Saturday, November 30, 2013

Of Course Teachers Are Bullied

They are bullied by other teachers, by students, by parents, but most especially by principals and other administrators, who unlike the others have total power to destroy their careers, and with no consequences for their actions.

A few comments after the piece:

I went through the bullying by an administrator routine about fifteen years ago. To her, I could do nothing right-- even though I was a nationally award-winning teacher. One thing I did was to research work place discrimintation laws and I asked questions of local labor lawyers. Meanwhile, I continued to follow all school district policies and curriculum but also added my own original lessons to the mix so my students would receive the best I was able to offer. It took me almost a year to find a time when the administrator demonstrably discriminated against me in public. I was able to go to the state and federal EEOC and launch a law suit. Again, it took a long time to wend its way through the process, but the suit also put her on notice that SHE was being watched. Just when it was certain that I would win the case, she left her position. Either way, I and the school were well rid of her. I'm still teaching; she's out of education. Just remember that while the law can't protect you from being discriminated against because you are a superior teacher, you may still be a member of another "protected class." Hang in there and do what you kow is right!


I too was bullied by an administrator--it was so bad that I had to resign my job. Now I have no job and have to substitute--it is really difficult to make ends meet.

I know the feeling when I was illegally fired.


I think this is a bigger problem than people know. Where unions have been busted (like WI) it's even worse. God help the teacher that disagrees w/the Administration. The best teachers are often the noncomformists.......but it's getting increasingly difficult for those independent thinkers to keep their jobs.


Friend, you were railroaded by that crew. Even if you'd been the national teacher of the year, the result would have been the same. Whether your teaching position was wanted for their cronie or to use in another capacity (to sacrifice, to move to another department or school, etc.), it was a foregone conclusion that you wouldn't be staying in it. Don't be surprised if some of the parents played a "supporting role" in your demise. Especially in small, tight-knit communities, familial relationships between groups grasping for power and control have tremendous hidden influence. Sadly, teachers are pawns in the games. It's that way in industry and the military, too. Unless you have a huge wad of money to hire a bulldog labor lawyer to fight back and lots of documentation in your hip pocket for evidence, your best option is to seek a work environment where you're happy to go to work each day and don't have to worry about where the next arrow will hit you. Life is too short. Leaving a bad, health-harming work situation is not the same as retreating or surrendering. Use your skills and talents where they will be appreciated and you can smile and laugh each day. It surely isn't in your former work place.


There are millions of other stories like this in the naked bureaucracy we call public education.

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