Video of Oakland teacher brawling with student gains national attention

May 1, 2013

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Trevor was website administrator for EAG from December 2012 to March 2014.
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By Victor Skinner
EAGnews.org

OAKLAND, Calif. – Some California schools are dangerous places, and not just for students.

A cell phone video shot inside a classroom at Alliance Academy in Oakland presents the most recent evidence of what’s really going on, and it ain’t pretty.

When a white male teacher attempts to eject a 13-year-old female black student from class, the two get into a scuffle at the classroom door. The teacher kicks the student, and she charges back swinging. The teacher then lobs a desk at the young girl before another school staff member hauls the student away, according to a video posted on Inquisitr.com.

The episode resulted in the student moving to another school, but the teacher wasn’t disciplined.

That’s likely because the type of violent behavior in the video is common in California schools. CBS reports police have been to Alliance Academy more than a dozen times this school year, and the district has expelled five students in 2012-13. One student was arrested in the murder investigation of an off-duty paramedic.

“We’ve had drugs, alcohol, we have students who are cutting consistently,” Faris Jabbar, a teacher at Alliance, told CBS. “Fights, threats, violence.”

Teachers blame a lack of stability and structure. They told CBS there’s a high turnover rate for teachers and school administrators there.

The school district sent in extra school administrators and an extra security guard in response to the video, according to CBS.

The story has an ironic twist because Oakland school officials are currently working to revoke the charter of several nearby American Indian Model Schools for alleged financial improprieties.

Those schools are wildly successful, particularly compared to the miserable traditional schools in the Oakland district.

oaklandfightIn 2011-12, “100 percent of the (American Indian) high school (juniors) scored ‘proficient/advanced’ on one of the math sections of the California Standards Test. By comparison, only 39 percent of Oakland Unified School District students reached that level,” KQED public media reports.

The Washington Post has rated the American Indian high school the most academically challenging in the country. Students – 95 percent of whom come from low-income families – are achieving the highest scores in the state.

The fight video, which is going viral online, represents exactly the type of school environment that parents want their children to avoid. Yet the Oakland school district wants to close successful charter schools that offer an alternative to the hellholes too many kids are forced to attend.

Go figure.

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