I've been thinking about the role police and teachers play - and there are some similarities. But I'm also thinking of how differently teachers and police are expected to react to disorder. Teaching required being a creative policeman. Which sometimes bothers teachers who hear stories of cops losing control in the face of recalcitrance and provocation. Cops are given a pass on reacting while teachers are put in the rubber room.
Today's racial discussions bring this to mind. It is not only some cops who have racial attitudes. I heard a number of racial insensitivities if not outright racism expressed by teachers and that certainly affected students. I was not exempt from some racial attitudes especially in my earliest years and had to self examine to try to overcome them. I didn't go through racial sensitivity training. My kids were my trainers and some of the students I became closest to were black students.
Teaching required being a creative policeman. Which sometimes bothers teachers who hear stories of cops losing control in the face of recalcitrance and provocation. Cops are given a pass on reacting while teachers are put in the rubber room. [See sidenote below].
Go to any school and you will see all sorts of provocation and recalcitrance. In the old days some teachers used some from of physical force and fear.
One thing I decided on early -- I would try not to call an administrator for help as that would be sending them a message that I was not capable -- and also a message to the kids that I needed help. After my 2nd year when I did need an admin at times to firm up my control - I rarely called for an admin again.
Which brings me to my point. I understand how dangerous it can be dealing with adult criminals for cops but there are also so many cases of minor incidents escalating - Sandra Bland for instance - where a cop things his manhood is being challenged -- while teachers who also may face verbal and even physical assaults must show enormous restraint.
Are teachers trained to show restraint? No. I think it comes naturally to most in the context of the situation - they are still dealing mostly with kids and of course teachers now know that even saying something could be a career-ender. Now police are facing a similar situation.
Peter Bronson addition: