Thursday, November 03, 2005

More Fun With The Law: Administrative Lockup

Polski3 has a brand-new student in his classroom. The problem is that Polski's school administrators did not comply with California law by failing to inform Polski that this student had attempted to poison one of the student's previous teachers: (emphais added)
It was verified for me today. I'd heard from another teacher that one of our current students had been expelled from our school district two years ago for his role in attempting to poison his fifth grade teacher.

According to California Law, teachers are to be notified if a students is enrolled in our classes who has been previously expelled due to assault or other violent behavior. The student in question was the subject of a school site team meeting today. Prior to the meeting, I asked the assistant principal (who was heading up the meeting) if what I'd heard was true. He didn't know if he could tell me. He checked with the Principal, then told me that "what you heard is true. No, we did not notify the teachers like we were supposed to."
I wonder if Polski is aware that the law has something to say on the subject of school administrators who knowingly withhold this type of information from teachers? As per Calfiornia's Education Code 49079 (c):
An officer or employee of a school district who knowingly fails to provide information about a pupil who has engaged in, or who is reasonably suspected to have engaged in, the acts referred to in subdivision (a) is guilty of a misdemeanor, which is punishable by confinement in the county jail for a period not to exceed six months, or by a fine not to exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000), or both.
Heh. Do you think that the police are going to show up at Polski's school and take anyone from the school's office to the pokey?

This type of behavior on the part of Polski's school administrators does little to build an atmosphere of trust and mutual respect between the teachers of his school and their own administration.

It would be interesting to know how many times (in contravention of the law) at Polski's school that the administration "forgot" to tell their own teachers about potentially dangerous students. Perhaps they "forget" because it's easier not to tell the teachers (and hope they don't get caught) than to deal with questions and concerns that would naturally be raised by the teacher who is assigned the responsibility of teaching the pupil
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