Week of January 3

Behavioural issues an unacknowledged problem in the classroom

Sir: My niece is a teacher, one of many teachers in our family. I respect the work they do, providing guidance and education for our youth – youth that will one day become the leaders of our great country.

There is an 11-year-old at my niece’s school who has severe behavioural problems. As such, he is treated with “kid gloves” and allowed to bully his classmates and be defiant and disruptive in class. He tells his teacher where to go any time he feels like it.

I’m told he even threatened to kill her, which was overheard by the principal. Yet there were no consequences.

What message does this send to the other children – that this behaviour is condoned? Had this happened in any other work environment, he would have been suspended or fired.

Please don’t misunderstand my intentions here. I am fully supportive of having an inclusive society. After all, each of us is a unique individual.

However, why does our society take so long to right obvious wrongs? And when we do, to let the pendulum swing so far it stops working all together!

I thought we had all agreed bullying will not be tolerated. If so, why do we allow our teachers to be humiliated and threatened with their lives? Because we are afraid to take action?

This child needs special attention and we must find better ways to assist him so he can function and thrive. I am not singling him out, but trying to draw awareness to what is going on in our schools today.

So parents, if you are reading this, stand up and have a voice about what is happening. This is not an isolated incident, it happens every day in many schools.

Our children have the right to an education in a safe and protective environment. And for parents of children with behavioural issues, make sure you are seeking out the best care possible so they may learn how to cope in a challenging world.

At the end of the day, we all want the very best for our kids because they deserve it.

Janet Clarkson

(former local resident)

Flesherton, Ont.


Don’t look without, promote from within

Sir: The recent departure of four high-level City Hall bureaucrats has resulted in comments and quotes in the local media about the situation making it difficult to recruit their replacements.

Why recruit people instead of promoting from within?

Are the jobs at City Hall dead-end jobs? The discussion about recruitment conveys the following message to the “minions” at City Hall: “The higher positions are not for you – they will be filled with outside hires.”

That message is not good for moral. So promote!

John Timar

Bright’s Grove