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How to Deal with a Disruptive Student

There is a student in my wife's class who is constantly trying to monopolize her time. He asks broad questions and insists that she answer them fully right then and there when she is in the middle of instruction. She tells him that we don't have time to discuss that in the middle of class but she would be happy to answer his questions privately outside of class. His response usually is something like, "Okay, but..." and repeats the question, or sometimes he goes on a rant about how he wants his question answered and she is not listening to him and so on and so on. The biggest challenge with this student is that he doesn't appear to have any concept of social consideration or respect for authority. As we are a workforce training organization, our students are to behave as they would on a job, with their instructors as their bosses. Our ultimate goal is to place them with one of our partners in employment and in doing that we are vouching for them. If this student continues to behave the way he behaves here he will not last long at his placement, which will reflect poorly on our organization. We are constantly trying to explain this to him and help him see the issues, but he wants nothing more than to argue and take the conversation in circles. This becomes extremely frustrating for her because while all of this is going on, her other students are missing out on important instructional time. She knows it is frustrating for his classmates because they are giving up valuable time to be here and to learn, and he is wasting their time.

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Classroom management is always a challenge when there is a disruptive student who refuses to listen! Unfortunately, this student sounds like the type who does not respect authority and does not listen regardless. The first thing that your wife should do is discuss behavior norms and expectations for students with the entire class and remind them of the classroom policies that were provided to them in the syllabus. It is a shame to waste valuable class time doing so, especially since school has already been in session for at least a couple of classes, but this will set the foundation to take action if this is discussed with the entire group at first. Your wife should also consider drawing up a 'contract' for classroom behavior and ask the ...

Solution Summary

The solution determines how to deal with disruptive students.