Truth be Told: If you make my kid pee her pants, I'm going to be pissed!
A first-year teacher at J.O. Davis Elementary School rewards good behavior with "Boyd Bucks," fake money used to earn privileges. One Texas Mother, Sonja Cross, is outraged after her 7-year-old son's inability to afford a restroom trip caused him to urinate on himself and suffer ridicule.
I am familiar with this sort of reward system, as my children's school does something similar. Of course, our school would never think of withholding bathroom privileges due to a child not earning the privilege to go to the restroom when the time came. When you've got to go, you've got to go.
The little boy in question came home crying because his fellow classmates started teasing him, which caused his mother to demand that the teacher end the reward system. She spoke with the administrators at the Dallas-area school and was told it would no longer be used as a leverage tool against children who had to go to the bathroom.
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As a mother, I would be outraged. I'm not even sure that I could control myself to just go to the administrators. My inner mama bear would surely rear its ugly head and I would end up at the school having intense words with the teacher. She is an adult in a position of power. We entrust our children to their teachers every day and this teacher has violated that trust.
Teachers are supposed to educate our children in an environment that he/she feels safe to grow in. By withholding bathroom privileges and making a child the target of ridicule because of not having enough of these earned rewards is crazy.
Even if this teacher apologized, the damage is done. I don't think she/he was trying to be particularly cruel; at least, I hope not. This is most likely first-year enthusiasm gone horribly wrong.
I fully understand using the reward system to earn extras but using the restroom is a necessity. It's like taking away food or sleep. It is inhumane and cruel.
I have taught my children to respect their teachers and adults because, generally speaking, adults have a child's best interest at heart. I have also taught my children that no one knows their body, their heart, or their mind, better than my children know themselves. I encourage them to listen to the adults in their life but they have been given my permission that if something feels wrong or off, to follow their gut. I can deal with the fallout later but I cannot restore my child's self-esteem and faith in humanity once someone has destroyed it.
Image via JBCurio/Flickr