Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Vote for my post on Mom Blog Network

Bad Teacher

Teachers have a rough job. 30-ish kids in a class, all with different needs, all in different areas of academic success or failure, all with their own little personalities. Parents constantly questioning them. Constant scrutiny from administration, parents, and others. Lesson plans. Making learning fun. Talk talk talking all day long without losing their voices. Meetings, meetings, and more meetings. I couldn't do it. I have the utmost respect for teachers, and am very careful to make sure that every one of my monsters' teachers know that I am there for them any time, any day, for anything they might need. Always. Because that is *my* job when I have monsters in their classes. To be there to help them help my student.

That being said, I have a problem with a teacher. It's a little bit stupid to have a problem with this teacher, because none of my monsters are in her class. Never have been. Definitely never will be. But I have a problem with her just the same.

I have the good fortune to be able to volunteer each morning in our elementary's SpEd room. I love it. I work with several children, and have learned a lot. With that, I also see a lot of the teachers while I am there. As silly as it sounds, I have started to have little lists in my head that go something like this: Oh! Love love LOVE so and so's approach to this! Oh, goodness. I don't think that would be appropriate for my child. Wow, that teacher really knows how to do such and such well.

A couple of weeks ago, after walking my #5 to his classroom and then making my way down the hall to the resource room, I overheard a conversation between a teacher and a couple of students that was so disturbing to me, I don't think I will ever forget it. This teacher had two students out in the hall in front of the closed door to her classroom. The students were upset, one of them crying. The teacher said, "I'm mad at (_insert name here_). Now, tell me who else I'm mad at today." and, those little students proceeded to name names. This is something that has clearly been done before with these students. And I was saddened to know that a teacher would behave in this way toward her class, encouraging one student to throw another under the bus, so to speak. 

And then, a few days ago, another incident. This teacher all but ran down the hallway from another room, back to her classroom, where once again, two (different) distraught students were standing outside her closed classroom door. She sharply asked the children what happened. And before they could answer, she snapped, "You're lying. And let me tell you why." and proceeded to rake them over the coals.

I don't know the whole story with either incident. Frankly, I don't care. She teaches second grade. And this is unacceptable. So what do I do? Do I go to administration and tell them what I witnessed? Do I keep my big mouth shut? Do I notify the district? Do I just let nature take it's course, since I know that the teacher will not be here next year since she is moving away? 

There are times that this teacher is in charge of both second grade classes, during recess, and other activities. And I can tell you that months ago, before she even knew who I was, she pulled me aside on the playground and told me what an instigator my #5 is. That he's always causing problems. She had absolutely no idea that I was his mother. And it bothers me that she would say such things to a complete stranger about a child.

This woman is clearly not a good teacher, not a good example, not a good fit. Indeed, I find her manner to be abrasive and harmful at best. But all my experience with her has been outside her classroom. Is it possible that her behavior is different behind closed doors? To be honest, I shudder to think. The a-word has crossed my mind more than once. No no no... not that a-word, though it is appropriate. The a-word I'm speaking of is abuse. I can't just stand and do nothing, knowing what I know.... but at the same time, what can I do?

That brings to mind a whole other subject. What nightmare-ish things would occur if she has special needs children in her class? Would they be belittled, labeled, and harassed simply because of their differences? The NT children in her class already are belittled, labeled, and harassed. In public. And most likely in class as well. I ache for her class. It could be so much better for them! It could be a great experience to be in second grade! But she clearly won't allow it.

 images via Google images

No comments:

Post a Comment