My son’s teacher keeps kicking him out of class. He is already behind and he can’t learn in the hall. What can I do?
Keep My Son In Class
Hi, Keep My Son in Class —
You're right! Your son needs to be in class to learn. Your goal right now should be twofold: 1)eliminating the issues causing him to be sent to the hall and 2)finding ways to keep him in class.
Find the Trigger
First, figure out what your child is doing. I firmly believe that children do not show up to school with the intention of being “bad” or misbehaving. Once you learn what your son is doing, ask what is happening before the misbehavior. For example, a teacher might correct a child in front of the class. Some children may feel like they have been publicly shamed, which then causes them to act out. If you know what triggers your son’s behavior, then you know what to target to eliminate it.
Is the Misbehavior a Strategy?
You shared that your son is behind academically. No one wants to feel like they can’t do a task. To avoid being seen as unintelligent, some kids misbehave on purpose to get out of learning. If the misbehavior is always taking place during the same class, your son’s misbehavior may be his strategy to escape doing challenging work.
Schedule a Meeting with the Teacher
It would be best if you met with the teacher to work together. During this meeting, learn how the discipline is being recorded. Is it internal data the teacher is keeping or is the teacher logging each infraction into a discipline system? You don’t want your son to have a huge discipline file following him from grade to grade. Learn what the teacher has done to try to curb the misbehavior. If the teacher’s only response is, “I sent him to the hall,” please know this is a reactionary practice and not a preventive practice to eliminate the issues that are triggering the outbursts. Ask if any resources are available to the teacher or parent to work with the child.
Finally, it would help if you talked with your son. Learn his perspective and what he is frustrated or angry about. The teacher can put supports in place at school. You can put supports in place at home—but your son has to be open to changing his behavior. You must get him invested in the process by listening to his thoughts and sharing what you expect from him in the future.
I hope these tips help you get your son out of the hall and back in his seat where he belongs!
Shawnta is a married mother of identical twin boys. As an Indiana native, she attended school in two Indianapolis school districts; she attended Indianapolis Public Schools for two years and completed her education in Lawrence Township Schools. Her sons entered kindergarten during the 2016-2017 school year, so she not only navigates Indianapolis schools from the educator's perspective but also ...