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(Mensaje se repite en Español)

One of the main reasons approximately 50% of initially idealistic teachers quit the profession within 5 years of starting is their complete and utter failure to receive reasonable discipline support from administration in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). While there was a time when LAUSD administrators supported teachers as a matter of course and served as a buffer between parents and students, now in the age of dismantling schools in favor of charters and privatization, the campaign to force out professional and fairly compensated teachers is in high gear with administrators putting a target on teachers with the clear message to students and parents that you don't have to take responsibility for your actions, you can just blame your teacher.

Now the LAUSD Board has gotten into the act and further raised the temperature against teachers by saying that "willful defiance" is no longer an acceptable reason to suspend a student from class. While it is true that suspending a student is not a solution to their continuing to disrupt a class, leaving them for the teacher to deal with- while serving the students breakfast?- is not something designed to facilitate the already difficult job of trying to teach students, the vast majority of whom are already years behind in mastery of the grade-level standards that would allow them to be engage by the teacher. 

Could social promotion and the humiliation it brings on students who suffer it year after year be the actual reason students are being disruptive in the first place? Nah, that can't be or LAUSD leadership would have dealt with it by now. Or would they? It's not as if the LAUSD Board has suggested what a teacher is now supposed to do with students who have told me in the past, "I'm not going to do any work nor am I going to allow anybody else in this class to do work." 

If this was truly about stopping the abuse of suspension as a means of dealing with improper behavior in LAUSD, the Board and LAUSD administrators might have first used the following California law to hold parents responsible for the behavior of their children, instead of dumping them on the teacher. 

California Education Code Section 48900.1

Legal Research Home > California Laws > Education Code > California Education Code Section 48900.1

48900.1.  (a) The governing board of each school district may adopt
a policy authorizing teachers to require the parent or guardian of a
pupil who has been suspended by a teacher pursuant to Section 48910
for reasons specified in subdivision (i) or (k) of Section 48900, to
attend a portion of a schoolday in the classroom of his or her child
or ward. The policy shall take into account reasonable factors that
may prevent compliance with a notice to attend. The attendance of the
parent or guardian shall be limited to the class from which the
pupil was suspended.

If you or someone you know has been targeted and are in the process of being dismissed and need legal defense, get in touch:

En Español

Una de las principales razones por aproximadamente el 50% de los maestros inicialmente idealistas salir de la profesión dentro de los 5 años de haber comenzado es su falta total y absoluta de recibir apoyo disciplina razonable de la administración en el Distrito Escolar Unificado de Los Ángeles (LAUSD). Aunque hubo un momento en que los administradores de LAUSD apoya maestros como algo natural y sirve como un amortiguador entre los padres y los estudiantes, ahora en la edad de desmantelar las escuelas a favor de las cartas y la privatización, la campaña para forzar la salida de profesionales de la enseñanza y una compensación justa es a toda velocidad con los administradores de poner un objetivo en los docentes con el mensaje claro a los estudiantes y padres de familia que no tienen que tomar responsabilidad por sus acciones, sólo puede culpar a su maestro.

Ahora, la Junta del LAUSD se ha metido en el acto y levantó aún más la temperatura contra los maestros diciendo que "desafío deliberado" ya no es una razón aceptable para suspender a un estudiante de la clase. Si bien es cierto que la suspensión de un estudiante no es una solución a su continua y perturbar una clase, lo que les deja para el profesor para hacer frente-mientras servía el desayuno a los estudiantes - no es algo diseñado para facilitar la tarea ya difícil de tratar de enseñar estudiantes, la gran mayoría de los cuales ya son años de retraso en el dominio de los estándares de nivel de grado que les permitan ser participar por el profesor.

¿Podría la promoción social y la humillación que aporta a los estudiantes que sufren año tras año es la razón actual de los estudiantes están siendo negativo en el primer lugar? No, eso no puede ser ni el liderazgo del LAUSD se habría ocupado de ella por ahora. O ¿no? No es como si la Junta del LAUSD ha sugerido que un maestro es ahora supone que debe hacer con los estudiantes que me han dicho en el pasado: "Yo no voy a hacer ningún trabajo, ni voy a permitir que nadie en esta clase para hacer trabajar ".

Si esto fuera verdad acerca de detener el abuso de la suspensión como un medio de hacer frente a la conducta inapropiada en el LAUSD, la Junta y los administradores de LAUSD podrían haber usado primero la siguiente ley de California para celebrar los padres responsables del comportamiento de sus hijos, en lugar de tirarlos en el profesor.

Código de Educación de California Sección 48900.1
Investigación Legal Home> Leyes California> Código de Educación> Código de Educación Sección 48900.1

48900.1. (A) La mesa directiva de cada distrito escolar puede adoptar
una política autorizando a los maestros para exigir que el padre o tutor de un
alumno que ha sido suspendido por un maestro conforme a la Sección 48910
por razones especificadas en la subdivisión (i) o (k) de la Sección 48900, que
asistir a una porción del día escolar en el salón de clases de su hijo
o pupilo. La política deberá tener en cuenta los factores razonables que
puede impedir el cumplimiento de una citación. La asistencia de la
padre o tutor se limitarán a la clase de la que el
alumno fue suspendido.

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05 2013


Peter's insights are accurate and precise. Students in LAUSD are being allowed to run amok and the blame is somehow being thrown on teachers who stand there like plumbers being told to fix a leak when their wrenches have been stolen.

A majority of LAUSD employees understand the problem, but are afraid to speak out in this gestapo atmosphere that Deasy has created.

Those of us in the classroom must resort to sneaky tactics to survive. We use technology to passify - Books on CD, computer labs with outside websites that keep track of student work. We go power point crazy. We also resort to bribery. I told my 9th graders that they would get Winchell's donuts if they acted "on-task" during any of the many impromptu visits from "district goons." Yes, I used the term "district goons" with them and they laughed. It worked. The goons couldn't get anything on me, and I rewarded the kids with donuts.

Another problem is the dizzying array of conflicting and contradictory criticisms that are coming at teachers from all directions. The Title Three EL "expert" wants material that amounts to "comprehensible input plus one." The Instructional director wants to see "learning objectives" printed out on the board and kids doing something directly related to these objectives, OH, and it must be grade level material and preferably something provided by the district. The "linked learning" business people have their own agenda which is completely different and project related. Finally, at the end of the semester, the kids get to fill out a survey on you, the teacher. Questions reveal an entirely different agenda with questions like, "how well did what you learn in class have real life applications? Did your teacher care about you? How well does your teacher know you? Did students pay attention in class?"

The initials RTTT (Race to the Top) should be replaced with GTT - standing for "Get The Teacher." Teaching in LAUSD is simply a no-win, damned if you do and damned if you don't situation. Teachers act as whipping boys and scapegoats. We need to pool our ideas together and begin to get subversive. Actually, we're already doing that.

LAUSD gets away with what it does because of its sheer size. It is a force to be reckoned with. Smaller districts don't often try what LAUSD does until after they see LAUSD getting away with things.

When all is said and done, I don't think the best teachers will be left standing. Only the teachers who know how to suck up to administration will remain. Writing a learning objective on the board does not guarantee students will learn. All it does is pacify some district bureaucrat who values style over substance.

Implicit in what you say is that teachers- their union, parents, and students continue to cede their power to a long dysfunctional LAUSD, because they do nothing proactive to stop it. While clearly teachers are not risk takers, it is more and more evident that doing nothing in the face of the present witch hunt against teachers and the continued mediocrity of predominantly minority public education only empowers those morally challenged folks running LAUSD that don't have enough of an education themselves to understand the effects on this society and their lives as well of continuing to purposefully fail public education for profit and illusory control over the chaos we are rapidly descending into.

Lenny, you know the beat goes on as they hamstring teachers and dismantle any control they may exercise over students. If students can't behave in the classroom. they have to be removed or you have the whole class misbehaving,I wish this deform board of education and superintendent could spend a day in our classrooms and maintain control without removing students who are disruptive. I actually don't blame the students for what they are allowed to do in the absence of any type of consequences for bad behavior. Our administrator's answer to any behavioral problem is to call the parents, When does this become effective, after the third, fourth or fifth call? This procedure is like yelling for help over and over again until it becomes a useless effort.

In general, district bureaucrats can't understand how difficult it is to get students to cooperate on a regular basis. I think that the LAUSD wants to (magically) be staffed solely with teachers who are among the best disciplinarians. They want teachers who are willing and able to enforce strict discipline among the students on a daily basis. They don't want teachers sending misbehaving students to the dean (usually a wanna-be administrator who doesn't know what to do).

Some teachers know how to talk tough. They know how to intimidate students into cooperation. They are not always the best at actual teaching but, if the students are well-behaved, then they are assured a job for life.

There are some politically-correct individuals who feel that suspensions are given because a student is in a minority group. I don't think these individuals understand that students need to held responsible for their behavior. The LAUSD wants to hold teachers accountable for their behavior but makes no effort to hold students (or administrators) accountable. Teacher misconduct is treated as a serious offense while student misconduct is tolerated by the LAUSD. Although exceptions might be made for violence, the real problem in the classroom is day-to-day misconduct (such as talking too much, making noise, not paying attention, not doing work). If a teacher is having difficulty getting basic behavior from students, the LAUSD is unwilling and unable to do anything about it (except send the teacher to the rubber room).

Even though John Deasy has support from business leaders and politicians, his no-confidence vote from teachers should be taken seriously. Those who support Deasy do NOT have to deal with student misbehavior on a daily basis. Most of them would not give up their six-figure jobs to go through what a teacher has to go through.

Some teachers will continue to succeed. There are teachers who know how to be scary and intimidating. They know how to get their students to be well-behaved (although they might not know how to get the students to learn the subject matter). Some teachers, at the other extreme, know how to make the students their friends. The students like those teachers but those teachers also might be unable to get the students to learn. Those teachers are likely to pass students along.

Although this issue is not often mentioned, I think a big part of the problem is that teachers (in general) are passing students along to pacify administration. Teachers cannot hold students to serious levels of grade-level accountability or the failure rate would be too high.

Students are not dumb. If they think they can get away with misbehaving, then they will misbehave. The interest in learning that many students have in the early grades is long-gone by high school. In general, school is not interesting for most of them. There is competition for students' attention from entertainment. It is not possible for the average teacher to make school as entertaining as what students see on TV.

I think that many fail to understand that the REAL purpose of suspending a defiant student is actually NOT to help that individual. I agree that suspension will not get that student to change his/her behavior. However, suspending that student sends a message to the others that there is a consequence for being defiant. Suspending that student can help discourage other students from becoming worse.

Other students are paying attention to what the defiant students are getting away with. One defiant student might be tolerable, but many defiant students make a classroom terrible and result in nobody learning.

This is most likely to be a problem for teachers who are nice people. Teachers who can intimidate their students will be fine.

One serious problem (in my opinion) is that there are very few teachers who are able to be nice, likeable people while still effectively asserting their authority and getting the students to learn and enjoy the subject matter.

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