A teacher’s daily struggle against disrespectful students


Antoinette Gilbert

A teacher gets upset as the students are disrespectful during class. Disrespect is shown in various ways such as listening to music during class and talking back.

Airpods play music into students’ ears as the teacher gives a lesson. Phones are out on the desks and fingers scroll through social media as students are more focused on their electronics than the lesson.

As students at Bonita Vista High (BVH) are habituated to using electronics, students have more access to technology in their class allowing them to be easily distracted by it. The reality is, this can be viewed as disrespectful by teachers. As of now, teachers are more concerned and frustrated as students are constantly disrespecting them in class. The disrespectful behaviors from students’ varies; from talking back to teachers to disrupting the lesson, disrespect is much more prominent than some may think. 

According to English 10 Accelerated teacher Sean Warlop, students are more disrespectful due to the loss of live instruction for two years. Warlop believes that students “are unaware of their rude behavior.” Nonetheless, it is crucial that students minimize disrespectful behavior, not just for teachers sake, but for their peers as well.

In the study, “Job-Related Stress Threatens the Teacher Supply,” conducted by Elizabeth D. Steiner and Ashley Woo, teachers are nearly twice as likely to experience stress, and three times as likely to experience symptoms of depression than the general adult population. With that, students must minimize disrespect in order to lessen the stress and symptoms of depression on teachers. 

BVH 1-2, 3-4, 5-6, Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate Italian teacher Robert Pirazzini agrees that students may not be used to the in-person learning environment after returning from distance learning. According to Pirazzini, it became challenging for teachers to teach as the students’ behaviors are becoming problematic. Teachers should not be worried about students’ behavior on top of grading and lesson planning.

Due to the change in students’ behaviors, BVH teachers are having to deal with those who disobey the rules. BVH should not be a place where either teachers and students are hurt from disrespect in the classrooms.

Unfortunately, some BVH students do not show importance to their classes; therefore, teachers would step outside the classroom to have a discussion with the student about their situation and problems. These are ways of how teachers like Warlop and Government, History and Economics teacher Frank Schneemann have attempted to prevent the misbehavior. 

By respecting their teachers inside classrooms and following the ‘treat others the way you want to be treated’ advice, it would lead to the path of a strongly bonded class.”

— Antoinette Gilbert

Furthermore, respecting teachers is crucial because it creates a friendly environment where students become more comfortable with each other.

“Once in a while a kid will get out of hand and I would have to stop the lesson. I would try to call them [the student] up and talk to them quietly, so I don’t embarrass them in front of the class,” Schneemann said

Teachers have a job to teach the required material to students. However, they cannot properly teach if students continuously get distracted and refuse to pay attention. Misbehavior leads to teachers pausing the lesson to refocus everyones’ attention, which causes inconvenience and also affects the learning growth of those paying attention to the class. 

By respecting their teachers inside classrooms and following the ‘treat others the way you want to be treated’ advice, it would lead to the path of a strongly bonded class. Not only will following the classroom guidelines allow teachers to feel relieved and decrease stress, it can also allow students to develop manners that will be useful in the future when attending college or in their workplace.

As we are coming to the end of the 2021-22 school year, it is time for BVH students to take out their airpods, turn off their phones before class and start respecting teachers. Doing so will only allow for a more welcoming environment at BVH.