Why do most high school teachers and administrators overly treat students like little children?

Today, I am asking a quesiton that may seem a little elementary and characteristic of my age (in a negative way). But I am just curious. I honestly don't care much anymore; I'm out of high school in 9 months anyway, but again, I am just curious.

The majority of the high school population is 14-18, so I understand being a litle authoratative, but I see them still:

- giving assigned seats
- making students make posters about "respect" and write down their "goals" in some pyramid on the first day of school
- running around the hallway needing to know where students are going at all times (i. e. if I have a free period, sometimes I just like to take a stroll around school and teachers have gotten all suspicious)
- telling you you can't eat in the hallway or outside on the patio (although not really enforced)
- not letting you into the library if it's past 5 minutes into the period (they used to be very leniant about this, but some reason they got really strict about this last year)
- emailing parents about every assessment/assignment coming up

I understand that they have to exert some authority but sometimes it just seems really over-the-top and that they're treating students there like they're in elementary school.

There are a few good teachers by the way that do treat students like adults (or almost so), and I commend them. They often make the best teachers anyway and receive the most respect. Students actually listen to them more.


Most Helpful Girl

  • It's the hidden curriculum; ie. teaching you that the establishment owns you and you need to conform to rules and respect hierarchies. There are plenty of rules that are just trivial and pointless, and made to be broken; so that a teacher always has the opportunity to throw their weight around and demonstrate that they have power and you don't.

    That said, some rules like the goals thing and contacting your parents can just be trying to help you out. Although it's annoying.

    Things like needing to always know where you are probably aren't the teachers' fault really; it's to do with health and safety, because you're underage and therefore in their care, so they're responsible if you were to be hurt in any way.

    Stuff like setting targets and all that is a trend, and probably not up to your classroom teachers, it's the senior management you want to blame for that. It's there to try and improve results etc. but most people don't care for it much. Including your classroom teachers probably as they're made to do it too on inset days and training courses etc.


Most Helpful Guy

  • You make a fair point - There has to be some control but sometimes they take it too far. On the flip side there has to be some respect by the pupils.
    In a perfect world students would be left to their own devices with a light guiding hand from teachers/administrators but in the real world it really comes down to two options too little control, potential chaos or too much control, harsh regime. You can see why school staff will pick the latter as the less of two evils.
    I am sure there are teachers and schools where the balance is good so kudos to them but I feel the harsh regime would be the norm. At this stage it is a culture/society thing but you would be surprised it is slowly changing with each generation ( For better/worse is a different argument ).


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What Girls Said 0

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What Guys Said 2

  • Unfortunately, it's how they're trained. What a great thing it would be to focus on the student, who they are and what their interests are. I think school in part is a waste of time if teachers push and enforce things that may have little or no value. There is no universal class or subject that is for/applies to everyone. It's more of a future marketing game, they way things are taught. We still live in an egotistical planet and I look forward to the simple change of embracing ourselves and each other as we are.


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