I would speak with the teacher who participated in the actual discussion.
You cannot take third hand information as fact. Then, I would arrange a
meeting with vice principal and the students. Try to determine why there is
such animosity. Perhaps they feel very inadequate in your class. I have
found almost all my behavior problems stem from the fact that students have
so little self confidence in their ability to create and make art. I am
extremly kind with these students and try to get them to work on a level
which will give them success.
Having the students write an appology is not very effect. I have a very
difficult second grade class. Unbeknownst to me...the teacher assigned
letters of appology as homework. It made no difference in their behavior.
To turn what I consider to be punitive into positive, I wrote them response
to their notes. Thanking them for their note and telling them I was glad
they understood how important it was that they all work together.
The other thing re: your students...perhaps they consider themselves
"artists". If that is the case, perhaps you could offer to help them put
together a portfolio, or a one person show (use a bulletin board outside the
art room or a large all space). Have them present their work and talk about
Hope some of these ideas help. It is hard...be compassionate. They really
don't have any idea what they are doing or saying....they are just kids. Sad
but true that they are not taught better manners at home!