in, there is definitely room for disciplinary action. Also, from I have read about IEP's, they essentially layout rights and responsibilties of all parties involved, so there may indeed be a civil rights case.

  • ||

    Also, from I have read about IEP's, they essentially layout rights and responsibilties of all parties involved, so there may indeed be a civil rights case.

    Oh my...now we have people defending IEP's.

    If you want to know why public schools cost 8 million times more than they used to, spend some time studying IEP's and the consequential civil torts they engender.

  • Fluffy||

    Mortimer, you are a cock.

    And you don't understand the meaning of the words you use.

    I'm actually taking the communitarian position here. Something I hardly ever do, so I know when I'm doing it.

    There's nothing "sociopathic" about my position at all.

    I'm taking the position that the class is a community, and that if one member of the community is disruptive, it isn't abusive for the others to communicate with him about it. Even if that communication is negative. How else is the kid supposed to know? Especially if his ability to read nonverbal social cues is defective.

    How is that the "sociopathic" position, and how does "my kid has a card that says he has a syndrome, so he can do whatever he wants and the community exists to serve him and his development, and everybody else better shut up," represent the non-sociopathic position?

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    MP, your response to my remark had nothing to do with the remark itself. It had to do with Fluffy's hypothetical creation upthread. That isn't your fault, I wasn't clear.

    However, had you read the story, you would know the reason why the child did not return to school.

  • J||

    Wow. A lot of silly things said here:

    If you think that something like that might be remotely effective with an ASD kid, you've obviously never known one.

    Also: I would prefer getting hit with a ruler over having my whole class bad mouth me now, nevermind when I was 5 and if I had trouble with others already. I think that as a punishment that is harsher than most other things that are mainstream. Kids are mean and all (and also very selfless and nice sometimes) but the teacher doesn't have to act like a mean 5 year old.

    Being a teacher isn't an easy job. I worked as one for a summer (ASD kids though, so different) and I know I wouldn't want to do it. Someone like that shouldn't be teaching though: they don't have what it takes.

    Also, despite enjoying my public schooling when I was growing up, I would never want to deny people educational choice for that very reason. I had from OK to excellent teachers, the opposite is often true though.

  • Steve Verdon||

    Fluffy,

    You're an asshole.

  • ||

    MP | May 29, 2008, 7:14pm | #

    Also, from I have read about IEP's, they essentially layout rights and responsibilties of all parties involved, so there may indeed be a civil rights case.

    Oh my...now we have people defending IEP's.

    If you want to know why public schools cost 8 million times more than they used to, spend some time studying IEP's and the consequential civil torts they engender.



    Nope, not defending. My knowledge of them is extremely limited. I read about them on Wikipedia and the entry is extremely pro-IEP, with no discussion whatsoever about disadvantages. And this case seems be a perfect example of "the consequential civil torts they engender."

    That said, given that this is a public school, which the parents are forced to pay for no matter what, this is the system we are left with. The teacher acted outside of this system's guidelines, and should be disciplined at the very least.

    We can argue about the legitimacy of the public school system, and whether this child would be better served by a private school that specializes in special needs students another day.

  • ||

    I'm taking the position that the class is a community, and that if one member of the community is disruptive, it isn't abusive for the others to communicate with him about it.

    Classes aren't communities. Kids don't get to have a say of who gets to be there. Any retard teacher who elevates the viciousness of children to classroom policy should be fired.

    Classrooms are there for children to learn. Teachers are there to teach. Classrooms are not little mini-communities; they should be benevolent dictatorships, where the teacher is in charge.

  • ||

    However, had you read the story, you would know the reason why the child did not return to school.

    I RTFA, and the child doesn't go back to school because the child doesn't want to go back to school.

    And my question was specific to the circumstances. People are treating this situation as if the child was ejected from the classroom, by the teacher, as a result of the vote. There is no evidence to back this supposition.

  • ||

    Fluffy, are you being deliberately obtuse? There is a difference between 'other kids let him know how they feel' and 'other kids are invited, under color of authority from the teacher, to inventory everything they don't like about him'.

    They're really not comparable situations at all.

    First, there's the authority thing. It's one thing to have a kid be mean to you. It's quite another to have a kid be mean to you with the approval of the only present authority figure.

    Second, there's the public thing. One of the creepiest and most stifling innovations of the Puritans was the notion of the public confession. Individuals are capable of compassion and understanding. People, collectively, are a herd waiting to stampede. And kindergarteners are even more herd-like, because they already live under unquestionable authority. If the authority figure says 'hate this person', they do so. Or do you really think there are 5-year-old John Galts out there nobly standing against a classroom full of their peers, declaring it's morally wrong to hate the teacher's chosen target?

    You can try to dress this up in terms like 'community', but the truth is, a teacher invited kids who were too young to know any better to humiliate and shame another kid.

    Tangent: Every time you say 'the class is a community' it gives me heartburn. Because it's not a fucking community -- it's supposed to be a learning environment, and whether or not I fit into the social structure of the classroom should be irrelevant. I don't want to send my kid to become part of some arbitrary community of strangers. I went through that myself, I know who those people are, and my life is enriched greatly by my ability, as an adult, to choose the people I include in my own personal community -- and exclude the douchebags who comprised that community for most of my childhood. The only thing I ever learned from that supposed 'community' was a well-honed hatred for most other human beings.

  • ||

    Sure. You've made your case. And I don't think much of it.

    That's nice.

    Really, if you don't understand about what Asperger's is, just ask. You don't need to be all passive-aggressive.

    People are treating this situation as if the child was ejected from the classroom, by the teacher, as a result of the vote.

    OK, you're just being a troll now. Or deliberately obtuse. You choose.

  • ||

    With all due respect, JW, you have absolutely no fucking way of knowing that my scenario isn't EXACTLY what happened, only with 15 kids instead of 5.

    Wow. Just wow.

    For the last time, the kid is FUCKING FIVE. He's not some surly emo kid raising a ruckus in the 10th grade english. You don't publicly humiliate and ostracize a very young child who doesn't even know how to tie his own shoes or even his left from right, let alone one you *know* has a behavioral disorder. She's an incompetant fuck who made an extraordinarily bad decision.

    Frankly, I think my version is eminently plausible, and fits what we have been told about the incident just as much as yours. If anything, mine is more plausible, because it doesn't require us to imagine that a kindergarten teacher would dump a bucket of pig's blood on some kid's head.

    Hyperbole and wishful thinking don't change anything.

    If you and MP just. don't. get it. by now as to *why* what this teacher did is wrong, then there really isn't much more to say.

  • ||

    People are treating this situation as if the child was ejected from the classroom, by the teacher, as a result of the vote. There is no evidence to back this supposition.

    The vote was definitely held, as the teacher confirmed this. Now, is it plausible to believe that, after the vote was held, the FIVE YEAR OLD student would have felt free to remain in the class?

    Note to everyone besides Fluffy & MP: You can take a horse to water...

  • Fluffy||

    A group of 5 students are playing in a kindergarten setting. One of the kids repeatedly becomes frustrated when the other kids interfere with the pattern he's arranging toys into, or when they don't respond to statements he makes to them that are in an extremely idiosyncratic speech pattern. In his frustration, he engages in a pattern of hitting or biting the other students.

    After one outburst, the teacher is trying to decide whether to send the [non-disabled] kid to the principal's office yet again. Before doing so, she sits all the kids down in a circle, and asks the four "behaving" students to tell the "misbehaving" [non-disabled] student how they feel about him and about the way he acts. She then asks the four "behaving" students, "Do you think this sort of behavior should get you sent to the principal's office?" and 3 of the 4 kids say "yes".

    The teacher then sends the kid to the principal's office, having added some communication to the tired routine of sending the kid out of class.


    I still say this is probably the closest description of what really happened in the class, and I'm waiting for a description of what was wrong with it that doesn't sound like some of the nerds around here are projecting their childhood unhappiness or social isolation on the situation.

    I ordinarily would not take a communitarian view of education either, but we're talking about a kindergarten class when I would bet that 90% of the "education" is simply socialization play. That means that if the teacher is trying to get a child to play more nicely with the other children, she is in fact "teaching", in the context of a kindergarten class.

    And I'm not particularly impressed with the aversion here to "shame" teaching, because I don't believe that you can usefully distinguish between socialization activity that teaches you that other people have feelings and won't like you if you abuse them, and "shaming". "You shouldn't hit Johnny, because it makes him not like you. Isn't that right, Johnny?" "Yes, that's right, I don't like you. You're not my friend." Is that shaming, or is it teaching? It seems to me that it's teaching because it's shaming. There is no such thing as learning to acknowledge social cues without negative reinforcement or "shaming".

  • First Little Pig||

    Late to the thread. Some thoughts:

    1) Many people (myself included) read this story and say "maybe he has Asperger's and maybe he's just a snot" I have known a couple of Asperger's-afflicted people. I am not certain that at 5 they would have been diagnosable nor that any 5-year old is diagnosable given their level of development. I have friends who have a pain in the ass kid and I am eagerly waiting the diagnosis he gets for the fact that he is a spoiled brat. The parents need treatment, not the kid. He's fine but I have zero doubt he will at least be ADHD as I would have been had it existed when I was a child.

    2. If he really does suffer Asperger's, perhaps a regular classroom at 5 is not advisable. Perhaps he needs individual training (likely at home) so that he can be integrated when he is ready. If my child had her day ruined by another "special" child and had her education interrupted I would be nonplussed to say the least. The kid should not be in the class if (for whatever reason) his behavior is terrible.

    3. The teacher blew it. There had to be another way of removing the child without the peer-ridicule. That was very ill thought out. So I don't really have loads of sympathy for her.

    4. We all sympathize with those of you who have challenged and challenging children. But please do shut up. Threatening genital mutilation against a teacher because a (read your) child acts in a disruptive manner is, frankly, beyond the pale. And honestly many doubt that your child suffers from anything more than bad parenting. If he is suffering from a disorder, so very sorry, but if you've latched onto a label to shield yourself from actually controlling his behavior or at least disciplining him, then fuck you. (Full disclosure: One of my sisters did this very thing to her daughter who never finished High School convinced that she was "mental". Once on her own, she's fine -- if on food stamps. ("Thanks Mom!"))

    5. Too many distracted and disruptive kids are labeled as diseased, disordered, or special. Some have afflictions, some do not. But in my day a swift smack on the buttocks usually uncovered the actually troubled kids and the ones whose parents failed to train appropriately.

    I can't back fluffy since I think that the teach handled the situation poorly, but I am entirely opposed to those of you threatening violence against the teacher. You have no perspective.

  • ||

    Fluffy, you said this would have helped you when you were five, and I hope it's not to late, but here goes:

    YOU ARE A DICK.

  • ||

    I still say this is probably the closest description of what really happened in the class, and I'm waiting for a description of what was wrong with it that doesn't sound like some of the nerds around here are projecting their childhood unhappiness or social isolation on the situation.

    What's wrong?

    You've significantly lowered the number of kids involved.
    You're alleging physical violence on the part of the shunned kid that is not reported.
    You're changing the details of the voting process.

    It seems to me, Fluffy, that since your argument doesn't fit the facts (note, neither the teacher nor the school are disputing the details Mrs. Barton gives), you change the facts to fit your argument.

  • Troll||

    No work for me here.

    /*kicks pebble while standing on the unemployment line

  • ||

    We all sympathize with those of you who have challenged and challenging children. But please do shut up. Threatening genital mutilation against a teacher because a (read your) child acts in a disruptive manner is, frankly, beyond the pale. And honestly many doubt that your child suffers from anything more than bad parenting. If he is suffering from a disorder, so very sorry, but if you've latched onto a label to shield yourself from actually controlling his behavior or at least disciplining him, then fuck you.



    This must be the "new brand of libertarianism", the cold, callous variant Huckabee was complaining about, with an extra dose of sarcastic faux-regret thrown in for good measure.

  • ||

    I think it's unrealistic to believe that the principal and the parents are going to be able to participate in every action that occurs in the classroom. The teacher most likely responded to a situation on the fly. It's not like she had ballots printed.

    If the goal waa to change the kid's behavior, then responding "on the fly" is the absolute worst thing you can do. Kids like this need structure, they need to know *exactly* what the consequence will be for a given behavior.

    If the goal was to get the kid removed from the class, half the kids in the class could have told the teacher that the principal needed to be involved in the decision.

    If the goal was to humiliate the kid, then, sure, great. Nice work. Mission accomplished.

  • First Little Pig||

    Mr. Potter,

    In case you have not noticed we do live in a time when many, many people are over diagnosed with syndromes.

    I do sympathize with those who have a real problem, but that smiling kid in the photo who "feels sad" that his classmates voted him out for being a pain in the ass does not strike me as a poster child for anyone with autism.

    And I do not sympathize with parents who, aware that their child caused disruptions, forces underpaid, under-trained public school teachers to deal with him/her along with a room full of other children some of them possibly mine and possibly harmed in the process of integrating the one.

  • ||

    Who said anything about autism or poster children? And what does the fact that he's smiling in the photo have to do with anything? Are you saying that if a kid can smile long enough for a picture to be taken that he must not have any psychological disorders?

    You know, if you people keep arguing incoherently, I just might turn off my computer and go out and get a life. I'll do it, and you'll be sorry!

  • Neu Mejican||

    Some basic information to clear up some misconceptions*.

    1)Someone with an ASD will benefit from social interaction with non-disabled peers. It is, in fact, the best route for them to learn appropriate social skills.

    2)Someone with ASD will benefit more from explicit communication regarding the way his/her behavior impacts others...as part of the syndrome is difficulty with implicit understanding of other people's emotional response.

    This does not mean that the teacher handled things properly. Sorry Fluffy...it is a much bigger deal than you recognize.

    3)The law requires that children be educated in the Least Restrictive Environment. This is defined as the regular classroom unless a specific case can be made that a more restrictive environment is needed. A child with mild ASD (e.g., Asperger's) would typically be educated in a regular classroom...even if they need some additional supports. Why? See 1 & 2 above.

    Side comment: this also provides a wonderful learning opportunity for the other kids in the classroom, if handled professionally by the school staff.

    4)It is against the law to exclude a child based on behaviors that are a direct consequence of their disability. If the behaviors are a consequence of their disability, and those behaviors prevent others from being able to learn, a more restrictive environment may be warranted. There is a well defined procedure for taking these steps.

    It does not involve a show of hands by the child's peers.

    5)Asperger's can be diagnosed easily as young as 2 or 3. A definitive diagnosis at 5 is no problem. There is certainly a dangerous trend in our country of pathologizing normal variation...

    The bar for an ASD diagnosis should be high and specific. If done properly there is little danger of treating normal variation as Asperger's. Diagnosis is not always done properly.


    *I have 15 yrs professional experience in developmental disabilities and a handful of graduate degrees on the topic...I will try to answer any serious questions if I get a chance.

  • ||

    If the goal was to humiliate the kid, then, sure, great. Nice work. Mission accomplished.

    And if the goal was the let the child know what the other kids thought of him, and if the child was then embarrassed because he didn't like what they thought, then nice work.

    But to some on this thread, hearing what other kids think of you is an act of meanness. Yeah, the truth can hurt sometimes. But lets coddle the little buggers.

    And BTW, as First Little Pig points out, there's a strong trend, discussed MANY times on this board, due to incentives in the system, you get your child classified as disabled (although in this particular case, it appears that it was the school which suggested the diagnosis). This child has not even been officially classified as having Asperger syndrome, yet it's being discussed as if it is a foregone conclusion.

    But some will still argue that the Asperger angle is irrelevant. That it is the audacity of the teacher, who exposed a child to the feelings of his peers, a poor helpful pitiful little five (!! FIVE !!, yeah, I get it, he's 5, big deal) year old that makes her deserving of public crucifixion.

    I'm not buying it.

    note, neither the teacher nor the school are disputing the details Mrs. Barton gives

    Yes, of course, schools under threat of lawsuit always rush right out with press releases stating their case.

    In fact, standard school policy today is to STFU under almost all circumstances because they know that a lawsuit is more often than not right around the corner.

    It is against the law to exclude a child based on behaviors that are a direct consequence of their disability.

    And again, there is no evidence that the child was forcefully excluded from the classroom.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Fluffy,

    How is that the "sociopathic" position, and how does "my kid has a card that says he has a syndrome, so he can do whatever he wants and the community exists to serve him and his development, and everybody else better shut up," represent the non-sociopathic position?

    This would be an extremely poor position for a parent to take.

    It is very, very, very, very, very, very, rare to find parents of a child with a disability that would fit this cartoonish characterization. Even if I give you some slack for hyperbole.

    Really.

  • ||

    In case you have not noticed we do live in a time when many, many people are over diagnosed with syndromes.

    That's a claim requiring evidence. Just because the old-fashioned method of calling kids exhibiting these types of behaviors lazy or insolent or stupid and whipping and beating and ostracizing them into compliance was so much simpler, does not mean it was the best way of handling such children, either for the children themselves OR the larger society into which such children would be released at the age of majority -- with all the proven negative psychological side-effects of constant punishment.

  • First Little Pig||

    Potter:

    You are correct, diagnosis from a photo and a statement of sadness tells us nothing about that child's disability. I am duly chastized.

    But I will bet money that the kid is not disabled in any way. Overly-enabled, perhaps. But not disabled.

    But let's assume he is disabled and he cannot control his behavior in the class. Do you reject the rest of my points or are you a blind partisan?

    I would not want that kid in a class with my kid unless he could control himself. If he cannot he should be in special ed... Or at home. Or a private school. (and I bet one week in Catholic School and he would not have any "condition" at all except for shame and contrition)

    But if you decide that you want to go get a life, I fully support you.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Pig, Aspberger's can and is diagnosed in kids as young as 4. My nephew, for one. And he's on the higher functioning, therefore less easy to diagnose, side.

    Also, to repeat my earlier statement, at seven he can kick your ass in chess and most computer games.

    And while I tend to agree that some parents like to blame obscure syndromes for bad parenting skills, that DOES NOT excuse this teacher's behavior. She's an adult. She's paid to teach the class. She is expected to act in a professional manner. If she can't cope she needs to get a different job.

    .... smiling kid in the photo who "feels sad" that his classmates voted him out for being a pain in the ass does not strike me as a poster child for anyone with autism.

    Did you actually RTFA?

    For the third time today, my son has a disruptive classmate with Aspbergers. The class took a slightly different tack, treating him like a human being. It is amazing how well that has worked. For the kid, for the class, and for the teacher.

    Course we are a little more progressive out west.

  • ||

    This does not mean that the teacher handled things properly. Sorry Fluffy...it is a much bigger deal than you recognize.

    She may very well not have. I don't think either Fluffy or myself have definitively claimed she was in the right. My issue with this thread is the lynch mob reaction to a minor dispute which likely never should have even been made public in the first place.

  • ||

    You can try to dress this up in terms like 'community', but the truth is, a teacher invited kids who were too young to know any better to humiliate and shame another kid.


    This whole situation reminds me of a similar shaming situation -- instigated by a teacher -- that happened when I was in the 7th grade. One of the kids in our class apparently had some hygiene issues (b.o., maybe? I suppose that would have been it). Well, one of our teachers took it upon herself, after overhearing some snotty kids making fun of his cluelessness in this respect, to bring our whole homeroom over to the other 7th grade homeroom -- with bars of soap and sticks of deodorant and to tell him loudly that he stank, and present him with the bars of soap and deodorant -- during class, with his whole homeroom present.

    I, and a just a few other people from my homeroom, didn't participate. We just kind of lingered around the homeroom expressing our sentiments of WTF, and why is Mrs. Jowlyhag singling out this kid (when besides, we all know most junior high school boys are totally filthy in their own individual ways). In hindsight, I also probably should have told that wrinkly c*****g off to her face, but I was very non-confrontational at that point in my life.

    Anyway, I ran into that guy about a year ago, and he looks very good now and is well-adjusted as ever, but to my misfortune of course he's GAY because isn't that always the way with all of the attractive, well-adjusted ones.

  • TB||

    Fluffy,

    How do you talk with Authority's dick down your throat all of the time? Is there any hobnailed boot you won't lick? You're on the wrong site.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    She's an adult. She's paid to teach the class. She is expected to act in a professional manner. If she can't cope she needs to get a different job.



    Meant to also say that (again) that if this is a problem that requires discipline, the teacher should have sent the kid to the office.

  • Neu Mejican||

    MP,

    And again, there is no evidence that the child was forcefully excluded from the classroom.

    I never claimed there was.
    I was responding to comments much farther up-thread.

    If this child has an IEP (which is stated in the news article), then he been diagnosed with something. It is most likely a generic diagnosis: Developmental Disability.

    And BTW, as First Little Pig points out, there's a strong trend, discussed MANY times on this board, due to incentives in the system, you get your child classified as disabled

    That, my friend, is a load of horse shit.

    After having been through the process thousands of times, I can safely say that the parent who has a typically developing child that is pushing for a diagnosis is the rarest of animals. And in most cases, even these rare birds have a legitimate concern.

    No incentive I can think of would make a parent want to have their child labeled "handicapped."

  • ||

    And if the goal was the let the child know what the other kids thought of him, and if the child was then embarrassed because he didn't like what they thought, then nice work.

    Adequate to below average work, as there are more productive ways to accomplish this goal.

    Of course, a real teacher (or even a real adult) would be more interested in a goal of letting him know what other children thought of certain behaviors. Making a big public show of making sure he knows what all the other kids think about him is the sort of thing humiliation enthusiasts are into, so I don't really think a fourth goal was added there.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    Smack, something similar happened to a guy named Schwarz in my platoon in basic. Except it was a lot more brutal. They dragged him into the showers, stripped him naked, scrubbed his body raw with brushes using Comet and other harsh chemicals.

    Most of us did not participate but in basic there isn't anything you can do because the DI's own you in a way that is largely unimaginable in the real world.

    He did start showering after that though.

  • Neu Mejican||

    I would not want that kid in a class with my kid unless he could control himself. If he cannot he should be in special ed... Or at home. Or a private school.

    [sigh]

    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .....

    [sigh]

  • First Little Pig||

    But Potter, beating, whipping and ostracizing the lazy or insolent or stupid actually worked more often than not. And given the behavior of young people today I am not at all certain that that was altogether a bad model.

    OK, to be serious. I am not advocating a coal-cellar or Pink Floyd-stylized-school-house system, but I am certain that while there are ill children, many who have diagnoses are not actually disabled, should not be medicated, and can control themselves through training and socialization.

    People vary. We have so limited the scope of what is normal that most XY chromosome youngsters are eligible for medication, those who seem hyper are drugged or punished rather than exercised in the school yard, and those who disobey are called something akin to Savant (face it, parents prefer that their kid have the "so- he's- a- handful- but- at- least- he's- probably- a- math- science- wiz" Asperger's diagnosis rather than simple (grab the Ritalin!) ADhD or the (The blame's on you!) brat label.

  • ||

    Yes, of course, schools under threat of lawsuit always rush right out with press releases stating their case.

    Ah, so the lack of evidence for yours and Fluffy's version of events IS the evidence! I think there's a 9/11 Truth thread you guys need to jump into a few posts up.

    This child has not even been officially classified as having Asperger syndrome, yet it's being discussed as if it is a foregone conclusion.

    From an updated article:

    Barton said Tuesday morning that Alex had officially been diagnosed with an autism-spectrum disorder and attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD.



    And again, there is no evidence that the child was forcefully excluded from the classroom.

    So, you think that it IS plausible that after the teacher held a vote in which the class voted that he leave the class, he would have felt free to remain in the class?

    Oh, and also the school district, according to the updated article, considers the matter serious enough to reassign the teacher:

    Portillo was reassigned out of the classroom at the district offices on Friday, as soon as Schools Superintendent Michael Lannon heard about the incident, Karst said. She said it could be up to two weeks before the district's investigation on the matter is concluded.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    You can try to dress this up in terms like 'community', but the truth is, a teacher invited kids who were too young to know any better to humiliate and shame another kid.

    Also in basic we watched the DI's drive a boy insane. Literally, drooling, hysterically insane. When they were done, they made him stand on a desk and forced 80 guys to point at him and laugh. About half of us wouldn't do it and the DI's let it go. It was grotesque and sickening and very much a grown up version of what this teacher did to a five year old.

    And, as the Corpsman led him away to the Looney lockup at Balboa Naval Hospital I had a n awful feeling that he wasn't going to get over it. Don't know if he did or didn't because we never saw him again. But I haven't forgotten his face. And that was a dam long time ago.

  • ||

    No incentive I can think of would make a parent want to have their child labeled "handicapped."

    The impact of fiscal incentives on student disability rates.

    Abstract

    In this paper, I estimate the elasticity of student disability rates with respect to the generosity of state reimbursements. The classification response is identified from policy-induced variation in the amount of state aid generated by serving a disabled student across local school districts in Texas from 1991-1992 through 1996-1997. My central estimates imply that fiscal incentives can explain nearly 40% of the recent growth in student disability rates in Texas. The magnitude of the institutional response varies by district size and enrollment concentration, student race/ethnicity and the level of fiscal constraint.

  • ||

    But Potter, beating, whipping and ostracizing the lazy or insolent or stupid actually worked more often than not. And given the behavior of young people today I am not at all certain that that was altogether a bad model.

    People have been complaining about the bad behavior of children for milennia, Pig. And while constantly beating students who constantly misbehaved -- as an Aspergers or ADHD kid is prone to do -- will tend to keep them under control while in school, keep in mind you're going to have to release the adult who grows up from this kid eventually, and he or she is going to have all the side-effect behaviors the human brain learns from constant punishment.

    In short, the society is not served by having such scarred personalities released into it.

  • ||

    From an editorial:

    I did take a look at Portillo's personnel file. It revealed absolutely nothing out of order.
    ...
    It was more than a decade ago (1996), but I was struck by her "superior" scores (the highest possible) in "effectively manages student conduct," and "demonstrates appropriate student-teacher interaction."

    Has Portillo turned into a monster since 1996? I doubt it.
    ...
    I don't know the answers to any of these questions, and (I suspect) nor do you. Perhaps we should put this witch hunt on hold until we do.


    Here here.

  • First Little Pig||

    Neu Mejican,

    It's great that you have expertise in this area and I bow to some degree to your wisdom.

    But do you not think that this kid must have done something (possibly time and again) that led to his classmates voting him off the island? I do not condone the fact that the vote was taken, but I suspect that the teacher had tried other ways of getting through to him to no avail.

    Here's a scenario: Kid A bites other kids. But he has been classified as having Mondo's Biting Syndrome for which there is no cure, but studies have indicated that in 80+% of cases kids with MBS behave better after 3 years of socialization with other students than not.

    The State has decided that it is in the best interest of the child to attend public school with his peers. There's no money for additional minders for the child and when he attends school there are incidents: he bites the teacher, a couple of the other students and the janitor. The teacher complains and it is duly filed in triplicate.

    But the child continues to bite other children and nothing is done about it. The children, at the teacher's urging plead with him to stop. But he can't: He's got MBS. There is outrage that the teacher humiliated this child and pseudo-libertarians call for her genitals to be blown off with a shotgun because one of them is parent to a biter.

    A) I ain't sending my kid to that school and that classroom to get bit.

    b) I have intentionally tried to infuriate you and many others on this board with that analogy. It is inapt, but hilariously appropriate.

    Final note: Experts like you are sometimes too close to the matter at hand to be objective. Educated and knowledgeable? Absolutely! Possibly subject to viewing the case through your expertise and your cases? Yes. Keep in mind that the kid has not been diagnosed.

  • J||

    It's always nice to have NM around for threads like this, I feel less alone.

    I do have to disagree with him on one point, however. Personally, I've seen people treat diagnosis of autism as more like a diagnosis of cancer than something that is pushed for. On the other hand, if you want to take any diagnoses, ADHD is sometimes pushed for by parents when there really isn't a problem for the kid outside normal range.

  • ||

    Hey! I take exception to your example, FLP. I've got Mondo's Biting Syndrome. But I don't bite...hard.

  • ||

    I haven't read all the comments, so somebody else may have already said this: I think a teacher could do this to any kid; hold him up to ridicule before the whole class, then get the class to "vote him out." His classmates may or may not have disliked him, but they took the cue from the adult authority figure.

  • Friedrich Nietzsche||

    Distrust those in whom the desire to punish is strong.

    [Which would make untrustworthy many of whom we've heard about, and some we've heard from.

    Just sayin'.]

  • ||

    Here's a scenario: First Little Pig makes up completely different facts when his argument doesn't fit the currently existing facts. But he's been classified as having Fluffy Fact-Changing Syndrome for which there is no cure, but studies have indicated that in 80% of cases commenters with FFCS argue better after having their pathetic attempts to change the facts refuted 36 times.

    There's hope, Piggy. Hang in there.

  • ||

    My next door neighbor seems to always be outside when I come back from work, and every time he sees me he stops me and tells me a stupid joke, and I dread coming home sometimes for this reason. Does that justify punching his lights out? No.

    Now, if he were biting me instead of simply telling me dumb jokes, THEN I would have justification for punching him. Because, you see, biting and being annoying are fundamentally different types of behavior.

  • ||

    I've got Mondo's Biting Syndrome. But I don't bite...hard.

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Guy Montag||

    By the by, this IS an example of child abuse. No question about it.

  • First Little Pig||

    Obviously I have succeeded in offending you Mr. Potter for which I am most pleased.

    Clearly I made up a story to make a point, you seem not to have understood. Taking out the 80+% bit you can stick on Asperger's and substitute annoy or irk for bite and .... oh, never mind....

    [btw they are 5 years old. When 5-year olds don't like someone it often involves not sharing, taking away toys, shoving/hitting/biting, and other behaviors. Do we know that this kid never assaulted the other children, however minor that assault might have been?]

    I will resort to Neu Mejican's lingo...

    sigh
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    sigh

  • First Little Pig||

    Oh Potter, you are in your rights to tell your neighbor that you do not like to hear his jokes and it is up to him whether or not he should be an ass and continue telling them.

    For children it's a bit different. If Sally does not like Justin calling her a poopy-head and it upsets her very much (he continues because she does not like it and it makes her cry) then the responsible adult is supposed to intervene on her behalf.

    In your case, your neighbor has free speech and can be an ass if he likes, you cannot hit him. Presumably, your telling him to stop should work assuming he has all of his faculties and is not suffering from Asperger's.

  • ||

    It was more than a decade ago (1996), but I was struck by her "superior" scores (the highest possible) in "effectively manages student conduct," and "demonstrates appropriate student-teacher interaction."

    Huh? They have (at least) a 12 year gap between performance evaluations? That's good work if you can get it!

    And of course, those of us who've done and gotten evals know that generally if you don't screw up, or at least don't screw up in a manner that your evaluator knows about, you're going to get a rating in the upper end of the scale. If the editorializer wanted to actually get the full picture, he could have looked through other teachers' files from the same year to get an idea of what the average rating was.

    And of course, this is not evidence of what did or did not happen in any case.

  • ||

    Another article on this, with info from the police report:

    The teacher said the boy had been sent to the office earlier that day, and when the office sent him back to class, Portillo asked her students whether they were ready for him to return, Steele said. Portillo said she asked the class to vote because they are learning about taking tallies, police say.

  • ||

    What's really going to traumatize the kid is when he grows up and does a Google vanity-search and finds this thread...

  • J||

    [i]What's really going to traumatize the kid is when he grows up and does a Google vanity-search and finds this thread...[/i]

    Ooh. Can you imagine?

  • J||

    Also, my italics plan failed.

  • ||

    MP, I think you are misreading "c". Continued abuse is not the criteria. The criteria is harm to the child similar to that which would be expected from continuous abuse. The actual offense need not be continuous to constitute child abuse. Continual low-level abuse equals infrequent intense abuse equals "child abuse".

    That's my read anyway.

  • ||

    This teacher's conduct is unacceptable. Everybody knows this is the sort of thing that can be remedied by a public whipping. Maybe she missed the day in her teachers' education program where they explained the proper role of the switch.

  • ||

    And honestly many doubt that your child suffers from anything more than bad parenting.

    first little pig,
    Please come to my front door and say the same thing to my face.
    I beg you.
    Sincerely,
    the wolf who will eat your tits, porky-bouncy binky-cock, entrails and head, in that order.
    I hope an elephant sits on your fucking head.

  • ||

    On a side note, that kid really looks like a troublemaker...I like him. :)

  • First Little Pig||

    Jamie, you need anger management counseling as well as reading comprehension 101.

    Your level of venom indicates that your child does indeed have an affliction for which I have sympathy. But that does not entitle you to threaten violence against others.

    And it does not prove that there are not tens of thousands of kids improperly labeled as ADHD, Autistic, learning disabled, bi-polar, etc etc etc. We've come to categorize difference as disorder far too often.

    What's worse for a kid: being a little different and coping with it, or being labeled as different and treated that way -- socially or through medication or through other means? I suspect the latter since not only does it single the individual out among his/her peers, it also provides a crutch/excuse not to cope with the world. And there simply have to be cases where a perfectly normal child is told that he or she is something that they are not... my niece being an example.

    Please sober up and re-read your comments here. If you do not think that your menace and threats are over the top .... Well face it, they are over the top.

    And my comments were not directed at you per se. That you personalized them demonstrates that you are passionate about the well-being of your child -- bully for you. But please recognize that not everyone who claims to be walking in your shoes actually is. Did you consider that those are the ones I am castigating? At no point did I say "Jaime Kelly is a bad parent." Though if you talk around your kid the way you write on this forum then you may very well be.

  • The Wine Commonsewer||

    anger management classes..........

    LOL and spewing wine all over the monitor.

    Visions of elephants sitting on your head regards, TWC

  • ||

    Not OK!

  • ||

    Why would a kid with Asperger's or HFA benefit from being in a class with "normal" kids, if social interaction with those kids isn't supposed to help "normalize" their behavior?

    I don't claim to be an expert, but I once knew a kid with Down Syndrome. This kid had a brother with a high IQ and even though I don't claim to know the difference between somebody with moderate impairment and mild impairment, I really think 'socializing' with people was beneficial to this kid. If he started out with moderate impairment, he was definitely swinging toward mild, I thought, when I'd talk to him.
    Anyway, I was diagnosed with manic-depressive disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder (Type III) when I was a teenager. Even though the latter might be kind of dicey, I think the former was legit because the Lithium really helped (although my home situation improving was invaluable, too. and therapy might have helped.). Anyway, they said the onset was probably during elementary school. I was often a difficult person to deal with when I was a young kid and also when I was a teenager (in some ways more than normal). I look back and see many ways in which my behavior was odd or otherwise flat out unacceptable or violent, and I'd like to thank every teacher that treated me with compassion and patience, and likewise for all my peers that treated me decently, or as a friend. Without the right set of circumstances, I really think I could have gone the wrong route. Hell, I' just now getting my priorities straight and getting into more 'standard' or 'normal' relationships with the opposite sex, but I could see how if most people treated me badly, or continued to treat me badly, I could have ended up a lot worse off.

    Yeah, being a teacher's hard. Being a parent's hard. Being a kid's hard. This teacher *obviously** behaved badly.

    **apparently it's only obvious to about 75% of us. But according to Martha Stout, 4% of people, maybe more, never develop a true sense of empathy.

    P.S. TWC, ASCII penis, et al. I'll gladly share a drink with any of you'all, if we ever meet.

    TWC, Jamie Kelly, Chris Potter, et al. I truly thank you all for sharing.

  • Neu Mejican||

    MP,

    I'll look at that article later, but it seems to be talking about incentives/funds in regards to school districts, not parents.

    When an institution has more money, yes, it will lower the bar and more people will be eligible for services. This should not be confused with an incentive for a parent to want their child to be labeled as handicapped.

    The costs, both emotional and otherwise, of having a child in special education far outweigh any incentive...unless that child needs the services, in which case, the benefits may make it worth those costs.

  • Fluffy||

    TB, you are a worthless cunt.

    I guarantee you that I am much, much more anti-authority than you are. And anyone who visits this site more than once could tell you that. Lurk more, noob.

    My definitive position on education issues is that public education should not exist. Once all education is in private hands, we won't have to debate issues like this because the incident would be a matter to be resolved between the school and its customer, the parent. But since we currently have a public school system, and since that public school system is set up with absurd and contradictory rules, we end up with conflicts between interest groups, and I'm going to comment on them if for no other reason than to pass the time.

    It is very, very, very, very, very, very, rare to find parents of a child with a disability that would fit this cartoonish characterization. Even if I give you some slack for hyperbole.

    That is absurd, Neu. I framed the sentiment in terms that made the aggressive sense of entitlement created by current law more obvious, but I think that sentiment when expressed in "nicer" terms is pervasive.

    Someone posted above that current law holds that you can't be disciplined for behavior that falls under the heading of your medical diagnosis. Do you understand how absolutely psychotic that is? Can you contemplate the mindset of people who would agitate for such a rule?

    What if we applied such a rule to real life? I could very easily go to my doctor's office this afternoon and present him with a narrative that would get me a diagnosis of adult ADD and a Ritalin prescription. Should I be able to take that diagnosis and walk around pushing people out of my way when elevator doors open, or hitting people with my car if they get in my way [since one symptom of ADD is difficulty waiting in line or dealing with unanticipated delays]? If my friends or coworkers approach me in a body to tell me that it's not OK for me to act like Peter Griffin in the Family Guy episode "Petarded", are they "shaming" me? Making me "bow to authority"? Putting me on a pillory?

    And all you douchebags complaining about empathy forget one simple thing: Where's your motherfucking empathy for the other kids in the class? Or for the teacher saddled with absurd rules by a socio-medical-bureaucratic establishment that, if left to its own devices, will eventually make all abusive behavior part of some syndrome or other? As far as I can tell, it's completely absent. If a situation arises where different parties have different needs and there is imperfect communication about the expectations of each, it seems to me that the position demanded by "empathy" is that those needs get balanced as fairly as possible and that direct communication is employed to make sure all expectations are known. But you "emotive" libertarians don't give a shit about that, because someone's feelings might get hurt - but conveniently you hankie sniffers only consider the feelings of one party at a time.

  • ed||

    This thread is the Special Olympics of threads.
    Everybody wins!

  • Neu Mejican||

    Fluffy,

    Someone posted above that current law holds that you can't be disciplined for behavior that falls under the heading of your medical diagnosis. Do you understand how absolutely psychotic that is? Can you contemplate the mindset of people who would agitate for such a rule?

    Actually, the law does not hold that you can't be disciplined for behavior that results from your diagnosis. It just holds that you can't be denied a free and appropriate public education because of those behaviors...and provides for due process. It sets up procedures for appropriate discipline up to and including suspension. It takes expulsion off the table, for the most part, if due process determines that the behavior can be attributed to the disability.

    As for the mindset of people who would advocate for such a rule, it would be similar to other groups in the past who have faced discrimination and exclusion due to some innate aspect of their (or their child's) being.

    Special education law is very much an extension of civil rights law.

    That is absurd, Neu. I framed the sentiment in terms that made the aggressive sense of entitlement created by current law more obvious, but I think that sentiment when expressed in "nicer" terms is pervasive.

    I believe that you when you say that you believe this...

    It still lacks veracity.
    It is rare at best.

  • Neu Mejican||

    edit:

    I believe you when you say that you believe this...

  • Neu Mejican||

    J,

    On the other hand, if you want to take any diagnoses, ADHD is sometimes pushed for by parents when there really isn't a problem for the kid outside normal range.

    Or at least no problem is evident while the child is at school. Like I said above...when a parent with a typically developing kids is pushing for a diagnosis, it is rare that there is not some legitimate concern, even if that concern does not stem from neuro-developmental problem in their child.

    Rare does not mean non-existent...

    FWIW, I think the "disorder of the moment" status has actually shifted towards ASD's in these rare cases. This is partly due to misinformation currently being spread about the nature of the disorder.

    Thanks Jenny McCarthy...
    http://mikestanton.wordpress.com/2007/09/24/jenny-mccarthy-and-autism-quackery/

  • ||

    ed | May 30, 2008, 9:40am | #
    This thread is the Special Olympics of threads.
    Everybody wins!



    Monitor, you owe me, etc.

  • ||

    Take the Asperger's test. I scored 36. Now I'm off to study airline schedules.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    Conform, at all costs- you might be next!


    It is very good advice.

    There was a saying about what to do when in Rome...

  • ||

    It's a great example of democracy, any why we are not one.

    Two wolves and a lamb voting what's for lunch.

  • ||

    warty,

    41 here

  • ||

    took it again.

    42 this time

  • ||

    And all you douchebags complaining about empathy forget one simple thing: Where's your motherfucking empathy for the other kids in the class?

    Right here, pal. That's not the issue, now is it? The issue is not what you say, but how you say it. Kapeche?

    Or for the teacher saddled with absurd rules by a socio-medical-bureaucratic establishment that, if left to its own devices, will eventually make all abusive behavior part of some syndrome or other?

    A very good point, one that mertits discussion. Alas, not the issue at hand. The issue are the actions of this teacher, not shoulda, coulda, woulda if things were different and why, oh, why, do we have to let the more disturbed ankle biters into the classroom.

    But you "emotive" libertarians don't give a shit about that, because someone's feelings might get hurt - but conveniently you hankie sniffers only consider the feelings of one party at a time.

    Yep, you could have used a little of that hanky sniffing earlier on. Sorry you missed that opportunity. You might be open to a bit more enlightenment on this issue today.

  • ||

    Score of 16 here.

  • ||

    How ever unfortunate the situation might have been for him, he's still a boy with Asperger's rather then a girl with Asperger's Syndrome. He'll grow up to be a millionaire software mogul, as opposed to an unemployed virgin. When a girl has limited social abilities, it is much more detrimental to her future success. (Yes, I'm bitter.)

  • Neu Mejican||

    Take the Asperger's test.

    13...not that I believe the test is meaningful.

    It asks the right kinds of questions, but a 4 point likert, with ambiguous questions is not going to get you either sensitive nor specific results.

    I will look to see if they are doing anything to validate the methods...

  • Neu Mejican||

    This thread is probably dead by now.

    But I thought I would respond to the article that MP linked to related to incentives and disabilities rates.

    As I suspected, this study looked at incentives for school districts. Not parents. Making it pretty tangential to my point.

    And as I suspected from the abstract, it simply finds, as expected, that when you provide financial incentives and increased funds for specialized services, institutions will loosen the application of eligibility requirements for getting the services those funds provide. More money increases coverage of marginal cases. It does not address whether there is an overall benefit from this increased coverage.

    From a public policy stand-point this predictable finding is important.

    Having worked in management as well as in the classroom, I can tell you that for the most part additional funds provided to school districts for providing special education services do not cover the costs of providing those services. A child with a special education designation may get funded at 125% of average. But the cost will typically run 10 or 15% above that...

    This is one of the reasons that administration representatives are members of the IEP committee that determines eligibility. In practice, however, this representative is not someone who works with the budget. School administrators that take this aspect of their job lightly end up paying for it out of their general funds.

  • ||

    I had constant problems with teachers verbally abusing me because I was different or taking another person's word against mine in certain situations which made me hate school. My children suffered the same throughout there public school days. I finally agreed to allow both to get their GEDs. Public schools are in turmoil and need to make changes to allow good educators to do their jobs

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