Discipline problems and violence in Philadelphia city schools are not new. In a report by Judge Ellen Green-Ceisler on school discipline she states,
I observed a prevalence of Level I offenses including violations of the
school uniform code, wandering in the hallways and students who were
tardy for class, disruptive, aggressive, and disrespectful to the teachers.
The teachers with whom I spoke said that reporting these violations was useless since nothing would be done
In March 2011 the Philadelphia Human Relations Commission issued a report concluding their investigation into violence within Philadelphia schools. The investigation was prompted by a violent incident which occurred at a local school in December 2009, resulting in multiple victims requiring hospital treatment. The conclusion of the report was: “racial violence and conflicts routinely interferes with student learning in district schools” (Graham, 2011, para. 3). In language reinforcing the findings of Judge Green-Ceisler the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations wrote:
District policies fail to provide a clear consistent framework for
preventing and resolving intergroup conflicts, and these policies
are neither uniformly implemented, nor clearly communicated.
(Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations, 2011, p. 9)
In five years nothing in Philadelphia has changed yet the person in charge schools gets paid more than the Mayor and the Police Chief combined. The mayor is running for reelection virtually unopposed. The Police Chief is equally popular. But the head of schools has divided Philadelphia by race with not a single White person speaking on her behalf. Teachers are blamed for students not achieving while test scores have continuously risen since the late 90s.
It is really very simple. Look at Philadelphia’s good schools and you will find schools that enforce the student code of conduct. Look at Philadelphia’s poorly performing schools and you see an absence of discipline.