I am one member of a five person board. The opinions I express on this forum are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Escambia County Staff, Administrators, Employees, or anyone else associated with Escambia County Florida. I am interested in establishing this blog as a means of additional transparency to the public, outreach to the community, and information dissemination to all who choose to look. Feedback is welcome, but because public participation is equally encouraged, appropriate language and decorum is mandatory.
Monday, March 16, 2015
ACLU Gets it Wrong.....Again
Sara Latshaw, an employee of the ACLU of NW Florida, wrote a viewpoint that appeared in the PNJ this Sunday. In it, she chastises me for having the wrong plan on discipline; she regurgitates the same liberal talking points that I've heard over and over about school discipline, according to her, "leading the students on a pipeline to prison"
First things first: The idea of a school to prison pipeline is a ridiculous myth! It is a lie. It should be labeled correctly for what it is--a HOME to PRISON PIPELINE! blaming educators, administrators, deans and counselors that care about all kids for the horrible choices some students and their parents make is a cop-out and it places blame on the wrong people. It all starts at home and everybody knows it. If you live in a dysfunctional home, and you have a challenged upbringing, we are standing by to help you with all sorts of resources if you just reach out and take them. Being stuck in Poverty does not make students misbehave and become abusive predators--their deficient home-lives do. So if you are living in a tough situation--let us help you!
But if you chose to use that as an excuse to destroy learning environments for students and teachers that are doing their jobs, that excuse holds no water with rational thinking individuals. It's called personal responsibility, you have to chose to conform to school site expectations, otherwise it is your fault, and nobody else's.
And it is sad when students make horrible choices and end up getting in trouble at school; if bad behavior escalates such students may very well end up in prison. But I say again as loudly as I can-this is 100% up to the student and his parents to decide whether to do right, or do wrong.
If anything, as I correctly pointed out in my viewpoint about smashing the prison pipeline, we may be guilty of being too lenient on students in school---leading disruptive students to the false conclusion
that judges and the criminal justice system will be equally lenient. And we all know how that works out for many kids that make bad decisions....
So here is what is important.
It is our job as school officials to make school environments safe for ALL students, to have firm but fair expectations and consequences for deviating from normal expectations. It is not our jobs to "look the other way" and give chronically abusive, violent, disruptive, predatory and oftentimes asocial students chance after chance after chance for political correctness' sake. It is irrational to blame us for family problems manifesting themselves as behavior problems, based upon faulty assumptions purported to be truths generated from randomly skewed statistics that focus intently on outcomes rather that initiating actions that cause such outcomes.
Sara probably knows all of this, but apparently it is much more convenient and easy for her to scapegoat teachers, administrators, and entire school systems for the bad choices of students and their families.
Sadly, she apparently finds a willing audience that laps up this drivel...
Instead of beating up teachers and schools and administrators that care about kids, maybe Sara and her buddies ought to get back to what they are (allegedly) good at--protecting free speech. Oh, wait, I forgot, they go AWOL on that issue when it is something that doesn't suit their liberal agenda, like when a bonehead pastor wants to burn a holy book or a dumb student makes a boneheaded, racially insensitive statement and gets kicked out of a public school based upon a 9-second video with no due process and no chance to appeal.
Yeah, the ACLU shuns those things and goes AWOL--- yet tries their damnedest to rip Christian crosses off mountains and to indict entire school districts as being racists targeting minorities whenever and wherever they can.
Absolutely, totally, disgusting.