Unannounced Visitors

Discussion in 'General Education' started by YoungTeacherGuy, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Aficionado

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    Jan 23, 2013

    Early this morning, a random woman walked into my classroom. I said (very politely and welcoming), "Hi, may I help you." She introduced herself as a new board member and said she was just doing some walkthroughs.

    Anyway, I said, "Oh, okay--welcome!" I didn't have time to chat because I was in the middle of a lesson. Twenty minutes later, I finished my lesson and she was still there...watching. After we transitioned to the carpet, she left. She placed a post-it on my desk that said, "I saw some great things here. P.S. Beautiful classroom!"

    Personally, I thought she would've been escorted by one of my administrators. I also thought we should've gotten some sort of warning via email. Something simple like, "We've got a new board member who'll be visiting classrooms today."

    I dunno...maybe I'm asking for too much.

    The buzz around campus was, "Did you have some lady walk into your room and watch?" I guess some teachers didn't have time to speak with her when she walked in, so they had no clue who she was.

    Your thoughts?
     
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  3. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jan 23, 2013

    I think I'd talk to my supervisor and request clarification on the policy regarding visitors.

    Did this woman have a school district ID badge?
     
  4. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Jan 23, 2013

    That's weird. I would definitely talk to your principal.
     
  5. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Aficionado

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    No school ID, no visitor pass--nothing. It was so bizarre!
     
  6. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jan 23, 2013

    In that case, I might have politely said that our school policy is that visitors sign in at the office and wear a visitor sticker. She honestly shouldn't be able to get upset with you over that, plus it helps ensure the safety of your class (just in case she's a whack job).
     
  7. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Jan 23, 2013

    I have a weird sense of humor. But wouldn't it be funny if some retired teacher did that for fun? Just went around classrooms leaving kind sticky-notes! ;)

    We have been told repeatedly that the higher-ups (above our admins) would just walk campuses unescorted-they want to decide what to see on their own. They would however, have district badges on.
     
  8. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

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    Jan 23, 2013

    I had this happen once. I had no idea who the woman was. Turns out she was from DPI, and she was also doing walk-throughs. I bet this wouldn't happen in any other profession. Imagine...a nurse is putting an IV in, and the head of the nursing board just stands there and watches.....

    Sometimes I feel like we aren't given any respect.
     
  9. JustMe

    JustMe Guru

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    I don't like this sort of thing.

    In my last school, I regularly had college students just walk in while I was teaching. Of course I also asked, "May I help you?" and they would respond, "Oh, I'm here from ABC University doing observation hours." Nice. When I was a student, we rightfully had to coordinate our hours with teachers or the college did on our behalf.
     
  10. monsieurteacher

    monsieurteacher Aficionado

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    I understand why she might want to come in unannounced, but she SHOULD have some sort of visitor's badge, and should have checked in at the office. I think I would send her to the office for a visitor's pass if she wanted to spend any time in my classroom.
     
  11. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Aficionado

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    I can't wait to hear my principal's explanation tomorrow (couldn't catch her today).
     
  12. msmullenjr

    msmullenjr Devotee

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    We have been told (emphasized recently) that no one should ever be on campus without an ID. Our former Principal is now the assistant superintendent for the district. He came to drop off a few books for me and our new office clerk wouldn't let him get much farther than her desk because she had never met him, and he didn't have his ID. She was super embarrassed about it later, but I think it was good that she was strongly enforcing that rule. She told him that my lunch was in 10 minutes and he was welcome to wait for me there. :lol:
     
  13. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Aficionado

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    Okay, friends...just checked the district website and she really is a board member (there's a pic of her on there)!

    At least now I know she didn't hop the fence to get to my classroom!
     
  14. Reality Check

    Reality Check Habitué

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    Jan 23, 2013

    YoungTeacherGuy - That's a VERY odd experience, especially given the societal climate we have now in 2013. Advanced announcements, badges, and escorts I would have thought would be standard practice by now at every school in the country.

    :dunno:
     
  15. JustMe

    JustMe Guru

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    This reminds me of when I worked in a small grocery store. The cigarettes were locked and we kept keys at the registers. Now, being a small town there were of course regulars and those who just hung out there all day...they kind of seemed part of the team there. But I was new and I didn't know this one guy who came in and asked for my key so he could get his own cigs. Um, no way buddy! When I said I would need to get them for him, he rudely said, "I OWN this store." Oops. But how the heck was I to know?!
     
  16. hbcaligirl1985

    hbcaligirl1985 Cohort

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    Jan 24, 2013

    We did too. We never NEVER just went into a teachers class uninvited. My senior English teacher that I did a years worth of observation for would tell me I could come any time and not inform him, but I always did so as a common curtsey.

    That is just...creepy.
     
  17. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    Jan 24, 2013

    think YTG may work in a small district like me. I looked up last week, while teaching a small math group, and there was the Supt, his asst, and two other district people observing me. We get board members sometimes and I always try to chat with them. One guy is good about coming out to look around. I like hands on officials like that.
     
  18. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Aficionado

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    Compared to other districts in area of CA, I don't think we're too small or too large. We've got 15 elementary sites and 4 middle schools.

    Anyway, here's the scoop from my principal: She and my vice principal were at an off-campus IEP meeting at the time the board member showed up. They had no idea she was coming because she didn't call or email.

    As far as not having her ID badge on: According to my principal, she may not have received her identification because she's new. :rolleyes:

    I guess my principal is emailing the head of the board to let them know what happened. Board members aren't supposed to just randomly show up and expect to come to our classrooms without being escorted. When she found out no administrators were available, she should've politely left and come back another day.

    Personally, I don't mind unannounced walkthroughs. In fact, I think they give administrators a good glimpse of how each classroom runs. There's no way you can fake good classroom management and good teaching when someone unexpectedly walks through your door. However, yesterday's situation was bizarre!
     
  19. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Jan 24, 2013

    Our school board is allowed to come and go as they please, but they wear district badges. We are encouraged to question any person walking around without a badge of some kind.
     
  20. a2z

    a2z Phenom

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    Jan 24, 2013

    It's great she liked what she saw. :)
     
  21. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    Jan 24, 2013

    For us any time a board member does a walk through the Principal escorts them around, they never go around all on their own.
     

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