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 AZ:
9/22/09 AZ was persistently disruptive, as she talked, yelled, sang, and moved her desk. She ignored repeated warnings and a planned call home, and so I sent her to the Opportunity Room.
9/23/09 AZ persistently talked, sang, tapped her desk, and yelled.
10/5/09 AZ walked into my classroom very late this morning, while I was presenting my lesson to the class. AZ stood in the front of the room and began excitedly telling a story to a few of her friends. I addressed this, but AZ completely ignored me and continued with her story. Finally she took her seat. I began talking to AZ about how unacceptable it was to walk into the classroom late and completely disrupt our learning – but she stayed facing away from me in her seat, and ignored me. I stepped toward her, and when I was about four feet away, she yelled, “get away from me!” So I sent her to the OP room for this blatant disrespect and big disruption in the middle of my lesson.
10/27/09 AZ persisted in talking during the lesson, and one time that I addressed this, she responded by yelling angrily, including “get off my junk.” Then as I was lining students up at the end of class, instead of getting in line, AZ smeared her hand all over the writing on the classroom dry-erase board. When I told her to stop, she first ignored me, and then wiped her hand on the hand-sanitizer dispenser, getting marker all over it. I told her to clean it off, and gave her paper towels. She did very little cleaning, and then got angry, and yelled about how the dispenser had already been dirty. Then in the hallway, I heard AZ taunting and threatening a special education student, and repeatedly calling him a “retard.”
12/3/09 AZ continues to show ridiculous disrespect. In today’s “family meeting” assembly, she began mockingly repeating Principal X’s words. I called AZ’s name, and she sneered at me, “What?!” Later, when I addressed the behavior of two other scholars, AZ called me a “snitch.” I looked at her, and she yelled, “What you staring at me for?!”
1/11/10 AZ was out of her seat and ignored multiple instructions to take her seat. When she finally did go to her seat, she said under her breath something about “this bastard…”
1/14/10 Right after I told AZ to sit down, and as she was right in front of me, she said something including the words “cut you.” She insisted that it was not directed toward me, and that she was quoting song lyrics. Later, she said something about “… look like a Yeti.” Again it seemed clearly directed toward me, but she insisted otherwise. Then during our class bathroom break, some girls were being loud in the bathroom, and our security guard X walked in to quiet them down. AZ was EXTREMELY disrespectful toward X. AZ told her, “You look at me too much”, AZ held her hand up toward X as X talked to shush her, and AZ said threateningly “Say something else!”