Do you expect paras to call you by your last name?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by waterfall, Dec 11, 2012.

  1. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    Today at lunch I was eating with one of my teammates and my para came up to talk to me about something. My teammate apparently thought it was offensive that she called me by my first name and was "speaking to me so casually even though I'm the teacher and she's the para." This seemed to really, really bother him. He thought it was very rude. It would have never even crossed my mind. We're both adults! Of course I expect her to use my last name in the classroom but not in situations with only adults. Is it like this at your school?
     
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  3. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    I can't imagine a teammate ever questioning a teacher and para's collegial relationship.:(
    Your teammate is rude.
     
  4. donziejo

    donziejo Devotee

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    No, I share a para and she runs the department . She's been there for a million years. I had to beg and bribe to get her to help me 30 minutes a week. She calls us by our first name and all of us call her by her last name. She's pretty scary:)
     
  5. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Aficionado

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    All paras at my site refer to me as "Mr. ____"

    ...except for one. She has known me since I was a kid, so she always calls me by my first name.

    I honestly don't care what they call me, though--as long as they do a good job!
     
  6. FT2012

    FT2012 Rookie

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    I'm disgusted by your co-worker and I hope that doesn't offend you. I was a para for 5 years while I was getting my bachelor's and master's degree in education. It's rude to assume that someone is less than you because you have a different educational background or qualifications. You are right; you're all adults working together for the good of the students in your school. You are co-workers, what's the big deal?

    Paras are just as important as teachers IMO. Most schools could not function without dedicated support staff (many that go above and beyond their job requirements).

    I'm so glad I worked in a school that respected me. I was treated very well as a para at my old school. In fact, I was often asked my opinion when working with the students. My teacher and I had an AWESOME relationship and we called each other by our first names! I think the fact that we related to each other as adults and co-workers that were trying to accomplish the same goal (student success) that we had such an amazing classroom environment.

    The kids use to ask if we were best friends outside of school. It's so sad to think a teacher feels this way.
     
  7. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Aficionado

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    :agreed:

    You're 100% correct!
     
  8. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    I was surprised at his reaction. Then again, I don't call the principal by her last name which some might think is rude. He's hispanic so I wondered if it was cultural.
     
  9. DizneeTeachR

    DizneeTeachR Virtuoso

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    When I student taught we had a para in the classroom...she called us by our last names (just as we did to her) in front of the students otherwise it was our first names. I had no problem with it and neither did the classroom teacher.
     
  10. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    If your co-worker was offended by that I am wondering what he would think of one of my student's calling me Ms. firstname :lol:. We used to go by first names in my school a few years ago and switched to last names with a change in principal and he hasn't been able to switch over. In the past I also went with a parent and student on a visit to a developmental pediatrician to support her when her child got a diagnosis of autism (I was a spec. ed. consultant at the time). After the visit the student called me Aunty firstname whenever I saw him at school and I couldn't break him from it. It was actually a honor to be called Aunty in their culture.
     
  11. geoteacher

    geoteacher Cohort

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    In the classroom and in front of students we both use last names. In other places I don't care what she calls me. I actually knew her years before I taught in the district.
     
  12. HeartDrama

    HeartDrama Connoisseur

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    How condescending! I guess he wants to make sure she knows her place, and stays in it!
     
  13. JustMe

    JustMe Guru

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    I would not expect a para to address me differently than a teacher.
     
  14. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Away from students, all my coworkers, regardless of their position or title, are free to call me by my first name.
     
  15. Curiouscat

    Curiouscat Comrade

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    I LOVE my para. She is the absolute best! My para is on an equal playing field with me. We discuss our students on a daily basis. Her perspective is worth its weight in gold! I wouldn't and couldn't be the teacher I am without her.
    That comment was rude and uncalled for in my opinion. I pray a para never has to work with the teacher that said that.
     
  16. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    My para only uses my last name when we are in class with students. Outside of class, we use first names.
     
  17. AnonyMS

    AnonyMS SpEd Para!

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    Last name

    I call all teachers by their last name in front of students; and most of the teachers by their last name away from students, using first name with those whom I am closer to. Same for paras.

    I always call administrators by their last name. Always.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2013
  18. UCLACareerChngr

    UCLACareerChngr Comrade

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    I always get amazed how offended people get by being called by their first name. At my school sometimes the office staff send out all calls and will say "Mr Smith, Alex Smith, please call the main office" and people get offended...get over it, the students know we have first names...heck my 7th grade computer students were using the Internet to find my home address within a month of my first year of teaching just to see if it would upset me...

    That being said, when I work with other teachers and students together I use the teacher's last name while in the presence of students.
     
  19. blazer

    blazer Groupie

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    In front of the kids in a class situation I would use and expect in return to be addressed as Mr Blazer and I would reply to Miss para or whatever. However in general conversations I would expect to use first names.
     
  20. txteach2b

    txteach2b Comrade

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    Dec 12, 2012

    At my school, we call each other Mr./Mrs./Ms. ____ in front of the students. Otherwise, it's first name. I do have one teacher who just slips and talks to me by my first name in front of the kids, but they don't usually make a big deal about it. It took me a LONG time to be comfortable enough to call the teachers by their first names, probably because I feel like I've worked here long enough to be comfortable around everyone.

    There are times, however, when the kids see or hear my first name that they start snickering because my name doesn't fit my race (think an African American name for a Caucasian). I just give them The Look, asking them to please call me Ms. Txteach2b. Most of the time, that quiets them about it.
     
  21. physteach

    physteach Companion

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    Dec 12, 2012

    Every adult in my school refers to each other by our first names, unless there are kids around. Even then we sometimes slip. How snobby do you have to be to think that some adults aren't worthy of using your first name?
     

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