Misbehavior and refusal to comply with school standards in students is expected to be discouraged, yet the strategies and approaches toward shaping the target population’s behavior must be selected with the learners’ best interests in mind. However, “shadow discipline” as a practice of using cruel punishments that har students in some way is unfortunately common in some schools in Texas, as a recent policy brief confirms (“Shadow discipline in Texas schools,” 2019). Personally, I do not support shadow discipline and believe that instances of shadow punishments must be reported and addressed, with appropriate measures taken to prevent them in the future.
Shadow discipline produces dire effects that the specified punishments have on children’s wellbeing. According to the report, 47% of parents claim that their children have been subjected to shaming, which is an outrageous practice that must be prohibited (“Shadow discipline in Texas schools,” 2019). There are much better ways to correct children’s behavior, including creating a positive role model that they will be willing to follow (Homer & Fisher, 2020). In turn, shaming leads to multiple adverse effects on children’s mental well-being, including the development of low self-esteem and the sense of being isolated (González et al., 2019). Therefore, adjustments to the current policy are needed to avoid mental health issues in students.
To address the current state of school discipline practices, several measures can be taken. Firstly, Texas House Bill 2183 proposes introducing a more rigid approach to managing documentation regarding early pickups. Moreover, improved training options for administrators and educators are advised as possible solutions. Secondly, in addition to the specified approach to rectifying the situation, a focus on collaboration between parents, educators, and the Texas state education authorities must be maintained. The specified approach to managing the situation will offer greater control over the problem of shadow discipline and children mistreatment.
González, T., Etow, A., & De La Vega, C. (2019). Health equity, school discipline reform, and restorative justice. The Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics, 47(2_suppl), 47-50.
Homer, E. M., & Fisher, B. W. (2020). Police in schools and student arrest rates across the United States: Examining differences by race, ethnicity, and gender. Journal of School Violence, 19(2), 192-204.
Shadow discipline in Texas schools. (2019). TexasAppleseed.org. Web.