I am thankful we are in the school district we are, no matter what complaints others may have, or my own occasional grousing about certain teachers I think should have retired years before my daughter entering their room. I just got a rote call… a recording made by my daughter’s principal that goes out automatically to all parents when they want to convey an update or reminder.
Today’s call wasn’t so benign as a reminder schools will be closed for voting tomorrow. A student apparently told some classmates he was going to bring a weapon to school. These aren’t disgruntled college students or drugged out high schoolers, these are MIDDLE SCHOOL… ages 10 to 13. The students who heard him reported it to the office. The police were called, no weapons found on the premises, the child removed and an investigation on-going. Our district, or at least, my daughter’s principal and assistant principal, feel it is their duty to let parents know what’s going on, and give us the facts, so if our children come home upset or just full of the rumors, we can deal with it. I am so thankful for that! My child has been the target of bullying in the past, and it makes her a little leery. I can point out that her principal, assistant principal and teachers are always doing everything possible to keep their students safe.There was an incident when I was in high school where one of my classmates snapped, and spiralled rapidly into paranoia and delusions…I remember it too clearly. I had been in the nurse’s office that morning, at the same time as this student. We were both sent home. Only he went back, with a compound bow and a quiver full of broadheads, intent on “hunting down the devil”… only, the devil in his mind was our vice-principal. He didn’t get off the first shot, because the VP knocked the arrow off the rest. The second attempt put a hole in the door, and one student broke his finger getting that door closed. 4 students and a teacher jumped him in the hallway, and wrestled the bow away and him into submission, but not before another student received a gash to one arm. These were all people I knew, and no one ever would have expected the boy to turn violent, even though most of us knew things weren’t so great in his life. He just wasn’t “the type”. I remember the rumor someone had slipped him drugs. I don’t know.
When did such violence become the norm? When did it somehow become culturally alright to blame other people, such as parents and educators, for everything that seems unfair and wrong in a child’s life? Are there really that many children out there who feel they have no other recourse? Or is it just the “cool” way to be, angry and vicious?