"A child's learning is the funtion more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Duncan's Record on Child Battering in Chicago Schools

From CBS in Chicago (ht to PEN):
Hundreds of students have allegedly been beaten by teachers, coaches and staff at Chicago Public Schools. 2 Investigator Dave Savini continues his ongoing investigation involving the illegal use corporal punishment.

Treveon Martin, 10, is afraid of a teacher at his school.

"I've seen him hit five of them in the classroom," Martin said.

Martin says he and others have been hit, grabbed and even struck with a belt.

"He's threatened almost all the kids in his classroom," Martin said.

He says it happened at Robert Emmet Academy in November but a Chicago Public School investigator didn't talk to him until last week - 70 days after the case was reported, and not until after we started asking questions.

"He holded my arms and he picked my body up, and then he just slammed me on the desk," Martin said.

An exclusive CBS 2 investigation discovered Treveon Martin is one of at least 818 Chicago Public School students, since 2003, to allege being battered by a teacher or an aide, coach, security guard, or even a principal. In most of those cases - 568 of them - Chicago Public School investigators determined the children were telling the truth.

"I'm thinking that I don't really feel safe," Martin said.

The 2 Investigators found reports of students beaten with broomsticks, whipped with belts, yard sticks, struck with staplers, choked, stomped on and pushed down stairs. One substitute teacher even fractured a student's neck.

But even more alarming, in the vast majority of cases, teachers found guilty were only given a slap on the wrist.

CBS 2 informed former Chicago Public School CEO Arne Duncan of our investigative findings shortly before he was promoted to U.S. Secretary of Education.

"If someone hits a student, they are going to be fired. It's very, very simple," Duncan said.

Before heading to Washington, he vowed to take action.

"Any founded allegation where an adult is hitting a child, hitting a student - they're going to be gone," Duncan said.

But that's not what happened under Duncan's watch. Of the 568 verified cases, only 24 led to termination. Records show one teacher who quote "battered students for several years" was simply given a "warning" by the Board of Education.

And another student was given "100 licks with a belt." The abuse was substantiated, but the records show the teacher was not terminated. . . . .


No comments:

Post a Comment