There is a very disturbing story coming out of Florida this afternoon that has caused a teacher to ‘reassigned until further action is determined.’
Last week, Elementary kindergarten teacher Wendy Portillo held a vote in her classroom in which kindergarten students “voted out” 5-year-old Alex Barton, who was in the process of being tested for Asperger’s Disorder, a type of high-functioning autism. Alex’s mother, Melissa Barton, said the vote was taken after classmates were allowed to tell Alex what they didn’t like about him.
The class voted Alex out of the room, by a 14 to 2 margin.
As of This morning, Alex had officially been diagnosed with an autism-spectrum disorder and attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD. He is not in school, but misses the one friend he made in the classroom his mom said. I think that this teacher should have helped the class understand that Alex was different because of the disorder he was born with.
When a student with special needs is placed in a class, a specialized teacher should help the other students understand that the child may be disruptive, but that they can’t control their behavior.
This could go a long way to preparing the other kids for what is in store for them rather than have them just not like that person.
It makes me sad to think that this little boy had to listen to his classmates list off the things they didn’t like about him. No one should ever have to go through that, especially a kindergartner!