Physical abuse cannot be tolerated in the classroom in any form. If students attack teachers, the first step is to call for help and position something between the students if able to. As teachers, the first concern is the safety of the students. Many teachers have some rolling chairs positioned strategically throughout the room. This a good way to get something between people. Most schools have a plan established to call for help. Typically, a radio or call button is located in each room. If this is not the case, the school board should be addressed. There needs to be a plan in every school.
Never try and physically restrain a student. It is not worth the risk. If there is a confrontation, get everyone away from the issue as quickly as possible. Wait for help.
When a person finds that they are on fire, they are trained to stop, drop and roll. This is good for a teacher who is being physically attacked. Teachers typically have a no touch policy and this is a great way to avoid a punch. Let all the students know that the first thing to do in case of any physical confrontation is to call for help.
Once physical abuse has taken place, it is essential that the teacher follows through to the full extent of the law. This is often hard for a teacher. Often, because of the nature of teachers, they want to give the student the benefit of a second chance. This simply cannot be tolerated where physical abuse is concerned. There is no way to know who the next victim might be or when the student might strike again.
As soon as there is help and the student is restrained, it is important that the teacher gets medical attention. If medical attention is not required, the teacher should immediately write a report of what happened. Memory begins to fail and stress does not help. So complete the information as soon as possible after the altercation.
Do not talk to anyone outside of the authorities about the situation. The administration should give the same instruction to the other students and take down their reports as well. Even if their information is not used, it gives them the opportunity to share information in a appropriate manner. This should help to minimize the gossip that be can harmful to individuals and to any legal arguments.
There should be a 100% no tolerance policy to physical abuse. It cannot be ignored and must be dealt with head on and with the backing of the administration.
Abuse in the classroom takes what once was a safe place and turns it into a war zone. Counselors should meet with any students who were present during the attack. Issues need to be resolved so they can return to the classroom and feel like this is a safe place.
There will be talk and questions. The teacher should simply send those with questions straight to administration.