SOT Discusses Student Behavior

Chair+Christina+Nguyen+leads+a+discussion+addressing+the+concerns+of+teachers+regarding+class+size+and+student+behavior.

Quinn Pedrick

Chair Christina Nguyen leads a discussion addressing the concerns of teachers regarding class size and student behavior.

Quinn Pedrick, Editor-in-Chief

At the second School Organizational Team meeting of the school year, the team primarily addressed the concerns of teachers and staff involving class sizes and student management.

The meeting occurred on Tuesday, September 7th after a day full of student altercations, and that brought up a recurring topic throughout the hour and a half long meeting about the behavior of students on campus.

The team as well as administrators discussed how student behavior was to be addressed, and Valley plans to improve overall behavior through restorative justice, having calm discussions with students about the situations they get involved in with no significant consequences without fair reason. Through talking to underclassmen in their classes as well as addressing students individually, they hope to help students understand the rules and expectations at Valley before further repercussions are instated.

The meeting began with teacher Sydney Ledsinger, during the public comment period, inquiring about the leveling of large classroom sizes, and Principal Kimberly Perry-Carter reassured her that the counselors are currently working on sorting out overcrowded classrooms on a student-by-student basis. It is a complicated situation that takes time, and with recent counselor changes, Valley hopes to have it sorted out in a few weeks.

Halfway through the meeting, the floor was reopened for public comments, a very uncommon motion in a typical meeting, in which teachers Lisa Withrow, Kristen Arsenault, and Stephanie Steyh joined in to lead a discussion on teacher perspectives with student behavior. Their concerns consisted of class sizes, student security when it comes to lockdowns or other emergency events, and student and teacher health involving wearing masks.

In response to the teachers, the team agreed that more safety drills need to be held so students can be aware of what to do in an emergency situation, and that behavior referrals can be done for students refusing to wear a mask. In addition to having student schedules rearranged, new teachers are being hired to fill the positions needed, but it is a slow outreach that will take time.

More teacher and student concerns will be revisited again or addressed in the next meeting on September 29th.