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  1. #1
    militat omnis amans magpie's Avatar
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    Default Putting troubled kids in strict environments is big business for Camelot Education

    Hard Lessons - BuzzFeed News

    When the 10th grader pulled out his cell phone in class — and refused to put it away — he knew he was breaking the strict rules at Camelot Academy of Escambia, the school he’d attended for the past two years. But he wasn’t expecting the punishment that followed.
    An administrator charged with enforcing discipline at Camelot Academy, Jamal Tillery, struck him across the face and dragged him into an empty classroom, hitting him until he fell to the floor, according to a police report. Then, the student told police, Tillery hit him with a trash can.
    The injuries were serious enough that when the student, who was 18 at the time, got home from school, his mother called the police and took him to the hospital.

    The incident in Escambia, in 2011, wasn’t the first time Tillery had been accused of hurting a student. Six years earlier, when he was teaching at another school, he’d pled guilty to charges related to the assault of a 10-year-old. There, according to a police affidavit, things followed a similar pattern: Tillery dragged a disobedient boy into another room, threw him against a door, and began to hit him with his own shoes, shouting as a witness looked on about how he would not be disrespected. Afterward, the report said, the boy’s face was marked with red, his fingers bruised from where he had tried to block the blows. Tillery had pled guilty to disorderly conduct and harassment.

    This time around, Tillery was arrested and charged with battery. He took a pretrial diversion that allowed his record to be wiped clean. Tillery maintains he was protecting himself: the student, a troubled kid with a record, struck him first, he said, and he never used a trash can.

    School administrators say they are confident Tillery did nothing wrong and was defending himself from a violent student. With Tillery’s record clean, Camelot Academy brought him back on board. The school had no idea that Tillery had a history of hurting a child — the 2005 incident with the 10-year-old, they said, had not come up in an FBI background check. That same year, as Camelot Academy’s director of operations, Tillery was accused of hurting two more students in physical altercations, police records show — one of them a 13-year-old boy. No charges were filed in either case. Inside all of Camelot’s publicly funded schools, security, order, and behavior modification take precedence over academics.

    Camelot Academy of Escambia isn’t a public school, though it is funded by taxpayer dollars. It is part of a fast-growing for-profit company, owned by private equity investors in California, that school districts hire to handle their most difficult students: kids with behavioral problems, those struggling to keep up, and those at risk of dropping out of the school system entirely.

    Camelot Education now owns 43 schools nationwide, making it one of the country’s largest alternative education providers. It has made a growing business out of taking in troubled kids at sharp discounts compared to publicly run schools, allowing districts to slash costs — and, at times, to improve their own metrics by shunting off their lowest-performing students. The vast majority of students who come to Camelot are black and Latino.

    The company has built its business on the “Camelot model,” a rigid system of strict discipline that is based, in part, on juvenile prisons and residential treatment centers. Inside all of Camelot’s publicly funded schools, security, order, and behavior modification take precedence over academics. A rigid hierarchy pervades student life: Top-ranking kids are assigned to an elite club, dressed in special uniforms and given privileges to oversee their peers — correcting their posture, their attire, their behavior. Students are ranked regularly on charts posted throughout the school, where the names of kids who are struggling are highlighted in bright red ink.
    The rest of the article is at the link. I've seen a couple people on the site talk about the necessity of corporal punishment in schools, particularly for troubled kids. I thought this article might add an interesting perspective to that conversation, as well as tie into the general trend in schools, prisons, and hospitals, where people are sold into correction or treatment for the profit of private companies.

    I'm interested in thoughts and opinions on this as well.

  2. #2
    Temporal Mechanic. Lexicon's Avatar
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    ^ brings this [2min] Louis CK bit to mind:

    Louis C.K. bit on hitting children by webmyc | Free Listening on SoundCloud



    Not to mention, assaulting a child (and that is exactly what it is) teaches the child, 'this is how you address or solve problems.'
    Even when they're too young to grasp logical reasoning the way an adult does, there are other ways to condition a kid to follow rules for their own safety/wellbeing.

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    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lexicon View Post
    ^ brings this [2min] Louis CK bit to mind:

    Louis C.K. bit on hitting children by webmyc | Free Listening on SoundCloud



    Not to mention, assaulting a child (and that is exactly what it is) teaches the child, 'this is how you address or solve problems.'
    Even when they're too young to grasp logical reasoning the way an adult does, there are other ways to condition a kid to follow rules for their own safety/wellbeing.

    exactly i live in a town that's very conservative and a lot of the people there were beaten as children and believe that you can only be a good person if you're beaten but the thing is the reason they act like good people is mostly out of fear and not actual sympathy or empathy and it's like i wasn't beaten as a child and i didn't end up horrible. they think everyone would behave if they receieved at least one beating. and it's like no you guys are fucking terrified to step out of line and also angry about it. but i don't say anything. i get swatting if the childs hand is near the oven or immediate danger but a switch i don't necerrely.
    In no likes experiment.

    that is all

    i dunno what else to say so
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  4. #4
    Self sustaining supernova Zoom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by magpie View Post
    *snip*
    This sounds scarily similar to how the prison system is shifting to a profit-based business model with very little focus on actual rehabilitation or standards of care. The purpose of the system (education, punishment) being twisted in order to streamline practices and reduce costs - sounds great in theory, shitty in practice.
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  5. #5
    militat omnis amans magpie's Avatar
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    Do you guys think there is ever a context where corporal punishment would be necessary in a school?

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    Senior Member Blacksheep2017's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by magpie View Post
    Do you guys think there is ever a context where corporal punishment would be necessary in a school?
    Absolutely not. I think our society has had a huge struggle with parents relying too heavily on schools to raise their children for them. Maybe due to households needing 2 incomes now, jobs are more demanding, etc. I think inevitably children fall to the responsibility and principles of a school system that has inconsistent teaching, discipline and even political bias. Our culture is tainted with violence everywhere. It's celebrated in movies, games and music. Our country is always involved in war. Mental disorders are abundant in a failing healthcare system that doesn't prioritize help for the mentally disabled. I could go on and on.

    Point is, having children is a choice. A responsibility that should be taken on with much more consideration and commitment. To be a parent is to accept the very important challenge of raising a child to be respectful, compassionate and driven as an adult so that the world, ideally, will be left better than the one we ourselves lived in.

    I am choosing to personally use the Montessori method on my daughter. I live across the street from a Montessori academy that we plan on sending her to when she's older. Montessori learning in implemented from birth at HOME. We practice various principles here now and she'll gain more knowledge once she attends. Montessori is a theory that children learn better with more freedom. Room to express themselves naturally through individual choice. Children of this learning method are reported to be more confident, compassionate, orderly, etc. than children of other schooling approaches. Obviously a stark contrast from the Camelot approach of creating a tense and restrictive learning environment.

    So, no, as an INVOLVED PARENT, I will handle the discipline my child receives so that they are not a problem to begin with at school or anywhere else. I won't lean on the system to raise my child for me.
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  7. #7
    militat omnis amans magpie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blacksheep2017 View Post
    Absolutely not. I think our society has had a huge struggle with parents relying too heavily on schools to raise their children for them. Maybe due to households needing 2 incomes now, jobs are more demanding, etc. I think inevitably children fall to the responsibility and principles of a school system that has inconsistent teaching, discipline and even political bias. Our culture is tainted with violence everywhere. It's celebrated in movies, games and music. Our country is always involved in war. Mental disorders are abundant in a failing healthcare system that doesn't prioritize help for the mentally disabled. I could go on and on.

    Point is, having children is a choice. A responsibility that should be taken on with much more consideration and commitment. To be a parent is to accept the very important challenge of raising a child to be respectful, compassionate and driven as an adult so that the world, ideally, will be left better than the one we ourselves lived in.

    I am choosing to personally use the Montessori method on my daughter. I live across the street from a Montessori academy that we plan on sending her to when she's older. Montessori learning in implemented from birth at HOME. We practice various principles here now and she'll gain more knowledge once she attends. Montessori is a theory that children learn better with more freedom. Room to express themselves naturally through individual choice. Children of this learning method are reported to be more confident, compassionate, orderly, etc. than children of other schooling approaches. Obviously a stark contrast from the Camelot approach of creating a tense and restrictive learning environment.

    So, no, as an INVOLVED PARENT, I will handle the discipline my child receives so that they are not a problem to begin with at school or anywhere else. I won't lean on the system to raise my child for me.
    I think this is all very admirable of you and indicates how invested you are in being a good parent.

    I agree that teaching a child to be compassionate, to behave well, how to respond to various situations, etc, should be the role of the parent(s), and that ideally parent(s) will discipline their kids appropriately so that they don't have discipline issues in school from being either disciplined too little or too much at home. Unfortunately, that's not the case for many many kids, and the responsibility does end up on the school to deal with the fallout from bad parenting.

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    Iron Maiden fidelia's Avatar
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    I think schools do need more options, especially as they are expected to cater to an ever widening spate of physical, mental, emotional and academic needs with less parental responsibility and involvement than ever.

    In my observation though, the very very very few times when corporal punishment may do any good at all ( and I think it is a very rare situation and past very young shouldn't be done at all) is not when kids are school aged and most parents or teachers or adults I know do not have the judgement to recognize when not to use that if the option is open to them.

    Many kids who act badly are not terrible people, but have insufficient attachment as well as good inputs in their lives. I also think that the more emotionally immature someone is, the more structure they need, but that also has to be supplemented with leadership and relationship.

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    Senior Member Carpe Vinum's Avatar
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    Corporal punishment is absolutely unnecessary in schools. I teach high school, and yes, I do get tired of dealing with cell phones....and foul language, and sagging pants, and shitty attitudes, and a host of other bullshit that irritates me on a daily basis. But I deal with it calmly and rationally. I give students the option of leaving their phone in a clear bin at the beginning of class to avoid the temptation of being on it in the first place. I have a lot of students now who voluntarily "surrender" their phones before class even starts. They get it back at the end of the period. If they take it out during, depending on the circumstances, they may get a detention or sent to the main office. Does it keep them from using cell phones? Actually for the most part yes it does. But beating a kid??? That creates so many more problems than it solves.

    I wouldn't be opposed to a good old-fashioned flogging for the teacher, though.
    NOSCE TE IPSUM. "Know thyself."
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    Bummer geedoenfj's Avatar
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    Default Putting troubled kids in strict environments is big business for Camelot Education

    I truly believe respecting, talking to children and understanding them, rewarding them generously for doing good, works much better than punishments..
    I think explaining to them the consequences if breaking the law, and including the punishment as within the context of those consequences would be a useful addition to get them to make a choice to do the right thing which is to follow the law.
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