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I was proactive! I stood in front of the door to prevent a student from running out of the classroom in anger. I spoke softly and gave a calm verbal direction and then I spoke more strongly using firm tones. The student almost knocked me over as he flung open the door to run out of the room. My left hip was side-swiped. Maybe I should have pushed "the panic button."
I had read in the newspapers of teachers who physically intervened and broke up fights and they were charged with assault. So we gave loud verbal directions to "stop fighting." A few teachers were brought up on charges because "yelling is corporal punishment." These were what you might call classic no-win situations.