Getting unfair evaluations.

Discussion in 'Substitute Teachers' started by longtimesub, Jan 28, 2007.

  1. longtimesub

    longtimesub Rookie

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    Jan 28, 2007

    Hi.
    I am glad that there is a forum for substitute teachers.
    I hope that no other sub teacher out there experiences what I am experiencing now.

    I have worked as a sub teacher since October 1997.
    I work for a district in California. A few days ago, I have received a big envelope from the personnel office.

    The envelope contained three evaluations of my performance. They all were from the same high school.

    First evaluation, by a psychology teacher, stated that I did not do a "good job" of following the lesson plan. She also stated that I did not do a good job of explaining. The teacher stated that she did not want me back as a sub for her class.

    Second evaluation, by a German teacher, stated that I messed up on administrating the quiz and left the textbooks in disarray. She did not want me back as a sub.

    Third evaluation, by a math teacher, stated that I did not try to "teach". He also stated that I was "too strict". However, he didn't state that he didn't want to me back as a sub for his class.

    Based on three evaluations, the principal of this high school asked the personnel to ban me from his school.

    I think I was unfairly treated in two out of three cases here...

    By the way, this high school is considered as one of the "best" high schools in this school district. Many kids from well-to-do families attend this high school.

    I subbed for the psychology teacher before at another high school in the district...several times. That high school is one of worst high schools in the district. It was the first time I subbed for her at her new school.

    The psych teacher determined that I did not do a good job after speaking to one teacher and her students. (She is a "rover", meaning she doesn't have her own room. I ran into one teacher during the first period. He was at his desk.)
    My response to the the psych teacher is that I did my best to follow her plan.

    Responding to the German teacher...Indeed, I did mess up on the quiz administration. I finally gave the quiz correctly during the last class block. About books...I don't remember anything about that.
    I subbed for this German teacher a few time before this incident.

    Responding to the math teacher...He made the assessment after briefly visiting one class, which turned out to be the worst of the day. (He was on campus for some training.) His lesson plan consisted of I passing out review sheets to the students. By the way, the class was the high school exit exam prep class. All the students in class were seniors.

    I passed out the math review sheets. Most of the class did not bother to do the work. The class had many students who did not want to behave. They talked loudly and used improper language. The class did calm down somewhat after some disruptive students walked out, without my permission. I also kicked out one student to the on-campus suspension room.

    By the way, when the regular teacher suddenly showed up, did the students at least pretend to be doing classwork? No.

    This math teacher is unfairly accusing me of not "teaching". It is not as if his lesson plan asked me to explain some math concepts in a textbook. Most of his students refused to do the review sheets. A few students, who were doing work, did not ask me to explain any problem. I would have been glad to explain some math problems. Students knew what they were supposed to do. But, they didn't want to do the work.

    I will be meeting a personnel dept representative next week to discuss these evaluations...I will be giving her my written responses to the bad evaluations although I know that they would do nothing to restore my reputation. I would still be banned from this "good" high school.

    Of course, it is not right for me to be sloppy. I am indeed sorry that I did not give German quizzes correctly.

    But, I think that the psych teacher and the math teacher are penalizing me although I made a good-faith effort in their respective classes.

    For the record...Before these complaints, I never got written up for not doing a good job of following the lesson plan. Again, I also never got written up for "not teaching".

    I am not perfect. I try to follow the lesson plans to the best of my ability. In the past, I have probably made mistakes in following the lesson plan. But, it is the first time that I am being written up.

    My conclusion is that the margin of error, for sub teachers, in a "good" school is very small. I really doubt that I would have been written up for "not trying to teach" or "not doing a good job of following the lesson plan" in a "bad" or "mediocre" high school.
     
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  3. MissFrizzle

    MissFrizzle Virtuoso

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    Jan 28, 2007

    It seems a little strange that you were just given 3 bad evaluations without having any notice before hand. Also, did these incidents all seem to happen near each other or were they over a period of years. I'm sure you did your best, and it seems a little unfair.

    Don't let this stop you. Keep going and good luck.
     
  4. UCLACareerChngr

    UCLACareerChngr Comrade

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    Jan 28, 2007

    In the case of the German class, did you write a note to the teacher detailing the problems you had with the quiz? When I subbed, I always tried to leave the teachers a detailed note on each class (sometimes it was 1/2 a page or more for each class.

    Also, did you tell the teacher in your math class that students were leaving without permission? As the "teacher" for that class, you are responsible for their safety and there could be some pretty serious consequences if something had happened to them.

    Not sure about the psych class. Now that I am teaching, I often get feedback from my students on subs - sometimes good, sometimes bad. I wouldn't necessarily ban a sub for a bad report - I understand how tough it is to be a sub sometimes and come in and implement a plan.

    I agree - it seems as if each of these cases in isolation is not that serious. However, if the principal sees the same name showing up on bad reports, I can't necessarily fault him/her for not wanting that sub to come back...at least you'll have a chance to work with personnel and hopefully straighten it out.

    If you need to sub, can you also apply to other districts in the area? Good luck - believe me, I know how difficult subbing can be. I had my share of unpleasant experiences, but all in all I enjoyed it.
     
  5. longtimesub

    longtimesub Rookie

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    Jan 29, 2007

    Thanks for the encouragement...
    I subbed for the psych teacher several days before Christmas of last year. I subbed for the German teacher in November of last year.
    I subbed for the math teacher this month.
     
  6. longtimesub

    longtimesub Rookie

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    Jan 29, 2007

    Thanks for the encouragement.
    I wrote down the report for the German teacher and I mentioned that I messed up on the quizzes for first two classes.
    I do try to leave behind detailed reports for the regular teachers...I write down who was not behaving rather than just writing that the class was "not behaving too well".

    Yes, indeed my report to the math teacher did mention names of students who left class without permission. Indeed, students leaving class could be a real problem for me. However, everyone in this forum would agree that a teacher should not physically stop a student from leaving a class.

    Actually a campus security showed up with one student who walked out...He asked me if I gave the student permission to leave class. I told him that he didn't have permission. The security took him to the administrator...

    One history teacher told this psych teacher that I didn't do a good job...(This psych teacher is a rover...She uses the rooms of teachers who are having their prep time.) During first class block, he was at his desk. At one point, I was explaining something to students. Then the history teacher told me to not worry because students knew what they were doing. He apparently felt the need to intervene...She stated that, after speaking to the history teacher and her students, she determined that I didn't do "a good job".
     
  7. UCLACareerChngr

    UCLACareerChngr Comrade

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    Jan 29, 2007

    That's too bad, that the sitting teacher would give a bad evaluation, especially when he told you that the students understood. I think many regular teachers don't have the proper perspective of what a classroom looks like through a sub's eyes...many times you're really having to think on the fly, with confusing lesson plans, kids that are trying to get away with anything they can...

    Good luck with your appeal. Let us know what happens.
     
  8. jkluttrell

    jkluttrell Rookie

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    Jan 29, 2007

    First of all I would never expect a sub to teach, that is my job not the sub's and a sub cannot possibly be expected to remember everything about the subject area without some notice. I think that arguement is not valid (about you teaching). I always enjoy when a sub leaves me detailed descriptions of what happened and nicely stacked, paper clipped work turned in. And that they followed the directions on the sheet of instructions. That to me makes a good sub. The lesson plan should be something easy enough for the sub to follow and the classroom procedures should be set up so that in the event of a teachers absence, the students know what to do in most cases when given an assignment. Again not your responsibilty in my opinion. Don't beat yourself up, the fact that you subbed for many years is a testament in of itself as to the kind of sub you are (not many can sub for multiple years at a time, the kids are so hard on subs, purposefully).
    Having said that I do think this is a good idea of evaluating subs, wish we did that at my school. However you should be informed of them and what they said so that if you did make a mistake it would not happen again.
     
  9. longtimesub

    longtimesub Rookie

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    Jan 30, 2007

    Thanks for the encouragement...I am trying hard not to feel miserable. I am telling myself that I did my best. Of course, I did mess up on giving the German quiz...
     
  10. teresaglass

    teresaglass Groupie

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    Jan 30, 2007

    What district is this?You can PM me if you want. if you live in Southern California you might want to try subbing in private schools.
    There are two agencies that hire subs for this. Teachers on Reserve is one and Kelly Educational Staffing is the other. You can get to Teachers on Reserve by going on their website at www.teachersonreserve.com. You can Google Kelly Educational Staffing and go on their website to find the nearest office in your area or you can contact your local Kelly Services office to find out where Kelly Educational Staffing is located close to you. Anyway I worked as long-term sub at a "good" school and I was let go after 6 weeks. I received no support and was yelled at by colleagues and I am an experienced special education teacher. I found out from another sub at this "good" school that this school does not back subs. I have never gone back there since and I do not want to. Anyway good luck with personnel and go elsewhere if you need to. Terry G.
     
  11. smilingteacher

    smilingteacher Rookie

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    Jan 31, 2007

    Sounds terrible. I would look for another place to sub. If there going to treat you unfairly why go back?

    If a school isn't nice to its subs how are they to their students?

    John
     
  12. UCLACareerChngr

    UCLACareerChngr Comrade

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    Jan 31, 2007

    Don't beat yourself up for messing up the quiz...teachers make mistakes too...everyone makes mistakes...it happens. It's too bad that they don't appear to be willing to cut you some slack...you would think that after several years, they wouldn't let a couple of incidents mar your reputation.

    I agree with others, might just be time to find another district and maybe get a fresh start? Good luck
     
  13. longtimesub

    longtimesub Rookie

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    Jan 31, 2007

    I met with someone from Personnel to discuss three negative evaluations.

    I was not fired...I just got banned from that high school. Personnel would do what the principal wants.

    I told her my story...Then she asked me what I would do differently next time.
    First, dealing with the psych teacher's complaint...I told her that I would perhaps write down instructions on board in greater detail...Remember the psych teacher complained that I was not articulate when I gave instructions.

    Second, dealing with the math teacher's complaint...I told her that perhaps I would do a bunch of math problems on the board even if no student asked me to do them...

    The rep from the Personnel heard my prescriptions...Then the meeting ended. It did not take a long time.

    Two high schools in this district, including the one I got banned from, make it easy for a regular teacher to comment on the subs...A sub would write down his/her report on one side of the form. Then the regular teacher could comment on the sub on the other side of the form.

    This school that I just got banned from...I had both good and bad experiences at that school. However, I must say that I had positive experience there most of time...I also liked secretaries at that school...They were very nice. They and I were on the first name basis...Oh, well...But, in any case, I no longer feel comfortable going back to that school. It seems as if perfection is expected of subs over there. Whenever I have a chance, I would like to warn other subs about this school...I would tell them to be careful.

    I appreciated your support during last few days...It was nice to speak to other teachers about this issue.
     
  14. NYMom

    NYMom Rookie

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    Feb 1, 2007

    Your being way too hard on yourself ! We all make mistakes (if you did make any true mistakes) and ESPECIALLY like jkluttrell said, how can they expect a sub to know something with no notice?? ITs not a sub's job to teach new material.
    It sounds to me like youre an amazing sub, you care so much about your job and take it very seriously.
    They are the ones that are losing out here, not you.
    Be glad, this is probably a blessing in disguise!
    Smile and keep moving! These people sound a bit obnoxious to me.
    What they did was wrong and uncalled for.
    XOXOXO HUGS !! XOXOXO
     
  15. longtimesub

    longtimesub Rookie

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    Feb 2, 2007

    Thanks...I do try to do my best always. I guess there is such a thing as a bad luck...Maybe I was at the wrong place at the wrong time...
     
  16. teachabc

    teachabc Rookie

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    Feb 27, 2007

    Wow, what a shame. That seems very harsh. It is sooo hard being a sub b/c you want to do everything perfect but people need to realize that we are all human!
    I have a question now; If you as a sub. were to give the teacher a survey, what kinds of questions would you want to know? That might not be a bad idea to leave for new teachers you will be in for. Then you could get immediate feedback the day you left rather then get this huge bombshell!!! This question is open to everyone really. Maybe we could come up with 5 questions or so that could help us all!!!!! Keep trying longtimesub!!!
     

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