Monday, January 28, 2008

Teachers In Physical Danger?

Here are two references to the same incident--specifically, that a substitute teacher was "body-slammed" by junior high students in the LA Unified School District, and how the district's insurance company has yet to accept the teacher's disability claim.

Teachers and students do not assault each other. Period. Any that do should be subject to severe penalties.

"On Oct. 5, 2007, at another notorious middle school, I was deliberately body-slammed on the head by two to three large young men in a P.E. class of 53 students, while another teacher (someone I had never met before) was decent enough to give a formal declaration to school and police authorities of what he had witnessed. I sustained a concussion and sciatica nerve damage as a result of this personal attack intended to 'terrorize [me].' I have memory lapses and continued head and leg pain. I'm told by the local police that this sort of physical abuse on teachers occurs with disturbing regularity. The LAUSD case nurse assigned to my case labeled my attack 'boys will be boys.'" she wrote.

If true, heads should roll--and I don't say that lightly.


allen said...

Why isn't this sort of thing actionable? Doesn't the school district have some responsibility to maintain order and protect its employees? I understand about immunity but immunity has limitations. Wouldn't an pattern of irresponsibility, as typified by numerous assaults and injuries, puncture immunity?

Darren said...

One would think.

Anonymous said...

I teach with someone who, several years ago, was physically assaulted in much the same manner as that substitute teacher. She took a several year break from teaching and then returned, but to work with younger (and less physically strong) kids. Left lasting scars (emotionally).

Ellen K said...

Teachers are denied due process all the time. An elderly substitute was knocked over by a student in a middle school in a Dallas suburb. She was placed in juvenile prison after her mother claimed she was 'too busy to monitor her daughter's activities'. What ended up happening is that a local minority oriented station staged a picket of the school district and the judge let her out despite the ongoing injuries of the teacher, now on disability. In Dallas, a teacher was similarly tripped on a stairway by two students in a high school. She is still fighting to get the district to pay for her medical and rehab. I have very little faith in schools when injuries occur because there are too many people willing to make the injury into a political cause rather than a civil one.