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Vance Schools Create Program To Curb Student Rowdiness

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Vance County school system

is working on a program aimed at curbing student rowdiness.

Like most public schools, Eaton-Johnsson Middle School has a few disruptive students. Vance County school leaders are looking at a plan that will separate the rowdy ones from the rest of the student body.

Superintendent Norm Shearin said the "Last Chance" program will give disruptive students two choices: straighten up or go home.

"We want to wake them up by depriving them of that social atmosphere," he said. "A lot of people look at school discipline as a punishment. That's not the way you need to look at it. Look at it as a way to change student behavior. We don't punish anybody."

The Vance County school system usually sends high-school students who fall a year behind academically to Western Vance Secondary. Some troublemakers will attend their assigned school but outside normal class hours.

Mike Talley, principal at Eaton-Johnson Middle School, said in order for the new program to work, parents must feel the force of what's happening with their child.

"My experience is when the parent is actively involved by choice or by requirement, students tend to succeed in a better way," he said.

School leaders expect to single out no more than 15 to 20 students from each of the two middle schools. They hope the inconvenience of late afternoon or evening hours will serve as a wake-up call for parents and students.