In one of my math classes I have 7 of the 8 seniors and there is some very difficult classroom dynamics and chemistry that comes with such a small group that also lacks academic leaders. At this point I see 3 students that are sources of great distraction or negativity. They seem almost proud of their dysfunction. I also see 3-4 students who are quieter, more introspective and who are ready to learn and succeed, but struggle to overcome the distractions of the other 3. I have had individual conversations with this second group and they have expressed great frustration with their classmates (in all classes). These 3 distracting students are, in the words of a grade 12 student, “hindering our education.”
This is not a new problem, but with IB exams coming all too soon there is a sense of urgency I feel more each time I wake up. The school has failed to solve the problem and many teachers seem content to simply chuckle and shake their heads.
So. What would you do?