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I guess I have to give a disclosure before I begin this column. “Please understand that I am not condoning the actions of the school resource officer in Columbia, S.C.” I actually wanted to write about a friend of mine’s son and daughter-in-law who were recently on “House Hunters” on HGTV. I wanted to mention what a beautiful couple they are and how the son is such a good reflection of his parents.

Also in that column I wanted to expand on the young men who are in the Journey to Medicine Program and what a pleasure it was meeting them and listening to a few of their stories.

But the story in South Carolina was everywhere. It was on every news channel, on the radio and on Facebook. So many talked about that “poor baby” and what happened to her. I heard some people say that the teacher was the punk and he should be fired. The officer has been fired and now everyone has an attorney.

I get it when I hear mothers and fathers say “don’t put your hands on my child.”

My question is why don’t some parents tell their children to show respect for the teacher and authority? Encourage children to listen instead of being a disruption in the classroom. I’m not making this statement based on my thoughts, but from actual stories from friends who are teachers in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Michigan.

I know former teachers who have had to retire because they could not take the conflict anymore. I know teachers who have been injured by students and assaulted by students who were lying in wait for them after class. At times the parents are called and in some instances the parent comes to jump the teacher.

Turnout is poor at open houses and PTA meetings. I really feel for the current day teachers. What do you do with the student that will not allow you to teach? There are some children who do want to learn. It seems like the presence of cell phones in the classroom have caused a lot of problems.

There is another video that went viral, but didn’t garner the same attention as the recent South Carolina incident. In this video, the teacher is White and the student is Black. The teacher is in his early sixties and the incident took place at JFK High in Paterson, N.J.. Watching that student assault the teacher made me as sick as the South Carolina video. What was more disturbing was the fact that there were several other videos of students assaulting teachers and most were over cell phones. One was an assault over getting bad grades.

I don’t know the answer. My wish is for students to listen to their teachers, my wish is for parents to train their children to have respect for authority and wish number three, you always get three, that third wish is for people to realize that there are always two sides to a story and then there is the truth.

(Email the columnist at debbienorrell@aol.com)



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Lifestyles Report…No longer the little red schoolhouse was originally published on newpittsburghcourieronline.com

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