Interesting situation...

Discussion in 'New Teachers' started by eri444, Aug 31, 2010.

  1. eri444

    eri444 Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2010
    Messages:
    70
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 31, 2010

    I wanted to know your take on this.

    This is my first year as a teacher in a middle school. I'll be teaching mathematics---my district consists of approximately 6-7 mathematics teachers. Last year, two of the teachers were leave replacements. At the end of the year, one of the permanent teachers decided she was going to leave, so the district posted for a new math teacher. Naturally, the leave replacements both decided to apply for the position, and so did others who saw the job posting.

    I ended up getting the tenure-track permanent position; 1 of the 2 leave replacements were not asked back this year, and the other one is still working in the school (and has been working in the school for 3 years as a leave replacement). I don't know why she was not the one picked for the tenure track position, but we had teacher orientation this week and my mentor (one of the permanent teachers) sort of told me on the down-low, "I don't want to make you worried or anything, and we are a professional group, but we, as a department, did petition for Ms. XXXX to be placed on a tenure track before they decided to post the position up last year, so there might be some tension in the department since you as a new teacher were hired, and she is still on the leave replacement track."

    I didn't really know what to say. I'm worried especially because she is still working in this department!

    What would you do in a situation like this? I hate that I'm already starting off the school year in fear that I might have a department that resents me for taking a permanent position away from a leave replacement. Even if they don't mean to, I feel that they're going to take that out on me, even though I obviously am not the one who hired myself!
     
  2.  
  3. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,483
    Likes Received:
    1,386

    Aug 31, 2010

    Can you change mentors? It doesn't sound like this one has your best interests at heart. It sounds like she just wants to be a gossip. You were the one who was hired so the P must have thought your skills were a better fit for the position. Perhaps she felt the other teacher would be too cliquey(sp)? Regardless, you go in there and knock their socks off! Make them all realize that you ARE the right person for the job. Good luck!
     
  4. eri444

    eri444 Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2010
    Messages:
    70
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 31, 2010

    Well that's sort of where the problem is

    the contract says only a tenured teacher can be my mentor, so there are 5 tenured math teachers --- apparently she did not originally want to mentor anyone, but when the mathematics teachers were asked, everyone refused to do it because of the leave replacement not being hired (they're obviously very close w/ her, and since she's still in the district, probably did not want to step on any toes or just not mentor me out of principle). So my mentor decided to step up to the plate, so to speak, and become the mentor so that I wasn't left in the dark.

    It's just really stressful, and now I have even more to prove than I did before - not to mention it's my very first year of teaching, plus I'm also doing my Master's classes at night - I wish I had a more supportive group of teachers working with me. Perhaps I'm just worried for nothing (since my mentor told me this in confidence, and I haven't met any of the others yet), but I can't say I'm not worried.
     
  5. dovian

    dovian Comrade

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2007
    Messages:
    260
    Likes Received:
    0

    Sep 1, 2010

    Can you try to find someone from another department to be your unofficial "mentor" for anything that's not math-related?
     
  6. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2007
    Messages:
    17,362
    Likes Received:
    46

    Sep 1, 2010

    I'm sorry that you have to start the year out like this. I would just go in there pretending you didn't hear anything. Be nice and professional to the people in your department. Go in there and knock their socks off! The P hired YOU so you must have had something that they saw was a better fit.
     
  7. INteacher

    INteacher Aficionado

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2007
    Messages:
    3,765
    Likes Received:
    1

    Sep 1, 2010

    This is what I would do too. Just ooze kindness, be the ultimate professional, and the math whiz :)

    But . . . what in the heck was her purpose in telling you that? I just don't get people like that?? First entirely unprofessional, next what exactly are you supposed to do with information like that, and why would she feel the need to give you such unsettling information?? Again, WHY??? I am so sorry you will be dealing with this as you start you new year
     
  8. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2007
    Messages:
    5,621
    Likes Received:
    5

    Sep 1, 2010

    Well.....

    I don't necessarily agree that the mentor was being catty. I, for one, would be really appreciative of the heads up if I was walking into a situation that was that tense. Unless the mentor told you in an abusive or snide way, I think maybe she was just trying to give you some insight into the situation.

    As for dealing with the other teachers, if things come up, be professional. Remember, you are not responsible for the hiring decision made by the P. When you saw a job posted, you applied. How were you to know that the department had a favorite? Be polite, do the best job you can do, and win all those others over :)
     
  9. eri444

    eri444 Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2010
    Messages:
    70
    Likes Received:
    0

    Sep 2, 2010

    I don't think she meant to be catty either - she definitely was just telling me as a 'heads up.' She has been nothing but nice to me so I think that she was just telling me in case the others acted coldly - I guess she didn't want me to think that they didn't like me.

    I went in today and met all of them for the first time, and my worries are gone - they were nothing but nice to me- The leave replacement was so nice to me that I actually feel bad for taking her probationary position (well not HER probationary position, but taking the opportunity away from her).

    I might bring in some cookies or something on the first day of classes with the kids (on Tuesday) and just write a little note like "Look forward to working with you all" or something like that.
     
  10. SwOcean Gal

    SwOcean Gal Devotee

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2004
    Messages:
    1,151
    Likes Received:
    0

    Sep 2, 2010

    Eri, that is a nice gesture! I think I may use your idea too! Thanks!
     
  11. Hoot Owl

    Hoot Owl Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2008
    Messages:
    3,888
    Likes Received:
    0

    Sep 2, 2010

    Congratulations, go in with a big smile everyday, work your buns off, be the positive force, let your actions/work speak loud and clear as to why the principal hired you.
     
  12. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2007
    Messages:
    17,362
    Likes Received:
    46

    Sep 2, 2010

    I'm glad they are treating you so well and the mentor's warning was for nothing! Have a great year!
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. nyctimel,
  2. waterfall,
  3. MissCeliaB
Total: 326 (members: 5, guests: 298, robots: 23)
test