“I have been kicked, punched, hit, scratched. I've had a student physically restraining me in front of my other students…. And many of the personal things that I have bought for my classroom have been broken or destroyed,” stressed Amanda Sheaffer.
Amanda is a first grade teacher in Harrisburg City Schools and one of many educators from a few elementary schools that are suffering from student violence.
The violence is so bad that teachers are resigning. One third grade teacher in a heartfelt video explains why she will never send her children to district schools. She notes,
I’ve seen too much violence incited in these classrooms. I have seen good kids … who want to learn and who love everything about school get disheartened because there is some kid across the classroom … tearing up the classroom, hitting people, and doing all sorts of malicious things because they do not care.
Pending Education Savings Account legislation, SB 2, would provide every student in Harrisburg a safe alternative. Under SB 2, every student in the district would qualify for an account that would receive a percentage of the state per pupil funding, or about $5,731. This money could be used for private schools, tutoring, online classes, and more.
Last year Harrisburg's failing schools experienced 73 assaults on students, 43 assaults on staff, and dozens of other acts of violence.
It's time to give these kids a way out and create a competitive alternative that will force the district to be accountable to the community it serves.