Repercussions of Southside student attack

Published 10:40pm Saturday, August 17, 2013

Dear Editor, 

If I was the employee that only prepared student’s meals or cleaned the desk to which they so learn, I feel students of any classification has stepped their boundaries when they think it’s okay to invade the personal space or make physical contact to a school personnel.

Never in a million years would I have thought something as vicious could have happened to me, I was attacked by four students.

I give of myself unconditionally to the challenges of my career. I understand in this profession much is required and much is expected, however, we must be able to work without constant interruptions, direct or indirect intimidations in our classrooms.

In as much as I was victimized, when granted the opportunity to make comments in court, I wasn’t sure where to start. So I spoke from my heart, I forgave these students and would hope they recognize they were wrong.

As their teacher, I was familiar with their potential in becoming productive citizens, and explained that the gifts and skills which they possess would vanish if they didn’t accept responsibilities and learn to respect authority.  I also reached out to their parents, to not uphold them in their wrongdoing but chastise them so there’s not a recurrence of those violent behaviors.

As for my wellbeing, I suffered intense physical pain but the mental stress to which I encounter will probably never cease to exist.

It’s sad to say we live in an era where a high percentage of our classrooms are not a safe haven and conducive to learning. Students are constantly fighting among themselves and we are authorized to take reasonable measure to establish appropriate conduct; they are constantly breaking school policies and procedures; however, when we attempt to obtain order or enforce these policies and procedures often times our intentions are interpreted as inappropriate behavior.

When these unfortunate occurrences happen we must get the support from our superiors. When the school system displays a level of support, the morale significantly increases because now it is perceive that our contributions are valued and appreciated.

I wish for all my students a chance to savor each segment of their educational experience and that the outcome will not land them in our judicial system.

I’m looking forward to this school year and I will rise above my circumstance and not allow my anxiety to overtake me. I John 4:4

Wanda Tyler
Southside High School teacher

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