As you walk into your job you dream of how much school means to the future of your son. You want him to have a love for learning and for school, something that can, and should last a lifetime. But then one day things change. For the worse.
Today, the Daily News reported that the KIPP Star Washington Heights Elementary School on W. 177th St two young boys were detained into "tot cells" to cure their behavior. According to the Daily News, these rooms (The size of a small closet) had a single mat, a single light and a window 2x3 feet in the door (seems like something out of a Viet Nam War prison camp). The students were left in there for 15-20 minutes.
Oh, these two boys were FIVE AND SEVEN YEARS OLD!
Teneka Hall, mother of one of the boys said;
“He was crying hysterically...It’s no way to treat a child.”On December 3rd her son Xavier had to be rushed to Columbia Presbyterian Hospital because he wet himself and his panic attack was so severe, that that EMS was called.
Another boy was detained a dozen times since September for acting out in class.
What did these boys do to deserve such barbaric treatment? They didn't clap in proper cadence?
Now we all know the militaristic tone of KIPP. I have seen it first hand in which students must sit with their backs at a 90 degree angle. That they must respond in a cadence, and where there is any show of individuality it's hit down with a hammer. But this is just too much. Who would suggest such a thing?
Psychologists suggested such a thing. Who are these psychologists and did they actually evaluate the students? If so, were the parents informed of the evaluation, and then, did they give permission? According to KIPP spokespeople, "...they only sent children to the room when their safety became an issue and they discussed using the tactic with the kids’ parents, who approved it.