I just came across a news report which is frankly shocking to me.
It’s a combination of ‘Survivor’ and systematized bullying in a kindergarten class.
In Morningside, FLA, a 5 year old boy who is in the process of being diagnosed with Autism, was ‘voted out’ of class by his classmates.
How a Kindergarten teacher could allow this to happen (and actually facilitate this) is mind boggling.
According to a news report (click here to see the original news story), kindergarten classmates of Alex where given a chance to say what they didn’t like about Alex. After expressing their dislikes (apparently to Alex directly…), the teacher put Alex to a vote.
Unfortunately, Alex’s classmates voted 14-2 to kick him out of the class.
Alex’s mother picked him up – and won’t send him back to the school. She is reportedly considering legal action, and the school board is reportedly starting an investigation.
Although this story is about Autism/Asperger’s – I’ve written about it here on my ADD/ADHD blog for four reasons:
- Some of my readers are concerned about Autism Spectrum Disorders
- Often kids with ADD/ADHD are teased, bullied and isolated socially – so the same issues apply
- I am an advocate for all of child’s (and adult’s) mental health – so if I can help to bring awareness and stop ignorance in any way – I will use this blog to do so…
- If I don’t stand up against discrimination when it arises, then I feel that I am condoning it. There is no way I can do that with this one…
I just find this outrageous.
For all of the advocacy work that many of us do – for something like this to happen in 2008 (or any time!) is completely unacceptable.
I want to think that this is an anomaly.
I want to believe that there aren’t other teachers who are using the model developed by reality TV (i.e. vote a student ‘off the island’ like on Survivor) to allow their students to humiliate and bully the most vulnerable in their classes.
Beyond this, I’m finding myself at a loss for words…
What do you think?
Is this an isolated incident?
What can we do to prevent anything like this happening again?
Please enter your thoughts and comments in the space below.
I’ve just found this video from CNN about this issue.
Here it is: