Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Horrible memory brought back

The worst has happened here today.  A seventeen year old high school student was stabbed to death in the cafeteria of one of the high schools in the northern part of the area.  This was before school, while the breakfast was being served.  All the details are inconclusive so far, but what is known is that one child is dead, four are hurt and three are in custody.  It appears it was a misunderstanding.

Why is this a horrible memory?  Well, thirty plus years ago, I was a high school teacher.  I had a student leave my fourth period biology class, walk around the corner to the cafeteria for lunch, get in the line, and get stabbed to death right there.

Thankfully, my memory of all this isn't as clear as it was.  Thirty years ago, collection of evidence wasn't as thorough as it has to be today.  School continued.  Parents didn't mob the school demanding all stop for them to get their kids.

I'm not saying it wasn't a usual occurrence. In fact, that is the only time in my over thirty year career anything like this happened in a school where I was.  It is just that common sense took hold.  It was/is a sad thing.  Today that boy would probably be a grandparent.  Who knows what he would have contributed to the world.

This situation today was a total circus, and it wasn't caused specifically by the school  nor the sheriff.  They were doing what they needed to be done.  And here is where I will probably get flak.  The circus atmosphere was caused by the parents who immediately left home to come to the school to get their child.

I don't know the student count at this high school, but I am pretty sure it is about 2000, and in fact I will bet closer to 3000.  I KNOW the administrators' and teachers' main concern is for the safety and welfare of all the students.  I also know that, especially now, there are emergency policies that take over - and they are there for the entire student body.  The faculty and staff know what they are doing!

The first complaint from parents, who were completely excluded from school grounds (thankfully), was that they couldn't get into the school.  I know you are worried about your child.  I just wish you had trust for those who are looking out for the welfare of not only YOUR child but each and every child.  Then they were upset that some of the teachers confiscated cell phones.  Well - I am sure the students were ripe with erroneous information.  Most teachers aren't thrilled about the proliferation of cell phones anyway.  They are great for cheating on tests.

The parents wanted their child immediately released from the school.  I guess they thought there would be a mass murderer around the school, breaking into classrooms that were locked down.  Locked down works two ways - keeping in and keeping out.  If all these kids were released, just how can the school be aware of just who the child is leaving with.  Can you imagine the outrage if the kid went with someone he shouldn't?  And then something terrible happened because of that?

The district said the kids who ride the bus to and from school would ride that bus.  Well:  "I have taken off work, and I will have to wait more - and miss more work?"  Perhaps you should have stayed at work until all decisions were made?

This went on for five hours.  The school sent the message to parents after about 2 hours.  That is when the parents clogged the parking lots belonging to the local businesses.  They weren't told to do that.

And then finally they said they weren't happy with security at the school.  I am pretty sure all hell would have broken out if the schools had metal detectors at all the doors.  It would have probably prevented this, but many of these same parents would have raised holy hell about their little darling having to pass through it.  Not their precious pumpkin.  They wouldn't have contraband.  And if they did, how dare the school confiscate said item.

So, ok - I have probably gone a little (ya' think?) too  far to the other side of all this.  But I think the teachers deserve a bonus and any and all accolades there are for keeping these kids with them in order for FIVE hours.  For getting them out of the building in an orderly fashion.  For controlling the mess in the cafeteria (I have had that duty before - ye' gads what a mess), and no more students were hurt AND the perps were in custody immediately.  The sheriff did what they needed - they kept the kids in school until they could talk to anyone who might have witnessed the fight.  Last I heard, the weapons were still missing.

All in all, the school did its job.  The parents, while meaning good, caused the problems.  They blocked traffic, caused multiple businesses to lose patrons, caused more problems for the school.  Shame.


JuJu said...

what a sad situation for everyone involved.

Judy said...

I agree totally!!! Back in the day, my kids school had random, unannounced locker checks--pot was a big drug back then. NO ONE ever complained!!! If this were a middle school or high school, I would not have been one of those parent's flooding the parking lot--guess I felt my kids were safe at school. Now, if something like that happened when my kids were little, I probably would have gone into town, just to see, and maybe get them, if they were hysterical with fear or something--which, really, none of my kids ever were. LOL They would have wanted to be there to witness all the drama! Of course, nowadays? This world is a weird place.