By: Krystle Crossman
School can be a very stressful environment. Kids have the pressure to fit in with the crowd, make friends, manage their time wisely, follow a schedule, and most importantly, get good grades. Some schools seem to put a lot more pressure on kids these days when it comes to testing and in one New York City charter school it has proven to be extremely detrimental to the students. They are so afraid to get up and go to the bathroom if they have to during a test that they are wetting themselves.
Success Academy in NYC has 35 different charter schools throughout the city. There have been reports lately that they are putting their students under such incredible pressure that the students are wetting themselves in the middle of tests. The students feel that they cannot get up and go to the bathroom even during practice tests because they are so afraid to fail. The CEO of the Success Academy stated that while it was not against the rules for students to get up and go to the bathroom during a test or practice test but that it is not encouraged. A classroom full of wet jeans makes it seem like this is not the case. Some of the schools were reported to have spare pants and underwear at all times because this has become such an issue. A former teacher at the Academy says that they had heard the vice principal of the school commend a child for wetting their pants because it showed dedication.
The CEO, Eva Moskowitz, said that the students are sometimes quite a distance from the bathrooms which is probably one of the reasons that they don’t go. She states that staying in the classroom with no break is helpful for them in the long run because it mimics a real testing environment. Parents are not too thrilled with this stance. One woman wrote in stating that her son now has problems going to bathroom because he wet his pants for the first time since he was three and the staff was insensitive to the fact that he had to go to the bathroom but being so young, was afraid of going down the long all.
New York City is not the only city that has this problem either. Memphis, TN has a charter school that was under investigation for the same thing. The parents said that their kids would come home with their wet clothing in a bag that they had to carry around all day with them.
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