Have you changed districts or buildings...

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Bella2010, Aug 31, 2013.

  1. Bella2010

    Bella2010 Habitué

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    Aug 31, 2013

    because of your P? I mean, I'm sure some of you have, but I guess I'm just kind of wondering how bad it was before you decided to change. I'm seriously considering this, but know I don't have it as bad as a lot of people, so I kind of feel like I should just deal with it.

    He's putting insane demands on us that interfere with our personal (family time) lives; trying to mold us and push us into his style of teaching, which is basically making us miserable. It's like he's getting more nitpicky as the years go by. It's already started and we're not even a month in yet.
     
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  3. geegee1981

    geegee1981 Rookie

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    Yes i changed districts after 1 year of teaching. My work environment was negative. The principal and assistant principal would exclude me from professional development and other activities. They would speak to everyone in the building accept me. They completely ignored me when i said hi. I was hurt being excluded. I am very nice and never said or did anything bad to them.

    The other teachers on my team would crack jokes about how small i am (im petite and 5'2), how young i was, and that i looked younger than the students. They didn't know that im in my early 30's with 2 graduate degrees. This was a career change for me. They assumed that i was 22 fresh out of college. I didn't fit in.

    So i searched all summer and found a new job. The staff in my new district are 100% friendly and helpful. They have young and seasoned teachers. Its a better environment.
     
  4. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I guess he's facing certain pressures and passing them on to the teachers...and that sucks. At my previous school, I could always tell after he went to a big meeting where he felt pressure about something. He'd come back and try to be positive about whatever change would be necessary, but we could tell the changes weren't initiated by him.

    I've been very lucky in terms of administration. While my previous principal didn't always handle students and parents how he should have, I liked him so much personally. Good man, and that counts for a lot in my book. My current principal is awesome.

    If you're miserable, I'd look elsewhere...but really try to learn a lot about the principals first. Of course, they could leave the school and everything could change... Tough call to make. :(
     
  5. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Me! It was a really hard decision because I had the most wonderful grade level team in the world, and that can really have a big impact on your day to day life at school. I was also working in an inner city district and I felt that I was really making a difference with the kids- their achievement levels by the end of the year were honestly quite amazing. I know principals can come and go, and part of me thought I should just stick it out until she left.

    Then it started to just get worse and worse. At the beginning of the year, my biggest problem was that I got NO support with behavior. I'd have a kid throwing chairs/books, tipping desks over, screaming profanities, threatening and/or hurting other kids, and my principal would not allow me to remove her from the room. I was expected to teach with all of this going on and the only consequence I was able to give was to call her parent. Luckily, that student moved a couple of months in and I had a wonderful class after that (I feel bad saying that, but it's true). After that, I thought I could just keep my head down and focus on teaching.

    Unfortunately, that was just impossible. My P hated our entire team because we had two union reps and they often spoke up. She resented that we were doing so well without teaching the way she demanded. We were 96% ELL and she told us not to teach vocabulary explicitly. She was always looking for "engagement" which she said was kids being happy/smiling in class, and no one ever got her approval on that one. We were always told we were doing everything wrong, but she refused to provide specific examples of what she was actually looking for. We were never told anything positive all year...literally. She took lesson plans out of my personal documents, put them in a common file, and accused my teammate of stealing them on her evaluation. She screamed at people in the hallway. People were terrified to ask questions in staff meetings. She and her "favorite few" would stand around in the hallway laughing and making fun of other teachers. I would literally feel physically sick walking into work in the morning and I gained about 30 pounds last year.

    My teammates really wanted me to "wait it out" because they thought she couldn't possibly stick around for long. However, two of them are currently in step 4 of the grievance process for discrimination and the district is supporting the P 100%. I don't think she's going anywhere soon.

    We haven't started with kids yet in my new district, but I've been back for about a week and a half now. The overall tone and the way the P interacts with the staff is SO different. I still keep in contact with my former teammates and from what they report, I'm very glad I got out!
     
  6. Bella2010

    Bella2010 Habitué

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    Wow! Hearing what you went through makes my issues seem pretty petty.

    It really is. :( I really like all the teachers in my building, and we've all banded together and support each other through all of this.

    There have been some changes or requests he's made over the last few years that he's blamed on new state laws or board policy, only to find out that is a load of crap. No laws requiring what he's asked us to do exists and we've found out from other principal's there were no changes to the board policy. I mean, I guess he thinks we don't talk to other teachers and Ps about this stuff? One of our staff members is married to a P in our district. :rolleyes:

    He's lied to me on more than one occasion, so I feel like I can't take anything he says at face value.
     
  7. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Yes. I once had a principal tell me that I couldn't do centers with my kinders. This was because my teaching partner didn't do them. She actually told me that I couldn't go to the bathroom unless my teaching partner did! She also walked out the front door for Christmas break while I was talking to her. I was mid-sentence!

    The last time, my P left & I didn't like his replacement. He was one of the VP's and known for telling teachers to do one thing one day and the next day it was the wrong thing to do. I left.
     
  8. Bella2010

    Bella2010 Habitué

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    It's really hard to articulate what I'm feeling without going into too much detail. Heck, it's hard to articulate what I'm feeling, period.

    It's like our job isn't hard enough. I can't think of one of us who aren't concerned with test scores, student growth, the well being of our students, etc. It would just be nice if we felt our P supported us instead of scrutinizing everything we do because he's hellbent on being the best at our expense. He makes us feel like failures and ineffective teachers since we don't do everything he would, or did do, as a teacher. What he did as a teacher simply isn't the style of most of us, any of us, really. I seriously just want to ask him to script out our day, activities, instruction, etc. That way we'd know exactly what he wanted and expected from us. I'm not saying there isn't room for growth on our part. I think everyone can benefit from learning new things, don't get me wrong.

    And he sends blanket e-mails all the time. So even though they don't apply to most of us, it just feels like one more thing we're getting griped at over. And the discipline thing, well...:|


















    -
     
  9. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Under one of my previous principals, I was ready to move to a different school and was actively looking to transfer within the district. I ended up not going through with it because I didn't like the locations of any of the schools with openings. It worked out for me in the end because the principal ended up being transferred to a different school. Any chance of that happening for you?
     
  10. Pisces_Fish

    Pisces_Fish Fanatic

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    I transferred schools within the district after 2 years with my same P. Working with her made me miserable and I still have occasional nightmares with her in them :huh: She had a background in middle and high school and had never taught K-5 before. She really had no idea how an eled room functions and was as cold as ice to the staff and kids. She ran the school with a militaristic fist. Creativity was discouraged and everything had a procedure, down to the grittiest details. I hated teaching my first 2 years. I worked 2 more years with a better P before leaving the district. I am very happy in my current district and I love my P. Even with his faults he's a great person to work with :)
     
  11. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    Districts, no. I have transferred schools because of problems that I blamed on Admin's lack of management skills, people/personal skills, having no control, no clear direction, favoritism, etc. - not because of excess time demands outside of contractual hours.

    Truth-be-told, I usually "blame" the students for me leaving a school but I guess many of their issues stem from a lack of coherent, clear school leadership. Schools with a wild, chaotic environment and out-of-control students usually have poor leadership. Although, after working at three different schools in my district, I realize that there are certain attitudes and behaviors that are common and pretty much acceptable across my district - stuff other districts would not put up with.
     
  12. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    I completely understand. I spent two years at a K-8 teaching MS under a woman who only had experience dealing with ELEM and she seemed to HATE having a MS added to her previously K-5 only school. She had no idea how to discipline, talk to, act, or deal with pre- and young teens. She tried to force the MS teachers to implement ELEM practices, procedures and behavior programs.

    But, what really made her angry was that the MS students' test scores were much, much lower than the ELEM students' scores on the state exam (which is a district-wide trend as students age) and the MS students had a lot more discipline issues (fighting, vandalism, etc.). She was always ranting that by adding grades 6-8 to her K-5 school, the district had "ruined" her on purpose. :rolleyes:
     
  13. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

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    I transferred districts. I didn't have enough time in to transfer schools, but I had to get away from that P.

    It's not an easy decision. Last year was pretty bad at my school (I liked my P but a lot of people didn't, plus we had a lot of district issues going on), and a lot of people left. Then they shuffled Ps all over the district, and we ended up with a new lady.

    But keep in mind - while it may seem small compared to some of the things others have gone through, those small things quickly multiply and leave you feeling miserable.
     
  14. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    I hate this too and think it's an ineffective practice. Yes, there are people who get these emails and fret that the P is taking an anonymous shot at them. But, there are other people who need to be told directly they are doing something wrong or they won't think it's them. They just assume the P is talking about someone else.
     
  15. Bella2010

    Bella2010 Habitué

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    I doubt it. He's the "golden boy" in the eyes of the super and asst. super, so they basically will let him go wherever he wants. Seriously. Two P jobs came open the year he became ours and they gave him his choice of buildings.

    I think that's part of our issue. He's geared more to lower elementary, not upper. Some of the things he wants/expects us to do are just downright ridiculous in upper elem and leave us feeling stupid and the students shaking their heads and NOT seeing us in a professional manner, IMHO.

    He kind of has the attitude of "if you don't like the way I run things you must not be dedicated like me."

    The last couple of years have been rough with him. We've all been seeing a trend. Making things worse, and really starting this year out on the wrong foot, was a really personal issue, which had the potential to influence my professional well being. He basically mocked me for being so upset about an issue that he had no idea about and something I wasn't going to share with him. I gave him the basic details and didn't feel like I needed to go further. I feel like he really discounted me as an individual and it kind of made me feel belittled. I just can't shake this situation, and everything else that he's piling on us this early in the year is just like one more nail in the coffin.
     
  16. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Sounds like my first mentor. She was a friend of the P's and was a retired 7th/8th grade math teacher. She didn't know or understand kindergarten at all! I was explaining early childhood best practices to her. She couldn't understand why I had to teach students how to walk into the classroom. Umm, some of these students had never been to school before.
     
  17. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    ^^^ Interesting, something I never thought about. I would also question why you would have to teach children how to enter a room, but I also have no ELEM experience.

    I always think it's useless to have a mentor or IL who has no idea about what you teach. I remember having an IL (who has a math background) tell me that my 8th graders should have a spelling bee. That was the only teaching tip he could offer me because he knew nothing about teaching US History.
     
  18. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    She thought that they should already know how to quietly enter the classroom and sit down and get to work. She couldn't understand that as kindergarteners they don't know how to do that. We have to teach them how to move about a room, how to stand up and push their chair in, how to move to the carpet etc. All of that has to be taught. They don't just know it.
     
  19. Geauxtee

    Geauxtee Comrade

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    Yes, I had an awful mix of emotionally manipulative admin and bullying/mean girl colleagues. So, glad to be free of that place :)
     
  20. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    Hats off to you, because teaching those type of procedures would drive me crazy and induce lots of frustration and permanent eye-rolling. :lol:
     
  21. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

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    Haha, my seventh graders still don't know how to push in their chairs or stand in a single file, quiet line. I'm glad my admin understands that it's just the nature of the age group.
     

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