Violent kindergarteners are posing a greater problem for teachers, says the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
As most North Texas students — including those in Fort Worth and Arlington — return to classes Monday, teachers expect to see a continuation of a disturbing trend: It’s the tiniest students who are hitting, spitting, kicking, biting and cursing like sailors.
. . . Counselors in Fort Worth and Arlington schools say today’s kindergartners are experiencing more emotional and behavioral problems than their counterparts five years ago, according to a survey released in February. Several area educators contacted for this report expressed the same sentiment.
The students are violent, lack discipline and show no respect for authority, according to the survey by the Partnership for Children and the Mental Health Connection of Tarrant County.
The survey blamed the problems on issues including fractured families, a lack of structure for children and a growing incivility in public discourse.
The problem is widespread. National studies show that about 10 percent of preschool and young school-age children behave aggressively and that 25 percent of young economically disadvantaged children do.
Many teachers are afraid of being sued if they physically restrain a violent child — even to protect the child or other students from injury.