Limitations and boundaries for student language
January 6, 2017
Whether it’s in the classrooms, on the field, or at home, students use different language when speaking in different settings with the limitations and boundaries for students regarding the use of language on campus tends to vary from teacher to teacher.
“As a rule, I don’t allow foul language or cursing in my classroom,” math teacher Jeff Schrantz said. “If it is a disruption of it is directed at somebody, that’s immediate grounds for discipline, whether it’s detention or a student needs to be sent to the principal’s office, but I can’t allow that. If I were to maybe slightly overhear it from a certain spot in the classroom, I’ll try to address that to let people know that that’s not allowed and that’s basically their warning. After that, if I hear anything from that student whether or not it’s directed at someone else then I would follow up with discipline.”
Though some faculty members enforce strict policies, others can be more lenient depending on the environment that they are in.
“Really teachers have the discretion to determine what language is used and of course we have a standard of appropriate language anywhere in the school and school sponsored events,” Principal Scott Warstler said. “There are times that a student may say something in the classroom that wasn’t meant to be malicious or directed at somebody and just conversational.”
Although students are not allowed to say whatever they want, whenever they want, the situation and context of the language used determines if there are consequences.
“We are teenagers and sometimes we use language that is not appropriate,’ so it’s okay for a teacher to redirect at that point and say ‘hey, I heard that/keep quiet/watch yourself,’” Warstler said. “Just because a student slips up and says something doesn’t mean they are going to be sent to the office and given a severe consequence. Now of course when that language is used in a way that is directed at someone in a derogatory way as an escalation of behaviors, at that point, it will be dealt with totally different from if it was in casual conversation and a student messes up. Our teachers have done a good job with common sense and discretion when determining how to move forward with that.”
Though most teachers would give consequences for certain language, coaches may have a different perspective on this issue.
“Disciplinary action would happen immediately because profanity is not accepted at any point in time,” campus Athletic Coordinator Chris Burtch said. “That’s not just for students, that’s for my coaching staff as well. I don’t allow it and I don’t think it’s right. The very first time I hear it, there’s going to be disciplinary action and you’ll have 250 yards of tire flips. I’m not sure if you know what that is, but it’s not a lot of fun. We’re not going to allow it and certainly not encourage it.”