High school students “march to the beat of their own drum.” Enforcing a more consistent and firm discipline will not make a difference in the high schools. Speaking as a high school student, the attempt to make a better discipline policy has been unsuccessful. All policies look good on paper, but when it is time to put the policies into action, it falls apart. High school students will challenge the new policies instead of abiding by them. For example, at Fort Dorchester High School, not only students follow a dress-code policy, but teachers as well. Even with the dress-code policy, students still do not abide by these rules. Students still come to school with short-shorts, super mini-skirts, hats, bandannas, gloves, sagged pants below the hips etc. The faculty cannot suspend every student or tell every student to go home. It is not realistic. In addition, high school students do not adhere to the policy against fights. If the need for a fight is evident, teenagers will do what they feel is right. This means that after disciplinary actions are taken, students will either stop disobeying rules or continue to break the rules.
Since this is the generation of “rebelliousness,” teenagers nowadays will not listen to just anyone. In other words, teenagers only have respect for the people who give them respect. A close bond with teenagers will allow them to take advice more effortlessly from others. “You can’t talk to me because you ‘aint my momma!” or “I don’t care! My momma will come and take my side too.” Teenagers believe that when they are in need of help, they can always get the dependability of their parents. Due to consequences for breaking policies, students tend to use their parents as a scapegoat for their problems. Not only do teenagers do this constantly, but also parents fall for it as well. High school students create a convincing argument for their parents and parents tend to side with their child/children majority of the time. As a result, students do not learn from their mistakes and they end up breaking the rules repeatedly.
The problem arises in the communication between high school students vs. faculty members, and faculty members vs. parents. The bonds between the two groups are lacking. The trust is not there; therefore, the respect is also not there. It will take a great amount of effort to fix this situation. Changing or rectifying disciplinary action and school policies is of no value to the students. The faculty needs to find a way to bond with students and gain their respect. In this, students will learn to respect the faculty. You have to give respect to get respect!