33 kindergartners have been suspended from Philadelphia schools this year. The new discipline policy has brought strong reactions from parent groups and advocates for children. Read the story in the Houston Chronicle.
Paul Vallas should be given a medal for his efforts to bring order to these schools. There is no group, other than parents, and not even all of them, that cares more about children than teachers and administrators, whereas the advocacy groups are armchair quarterbacks at best.
If, as one critic suggests, the suspension of ill-behaved brats causes the parents of such children to become hostile toward the school system, then the reaction of these parents is wildly inappropriate and goes far in explaining the unacceptable behavior of their children.
The proper reaction for a parent of a child suspended from school for most infractions is embarrassment, not anger at the messenger. The reason is self-evident: parents are responsible for the behavior of their minor children. If a child fails to behave properly in a social situation, it is the responsibility of the parent to acknowledge and correct the deviant behavior.
One hopes that Mr. Vallas will stand his ground in the fight to ensure an appropriate educational environment is created in his and other school districts. And shame on the parents who fail to accept the message being delivered.