Idaho fourth-graders who flunk reading have faces marked

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  • terra nova Park City, UT
    Nov. 22, 2012 11:43 p.m.

    My first grade teacher told my mother "Your boy will never read." Mrs. Thompson was a short, stern, demanding woman with greying hair pulled back into a bun so tight that it caused MY eyes to water. Her wrinkled face was unadorned by any makeup, the creases on it were not from laughter. She was emotionless at best and stern at worst. To my mother's credit, Mrs. Thompson's assessment elicited a wan smile and a just audible, "Hmm.. We'll see."

    Over the summer we worked on reading. Mom paid me to read books to my little sister. Capitalism may be flawed, but it produces results. I got paid to read AND drive my sister crazy.

    That fall I entered second grade at a different school. A newly minted teacher named Miss Robinson walked into class. She was willowy blond who smiled a lot. Her warmth, kindness and gentle spirit permeated our classroom like a spring breeze. A young boy will do a lot for a teacher he loves. By the end of the school year I was reading two grade levels ahead of my peers.

    Thanks mom. And thanks Miss Robinson.

  • tlaulu Taylorsville, Utah
    Nov. 21, 2012 11:48 a.m.

    I'm imagining with a thinking error what I could've written on this teacher's face if that was my child.

  • Zona Zone Mesa, AZ
    Nov. 20, 2012 7:55 p.m.

    Holy Eighth Amendment Problem!! This is very poor judgment. Maybe all of next week these nine students should get to draw with permanent marker on this teacher's face. Ironically, it may be the only way she learns.

  • rnoble Pendleton, OR
    Nov. 20, 2012 1:48 p.m.

    You have all ignored the decision of the students. 3 chose to miss recess and work on meeting the goals. 6 chose to continue recess and be marked. How is this translated into fire the teacher. I say kudos to the teacher. She is trying to use several methods in achieving reading success. And many studies show that reading success at this time in their lives is a predictor of future success. Those 6 could have chosen to miss recess but they had less respect for working on a deficiency than having "fun" time off. I would hope their respective families would reinforce the importance of working on the deficiency over the fuss regarding their decision to be marked so they could have recess.

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    Nov. 20, 2012 2:45 a.m.

    Glad this didn't happen to one of my kids, my wife would have slapped this teacher and then we would be the news story.

  • Shawnm750 West Jordan, UT
    Nov. 19, 2012 9:46 a.m.

    I have to agree that the teacher should never have let this happen. She should've known that children at that age would take something like that too far. However, I do think it is a good lesson for the students about choices and consequences. I'm betting some of those students who advocated marking faces of those who didn't reach their goal ended up having their own face marked.

    Again, I'm not advocating what happened. The teacher should've intervened and imposed some guidelines regarding the award/punishment, and hopefully she took the opportunity to teach the students about choices and consequences. My guess is that some kids did learn that lesson, but it's unfortunate that played out the way that it did. Kids should feel safe at school.

  • Third try screen name Mapleton, UT
    Nov. 17, 2012 5:33 p.m.

    That teacher would be gone in my school district. And we'd consider ourselves fortunate to avoid litigation.
    There are many ways to encourage healthy competition; this isn't one of them.

  • xscribe Colorado Springs, CO
    Nov. 17, 2012 9:15 a.m.

    It truly is amazing what some people, in this case a teacher, think is a good idea. I would guess, maybe wrongly, that if the teacher ran it by the principle, the idea would be nixed. Not having a clue that there there are issues with certain behaviors by teachers these days is amazing to me. We had a substitute teacher here body-slam a child a few days back. Again, how can you beleive that that's okay?

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Nov. 17, 2012 8:39 a.m.

    I hope that teacher is no longer teaching.

  • Utahprof Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 17, 2012 8:38 a.m.

    As a teacher, I cannot imagine how this is going to motivate anyone to achieve anything, esp. a 10 year old. These kids are going to be even more frustrated by their reading problems, suspicious of their teacher and fellow students, and quite likely to turn their humiliation into defiance (as defiance is a way of undercutting the authority which directed their humiliation). This teacher needs to be removed from the classroom pronto.

  • Screwdriver Casa Grande, AZ
    Nov. 17, 2012 7:17 a.m.

    Oh Idaho, how I will never miss being there. I vow to not even fly over Idaho. I've politly asked my daughter not to even date someone from Idaho. Anyone, just not from Idaho.

    Of course most people from Idaho are pretty normal but the bad eggs are just to frequent and seem to be in charge there for me to have anything to do with the place.

  • Ironmomo Ogden, Utah
    Nov. 17, 2012 7:14 a.m.

    Public humiliation is generally not the best motivator. Inspiring a young mind into wanting to read takes some effort and creativity on the teachers part and support from the parent or caregiver. But once hooked on the joy of reading, a young student will generally want and like to read sometimes to excess.

  • yuvgot2bkidding Salt Lake, Utah
    Nov. 17, 2012 6:24 a.m.

    It has always been a mystery to me how men can feel themselves honoured by the humiliation of their fellow beings. --Mahatma Gandhi