Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Should we give second chances to students?

This past weekend I caught up on TV shows I had recorded on my DVR. I find that during the week there is very little time to watch TV, so early morning or in the lull of the weekend afternoons I catch up on some of my favorites. I’ve been watching Grey’s Anatomy since it first started, and I record it now so that I can watch it at my convenience. 

On last week’s episode, there was a scene where a former resident who was fired was returning to the hospital. There was a lot of talk about her return, saying that she didn’t fight hard enough to get into the ER, or study, or prepare. She also drilled through a patient's leg all the way to the table. So why was she back?

Dr. Webber believes in second chances. 

When Arizona (doctor on the show) asks Dr. Webber why he was re-hiring Leah, the former resident who had been fired, he tells Arizona that when Leah left she learned and had proven herself at another hospital. He asked Arizona, “Don’t you believe in second chances?” 

This scene stuck with me, and I replayed it in my head during one of my runs. Dr. Webber and Arizona could both agree that when Leah left, she went on to learn surgical techniques proficiently and had proven herself to be a good surgeon. Dr. Webber and Arizona had different beliefs about whether she should get a second chance at their hospital.

Photo source: Yahoo

What does this have to do with teaching and learning and schools?

What educators believe about students impacts the students' growth and opportunities within the classroom and school. 

How would you answer these scenarios?
What about the science student who didn’t learn how to balance equations the first time around, but a few weeks later is a whiz at it? Should he get the opportunity to re-take a test about balancing equations

How about the student that smarts off to the teacher in class? He serves his consequence of detention. Does the teacher then “write him off” and not try to build a strong relationship with the student after that? Or does he get a second chance?

I bet there are more scenarios that could be written about second chances.

Have you ever been given a second chance? 
Do you think students should get second chances?

1 comment:

  1. Students should get second, and third and fourth...chances! They are in school to learn and to grow, and school is not a "kill or be killed" society. I love the article; thank you for writing this!