teacher freakout!
April 23, 2004 12:09 PM   Subscribe

There are goofy news items every day, but once in a while you have some story that transcends them all. Teacher accused of ordering student thrown from window is quite possibly the silliest story I've seen this year. It's beyond the Onion. Teacher enters class and takes photo of students, one student objects, teacher makes a disparaging remark about the way the student looks and student hits an emergency button, then the teacher orders two boys to throw her out the window (where she suffered injuries). Best line about the boys "they threw the girl out the window because they did not want to be written up for disobeying a teacher."
posted by mathowie (29 comments total)
Another missed opportunity to use defenestrate.
posted by the fire you left me at 12:15 PM on April 23, 2004

I have often wanted to throw students out of windows, but we have a strict anti-defenestration policy here at our school.

On preview: I love you, the fire you left me, and I want to have your children.
posted by Joey Michaels at 12:26 PM on April 23, 2004

Milgram again shown to be correct.
posted by anathema at 12:35 PM on April 23, 2004

Was this a first story window? Not that it makes much of a difference but I don't recall seeing that info in the article.

When I was back in school, a teacher got suspended for spanking a student under a desk while the other students watched.

Oh to go back to the days when misbehaving kids got a ruler smacked across their knuckles.

On Preview: anathema, well put and damned funny too.
posted by fenriq at 12:39 PM on April 23, 2004

"they threw the girl out the window because they did not want to be written up for disobeying a teacher."

Just following orders eh? Someone explain Nuremberg to these kids.
posted by bobo123 at 1:00 PM on April 23, 2004

14 year olds are pretty savvy. Despite what they told the principal (which, by the way, reeks of adolescent cleverness), I think they went along with the teacher 'cause they knew that doing so would get her crazy ass thrown out of the classroom.

It must have been a short drop to the ground. If I knew that no one would be seriously hurt, I'd have done much worse to get rid of a bad teacher back in the day. Score one for the precocious youngsters.
posted by junkbox at 1:14 PM on April 23, 2004

Does anyone get why it took the girl over twenty-four hours to realize that she had cuts and a neck injury? She was "defenestrated" (you guys have been waiting all year to use that word huh) on Monday and went to the hospital on Tuesday night.

Get yourself thrown out of window
posted by banished at 1:21 PM on April 23, 2004

At the very (VERY) least, at least this teacher had enough presence of mind to resign, and not to try to fight to keep her job.

There are so many examples of people who just should not be working with children. I myself am not a teacher, so I am not familiar with the licensing requirements. Can someone chime in as to whether or not psych tests are required for a license?
posted by vignettist at 1:45 PM on April 23, 2004

vignettist - we make teachers get just about every license possible except the psych test, i think. right now all teachers in my state are asked to get a master's degree before they can teach. ('cause you need a masters degree in something before you can teach kindergardeners, apparently). this is after doing a full year of student teaching (where, full-time, they teach for nothing, and have to pay tuition at the same time out of the money they aren't making).

then because teachers are so busy trying to jump through the hoops to get certified, there aren't enough of them around to teach. so school systems hire temp teachers with no real teaching skills or experience, at which point the parents get mad, blame the schools for all of their kid's shortcomings, vote to raise theaching standards and certification requirements even higher, then promptly cut education spending so that teachers don't make any money and can't afford to teach classes. but, now that they have master's degrees, they just go get a job as a school administrator in another state with lower requirements.

and yes, i may be a little bitter about this, what with having two teachers as parents and a sister-in-law going through the hoops at the moment.

but back to the point, none of the above would likely apply to a 63-year old teacher likely grandfathered in from a time when the requirements were lower. and no excuses for a teacher who ordered something this stupid. gives the rest of them a bad name.
posted by caution live frogs at 2:04 PM on April 23, 2004


Honestly, the way some members use this site to post stuff that anyone can read in the online newspapers is getting beyond a joke...
posted by i_cola at 2:06 PM on April 23, 2004

Just in case...that was a joke. Or an attempt at one at least.
posted by i_cola at 2:08 PM on April 23, 2004

Another missed opportunity to use defenestrate

I'd like to see "fenestrate" or "refenestrate" used as well.

Maybe I could become the Mad Fenestrator, grabbing people willy-nilly and throwing into places through open windows.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 2:10 PM on April 23, 2004

What a terrific idea, ROU_X. And a Google search for "Mad Fenestrator" shows no links. I think you should assume this immediately as your new superhero identity. (Unless you're a teacher, that is.)

p.s. I feel the same way about 'refrigerator.' A lot of things you stick in that box have never been frigerated in the first place.
posted by LeLiLo at 2:21 PM on April 23, 2004

I can see a teacher making an off the cuff remark to toss a student out the window. Giving the teacher the benefit of the doubt, I'm guessing that's what happened and a couple of smartasses jumped all over it.
posted by busboy789 at 3:30 PM on April 23, 2004

Does anyone get why it took the girl over twenty-four hours to realize that she had cuts and a neck injury?

The cuts probably did not amount to much, the neck injury was probably not apparent until then. I hurt my back recently pulling a dead shrub out of the ground but it did not hurt much at all that night. It was the next day that I could barely walk.
posted by bargle at 4:00 PM on April 23, 2004

Thanks, clf. And I hear you about the temp teachers.

When I was out of work a few years ago tons of people suggested I go out and substitute. "Easy money" they'd say. Nevermind that I have no apptitude for teaching children. But, akin to your argument, seems that their point was more the "easy money" and less the "preparing our nation's youth for the future".
posted by vignettist at 5:03 PM on April 23, 2004

I was a substitute teacher while in college, before I had my first degree. But, I was working in the juvenile detention center...where apparently they couldn't ever get a "real" teacher as everyone was afraid of the kids.

I really loved doing it, I loved the kids...and I did it for a very long time...in fact until after I dropped out of my graduate program and got a job that paid twice what they would have paid a certified teacher. I don't know how teachers do it, I really don't. That's a hell of a lot of work for a pittance of money and enormous hassles.

That said, no matter how annoying kids can be, one shouldn't have them thrown through windows, sealed into lead pipes, or sold to nike manufacturers. It's in bad form.
posted by dejah420 at 5:31 PM on April 23, 2004

Having none, I think children are objects and should be handled as such.

I got stuffed into a locker once. By the Dean of Students. And held there terrified by his massive, outraged, cardigan-clad bellowing bulk until I admitted I had smoked a joint under the bleachers instead of going to gym class.

No charges were filed, and I stopped smoking grass.

(At school.)
posted by BitterOldPunk at 5:43 PM on April 23, 2004

if it wasn't for ADHD then students wouldn't ask questions like "why are you taking my picture?" or "what's does expontitally mean anyway?" or "where did that axe come from?" and teachers wouldn't have to defenestrate them.

kudos to the media for bringing news of our civilization in decline to our immediate attention.
posted by klik99 at 9:23 PM on April 23, 2004

kudos to the media for bringing news of our civilization in decline to our immediate attention.

Oh, take it easy.
posted by Witty at 12:27 AM on April 24, 2004

Maybe our schools need to start enforcing evolution.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:49 AM on April 24, 2004

Am I the only one who wants to withhold judgment until the story is told in more detail? There is rather heavy implication here that there's a lot more going on than what was in the article. Why was the teacher taking pictures? What was the history of the relationship between the teacher and this student, and the student and the class, and the teacher and the class? Why did the student hit the "office assist" button? What kind of profanity was the student using? ("Next thing you know, I'll get thrown out of a fucking window"?) What did the student have to say about it afterwards?

i can tell you, I had teachers who could have walked into a classroom and started taking pictures, and all the kids would have started mugging for the photos; and I have had teachers where if they walked in one day with a camera, we would have immediately feared that our images were about to become targets at a shooting range. Similarly, I have had teachers who wished out loud and sincerely for the return of corporal punishment, and I've had hippy teachers who would joke about it and know that the kids knew they were joking. And I've had classmates who have been unfairly persecuted by particular teachers, while I've also had classmates whom, with the barest hint of permission, I would have probably helped throw through a window. And I think it's telling that the article doesn't mention whether or not they were on the first floor. Probably they were, but the lack of this detail says to me that the writer was trying to make the whole thing sound more sensational than it really was.

p.s. I do not remember ever going to school anywhere, preschool through graduate school, with a window in the classroom of the sort that it would have been practical to throw someone out of without a great deal of difficulty. Except maybe that two-month intensive Spanish program in Mexico.
posted by bingo at 8:16 AM on April 24, 2004

this story tickled me. at my high school, there was only one teacher for senior government, and you were required to have a passing grade in that class to graduate. the government teacher was an elderly woman who, despite her considerable bulk, kept the room temp in the tropical range and then wore a sweater draped over her shoulders. she had no skill whatsoever - her class was rote memorization, she followed the book paragraph by paragraph, and each day there was a chapter quiz, taken right from the book. this woman hated her job, despised most of her students, yet enjoyed complete and total control due to the fact that if you failed her class, you were left diploma-less and summer school bound. many are the spring afternoons we plotted various deceits in order to get the windows open, and mostly failed. many are the days we wished we could throw her out the window!
posted by quonsar at 10:36 AM on April 24, 2004

This reminds me of the fate of my fourth-grade bully (who was, to be fair, developmentally disabled) Buddy. Buddy liked to punch other kids, including me, and he especially liked to punch other kids during social functions like field trips. One day, dear Mrs. Funck put all the kids in the class into a line and, one by one, each was to punch poor Buddy. Buddy eventually high-tailed it out of the classroom and the school, but not before being hit by at least 2/3rds of the fourth-graders (including me). Mrs. Funck played out the rest of the year and then retired; the young me believed that she was experiencing health problems but the older, wiser me thinks that this incident was a major factor in her departure.
posted by hoboynow at 12:17 PM on April 24, 2004

Wow, hoboynow, that's a great teacher.
posted by bingo at 6:38 PM on April 24, 2004

bingo - greatness is seldom appreciated during it's time.

BitterOldPunk - I hereby bestow upon you my "troutfishing's seal of writer's zen brevity" - (which I ripped off, shamelessly, from Richard Brautigan) for your comment :

"....Having none, I think children are objects and should be handled as such.

I got stuffed into a locker once.....By the Dean of Students. And held there terrified by his massive, outraged, cardigan-clad bellowing bulk until I admitted I had smoked a joint under the bleachers instead of going to gym class.

No charges were filed, and I stopped smoking grass." - Brilliant, in my humble opinion [which obviously is not quite so humble given that I've now made a point of stressing my humility. Nonetheless.......] or, at the least, very good indeed.
posted by troutfishing at 10:07 PM on April 24, 2004

Anyway - peeling away any layers of Mathowie related sucubi and incubi, this story is still coffee spewingly hysterical.

"According to an incident report by resource officer Brian Chiappetta, the incident took place in the morning during second period. The students were in class when the teacher took a photograph of some of the students, the report said. When the girl asked why the teacher had taken her picture, the teacher allegedly responded with a disparaging remark about the girl's appearance.

The girl became upset and began to use profanity and hit the office assist button on the classroom wall, the incident report said. The teacher then allegedly told two 14-year-old boys to pick up the girl and throw her out the window.

The two boys later told principal Kenneth Daniels that they threw the girl out the window because they did not want to be written up for disobeying a teacher."

Life imitates Rashomon : meanwhile, Grrrls rebel, boys suck up. POP involvement alleged. Story at 11.
posted by troutfishing at 10:26 PM on April 24, 2004

Is Brain Chiappetta the resource officer that grows?
posted by john at 4:08 PM on April 25, 2004

For it to be like Rashomon, we would have to be hearing multiple stories that conflicted with one another. I don't think anyone is really disagreeing about what happened here. There's just a weird lack of detail from everybody. (or just the reporter.)
posted by bingo at 4:29 AM on April 27, 2004

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