Baumhower: To the teacher who grabbed a kindergartnerWritten by Jeremy Baumhower | | firstname.lastname@example.org
To the teacher at Riverdale Local Schools whose face is being featured in newscasts around the world:
Although I was never in your class, I have had you before as a teacher.
I was undiagnosed ADD and teachers like yourself had no idea what to do with my energy. My leg never stopped shaking, I would become bored easily and talk in class. So the teachers and I would have similar moments like the boy and you in the video.
I had very “handsy” Catholic teachers who loved to host hallway “chats.” I was never spanked, but my face was grabbed, the scruff of my shirt tugged by multiple teachers and on numerous times. If I was lucky, I was punished by writing dictionary pages during recess and lunch.
My early years at school and the moments I had with teachers like you, did not give me a desire to learn, but rather the opposite. As you can possibly imagine, the “chats” continued because I was not listening or learning from prior punishments. In the fourth grade, I was kept home from the Toledo Zoo field trip because of my behavior. That specific punishment created a disdain for everything school-related thereafter. My behavior never got better, I just got older and less interested — but it started with very moments like this.
In the very moment you lost your cool and grabbed the boy, you directly changed the way he will view every teacher he will ever have. Although he is young, that minute in the hallway will be forever burned into his mental hard drive.
You may have just stolen or altered a child’s ability to learn.
I am so happy that school has changed and that my children have not had a teacher like you. You probably got into teaching for the best of reasons, but it appears you have stayed too long. You are supposed to touch a child’s mind and heart, not touch the child the way you did.
I had teachers like you. I remember every hallway “chat.” The “chats” and the faces of those who shared them with me are the only things I remember from those years.
Please retire: You are now doing more harm then good.
Former St. Clement Student
PS: My mom was young and did not want to her 8-year-old son on prescription drugs. She had no idea of the damage being caused because her generation was getting spanked with a paddle by grown men. Thank god the times have changed, you just haven’t.
PSS: To the good teachers — Thank You. I love what you do. You change the world one child at a time.