Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Thomson Elementary Incident Raises Concern: How we can Respond

By Craig Melcher
This was big news in the last few days for DCPS:

http://www.cnn.com/2011/CRIME/03/21/dc.students.cocaine/

It details an incident of a DCPS fourth grader allegedly bringing in cocaine to school. I don't think our tutors have had one-on-one interactions with kids who have committed such actions, but he would be around the age of most of our students. The article further reflects the type of environment a lot of these students are raised in, in which standards are set far too low, and one might find drugs invading the playground even at this young age. Although this particular incident is not the norm, it also forced me to question whether, nine or ten years from now, which students of our own might fall victim to peer pressure and lose sight of the goals we work so hard to help them establish. This incident will encourage me to talk to my tutee even more about the next few years in addition to reading and writing activities. To quote the prophet Uncle Ben from the groundbreaking film Spider-man, "With great power comes great responsibility," It is our responsibility to use our relationships and influence over these students to steer them in the right direction.