Why Johnny Can’t Count

classroom chaosBlogger JF Beck spent 30 years teaching in Western Australia’s public high schools, so the recent and shameful news that academic performance is declining even as the bureaucrat-infested, jargon-clouded Chalk Industrial Complex demands and gets ever-larger sums to “educate” Australia’s children came as no surprise.

As part of a long post at his site, he details the process teachers must follow when confronted by some nasty little piece of work who refuses to learn and behave, all the while stopping fellow classmates from learning:

  • Correct the pupil.
  • Contact the parents.
  • Develop an IEP and, if necessary, a BMP (Behaviour Management Plan) after reflecting on the situation.
  • Implement the IEP and BMP.
  • Enter behavioural details into the Schools Information System (SIS). The details must be dated and written so that management can, if necessary, copy and paste them into appropriate documents. The school network is often down, however, and unless a teacher provides his own computer – either through purchase, or rental from the Education Department – there is no way to access the network.
  • Consult with the line manager and year coordinator. DO NOT do this unless all previous steps have been taken and proved ineffective.
  • Meet with the pupil and the line manager to draw up a behaviour contract. The contract will likely require modified behaviour by both pupil and teacher, the pupil having complained at length about teacher shortcomings.
  • Monitor compliance with the contract.
  • Continue updating pupil behaviour data in SIS.
  • Brief line manager.
  • Meet to draw up a new contract.
  • Continue SIS updates.
  • Monitor compliance with the new contract.
  • Brief the line manager.
  • The line manager refers the matter to Student Services for further action.
  • Brief Student Services – be prepared to defend your handling of the matter.
  • Meet with the pupil at Student Services to draw up a new contract.
  • Continue entering data into SIS.
  • Monitor contract compliance.
  • Meet with the pupil and parents at Student Services – be prepared to defend your handling of the matter.
  • It’s the end of semester so the student changes classes.
  • The problem isn’t solved, it now belongs to another teacher.

The next time some teachers’ union cup-rattler blames the galloping ignorance and rising idiocy of Australia’s youth on a lack of funding, remember that no amount of money will ever make a disruptive teen sit down, shut up and learn.

Beck’s post can — and should — be read via the link below.

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