The popular method of punishing disobedient students with humiliation is a very poor one. It doesn’t bother to get to the crux of the problem and it turns human beings who have made poor choices into show ponies.
I expect that the Principal that dealt with a fistfight by handcuffing its student fighters to each other in a public place, will be praised for his innovative approach. Whilst I love innovation in education, I will not be among those that applaud this stunt.
A first-year principal in Mesa, Ariz., has been thrown into the spotlight for employing a controversial — yet apparently effective — method of student discipline.
When two Westwood High School students got in a fist fight during class this week, Principal Tim Richards gave the teens an choice: suspension or public humiliation — by sitting next to each other holding hands in the school courtyard.
The students chose the latter, hanging their heads as peers watched and taunted them from all sides. Westwood students found the stunt funny.
“Kids were laughing at them and calling them names asking, ‘Are you gay?’” student Brittney Smyers told ABC 15.
My first objection to this method is that it continues the cycle of bullying. By parading these two publicly and submitting them to public humiliation and taunting, the punishment becomes nothing more than a case of turning the ‘bullies’ into the ‘bullied’. Any sensible and authentic punishment wouldn’t have exposed these 2 to the hectoring that they were subjected to.
Additionally, it is the schools job to turn its students into responsible and respectful human beings. Any consequence has to be measured against this objective. Does humiliation make a person want to make good decisions? Does it make them regret their actions? Prevention is important but changing ones mindset is much more important.
Is that easy to achieve? Of course not. But at least it isn’t the cop-out a public humiliation is.
Click on the link to read What Principal Would Ever Approve of this Kind of Bullying?
Click on the link to read Bullies Should Not Be Treated Like Students With Incorrect Uniform
Click on the link to read Social Media: A Playground for Bullies
Click on the link to read Charity Pays for Teen’s Plastic Surgery to Help Stop Bullying