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When should a violent child be removed from a public school?

I sub at my son's school & have been wondering all year if there are kids at his school who would be better served somewhere else.

Reading the posts about the boy who was pepper-sprayed had me thinking about the children at my son's school, because the potential is there for some of them to become equally violent. Actually, I've witnessed a few incidents and it is scary. There is one boy in particular who I've seen destroy the school psychologist's office in a fit of rage. In 1st grade, a student tried to stab my son's teacher with a pencil. And that student, now in 3rd grade, is still at the school.

Where do you think the line should be for kids who are violent to be removed from a school? And do you think the motivation to keep them there is purely financial (for the school system)?


Asked by sweetpotato418 at 7:58 AM on Apr. 8, 2011 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Level 19 (7,958 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (8)
  • I guess 3 strikes a year kind of thing, not for detentions but for suspensions. I dont thing its fair to have other children going to school in fear or even just being distracted by someone who probably needs more help when what the average teacher/school can provide.

    Answer by mom24girlsmt at 8:02 AM on Apr. 8, 2011

  • I have been asked by schools to sign home-bound (so they can avoid having to pay for other options). But sometimes there is no one safe in the home to watch the child. Even good parents may not be able to manage and cope with a truly mentally ill child posing a risk to the child and others in the area. Parents try desperately to get help their child needs. NO insurance covers the cost for long term residential mental health needs. Parents in middle class families or low income can't afford the care needed. They scream for help and get labeled bad parents. All I can say is in my state we do not vote for the people who can make options possible. In fact, we vote consistently for those that keep pulling more and more resources so that schools are left with zero options.  I now see kids who schools send to my private practice in hopes of a magic cure.  Treatment is expensive.  And we don't want to invest in our kids.


    Answer by frogdawg at 8:25 AM on Apr. 8, 2011

  • I worked as a therapist in public schools and worked specifically with mentally ill children. I agree there should be appropriate settings to meet the needs of very mentally ill children....but there isn't. At least not in my state. Many times the school had options but the principal chose not to exercise those because of the politics involved (her reputation, her chances for advancements/promotions, how expensive it is). And sometimes it IS safer for a child to be at school and not at home. There is a very expensive way in my state, and many states have this option. We call it Continuum of Care. It is a therapeutic residential option for the most ill and schools are obligated to pay for at least a good part of the care. So can the Department of Juvenile Justice. Because of the expense most schools desperately try to avoid it at all costs.  About the child be safer in the school:


    Answer by frogdawg at 8:21 AM on Apr. 8, 2011

  • Legally they can never be removed because every child is entitled to an education. It is up to the parents, admin and teachers to learn how to handle an out of control child. These are children, not hardened criminals. Most districts also have schools for children with emotional or other issues (prone to violence). My son is Bipolar and could be violent in school and I asked that he be changed to the special school but was discouraged from doing so by the school who eventually called the police on my son for throwing rocks. I thought that was beyond stupid. Kids throw rocks, and it went on my sons criminal record. In any case I think more of the special schools loaded with therapists should be made if a school system is unable to handle a child with issues.

    Answer by gemgem at 8:01 AM on Apr. 8, 2011

  • They can't be taken out. Our school created a zero tolerance - but that led to such bs. The principle tried to EXPEL (not suspend not detention) a kindergarten for bringing a batmobile to school (it had little torepedo like things attached) that he could"have used as a weapon". Another child was sent to the alternative school in 3rd grade for hugging aid in what I would call a "man hug" where they pat your back. The principle witnessed it and called it Hitting....the aide was afraid of loosing her job so she went long with it. When the principle departed 2 years later the aid told everyone how terrible she felt but the damage was done. That child is now in 9th grade and has hated school since and talks of dropping out when he is 16)

    Answer by brypmom at 8:20 AM on Apr. 8, 2011

  • I just want to clarify - at no time was I implying that children should be expelled and sent home. The first part of the question was about children being better served somewhere else - in another educational setting.

    I really feel for parents who are trying to help their ill children, and not getting the support they need. My DH is a teacher & when we lived in another state, worked at a school where there were an equal number of therapists & teachers. It just seems that something needs to change. No one is being served by the current system, especially not the children who are ill.

    Comment by sweetpotato418 (original poster) at 10:20 AM on Apr. 8, 2011

  • I want to add that from what I've seen, Special Ed in this country is utterly ineffective, thanks to the endless filing of paperwork, data collection & seemingly endless wait for a child to receive any kind of intervention.

    For those of you in education, maybe the RTI (Response to Intervention) program, if implemented well, may speed up the process, but I'm not super optimistic.

    Comment by sweetpotato418 (original poster) at 10:24 AM on Apr. 8, 2011

  • my son was sent to the E.R because a little girl bit him on the arm. Some kids are just mean by learning from the parents and some are just mean because they cant help it

    Answer by NorthStar115 at 9:48 AM on Jun. 16, 2011