Friday, April 29, 2011

Irate Parent Confronting A Student in School Cafeteria

One month prior, the March 29th post titled Irate Parent & The Response of School Leadership. talked about a disruption at CT school in Thomaston. (I suggest you review that post for the recommended protocols).

Now on April 29th in East New Haven at Joseph Melillo Middle School (pictured above) a warrant has been sworn out for the arrest of a parent who allegedly (after receiving a cell phone call from her daughter) came to school and confronted another student in the cafeteria during the school. An excerpt from the story is as follows:     

INCIDENT: What precipitated the confrontation? According to East Haven PD an official stated:  “I guess there was a situation ... where there was food being thrown, and this girl called her mother from the cafeteria, saying that this other girl was throwing food at her.”  “I guess she’s had problems with her in the past.” According to police, “it appears the parent was ‘buzzed’ in the front door but did not follow the clearly printed rules,” which require visitors to report directly to the main office. The school has a security camera that shows who is at the front door, but does not have a camera that covers the area between the door and the office, he said. But he said the incident “happened so quickly,” and that as soon as the secretary realized that the woman hadn’t come to the office, she told Principal and they went looking for her. “Instead, she stormed into the cafe and confronted a female student about a situation regarding her daughter,” police said. The mother “went up to the other girl, and from what the other officer was telling me, got physical with her,” he said. “A male student tried to stop the parent and was pushed away by that parent,” police said.

East Haven Police Department Youth Detective Michael D’Amato said the investigating officer, will seek a warrant to charge the mother, whom police have not yet identified, with breach of peace. There may be other charges as well, he said.

What should the Irate Mother Have Done If She Was Concerned“Regardless of what the situation was between her daughter and the other girl, the parent had no right to take the situation into her own hands by entering the school and confronting anyone other than the principal,” police officials said. “She should have gone to the main office to the principal and handled it the proper way,” he said. 

  • Students and Parents need to know and be reminded of how to respond if they are being bothered by someone in school. Contacting a teacher, guidance counselor, housemaster or vice principal, or principal OR even the police are a multitude of options for a student or parent to use to solve a problem.
  • Students and parents need to be reminded of the PROPER way to contact each other during the school day. 
    • Parents and students calling each other and texting each other throughout the school day are an interruption to the educational process. It happens more often then people may think. This does not even address student to student calling and texts which is highly disruptive and can be used for nefarious purposes or have unintended consequences.
  • Parent or student communication during the school day will be addressed in a future blog.           

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