Throughout Florida high schools in the 2016-17 school year, behavioral lessons are becoming relevant to students once again. According to chemistry teacher Teresita Chipi, small misdemeanors have been on the rise; thus, the Broward County School Board is experimenting with new ways to stop this unrest on campus.
To eradicate such problems, lessons on life skills are being implemented during every PSD day. Teachers of all grades and subjects are required to teach their students various behavior lessons during their third period class. The first lesson taught this year was on positivity, followed by lessons on both hallway mannerisms and classroom rules.
The next set of lessons will be chosen by Ty Thompson and will follow the school’s motto, teaching students how to be passionate and proud. These lessons, like the others, are going to include a video and a discussion from the teachers.
As a chairman for the disciple committee, and a state committee that works under Tyne Hogan, Chipi has helped adapt this statewide idea to better fit Marjory Stoneman Douglas.
“I was a little reluctant upon the idea, but after the first time I was positively surprised with the results people have been reporting,” Chipi said.
According to Chipi there has been a lot of positive feedback with this new idea, and various students and teachers around the school are looking forward to seeing it develop in the future. She also reported that other teachers have expressed approval of this new program.
Students are expressing some positive feedback as well. They are glad to see positive changes within the school, especially concerning a topic that is frequently overlooked.
“I really like this change as I think some of the kids in this school really need to adjust how they act, and even though these lessons aren’t much I hope that it leads to more in the future,” sophomore Tommy Holgate said.
There have been some problems with the system so far; for example, during the last PSD day, teachers experienced some confusion in regards to what video to play, resulting in different lessons being taught. Some teachers have also refused to show the videos to their classes.
However, hopes remain high within that this new system will cut back on small incidents such as tardiness and bad manners, but some students still oppose this new system.
“I definitely think that behavioral lessons were needed in elementary school, but now that we are in high school I think that it is a little too late,” junior Hugo Carneiro said.
Sophomore Noah Caracuel is also concerned that it will cause problems in the future. The current behavioral system interrupts all third period classes. This could potentially cause problems in which the school’s third period classes would fall behind the other classes.
“I have already had one of my Spanish projects rescheduled, due to this new change. I definitely think that more problems can come from this system,” said Caracuel.
A teacher who wishes to remain anonymous, also thinks that these lessons are a waste of the teacher’s time. They even went on to say that it appears that the school board is implementing these lessons because they do not think that kids are receiving good parenting.
This negative feedback is substantiated by a survey conducted at MSD that found that 233 students out of 300 did not feel that the lessons were helping the school in a positive way.
This concept of behavioral teaching has been very controversial throughout the school, with some thinking that it is needed and others disagreeing strongly. The school is waiting to see how this new implementation will evolve over time, and whether or not it will be effective.