I’ve written hundreds of behavior referrals for students, mostly when I’ve had to kick them out of my classroom. For my first two years, when I taught at a middle school, students who were sent out of class went to our in-school suspension room, strangely known as the Opportunity Room, or OP room. Students were almost always held there for the remainder of the period, then sent on to their next class, and expected to return to my class the next day—with no real consequences. Here are the referrals I wrote for one student who we’ll call AR:
10/12/09 AR refused to follow instructions in class today. He talked repeatedly during my lesson, and then defiantly argued when given consequences. AR was given a verbal warning, then moved to a seat in the back of my classroom, then given a detention, and then finally given a referral and sent to the Opportunity Room.
10/13/09 AR refused to follow instructions. He talked when instructed to stay silent, and he refused to take his seat. He was given a verbal warning, then moved to a seat in the back of the classroom, then given a detention, and then finally sent to the Opportunity Room.
10/20/09 AR was refusing to take notes, refusing to work, and talking during the lesson. He was given a verbal warning, then told to move to a seat in the back of the classroom, and then given a detention. Even while sitting in the back of the room, and while I was standing just a few feet away, AR was yelling across the room to get the attention of another scholar, at a time when both of them needed to be working quietly. AR was finally sent to the Opportunity Room.
10/29/09 AR kept harassing X, refused to do his work, and once muttered “shut up” to me. When he was eventually sent to the Opportunity Room, he refused to take his worksheet with him. I emailed his mother the following morning about all of AR’s behavior, and she replied that he would not cause any more problems. And the next class day, 11/2, AR was wonderful in my class!
12/8/09 AR announced to the class that he needed to go to the nurse because he’d gotten “kicked in the ball sack.” Later he kept talking when he needed to be silent. He also slapped X, for which he was given a detention, and he kicked Y. He was warned of another parent phone call if he does not shape up.
3/10/10 AR kept getting out of his seat, he chased X around the room, he dove on the floor, he punched Y, and he wrestled with X.
3/11/10 AR kept getting out of his seat REPEATEDLY and playing around, and he kept talking during my lesson. He also pushed, chased, and hit other students. I have to watch AR CONSTANTLY, and the second I look away, he begins misbehaving. I emailed his mother.
3/30/10 AR kept playing, shooting rubber bands, and touching other students. I emailed his mother – again.
4/14/10 AR kept talking and talking in class, and in the hallway he kept getting out of line and walking ahead of our line.
4/19/10 AR punched X, threw paper, and danced around.
4/26/10 AR was running around the room and hitting X, and he kept talking and talking and talking. I emailed his mother about this misbehavior, and his poor academic performance.
5/4/10 AR kept playing around, getting out of his seat, play-fighting with AP, hitting AP, and running around the classroom and the hallway with AP yelling.
5/21/10 AR wrestled with X, threw a pencil at someone, and kept playing and playing in the hallway.