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  • Carlos Turcios

"The students are out of their mind" - FWISD Teacher Speaks Out

Photo of FWISD Math Teacher Daryl Guyton

Daryl Guyton is a Fort Worth ISD teacher facing termination for defending himself from an attack by a Dunbar High School student. Guyton recalls the student had begun shoving him, the struggle causing objects on his desk to be knocked over along with him, when he had only told the student to step away from his desk.

This is Fort Worth ISD. This is the story of many teachers in Fort Worth ISD.

Mr. Guyton said this in a statement he sent to his principal after the incident occurred, ”I was checking my email to make sure that I was releasing the correct students. He stood up and came behind my desk to check for his name but was reaching out to touch my iPad." The teacher had warned him numerous times while continuing to write, but the student had shoved the teacher in response.

"He bum-rushed me," said Guyton.

Guytons statement

"When he pushed me, I moved into the desk and wall." Because the desk & chair were on wheels, Mr. Guyton had been trapped. In the struggle, he had demanded the student let him go. "He wouldn't stop. I had to press a pen into his arm to get him to stop. Everything on the desk fell off, including a glass container with pressed juice that shattered. Glass and juice was all over the floor.” When the student had finally stopped, the teacher sent him off to the band hall.

Mr. Guyton contacted the student's parents himself after the incident to explain what had occurred. The teacher states his parents had agreed that the student was in the wrong per their conversation but on Monday, a report was made to the Office of Professional Standards.

Statement from Office of Professional Standards

Fort Worth ISD almost immediately concluded with their investigation that Mr. Guyton was “culpable” of the incident and recommended termination to the board on September 26th.

Office of Employee Services Statement

On September 26th, the board approved the recommendation to terminate. Mr. Guyton plans to appeal the decision as a result of the board voting for termination. 

When Mr. Guyton was asked how disciplinary issues are in Dunbar High School he had only one word, "chaos". Mr. Guyton says that buses arrive late to school and students attend school at any time they please throughout the day, instead of at the scheduled time. Mr. Guyton states, “first thing in the morning it smells like weed."

Mr. Guyton goes on to share the disciplinary problems that other teachers across the ISD continue to face. "The students are out of their mind.” He also remarks that there are fights on a daily basis in the cafeteria, and that he has three students in his class who have ankle monitors. 

“I don't feel supported,” sighs an exasperated Mr. Guyton. And many other Fort Worth ISD teachers would agree, with such a high turnover rate. “There's no way that you let a teacher get attacked... say you're voted for termination, and let the kid walk around. He didn't get ISS or suspended.”

Guyton is not allowed to teach at this moment, and instead must go every day to the Office of Professional Standards to sit outside in a bench with six other teachers. Guyton says one of the teachers there is in a similar situation and being disciplined for breaking up a fight, which was seen as "too rough” to the school. 

When asked why they are not allowed inside the building Mr. Guyton stated that the building is still under construction which is why the ISD makes teachers sit outside. 

When asked about the ISD trajectory he replies, “ISD is focused on attendance not achievement.” He adds on, “Post-Covid has not helped, and changes on principals have not helped.”

Mr. Guyton recalls the experience of some of his fellow teachers, his head hung low.

"There's a Spanish teacher, Jesus, a little old lady... they make fun of her. And she's tryin' to teach them Spanish... they don't listen to her, they throw stuff at her..." Guyton continues. "There was another lady, she had her papers all organized, and at lunch they would go into her room and throw all her papers on the floor, trash the room, and leave."

Disciplinary problems are rampant in Fort Worth schools. Turnover is high. Students are dropping out left and right, or not even showing up to school in the first place. FWISD is facing a major teacher shortage at this moment. In this chaos, teachers are relentlessly abused, students are bullied and made into victims of gang violence. But why?

SOURCE: FWISD Watchdog - Another FWISD Teacher providing insight into the disciplinary problems in FWISD

Mr. Guyton gives his insight on the heart of the issue: attendance. Attendance, according to Mr. Guyton, is the main goal of Fort Worth ISD, rather than grades or performance.

"They let the kids fight, do drugs, they don't have to pass their classes. The only thing they have to do is be there, and that's it. The only thing that seems to be focused on is attendance."


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