In this day and age, why would anyone want to become a teacher???
After all, teachers have no rights whatsoever over the students. Students rule the roost. Students don’t respect teachers. Teachers have to cop verbal abuse from students. They are not allowed to comfort a child who is hurt. They are not allowed to intervene when kids are bashing each other up in the school ground and instead of stopping the bully, have to pull the victim away. And now, teachers also have ‘read’ legal rights to the students before speaking to them.
If you read the story I have linked above, the gist is, a 14 year old boy got acquitted in court for stabbing a servo attendant because he confessed to his teacher who made a statement to the police and according to the court, the teacher should have informed the boy about legal consequences prior to the boy confessing. In other words, I suppose the court wanted the teacher to say “Anything you say or do can be use against you in a court of law”.
Is the judge for real???
It’s a fucking joke. That’s not remotely funny.
As a psychologist, we are mandated to inform clients at the very beginning that anything they tell us will be confidential unless there is a risk of harm to them or others. But teachers do not have anything like that. They are not psychologists. They do not have confidentiality clauses. So why does a teacher have to explain such a thing to a student? It’s not in their role.
And what next? If someone in the community gets told by another individual about a crime, are they supposed to read them their legal rights as well? I thought that was only something the cops had to do.
This court case has set a precedent. One where teachers are probably not going to report crimes of students. Or one where no one wants to report a crime they have heard. Or one where the child or adolescent knows they can get away. Yet again.
On the plus side, there has been an appeal made to the DPP to review this. And the state government thinks it is an appalling decision as well.
I work with kids and adolescents. But I think we have gone too far the other way in terms of their rights. To the point where the adults involved i.e. parents, teachers, police have fewer rights than the kids. And trouble is, the kids know that.
Things don’t have to be black and white. The answer to curbing child abuse is not complete permissiveness and lack of discipline or power. There has got to be a middle ground. Right now, we have helpless parents, helpless teachers, helpless police and yes, sometimes, helpless therapists.
It’s a bloody nightmare!
I think things are getting worse instead of better. And personally, I wouldn’t want to be a teacher today. Or a cop for that matter. Or even sometimes, a parent.
Politicians — are you listening? Do something about it!
Until next time,