New Student on Day 1 of Big Test

May 20, 2007 at 9:59 pm | Posted in behavior, education, high stakes testing, teachers | 4 Comments

Tomorrow is the first of eight days of our high stakes testing period. I shall receive a new student from a fellow teacher at my school because, as the principal puts it, “it’s for the student’s safety and the teacher’s own good.” Apparently, the teacher’s been screaming at the student and putting his hands on the student.

Tomorrow is clearly not a good day for the student to begin adjustments to a new classroom, a new teacher, and a new environment. Definitely not the ideal day for me to establish a working, respectful relationship with a new student, though we shall both try very hard.

Honestly, I’m dreading it. I know the boy because he was part of that class that I substituted five days in. I’ve already taught him for five days (which is a big plus). I know a bit of what he’s capable of academically and behaviorally. He and I will probably do quite well together. BUT he’s had a bad experience in the classroom for the past two months or so with his previous teacher. To start Day 1 with me being put in a high-stress situation isn’t going to endear me to him.

Is the boy a huge discipline problem? Not really from what I saw. He was very bright, a bit of an attention getter, definitely testing his limits with me, a born leader. I don’t know what his home situation is like, though I met his mother and him, introduced myself, and she completely, rudely ignored me AND her son trying to get her attention (she was being irate at one of the office staff members over lunch tickets), so I can guess that him home situation might not be ideal. He really is extremely bright, which tells me that if I don’t challenge his mind, his behavior will be very disrespectful because he doesn’t respect me. My guess is, that’s exactly what happened with his last teacher. Unfortunately, in the middle of these stupid BIG TESTs, I won’t exactly be pulling out all sorts of amazing lessons throughout the day, will I? It’s going to be, “Sit down quietly for the next three hours.” Not exactly best practice is it?!

We shall see.

What p-d me off is, “WHY DID THE PRINCIPAL PUT HIM IN MY CLASS NOW?!” I mean really, ya couldna picked a better time? Last week would have been perfect! She discussed the possibility with me and I told her, yes, I would welcome him of course, but I didn’t think I had to remind her of the BIG TEST coming up and perhaps she should pick an appropriate moment to move him into my class?! Didn’t even occur to me that that was something I had to tell her.



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  1. I can’t wait to hear how the first day of testing with the new student went… I have to say that I’ve never seen a student switch classrooms within the same building so late in the year. Hope you find a way to make it work!

  2. This is a common event at my school. Another teacher received two students today from another school. Very low academically. We suspect that these schools kick students out right before the BIG TEST to inflate their scores…which consequently depresses our scores. Every year at this time, we get an influx of a dozen new students of all grade levels, all academically low compared to their peers. My new boy arrived at our school about two and a half months ago actually.

  3. That’s quite a ploy those schools have going for them. I was trying to say that it seems odd for a kid to switch classrooms within the SAME school at this late stage of the year, though… how many weeks of school can you guys possibly even have left? As for switching from one school to another, yeah, I suppose that can happen anytime, although the influx you describe is just sickening. What a disgusting practice.

  4. One of the office staff told me that they just enrolled 16 students across the grade levels in the last week or so. The same teacher who received two new students received another one yesterday. A friend of mine received two, all academically low of course. It is a disgusting practice and I have no idea how they manage it because my fellow teachers complain that no matter what violence or atrocity a student commits, our school never kicks them out!

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