Recently in the Baltimore news, a female teacher was caught on cellphone footage engaged in a fight with a seventeen year old student who after refusing to put away a cellphone for an exam, threw a book at the teacher. This sort of incident is not the first time a teacher has been involved in a conflict with a student nor will it be the last. It is unfortunate that more and more of these sorts of incidents are occurring with each passing day.
In the educational world, more teachers and members of the faculty are making the conscious decision to either leave their careers or transition to teaching different grade levels, resulting in an educational exodus that leaves a deficit of educators in the public and private schools. One of the reasons that teachers are leaving the education system is because of the behavior of students. Modern students have begun to lose respect for their teachers, which has resulted in them acting out through acts of defiance, verbal, and physical assaults. They have begun to view teachers of less of a source of guidance and knowledge, and more of a glorified babysitter. Students are testing the boundaries of how much they can get away with, believing that they can get away with whatever they want because the teachers cannot punish them with traditional methods.
Speaking personally, I have seen and heard how the current state of the public education system has affected teachers in the school. When I was in high school, one of the female teachers responsible for teaching algebra would receive verbal abuse from her students nearly on a daily basis. There were times where she would scream back at the students and her voice would echo through the halls. It would eventually take it’s toll on her, leading to depression. She would eventually decide to teach middle school students because ‘they are more well behaved’. Another of my teachers, who taught government studies as well spoke out against a group of students. He instructed five other students as well as myself to step outside before he began a verbal barrage against the remainder of the class for their behavior.
All of this leads me to ask, what do we do now? If more teachers leave the educational system, who will teach the next generation of students? The truth is, I don’t know. I honestly fear for the next generation of students and what might come out of it.