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October 22, 2014

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From the Principal:

Laying down the law to change the culture

Students will benefit from zealous adherence to rules

David Wilson, principal of Chaparral High School, on Thursday, August 18, 2011.

David Wilson, principal of Chaparral High School, on Thursday, August 18, 2011.

I only have one chance to make a first impression on the first day of school. Kids have to know it’s not the same Chaparral they left last year. We’ve done all that we could in a short time frame to change the exterior of the buildings. We added the banners on the front of the building, a fresh paint job, the big C for Chaparral.

That’s why we’re going to have the band out front today, out greeting them, being excited with kids. In the big courtyard we’ll have new speakers playing music.

The whole issue from this very first morning is to set that tone. You only have one opportunity to set that tone for the kids, and we have to be on our A game.

I’m focused on changing that culture, and that’s why I worry about things that I’m cracking down on. You don’t want open rebellion and open revolt. There will be no electronic devices, period, from 7:30 until lunch at 1:40 p.m. When you have kids who are used to aimlessly texting and taking calls at will, walking into class with ear buds at will, listening to music and ignoring teachers, instruction suffers. The bottom line is graduating kids and you can’t graduate kids if they’re not learning. By damn, they need to be doing their part, which is participating.

I absolutely positively know there will be pushback. Do I hope there will be none? Yes. Do I think there will be? Yes. It’s the 80-20 rule: 80 percent will go along with the rule; 20 percent will be upset. The 2 percent is who I will hear from. The parents will call into newspapers, TV stations, the School District. I don’t have a problem with that. I’m simply enforcing Clark County School District rules.

We will have zip ties for kids with sagging pants, saggers. When I came in last year, kids literally had their entire butts hanging out. That’s unacceptable.

It goes right down to the tardy policy. They’re used to just walking the hallways aimlessly, and we’re not going to let that happen, and the last thing is we’re not going to let kids exit the classroom unless it’s an absolute emergency. Most of the damage to the campus, etched glass, graffiti was done by kids either just wandering out of the classroom or saying that I have to go to the bathroom and never coming back. That change is just going to help keep things under control.

Those are huge changes in culture. We have to get the routine and procedures under control. It’s not going to be this easy walk in the park. But I’m looking forward to it.

David Wilson is the principal at Chaparral High School.

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  1. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Finally, someone who has the guts to stand up and take action. There will be the freedom of speech crowd saying sagging is their constitutional right. It is NOT.

    Good luck David Warren!

  2. Sorry...Wilson

  3. Here Here! What a wonderful concept...adhering to CCSD rules!! Although they were always in place, teachers, administrators and other CCSD personel ignored them all. Fear of retaliation? Probably. Fear of involuntary transfers? Maybe. Fear of parent rebuttals? Most definately. Time for parents to wake up, take the darn cell phone out of your kids hands for a change, make them "play" and operate in the REAL WORLD because some day, they are going to have to show up for a job interview....IN PERSON! They are going to have to communicate in real time, answer questions face-to-face, and begin lasting relationships without texting being in the equation. The jury is still out on whether or not this principal will succeed or be ousted by higher ups who receive phone calls from worried parents that their brats are being "abused". I wish him luck. Let's hope it works and the Big C becomes the standard and not the exception. Time for change folks, do it now or you may be forced into change you may not want....something to ponder...

  4. I do not understand. Your only idea, is to make all the adults, that are receiving money to do a job, actually start doing that job?
    Hmmm, this is an interesting concept for government workers everywhere.
    Do not blame children for an out of control school, that does not enforce any of the rules.

  5. That's right, Brian, don't blame the kids - try blaming the PARENTS who let their kids walk out of the house dressed like ho's and wanna-be gang bangers. Don't blame the teachers whose hands are tied when it comes to any kind of discipline - that's the ONLY time the school will hear from some of these so-called 'parents'.... when their kid is being made to toe the line - that's when these so-called 'parents' will suddenly become involved (to the detriment of the child, for sure). When it comes time for parent-teacher conferences (if they even do those anymore) these same so-called 'parents' will be nowhere to be found. All this 'discipline' should be starting at home anyway -- parents should be making sure their kids are 'dressed for success'... the way they dress DOES make a difference - just as the way people dress for work DOES make a difference in how they perform. Sadly, some so-called 'parents' just don't seem to 'get it' and probably never will.

  6. Any bets that a lawsuit is now in the works? Making kids follow rules is sure to violate some human right or free stupidity clause in the Constitutions we are not aware of.

    otherwise, I wish him luck and find it refreshing that a school is willing to start teaching and not just playing babysitter.

  7. I like the new principal. Great move!!!!