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Bust that 6-year-old

Little boy acts up & school calls cops

Six-year-old Jonathan Modesto may not be an angel - but he's no criminal either.
Yet when little Jonathan acted up in class last week, Brooklyn school officials called the cops.

"How can you call the cops on a 6-year-old?" said Rosemary Galarza, the boy's mother. "There was no reason for that," she said, adding Jonathan - who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder - is having nightmares about the incident.

"He thinks he's going to jail every time he sees a cop," Galarza said.

The incident at Public School 217 in Ditmas Park took place last Wednesday, when Jonathan threw a tantrum in his kindergarten classroom, allegedly kicking a paraprofessional and an assistant vice principal.

The school principal, Franca Conti, allegedly told a school security guard to either watch Jonathan all day or call police.

Margie Feinberg, an Education Department spokeswoman, confirmed that police were called, adding that "the school is investigating the incident and the region is planning to meet with the parent."

Several PS 217 parents made similar accusations against Conti and her staff.

Viola Brown said school officials called the cops on her 8-year-old grandson, Kadeen Dryden, for throwing a tantrum and slamming a classroom door. Kadeen, who also has ADHD, was taken to a hospital for an evaluation.

"It was ridiculous what they did," Brown said. "We took him out of the school. And I want my other three grandchildren out of here too."

School sources confirmed at least one more incident this school year when police were called, responding to a 5-year-old boy who was nipping at teachers' ankles. He was taken away in a stretcher, the sources said.

Galarza wants the principal ousted. She started a petition that has more than 200 parent signatures, and is also planning a protest outside the school.

"We need to remove the principal and get someone in there who truly cares for the kids and their education," Galarza said.

Conti declined comment.

~Linky lee

Are we noticing a trend here? Because if we're not, we should be. More and more kids (of color) are being tried as adults. Now more and more TODDLERS are having the cops called on them. They are conditioning minority children to believe they are "criminals" at younger and younger ages. They are telling our kids that they are "out of control" and need policing younger and younger. I'm waiting for them to bring back Eugenics and just institutionalize black babies from the moment they are born. We're getting closer. Keep thinking it's not a big deal. Then wait for someone to call the police on your 3 year old cousin.


( 36 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 25th, 2006 07:06 pm (UTC)
I can't say I'm surprised, as my aunt (a school principal) just had to let a new teacher go because her automatic response to any issue was to call security. She couldn't control her classroom, and seemed to think that because the kids were black any aggression (this includes talking back) meant she was in danger. Mind you, she was teaching 7th grade. Part of the problem seems to be that Teach for America and groups like it are recruiting people that really have no business in a classroom.
Jun. 25th, 2006 09:40 pm (UTC)
word to what you said about teach for america. i don't care how wide-eyed and idealistic you are and how much you think you can help inner-city kids, you need to be properly trained in education and child development before going into teaching. you also need to be prepared to stay in teaching for more than 2 years to really make a difference.
Jun. 25th, 2006 11:20 pm (UTC)
Unfortunately, TFA is becoming today's trendy resume builder. I know some good people went into that program. At the same time, every person I know of who went into that program came from either an Ivy League school or some other type of exclusive school.
Jun. 25th, 2006 08:09 pm (UTC)
This makes me angry. Soon they'll have the officers in the delivery room, ready to snatch us as soon as we're out the womb. Man, between this and the latest Washington Post installment my head is about to explode.
Jun. 25th, 2006 08:21 pm (UTC)
These kids are bad. They shouldn't be kicking adults. If the parents can't control them, how the hell do we expect strangers to contol them? ADHD is a cop out. Probably some drugs they're taking are making them act crazy.

NOTE: Conti is a Latino name, and the kid is latino.
Jun. 25th, 2006 08:27 pm (UTC)
"These kids are bad."

WTF is bad? And even if they are "bad," Bad doesn't equal criminal when you're a doggone toddler. A teacher that calls the cops on a 6 year old needs to get a new job.

"NOTE: Conti is a Latino name, and the kid is latino."

Well, it's a good thing I said "kids of color" and "minority children" then, isn't it? Especially given the same thing happened to a 5 or 6 year old BLACK girl.

Not that I expect any less from the brainiac who brought us "let the Africans worry buy Hotel Rwanda."
Jun. 25th, 2006 08:41 pm (UTC)
Ok, but he was SIX YEARS OLD! No police station should have an incoming phone call to come handle a six year old who KICKED someone!
Jun. 25th, 2006 09:35 pm (UTC)
Conti is actually an Italian name.
And if the teacher was Latina that wouldn't make any difference because that would just mean that she was acting on her own internalized oppression. Ie. Black cops who abuse Black suspects.

No children are inherently bad. They behave the way they do because of their environments and circumstances. ADHD does not make a child inherently bad either.
And no six year old is dangerous enough to call the police on. There are plenty of ways to handle an "out of control" six year old without calling in law enforcement and if a teacher does not know them or is unable to implement them then that teacher has no business whatsoever in the classroom.
Jun. 25th, 2006 08:54 pm (UTC)
I think it's wrong for people to call the cops on children if you can't get a handle on the situation however this kid was acting up. He should know better than to kick a teacher and VP. Parents should take more responsibility in parenting. As far as having ADHD, some children are often misdiagnosed and not to say he doens't have it, maybe he does however people use that as an excuse for their bad behavior.
Jun. 25th, 2006 09:06 pm (UTC)
"however this kid was acting up. He should know better than to kick a teacher and VP. Parents should take more responsibility in parenting."

Does this not go without saying though? Who thinks kids should be kicking teachers? Who would say a parent shouldn't take any responsibility?? You do realize this is like a subtle aggreeance, right?
Jun. 25th, 2006 09:31 pm (UTC)
See, that's what I was thinking...the kid KICKED a teacher?!?! Also, as far as the parents are concerend, I remember when I was coming up, my mom and grandmother flat out let my ass know I better behave better just because I was a Black kid -- and that white kids would ALWAYS be allowed to get away with more and no matter how unfair it was, it was on me not to act a fool. And I don't for once feel bad that they taught me that earlier on.

Alright, rant over.
Jun. 25th, 2006 09:40 pm (UTC)
Michael Moore was right in "Bowling for Columbine." He said the news media in the USA was all about making people afraid of each other, especially making white people afraid of black people. Now white people are even afraid of brown children.

I see your pointacidcookiegirl but this is a six year old and even though what your parents told you was correct, there is something wrong with a principal calling the POLICE because a child kicked a teacher. Why weren't the parents called?
Jun. 25th, 2006 09:50 pm (UTC)
Oh, I'm not saying the school was right...in fact something needs to be done about that situation. However, the fact that child felt it was okay to kick an adult period just left a bad taste in my mouth.
Jun. 25th, 2006 10:01 pm (UTC)
I agree with you there; I just think the principal should have called the parent and said that they had to discuss what happened.
Jun. 26th, 2006 05:41 am (UTC)
he's a CHILD. Kids also feel it's okay to eat spoonfulls of mayonaisse, and two pounds of easter candy and draw on the walls.
Jun. 26th, 2006 11:52 am (UTC)
lol You know? Since when do we attribute adult decision making to kids?
Jun. 25th, 2006 09:58 pm (UTC)
Hmm, I might have to pick up Bowling For Columbine now. It's frightening to know that incidents such as these are only going to become more prevalent. Which also made me think back to when my family pretty much warned me about the inherent fear white people have of Black people so early on. Also let's not forget about talking heads saying shit like we should abort Black babies to reduce crime. There's definitely some very insidious seeds being planted.
Jun. 25th, 2006 10:11 pm (UTC)
Why weren't the parents called?

That's what I'm saying? Whatever happened to removing the child from the classroom, taking him to another room with just him and adult supervision and calling his parents if they couldn't get control of him? Why the cops?
Jun. 25th, 2006 09:43 pm (UTC)
"See, that's what I was thinking...the kid KICKED a teacher?!?!"

Have you never heard of a child hitting or kicking a person of authority before? It happens pretty often.
Jun. 25th, 2006 09:53 pm (UTC)
I know it's been happening more and more. It's just hard to imagine a small child feeling it's okay to kick an adult. When did that ever become okay?
Jun. 25th, 2006 10:09 pm (UTC)
It's not okay, but it happened while the kid was throwing a tantrum. Throwing a tantrum usually involves limbs flailing all over the place. It didn't necessarily say that the kid just walked up to the teacher and VP and kicked them in the shin or something. Possibly, it was a tempter tantrum and the adults were probably trying to attend to the kid or stop it and they got kicked. There's nothing here to say the kid consciously thought it was okay to kick an adult.

Nor can we say it's been happening more and more. We report and talk about these things more and more, but kids have always been kids and thrown tantrums. But back in the day they'd get beat. We can't really say for certain that these occurrences are happening more often, because they might have just been handled differently in the past and not made the news.

In any case, calling the cops on a kindergartener who throws a tantrum is beyond overkill.
Jun. 25th, 2006 10:27 pm (UTC)
That's probably the story. . .
I know wbaout a kid who was acting up in class, refusing to sit in her seat. The teacher calls the principal, the principal gives the kid a three-count to get it together. Kid is defiantly standing next to chair. Principal and assistant pick up child and physically drag her out of class. She is flailing and saying "You DO NOT have permission to touch my body" as she's dragged out. tghey put her in a room and block the door. The child is given a major suspension for assault because her flailing while being physically grabbed and dragged was termed as "assault". The adults in this particular scenario escalate a typical power struggle with an 8 year old girl into a physical incident. Because of the power imbalance they can define how it is termed.

White teachers and administrators seems to have no problem putting their hands on and restraining brown and black children.
Jun. 26th, 2006 02:58 am (UTC)
And even more than that, the frontal lobe, where we process the difference between right and wrong & consequences, doesn't fully develop until we're about 20 y.o. So even if he were conscious of his actions, he still might not be capable of making the right decision. That's what we call immaturity, but it seems like everyone's forgetting this nowadays.
Jun. 26th, 2006 02:01 pm (UTC)
Some people call it immaturity; my parents called it home training, or lack thereof as the case may be. If I had thrown a temper tantrum in school, I would've rathered the cops get called than my parents. Fuck the dumbshit.
Jun. 26th, 2006 05:43 am (UTC)
in addition
the kid more than likely KNEW not to kick a teacher. But if he's in a situation where he's angry and wants to lash out, then what better to do than kick the teacher?
Jun. 25th, 2006 10:27 pm (UTC)
I remember when I was in the 3rd grade, I saw my classmate beat the fuck out of the teacher with a ruler. It was kinda scary.
Jun. 25th, 2006 09:44 pm (UTC)
a kindegartner threw a tantrum. it's what toddlers do!! they get tired, cranky, hungry, overstimulated, etc... and they throw tantrums. he wasn't acting up, he was acting out. like little kids do.
Jun. 25th, 2006 11:04 pm (UTC)
He and his mother need a beatin.
Jun. 25th, 2006 11:27 pm (UTC)
It amazes me that people find nothing wrong with this... but then again it doesn't. Many people didn't find anything wrong with sentencing 13 year od black kids to life in prison either.
Jun. 26th, 2006 03:44 am (UTC)
Many people didn't find anything wrong with sentencing 13 year od black kids to life in prison either.

Or tasering unarmed black</b> women during routine traffic stops.
Jun. 26th, 2006 12:00 pm (UTC)
You know? Pregnant, black women too. Then they run into the nearest precinct, find the first black face, pull him out and make him give a statement about how UNracist and by-the-books all his fellow officers are.

I remember someone posted a link with video footage about a girl who couldn't have been more than about 15, 16 working at some drive-thru place. This cop SWORE he'd given her a 20 (or was it a 10?) and demanded the "correct" change back. Asshole comes inside, charging past everybody, tases her and makes her come to the precinct. In the end it is revealed that she gave him the correct change (and even if she DIDN'T give him the correct change, WTF??). That video gave me chills for days.
Jun. 26th, 2006 01:49 pm (UTC)
I read the article about the pregnant woman getting tased (and I was pretty pissed about it) but a teenager getting tased over some change? are you serious? do you still have the link to that video because I'd like to see it.
Jun. 26th, 2006 03:08 am (UTC)
Who else is reminded of that "Arrest black babies before they become criminals" T-shirt?
Jun. 26th, 2006 11:49 am (UTC)
ADHD is quite serious, especially for children at that age.

It seems as if these "educators" are not at all equipped to handle kids with ADHD. Thus, they call the police on six-year olds who are just having a bad day.

I'm glad to hear that his mother is fighting back and is not ignoring this situation. All too often you hear about minority parents who are bit more removed from these kind of situations since they probably have their own "adult" problems.

In elementary school, a teacher of mine, Frog Face Freemen is what we called her, grabbed me by the hand and pulled me across the floor because I was talking when I shouldn't have been. We were sitting on the floor listening to some other teacher or whatever. My mom nearly got her fired. And I was put into another class. That was about ten years ago. It really was a big deal because she had no business putting her hands on me, even if I wouldn't be quiet. There are other ways to handle children who are misbehaving.
Jun. 26th, 2006 09:54 pm (UTC)
PS 217 is 2 blocks away from my house. Viola Brown(not her real govt) is one of my homegirls and she was telling me about this very same thing today. Im starting to wonder what cracker jack box this lady got her teaching degree from that she felt it was okay to call the cops on a 6 year old boy.
Jun. 27th, 2006 05:06 pm (UTC)
i think that black kids are very often not considered to be children at all anyway, just small but still scary black people, so this doesnt surprise me.
( 36 comments — Leave a comment )



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