Tuesday, November 20, 2012

the parents should be punished for failure to invest in their children...,

usatoday | A fourth-grade teacher in southern Idaho is being criticized after having her students use permanent markers to draw on the faces of classmates who failed to meet reading goals.

Some parents and administrators say the punishments given to nine students in Summer Larsen's class were inappropriate and left the children feeling shamed.

Cindy Hurst said recently her 10-year-old son came home from school Nov. 5 with his entire face — including his eyelids — scribbled on with green, red and purple markers.

"He was humiliated, he hung his head and wanted to go wash his face," Hurst told The Times-News of Twin Falls. "He knows he's a slow reader. Now he thinks he should be punished for it."

Larsen, who has taught at the school for six years, didn't respond to requests for comment. But Cassia County School District Superintendent Gaylen Smyer confirmed what took place in her classroom, though he didn't name Larsen.

The students were allowed to choose their own incentive to meet the reading goal, but instead of a reward, the class chose a punishment: Students who failed to meet the goal could either stay inside at recess until it was met, or have their faces written on by classmates who met the goals.

Nine students didn't meet the goals, the paper reported Friday. Three chose to forgo recess, and the other six chose to have their faces marked on.

"Although all the students in the class agreed to the incentive, once it occurred it was not so well received. Nor should it have been," Smyer said.

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