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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Duval County needs a repeat offender rule

It has long been a cry that one of the biggest problems the district has is parents who have abdicated their responsibilities.

Well let’s bring responsibility back.

I propose that if a kid gets a certain amount of referrals, I think three but the number could be negotiable, for any reason then they are suspended indefinitely until the parent brings them back. It could be the very next day but the parent has to come in and meet with somebody, the principal preferably but a dean or guidance counselor would do as well.

When they come in they are required to sign a behavior contract which states with the next referral the child receives they will again be suspended indefinitely until the parent comes in and stays the day with the child, from the beginning bell to the end. Again this suspension could end the very next day but now the onus is on the parent being a parent and not on schools to raise kids. If a parent knows they have to come in then I think they will be willing to be more involved.

I believe our schools have also abdicated many of their responsibilities. We don’t require attendance, promptness and barely require a basic level of behavior and effort. Our schools often exacerbate problems in families and neighborhoods because if kids don’t learn a work ethic or discipline at home and schools ignore those things too, problems get worse.

I don’t like just blaming the parents but I recognize that some parents need to be persuaded to do the right thing. Let’s stop talking about it and do it.

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