Stopping Child Terrorists

@laglen (19782)
United States
March 12, 2010 9:28am CST
[i]Heads will be forced to list children as young as five on school 'hate registers' over everyday playground insults. Even minor incidents must be recorded as examples of serious bullying and details kept on a database until the pupil leaves secondary school. Teachers are to be told that even if a primary school child uses homophobic or racist words without knowing their meaning, simply teaching them such words are hurtful and inappropriate is not enough. Instead the incident has to be recorded and his or her behaviour monitored for future signs of 'hate' bullying. The accusations will also be recorded in databases held by councils and made available to Whitehall and ministers to help them devise future anti-bullying campaigns. The scale of the effort to stop children using homophobic or racist language was revealed after the parents of a ten-year-old primary school pupil in Somerset, Peter Drury, were told that his name would be put on a register and his behaviour monitored while he remained at school. The boy was reported after he called a friend 'gay boy'. His parents fear the record of homophobic bullying will count against him throughout his school career and even into adulthood. Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1255264/Pupils-aged-hate-register-Teachers-log-playground-taunts-Government-database.html#ixzz0hybQ9lRE[/i] This is so disturbing on so many levels. What do you think? More reasons to home school your children. Did you EVER say anything as a child that could be contstrued as hate? If you say no your a liar! We need a list of lists. Actually, I dont think I want to know how many I am on. We should start a list of people who make lists.
2 people like this
7 responses
@xfahctor (14131)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
12 Mar 10
I take a lot of guff from my UK associates here over this, but I have been saying for a while now the UK is turning in to a major police state. If ever there was a reason for homeshcooling....this article would be it.
2 people like this
@laglen (19782)
• United States
12 Mar 10
scary huh? Lists for things you say. You have the right to free speech AND a right to a list
@owlwings (39740)
• Cambridge, England
12 Mar 10
The term 'right to free speech' (properly, 'the right to freedom of speech') is one of the most abused terms in history. Nobody has the right to attack another person, verbally or otherwise, with the intention of harming them. As a result, all declarations of the Right to Freedom of Speech (including those in Article 13 of the American Convention on Human Rights) recognize limits on the freedom of speech, particularly when 'freedom of speech' conflicts with other values or rights. In other words (to take an example from the newspaper report this discussion is based on), it is not OK for anyone to taunt someone with the epithet 'gay boy' (whether or not the person using it understands the implication of the words and whether or not it is actually true) if the intention was to hurt or denigrate that person by doing so. (Actually, I hope that we would all agree on that point!) Again, anybody has a right to make a list - but it is the intention behind the making of the list and the data contained in the list that is really the issue. We would all recognise that it is our right to keep lists of our family and friends, including some very personal data, and I think that most of us with children would allow their schools to keep lists of information about those children, including records of their performance at school. In this discussion what is at issue is the way that this information, particularly information about unacceptable behaviour, might be used. The article quoted appears to originate from a 'press report' from a single source (the wording found in numerous places is so similar that it must have been taken from one document). I suspect that this report was issued by a small radical body (I have not yet found the real origin of this information) and was sent to a very carefully selected sub-set of both offline and online media. Freedom of speech and the freedom of expression are very carefully and skilfully manipulated here. I find it interesting that nearly everyone in this discussion (so far) is from the United States except me. From what I know of the use (and transference) of information in the United States, I think I would be as concerned as you are about this but, since I am from the UK and know something about the way things work here (and also do not entirely believe everything I read or, rather, try to read the sources on their known merits), I don't see very much to be concerned about.
@Rollo1 (16685)
• Boston, Massachusetts
12 Mar 10
We ought not to feel too secure in the states because I have noted that everything that happens in the UK eventually makes its way over here and vice versa. Over-zealous schoolteachers and worse - school aides - often take things wrong or misunderstand. They train to teach children but don't seem to understand them or to even to have been choldren. My son once nearly got into trouble in an after-school program because some ridiculous aide thought he said the N- word. His speech was as unclear as most his age (5, I think) and he had learned the word "naked" which became his favorite adjective (and it made him giggle incessantly). When he asked a friend for the "naked crayon" they thought he said something else and I got disturbing report. Yet when he came home from school recently, upset that a girl had called him "gay", I advised him that she probably just learned that word and knew that it was shocking and so it's her new insult word. Had the girl kept up this behavior, I would have followed up on it with the school, but as I suspected, she never said it to him again and it had no long-term consequences on his psyche. Sometimes it's important to not make a big deal of something. If a child says something objectionable, it's fine to correct them and tell them not to say that word. However, if you make a big deal of it, you risk having them decide that this is the word they can use whenever they want to be shocking or impress their friends. At certain ages, they may say words they have heard but have no idea of the true meaning. Branding them for life is so wrong and so ridiculous. Anyone who has any education in child development would know better than this.
2 people like this
@laglen (19782)
• United States
12 Mar 10
I agree with what you say, but I am more concerned with how this info will be used later.
@spalladino (17925)
• United States
12 Mar 10
So, you can't get into a university because you called someone a name when you were in the 1st. grade and your name was put in this database? This is horrible! If I had school age children over there I would definitely home school them for this very reason.
@laglen (19782)
• United States
12 Mar 10
yep. poor kids.
@owlwings (39740)
• Cambridge, England
12 Mar 10
I think that it would be an exaggeration to say that someone would be barred from university because of a single incident in primary school!
1 person likes this
@spalladino (17925)
• United States
12 Mar 10
Owlwings, how do you know what information would be available to the university other than that the student is registered in this massive database? Will they have access to the specifics...the number of incidents the perspective student was involved in...the severity...the type? You need to think outside of the box, not simply base your thinking on this issue to the example given in the article.
1 person likes this
@owlwings (39740)
• Cambridge, England
12 Mar 10
On the one hand, it sounds like another example of the Nanny State but, from another point of view, I am glad that this sort of information is going to be noted down. In my days at school (50 or 60 years ago), there was a lot of bullying and unkindness and, if it happened to come to the attention of a teacher, it was dealt with by punishment, often actual physical punishment. All those short and sharp methods (which I have to say - and many would agree - were very effective) are now disallowed in the interests of Child Rights and Child Protection. When a school had less than 1000 pupils in total, it was relatively easy for the Headmaster and one's Form Master to keep a note of a pupil's behaviour without writing it down (except in one's end of term report). Now that many schools are far larger, that personal knowledge is not so easy to keep and written records are necessary so that other members of staff have access to a student's behaviour record. Schools are still in the position of being in loco parentis and it is noticeable that many of them take that responsibility more seriously than the actual parents! That is not the way it should be but it is the way it is. I don't like the idea of written records of this sort of thing but I can see that it is to some extent necessary in today's climate. One good thing that ought to be evident from such a record is any improvement in a child's behaviour - fewer reports, perhaps, as time goes on or even a complimentary mention of examples of good behaviour. I think that the introduction of measures like this does not, of itself, make a good or valid reason for home-schooling: there are far better and more cogent reasons if one needs them. Most well-adjusted children receive part of their education at school and also a very significant part at home: the school and the parent should, ideally, work in partnership and that is the way that it happens in the best of cases.
1 person likes this
@laglen (19782)
• United States
12 Mar 10
But this is not for the schools to utilize, this list goes to the government.
@owlwings (39740)
• Cambridge, England
12 Mar 10
The Daily Mail is not noted for scrupulous accuracy in its reporting but the article does state that "...details [are to be] kept on a database until the pupil leaves secondary school" and that they "will also be recorded in databases held by councils and made available to Whitehall and ministers to help them devise future anti-bullying campaigns." The second statement does NOT imply that 'identifiable information' will be stored on local or National Government databases. Only the schools have a right to keep individually identifiable records until the child leaves their jurisdiction and they have NO mandate to share that personal information with anyone else except the child and their parents and, in exceptional circumstances, with the judicial system. The data that will be made available to Government will be of a general and statistical nature.
@owlwings (39740)
• Cambridge, England
12 Mar 10
After some research, I have located one of the documents which is behind this report. It is a consultation document which gives advice on dealing with bullying, not a piece of legislation ... nor even proposed legislation. It is a PDF document: http://publications.dcsf.gov.uk/eOrderingDownload/DCSF-01136-2009.pdf I am still looking for other reports on the alleged proposals but I keep coming across substantially the same article in various very right-wing and somewhat marginal publications. It seems that somebody has sent out a Press Report to certain well-chosen journals with the object of putting a particular spin on the story.
• India
13 Mar 10
Its totally an absurd idea to record the things for a toddler at schooling life and used the same data to brand him or her as the future terrorists etc. Hence in this sense it is better to go for homeschooling our kids,thus is the best way to avoid the one sided view.In fact instead of recording the details of a child,there should be also the provision for recording the other side of the story that why the child had been provoked to speak out such things and hence the element of provocation must be dealt with red iron rod. In fact the past political decisions play a greater role of giving birth to the present day terrorists and therefor its high time to reevaluate the past and redress the wrongs and punish /diminish the present conception which were made us believe that he was a good / that character was bad. If we do not correct those past misdeeds or blander that were committed we cannot and should not expect a good future In terms of our personality,as a nation and so on......
@laglen (19782)
• United States
13 Mar 10
I agree if you are going to document one side, you darn well better document the other side.
@gewcew23 (8011)
• United States
13 Mar 10
Bullying is the new terrorist, good grief. Kids say stuff that when they grow up we look back and say what an idiot they were. I can prove it. A seven year old boy will say he hates girls and will say they are nasty, when that same boy turns 14 you will not be able to keep him away from those same girls he said he hated seven years ago.
1 person likes this
@laglen (19782)
• United States
13 Mar 10
This is how we learn what socially except able behavior is.
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Mar 10
Wow. This is not needed. Why keep a record like the kid is a criminal.Kids say things they don't know the meaning to. They say mean things they don't mean. You talk to the kids. You teach them how to behave better....but you don't treat them like hardened criminals. ALso they said the information would be shared with other agencies...what about privacy issues? I am really worried about the UK. I agree with X when he says they going toward a "police state".
1 person likes this
@laglen (19782)
• United States
12 Mar 10
I totally agree. Just that people think this is ok scares me.