Dealing with a DIFFICULT in-class support teacher. I'm going insane. HELP!

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by LittleShakespeare, Feb 28, 2018.

  1. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Feb 28, 2018

    I am the primary teacher of the classroom. My name is on the report card. I make the lesson plans myself with NO HELP from her, but still, the in-class support teacher has some major control issues. She takes over the second she walks in and leads the classroom.

    She insults me on a daily basis in front of my students by saying, "OH! You should have been a librarian! You shouldn't be a teacher. You shouldn't be in education. Be a librarian so you can read your books happily." That I can deal with. When I do things my way, she gets mad. When I do things her way, she pins the blame on me if the lesson isn't successful. If I can't stay after school because I have to pick up my niece, she lectures me about how it's not my child and how I shouldn't bother. If I miss my prep to help out when we're understaffed, she gets mad at me and says that I shouldn't be helping so much.

    I think she's a spy, too. I didn't know that our VP isn't a fan of guided notes. So, the support teacher stole my lesson plans and notes and gave them to the VP. The VP never told me that she had those stolen lessons, obviously, but I thought it was very weird: the VP observed me for a literature circle lesson, NOT a guided notes lesson. But during my post-observation, she kept talking to me about guided notes and how they're too elementary. I also saw them on her desk. So my colleague has been snitching on me, it would appear.

    She also gossips about me to everyone in the department. All the other English teachers don't want anything to do with me. Anytime they see me, they're always like, "Oh, there's the girl that loves literature too much!"

    I've been trying to be kind and understanding, but today was really the last straw. I was suffering from the flu for two days, and she got so mad at me for not being there because she didn't know what to do when I wasn't there. She just sent me a tirade of an email about how I "scamper" around in the mornings rushing to put a lesson together. I have no idea what the heck she is talking about! I confronted her about my lesson plans and told her that I will be taking the baton from now on. I want to take the reins. This is my class!!

    At this rate, I honestly don't care if my contract gets renewed at this district, but in case it does, would it be terrible if I request not to work with her next year? Am I doing the right thing by being a little more assertive? I'm just scared if she complains to the VP that I'm not being a good sport, and I'm not in the teachers' union yet.
     
  2.  
  3. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Phenom

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    4,398
    Likes Received:
    1,304

    Feb 28, 2018

    You’ve posted this many times before and we’ve told you to stand up for yourself and to assert your control over the other teacher. Don’t allow her to talk down to you. Seriously. Take charge of your own classroom. You’re an adult, start acting like it.
     
  4. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Feb 28, 2018

    First, I humbly apologize this post had gotten you so offended. If I did post it before, perhaps you could have just ignored this one, or redirect me to the post where you gave me the advice before.

    Secondly, the reason I ask is because I've had some fellow teachers (not at this district) who have told me to kiss up to her despite the fact that she's being hurtful. Kiss a$$ in order to kick a$$, is what they have said. I'm just seeing if anyone here shared the same outlook.

    Thirdly, I'm almost 30 years old, a professional at what I do. I'm not throwing hissy fits or tantrums at her. In fact, I'm planning on sitting down with her and talking to her about how things are going to pan out moving forward. So, I have to disagree with your petty assumption about me not acting like an adult when in reality, I do a lot more "adulting" than it would appear.
     
  5. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Phenom

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    4,398
    Likes Received:
    1,304

    Feb 28, 2018

    You’re right. Maybe I could have said that more tactfully, but please confront her already. If someone did that to me, I would have immediately stood my ground and rebuked them.
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2018
  6. pommom

    pommom Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2015
    Messages:
    444
    Likes Received:
    98

    Feb 28, 2018

    :dizzy: again?!
     
    futuremathsprof likes this.
  7. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 1, 2018

    You know, you could just answer my question or ignore it altogether. Just my two cents. :)
     
    Been There and Hokiegrad1993 like this.
  8. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2010
    Messages:
    1,564
    Likes Received:
    743

    Mar 1, 2018

    What have you already tried to deal with her?
     
  9. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2002
    Messages:
    5,087
    Likes Received:
    462

    Mar 1, 2018

    OK. Apparently I missed the previous posts. So, here are my thoughts.

    Stand up for yourself. It is your room.

    DOCUMENT! DOCUMENT! DOCUMENT! Every little nit picking thing she says or does.

    Either kill her with kindness or get rude and shut her down.

    Talk to your union rep if you have one.

    File a grievance.

    Stand there and give her the stare down like "who do you think you are?"

    Stand there and smile a big ol' smile and let it go in one ear and out the other.

    Find a new job elsewhere.

    I don't know what else can be said.
     
  10. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Phenom

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    4,398
    Likes Received:
    1,304

    Mar 1, 2018

    :agreed::yeahthat:
     
  11. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 1, 2018

    Of course I have, but it's not working.
     
  12. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    6,330
    Likes Received:
    2,219

    Mar 1, 2018

    Your response did not make sense.
     
  13. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 1, 2018

    How so? I have tried confronting her a few times about belittling me in front of my students, but she responds with the silent treatment or a few long tirades. Sometimes she even throws fits. It feels like I'm dealing with a toddler most days.
     
  14. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    6,330
    Likes Received:
    2,219

    Mar 1, 2018

    You were asked what you have already tried. "What have you already tried to deal with her?"

    Your response was
    Your response does not answer what, which was the question.
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2018
  15. pommom

    pommom Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2015
    Messages:
    444
    Likes Received:
    98

    Mar 1, 2018

    Sorry

    I understand posting the same issue over again when it keeps happening.
    Just be professional and focus on the kids. It is a personality clash, and it takes extra effort on anyone elses part to work in those situations. 3 more months!
     
  16. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 1, 2018

    Okay, I misunderstood, but then I answered what I've tried to do. So what's the problem?
     
  17. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 1, 2018

    I'm not sure if you read the question, but I'm not in the union yet.
     
  18. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    6,330
    Likes Received:
    2,219

    Mar 1, 2018

    You asked "how so?". So I answered. No problem with me.

    Now I am wondering why you asked "How so?" if you knew why I said your response didn't make sense.

    Well, I pointed out that it didn't make sense so you would read the post properly and answer the poster hoping that she or we could come up with alternative ways to help you. Now I am sorry I did, but it has been enlightening.
     
  19. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2002
    Messages:
    5,087
    Likes Received:
    462

    Mar 2, 2018

    I'm not sure if you paid attention to the suggestions the last time you posted about this.

    Good luck.
     
  20. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 2, 2018

    I'm not sure if YOU were paying attention, but you probably noticed that I didn't post about this problem specifically, but my other questions were geared towards the district and not my colleague. I might have mentioned the problematic colleague in passing, but I never asked how to deal with her until now. :)
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2018
  21. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 2, 2018

  22. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    6,330
    Likes Received:
    2,219

    Mar 2, 2018

    Caesar753 likes this.
  23. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 2, 2018

  24. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 2, 2018

    [QUOTE
    Maybe she was referring to this one?
    If the discussion here is anything like your interactions at work, it is very telling.[/QUOTE]

    Not sure what you're getting at exactly, but okay?
     
  25. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    6,330
    Likes Received:
    2,219

    Mar 2, 2018

    Let me understand this....
    Because you didn't directly start a thread which addressed the issue, no thread that discussed the issue and what you should do counts as getting advice about the situation?

    I'm thinking you may need to own the problem with the para if your communication style with this forum is like your communication with others at school.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2018
    futuremathsprof likes this.
  26. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 2, 2018

    Lol. I'm thinking you're coming up with conspiracy theories for no apparent reason. In case you haven't noticed, a few other users were being a little too harsh for my liking, so excuse me for standing up for myself. I'm terribly sorry that my question offended you so much, but if you didn't feel pressed to answer, you could have just ignored the post.
     
  27. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    6,330
    Likes Received:
    2,219

    Mar 2, 2018

    "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." — Inigo Montoya, The Princess Bride.
     
  28. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 2, 2018

    GREAT movie. ;)
     
  29. Kenz501

    Kenz501 Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Messages:
    519
    Likes Received:
    22

    Mar 3, 2018

    I am terrible at being assertive. I have a tendency to defer to people I have trouble getting along with in hopes of satisfying them, making peace, or getting more help, even if it costs me other people's perception of my performance or hinders me from performing my job well. At least one of my coworkers noticed I wasn't standing up for myself at the last place where I worked, and she suggested I start not letting people "walk all over me."

    I'm at least aware that I have rights as a teacher, union or no union. I'm also wondering if it's a coincidence that some exceptional teachers have also worked as lawyers or were trained as lawyers. Sometimes the system will be unfair. Contact someone in a higher position than where you work and lay it out with printed copies of emails, videos of correspondence (check the rules; you don't want to violate policies yourself, but try to get recordings of her displaying her vitriol), study your rights, make a friend in a higher position, and complain politely until someone finally does something.

    That's just a suggestion, though. I don't know if it will work in all cases, and you certainly don't want to make yourself look like the bully.

    Organization and professionalism are huge hurdles for me, so if I didn't have a friend or two to take my side at places where I've worked, I would probably be out of a job.
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2018
  30. Kenz501

    Kenz501 Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Messages:
    519
    Likes Received:
    22

    Mar 3, 2018

    Be happy you aren't like me. I have an issue that's a little different. What do you do when you find out that you actually can't teach? I've been bullied before, and I never lost my job to it; in fact, it kind of helped me hide my own deficits. Now, no one is bullying me here; everyone has been perfectly professional and agreeable, even neighborly--I didn't know places like this existed--yet, I've still managed to make a mess of things.

    Also, sometimes deferring to the bullies works. They're like that for a reason, and you might learn something. I feel like I know a lot about having poor social skills, and, ironically, maybe those strong-willed people are the kinds of people I sometimes get along pretty well with. I'm willing to defer, nod, smile, laugh, ignore, and carry on. If they continue to mistreat me, though, that might be a cause for concern.

    Also, depending on what connections or professional record the one person at the school who isn't afraid to treat you like dirt has, it might just be beneficial to not open a can of worms. Some people are hired for their skills and their connections. It's not fair, but it simply is. Rocking the boat just might not be worth it if this is a veteran employee with 20 or 30 plus years of experience and a friend at central office. Chances are she knows how to play the game and may have leverage against even the principal.
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2018
  31. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2011
    Messages:
    5,770
    Likes Received:
    1,004

    Mar 3, 2018

    Honestly, tell your admin that you want her out of your classroom or else you'll seek employment elsewhere.

    If they don't acquiesce to your demands, seek employment elsewhere. Sounds like a caustic environment.
     
  32. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 5, 2018

    Hey, everybody. I wanted to thank you for all your solid advice. It means the world to me. I've been such a mess.

    My co-teacher yelled at me today in front of my class and in front of a fellow teacher. She was angry at me for not sending her the lesson plans on Saturday, but I've been battling a bad flu. I was so humiliated that I started to cry at the copy room. At this rate, I think I'm going to seek my supervisor's help.
     
  33. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 5, 2018

    You're right. I'm actually going to try finding another school. I don't think this is the right school for me, to be honest. The kids are tougher and I don't have much support from other teachers. I just hope it won't look back if I refuse a renewed contract.
     
  34. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Phenom

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    4,398
    Likes Received:
    1,304

    Mar 5, 2018

    And yet, you still didn’t stand up for yourself. Again.

    This seems to be a never-ending cycle. You. Need. To. Be. Confrontational. Stop the lesson and ask her to step into the hall gracefully and then tell her like it’s going to be. Be professional yet firm.

    Please stop walking around on eggshells around this person.
     
    SpecialPreskoo likes this.
  35. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 5, 2018

    I have already tried talking to her. Several times.
     
  36. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Phenom

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    4,398
    Likes Received:
    1,304

    Mar 5, 2018

    What did you say specifically? Were you forceful? Did you let her know that she is way out of bounds and her behavior is unbecoming of a professional? Did you tell her in no certain terms that you will not tolerate her aggressiveness? Did you let her know that you will report her if her misbehavior continues?

    Or were you as timid as you sound here and meekly ask her to stop?
     
  37. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 5, 2018

    I think I said something like, "Marci, I'm in great appreciation of your guidance, but I've been feeling a bit insulted as to your aggressive behavior. I feel like you're undermining my authority in front of the kids. From my job description and what I was told, this is my classroom. When I let you take the reins, you complain that I don't contribute. When I take the reins, you're still not satisfied. How do you wish to proceed going forward?"
     
  38. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Phenom

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    4,398
    Likes Received:
    1,304

    Mar 5, 2018

    Very nicely worded!!!

    You should have followed up by reporting her to your principal as soon as this happened. Document each occurrence. Show a history of this person’s unprofessionalism to build a case against her. When you do this, write the date, time, and actions taken by both parties. Discuss how you confronted her and what her response was. Let your principal know each time.
     
    LittleShakespeare likes this.
  39. LittleShakespeare

    LittleShakespeare Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2017
    Messages:
    289
    Likes Received:
    60

    Mar 5, 2018

    Thanks for your help. I'm just worried because my mentor says not to go seek the VP's help. I'm a newbie, and they won't ever take my side. Everyone at this school has been telling me to suck it up and take it like a champ.

    I had an epiphany last night. I love teaching my books so much, but I don't think that's something I can do here. This school environment is really not for me. I'm not happy. And I hate to say this, but I think I miss my old district. I wish I didn't screw up so badly.

    I'm going to finish this year off in stride, but I will spend every waking moment this summer applying to new districts. I'm even thinking about going back to school. I've always wanted a PhD in literature. It'll be hard leaving this school that I've grown so accustomed to, but I don't want to spend the rest of my life having a crying spell in the copy room over an in-class support teacher.

    I want to thank you all for your help. I'll probably be posting soon for help with my resume. Thanks for always supporting me and cheering me on. I'm in great appreciation. :heart:
     
    futuremathsprof likes this.
  40. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Phenom

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2014
    Messages:
    4,398
    Likes Received:
    1,304

    Mar 5, 2018

    Agreed. I want you to be happy and not miserable. Do what’s best for your mental health. Good luck!
     
    LittleShakespeare likes this.
  41. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    6,330
    Likes Received:
    2,219

    Mar 5, 2018

    You are right. It isn't a good fit if you want to teach what you want to teach rather than teaching the educational standards.

    You are never supposed to teach books. You are supposed to utilize books to teach educational standards when appropriate. Some schools would rather teach the standards without utilizing entire novels to do so while others don't have a problem with most of their content to be taught utilizing novel study.

    In my opinion, there are many times standards would be better taught utilizing smaller readings rather than using the novel to teach too many concepts. They are great to apply a group of lessons, but not always as the main teaching tool.

    Good luck.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

Total: 255 (members: 0, guests: 214, robots: 41)
test