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BOTD 12/18/14 "Blast From The Past: Schoolyard Tussle" A DMK Production

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David M. Katz


Marshall
A BLAST FROM THE PAST:  SCHOOLYARD TUSSLE
A DMK Production

The year is 1965.  You are principal at the local elementary school.  You are passing through the school yard and come across:

Wayne Brown and Billy Palmer - Both 11 year old fifth graders
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What do you do?


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Jack


Admin
I'm going to find out what the reason for the scuffle is. Assuming this hasn't happened before, and neither of them is a trouble-maker, I'll probably talk it out with them, have them apologize to each other and shake, and then send them on to class. If it has happened before, I think those jeans look thick enough about three swats would be about right.


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AFinch


Sherrif
It depends. In 1965, zero tolerance hadn't, fortunately, been thought of yet. (and whoever DID think of it should be beaten, not spanked).

First thing to do is to break it up. But before punishing anyone, I need to know the facts.

A couple of years prior to 1965, I was a small, sometimes too smart for his own good 9 year old, who was picked on and bullied daily at recess by a much larger classmate. One day I'd had enough and I snapped. The situation ended much like that photo, except I had my bully in a headlock and banged his head against the grass once or twice until he started crying (in those days, schoolyard fights stopped when somebody cried or got a bloody nose. Nobody EVER went to the ER for treatment following them).

A male teacher came and broke up the fight. And then shook my hand, and said: "it's about time". He wasn't my teacher, but he did do boys' PE, and had been watching this bullying for months. I don't even remember the teacher's name (though I remember the bully's very well). But I've never forgotten his kindness and support, and the fact that he was willing to react rationally, instead of in a knee-jerk fashion in accordance with some "policies and procedures" manual.

Iconoclast


Trailboss
It looks to me like they are just tussling or playing. Neither of them is punching or bleeding.

So I will do nothing because I realize boys are boys!

Iconoclast

squarecutter


Sherrif
I think. like others it will depend on the history of each boy and the circumstances AND their attitude. If my presence as Principal can bring the two to their senses and I am satisfied it isnt bullying and if the two can shake hands and move on we may avoid a visit to the office for these two. They both know my paddle is available if they want to push me.

6 boys need to work this out on Wed Dec 17, 2014 7:33 pm

shannonsp6


Kid
I think boys need to work things out. If the boys can shake hands and this is not something they do all the time. I would be able to let them off with a lecture of sorts. I don't respect bullies, but I do think boys grow a little when they survive a fight. You don't want boys to grow up being scared to stand up for what they think is right..

Stone Man


Marshall
Good posts, leaving me nothing to add at this point.

Trotzkopf


Kid
I would stop the Fight and go with both boys to the gym, give them boxing gloves and let them fight.

ivor


Marshall
Being 1965 I think Trotzkopf's answer might well have been the one employed.

Other than that it does rather depend on if it can be established if this is a friendly tussle or something more serious.

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Padraig


Trailboss
I think it's covered by the posts above.

Kat


Editor Extraordinaire
I don't have anything to add to the wisdom above.

Kat

squarecutter


Sherrif
Trotzkopf wrote:I would stop the Fight and go with both boys to the gym, give them boxing gloves and let them fight.  
Don't know about Germany or the States but this was a regular solution in British private schools back then.

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