A Shrewdness of Apes

An Okie teacher banished to the Midwest. "Education is not the filling a bucket but the lighting of a fire."-- William Butler Yeats

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Can you say "Hostile Work Environment?" I THOUGHT you could.

We have a young female teacher new to the school. She is funny, lively, and quite the attractive young thing. Apparently, Mr. Lowjack in her class has noticed this, and has made a few comments. She was being tolerant, not wishing to appear to be one of those people who write up young miscreants at the drop of the ol' pants, but...

The other day, he complemented her on her attire and then suggested she had gotten some of her jewelry at a Mardi Gras celebration. Think about this for a minute. You'll get there. this was not the first inappropriate thing he has said or done.

So of course, that's sexual harassment, and she did write up said miscreant. Here's where it gets fun: the admin who is responsible for this alleged student basically gave him a slap on the wrist and is now putting pressure on her to allow him to remain in her class.

The cluelessness is awe-inspiring. Other pug-uglies in the class have now been emboldened to mouth off because the consequences for such lipping-off are considered inconsequential, and its SOOOO amusing to be able to attempt to humiliate a teacher or indeed any "girl" in front of a class that is half knucklehead in composition.

Is it because this administrator cannot imagine a kid doing this to her? I think it's because we teachers are supposed to check all expectations for dignity and and respect at the door. Now, if this kid HAD said this to our admin in question (unlikely, by far, for many reasons but, nonetheless--) I imagine five days out would have been the minimum consequence. But hey! She is being an ADVOCATE for this poor misunderstood little cretin, and wants to give him ONE... MORE... CHANCE....

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15 Comments:

At 1/27/10, 9:59 PM, Blogger Polski3 said...

Isn't there a federal department of something that could deal with this on behalf of the teacher? Perhaps someone from your school could print out something from a Federal website regarding Federal investigation into such workplace issues and post it where idiot administrator could see it.....

And, WHERE is your Union rep here???? Does your state allow a teacher to suspend a student from their class? Does your state allow a teacher to require a parent to sit with their misbehaving, unruly, rude, crude and otherwise troublesome spawn? California Ed Code does.

THAT being said, are there some gentlemen on the school football or wrestling team who are interested in teaching this "young man" some manners?

 
At 1/27/10, 10:31 PM, Blogger Cassie said...

Definitely think if she's in a union, she needs to talk to her rep ASAP! Remind her to document, document, document (can she record audio/video in her classroom?) and see if any teachers (of any subject) have a free period when this dude is in her class and can sit in to observe.

 
At 1/28/10, 3:37 PM, Blogger Mrs. Chili said...

I'm reading Ms. C, but I have nothing of any value to add. This is just another head-shaking example of the cluelessness that seems so prevalent in our culture...

 
At 1/28/10, 7:55 PM, Blogger NYC Educator said...

People who do such stupid things don't know the value of consequences, or don't care, and should perhaps be forcibly sterilized just to minimize potential consequences to society.

Amazing they end up with jobs supervising educational departments.

 
At 1/28/10, 8:18 PM, Blogger Kim said...

I don't understand this, either. One of the women in my department was in class the other day, leaning over to help a student, when she turned around to see a male student taking a picture of her. She didn't take away his phone or even call for an administrator. I don't recall if she wrote him up or not. Her response: "Oh, I didn't want to make a big deal of it." He took a picture of your ASS!!! I would've snatched the phone out of his hand and held on to it until an AP got there to see it and then I would've erased it. And THEN I would've gotten on the phone to his MOTHER and had a fiery chat. (Now granted, no one is taking a picture of my 46-year old, chubby backside, but STILL!)

 
At 1/29/10, 5:14 AM, Anonymous Just saying said...

I find this over and over as a new teacher at a um, difficult school. If I write something up/describe it, the consequences seem a step or two or three less than warranted.

HOWEVER, if the same behavior (or even a less bad version of it) is actually seen by or happens to an administrator, why then, consequences galore! Often a step or two more severe than warranted.

The only solution I can think of is to try and lure students to misbehave in the hallway with an administrator nearby!

 
At 1/29/10, 3:13 PM, Blogger "Ms. Cornelius" said...

Polski: Teachers can suspend students from their classes???????? Heck, NO we don't have that right here in the Land Between the Coasts! Nor make parents sit in class with their kids (which actually wouldn't help because I've seen that dad, and let''s just say the apple did not fall far from the tree).

And they are taking advantage of the fact that she is on a year-to-year contract and in the most... exposed... of positions.

 
At 1/29/10, 6:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, wait...you have one well-behaved, high-achieving AP student who must be PUNISHED for the heinous, unforgiveable crime of being homeless, and you have one law-breaking thug who must be CODDLED at all costs?

Geeeeze....

 
At 1/29/10, 9:09 PM, Blogger Theresa Milstein said...

You're right - if other students see inappropriate behavior go unpunished, it emboldens them to do the same. That poor teacher. The administration should have her back.

 
At 1/30/10, 4:45 PM, Blogger Darren said...

Given what passes for "dancing" nowadays, I've told my school administration that while I'll be on duty at dances, I will not go into the gym where the dancing takes place. If they compel me to do so, I will file a sexual harassment claim against them! So far, no one's pushed far enough to see if I'm bluffing or not.

If they're not going to stop the grinding and such, and compel me to be in there, it's sexual harassment. The rule's there, I may as well take advantage of it.

 
At 1/30/10, 5:34 PM, Anonymous Ms. Cornelius said...

Darren, I SO agree with you. I refuse to stay in pep assemblies when the drill team performs, because I feel disgusted afterwards.

 
At 2/2/10, 4:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Comments like that happen all the time where I teach and nobody seems to care. In addition - we also don't take threats to teachers very seriously. I had one student threaten me (in front of the whole class AND administrator) and while my admin DID expel him pupil services overruled it and sent him right back. I was also told that we can no longer even appeal these rulings. In light of things like that a little sexual harrassment is pretty tame and unfortunately par for the course.

Sorry - anon. I keep all identity offline if I can.

 
At 2/3/10, 5:40 PM, Blogger "Ms. Cornelius" said...

Don't blame you. Not a bit.

 
At 2/7/10, 7:47 AM, Blogger Chiropractic Marketing said...

The environment refers to the air, water and land in which people, animals, and plants live. So human beings, animals, plants, air, water and soil are the main elements of the environment.

 
At 2/9/10, 11:12 PM, Blogger QuakerDave said...

He needs to call her union rep. Like, yesterday. The laws protect her here, not the kid.

And she can sue.

 

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