Schoolroom violence averted through prayer

Safe—even at knifepoint

Several decades ago, after completing my first year of teaching in a public high school, I, like most new teachers, needed to work in the summer. Unfortunately, one of the students in that first summer's class was very disruptive. For several days I cautioned the student about his behavior and reminded him that unless he improved immediately, I would remove him from the class, and he would be dropped from the class list, in accordance with summer school policies. But the disturbances continued.

Finally, one day, in a normal tone of voice, I said to him, "Mr.—, please pick up your things and remove yourself from my class. You will not be allowed to return." He protested briefly, saying, "I need this class, I'll do better, I'm sorry." But I calmly and firmly replied, "There is the door, use it." The classroom atmosphere improved remarkably from that point on.

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PROTECTION IN THE SCHOOLYARD
September 20, 1999
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