Nashville School discipline policies spark ‘chaos’

Phil Williams:

When NewsChannel 5 Investigates gathered a group of teachers over the weekend for a Teacher Town Hall, they didn’t hold back.

We asked them to describe what they experience every day.

“Chaos,” one teacher responded.

“Total chaos,” another agreed

High school teacher Laura Leonard concurred.

“Just chaos,” she said. “I mean, there’s just no accountability for the students.”

More than any other issue, these veteran Metro Schools educators said that student discipline — or the lack of it — has become a huge concern under Dr. Shawn Joseph, as the schools director tries to dramatically reduce the number of students being suspended.

Elementary school guidance counselor Constance Wade recounted the stories that teachers tell.

“Students are in school and they are disruptive and they are running through the halls and they are using profanity and hurting other students,” she said.

While the teachers acknowledged that Joseph’s push to keep children in school — especially children of color — is a good idea, that hasn’t stopped students from taking advantage of those good intentions.