Is it normal to be cussed out daily by students as a substitute teacher

Discussion in 'High School' started by taylor914, Mar 15, 2019.

  1. taylor914

    taylor914 Rookie

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    Not just throwing around the term "daily" like it seems "daily" but it literally is that often and sometimes, 2-3x a day, anything from f*** off to f*** this stupid n***a to every other expletive you can imagine being thrown my way. Literally appalled at how they talk & treat me as a sub. I walk in to seven hours of name calling and the most degrading talk I have witnessed in my life, and I was a cop for five years before this. Today it happened when I caught some girl taking pictures of me from 30ft away trying to be slick about it. That was her 2nd and final warning after I heard her use the F word earlier in the period. If I hear it once, thats a warning. Hear it again, theyre gone.

    The HS doesnt seem to give a rats behind about it because they always send "security" to come up and get the student, who treats them like theyre all "buddy buddy."

    What gives?
     
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  3. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Connoisseur

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    No, definitely not. I would find a different school.
     
  4. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

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    Mar 16, 2019

    My last sub job was six-weeks at a middle school similar to your experience. Not normal, but sadly, some buildings choose to look past this language and consider it as part of their culture.
    I witnessed a mom being told by a boy to "suck my ____". He had a big grin on his face and was grabbing his privates. It was another boy's mom too! Even the talented & gifted students I had were more like "Entitled & Sassy". Thankfully, the school is now closed.
     
  5. skyline

    skyline Companion

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    Mar 16, 2019

    It depends on the school. In my rural location, it's not very common. I could see it being a lot more common in city schools, especially at schools where the school culture allows it.
     
  6. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    It's all about where you are. Consider that the security officers and those students probably see each other frequently - you are not the only staff member who has had to have these students removed from the classroom. In defense of the security officers, their job is to remove the student without creating an igniting incident in what could be a combustible situation. Trust me, I have seen what happens when the student decides to resist a peaceful exit, and ramps it up instead.

    You may want to look for younger students, different schools, different school cultures, or a combination of the three. Just know that changing all three may not be a guarantee that things will be as you hoped or imagined, sadly.
     
  7. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    Not normal for me. I never had a single kid cuss at me when I subbed. I was in a rural high school.
     
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  8. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Groupie

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    I am sometimes critical of my admin for not being tough enough on kids for things like being tardy/absent too frequently or cheating on assessments but I can confidently say that if a student ever cussed me out like that, they would, at minimum, be suspended for a least a day or two.
     
  9. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    OP, I don't for one minute believe that any teacher should have to endure the verbal abuse that is out there, not only directed to subs, but regular staff members in certain districts and areas. I have subbed in wonderful districts where the verbal abuse you mention would never occur. Those were suburban districts, and people, in general, just don't talk to each other like that. I have also worked in districts where the students speak in vulgar language to each other, as well as to the staff. The entire school culture is different, and all I can say is that if that is the language the kids are hearing and using at home, on the streets, etc., then it will be a constant struggle to correct the situation. You can fight the good fight, or, you can find an environment/culture more in keeping with your own to work at. Without making excuses, many of these students hear this language, and witness the disrespect on TV, in films, in the video games they play, in the foul language music they are plugged into, and that doesn't hold a candle to what many hear in the home, from the adults who should be role models, or on the street, in the gangs they aspire to belong to.

    There are a variety of cultures out there, so if you can find districts that more closely mirror what you would consider normal and acceptable, that would be where I would be looking to work. It does often help to move down in age groups, since the younger students are sometimes less inclined to be as brazen as the older teens. I teach full time in an environment where civil language and respect are overshadowed by conditions more like the ones that you have described. I struggle constantly to make sure that what I hear does not become language I would ever use. I am sorry that you have had such a rough indoctrination into subbing.
     
  10. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    It has become the norm at my school for all staff to get cussed out during the school year.
     
  11. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    I’m so sorry. I really wish that you transfer your retirement/tenure elsewhere where you are appreciated and leave your toxic work environment. Just awful...
     
  12. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    I'm close to being fully vested, so I can hang on.
     
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  13. taylor914

    taylor914 Rookie

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    Mar 19, 2019

    Today, I set ground rules and one of which was NO CUSSING, especially the F word. I said there wont be any warnings. I dont want to hear it andf if I do, you will be out of here. Sure enough. One student about 20 minutes later said it loudly, then refused to leave, so I had to call security. Another walked right out of the class when I said no to using the RR (because he was one of the ones cutting up / slacking off) in the back of the room. This isnt inner-city, but not far from it.

    But what kills me is this is brand new school, in a nice area, sort of close to the big big-city, and yet you hear all this vile foul mouthed language constantly, in the classes and also when its said to teachers, meanwhile literally half of the students walk around with their phone in their hands or earbuds in, even in class. Just absolutely blows my mind.

    Every single day Ive been here Ive had to, at some point, kick someone out and why I kick them is because of mob-mentality. One person can turn an entire class against you or disrupt their studying. The administrators have not said "you have xxx authority." They only come when I specifically ask for one.

    This job has got me seriously questioning my life's choices & what I did so that I could go through all kinds of schools, even an MS, to be paid $100 a day and cursed at constantly.

    Just in case anyone reads this, I am considering December or Seattle when I move this summer. Not sure if anyone knows districts but i am considering both. Certified to teach Criminal Justice (MS in that, 5yrs patrol as well). Like i said, slim chance thats relevant to anyone but just in case.

    Edit: 10th period today, had to remove two more students after they dropped the F word multiple times themselves. One muttered "watch dis' im gonna go flip that motherf****n teacher off," then another walked out. Then another said "F that MFer" because i had her removed last week when she refused to stop cursing. So after 3 trips from security here, for this period alone, the last security guard suggested I find a new district when I said "It boggles my mind, how I come in here & get treated like this - it's like this every single day, when there's no way everyone gets treated like this." Of course, there are other factors that come in to play here. Im sure we can all make some decent guesses as to what those are and why they are important.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2019
  14. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

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    Unreal! This sounds so much like my last subbing experience I spoke of at a middle school. There were so many fires to put out in that building, security could not come running to all of them. When that occurs, the kids end up running the zoo.

    Even though the building had cameras, they had so many hall roamers. The kids just didn't care. I had a real problem with kids running in/out of my room all day long. They would stop in to ditch staff or just socialize. They literally acted like I was not in the room. I started locking the door and made a rule that I had to answer it. That REALLY made the roamers mad. One day the P told me I could not do that anymore. She said it was a safety issue. If I was in trouble, how could she get to me.
    WHAAAT?!?!?
    This made no sense. I wanted to say, "Don't you carry your master key with you at all times like we do??"
    Instead I did not question it. The roamers won and they continued to run their zoo.

    As a sub, you probably have the choice to work when/where you want. Give the administration your professional feedback and avoid this place in the future.
     
  15. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    Mar 19, 2019

    A small child told his classmates f them and they could go suck a ****. This is the environment they grow up in people. They not only cuss out teachers, they cuss each other out.
     
  16. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    This is despicable. I would definitely stop working there immediately.
     
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  17. taylor914

    taylor914 Rookie

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    My boss emailed me said we need to meet. I replied wondering what other information he would give about the intent of the meeting and he only said that I would find it "purposeful" which explains absolutely nothing.

    At another district, about 3-4 months ago, a student wlaked out of the class with my cell phone, which I immediately tracked through my macbook & found the student had discarded it when the alarm went off. The principal initially said she was "sure" that none of the students I told her may have taken it, did take it. After she reviewed the videos, in the area it was thrown away, sure enough, one of the students who had said he didnt do it in fact had done it.

    Principal went on to tell me, in a solemn and understanding way, "he did it so he could sell the phone to pay his mothers utility bill." Would not return my phone call about the incident, tell men who it was, let me speak to them or ask why, or anything. I was essentially hushed out of the building when the regular teacher had returned.

    She bought the story hook-line & sinker. As for criminal charges, I notified the SRO I wanted to do so, and he assured me they had been charged, but 3-4 months later, not one phone call from the DA nor does my name show up as any victim or witness in the Court's database, they told me.

    Maybe it's me or maybe it's the very large metro-area I live in that is just like this. I worked in the burb's, in a city of 160,000, but am now in a larger city of half a million where the students are much worse. Maybe all subs in my area have it this bad or maybe I am the only one unwilling to stand idle while these "students" curse us, steal our belongings and get away with almost anything they want.

    Conversely, two years ago, I subbed at a catholic HS where it was a whole other world, night and day difference, not even in the same galaxy - it was a pleasure to work there so that tells me it isnt a problem with youth across the board - more so a problem with certain groups.
     
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  18. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    And then there are teachers and admin who defend and make excuses for this behavior, as if it’s somehow acceptable. IMO, that speaks volumes about them.
     
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  19. alp123

    alp123 Companion

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    My P and District is known for defending this horrible behavior. It's my first year and most likely my last. I teach 2nd grade and a student brought a knife in and threaten to kill me. My admin gave him one day in school suspension and said he watched to much Youtube. They keep saying that this is the culture, we have to understand our students....blah, blah, subs won't even come to our school. Whenever the union tries to bring it up at board meetings, the Superintendent immediately cuts them off. We are basically cultivating criminals. It's really very sad. So many sweet kiddos, but the district is so afraid of being sued I guess. I'm just trying to make to June. I'm a single parent and finding a new job is tough, a lot of temp contracts. :(
     
  20. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Oh my goodness, if a student threatened me and brought a knife to the school where I work, I would have the security guards take the cretin down and then press charges to ensure they got locked up. I wouldn’t think twice about it and neither would my admin as they actually do their job. Imagine that. THAT is how it should be handled. End of story.
     
  21. alp123

    alp123 Companion

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    Unfortunately, we don't have security because it's an elementary school. My admin tries to hide a lot of the behaviors. I'm not new to the profession, so I know that this is not normal. When they police officer called me he said, "You're not scared of a 7 year old are you?" Totally dismissive. There are fights daily....PBIS is a joke.
     
  22. Reality Check

    Reality Check Habitué

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    Welcome to urban education! Writing up profanity in my schools would've been like giving out speeding tickets at Indy 500....there was no point to it. And administration will ALWAYS hide behind, "It's your classroom management skills." They don't want to be bothered. You can either ignore it or come up with a sarcastic response. That's about it.
     
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  23. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    This is what education is devolving into, folks. And people honestly have to wonder why I say what I say.
     
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  24. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    This is just a paycheck, just call a spade a spade. Administrators don't care so why should we? Show up, get paid, and get ready for summer break!
     
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  25. Pisces

    Pisces Rookie

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    I'll give you the advice that someone who is now a professor at a large university and used to be in the classroom for 10 years gave me:
    "This goes against everything I stand for but... do not work at a bad, rough, urban school. Find a high performing school - public or private - and work there."
    I got similar advice from a few others.
    I heeded that advice after many years at a Title I school. I work at a much better school and the difference is night and day.
    For that, I am thankful. I like where I work.
     
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  26. zmp2018

    zmp2018 Rookie

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    Dear God, this is exactly like my first subbing experience at the middle school that I actually attended.

    The kids were awful! They would just start obnoxiously laughing when I greeted them at the start of class, answer phone calls, FaceTime, etc. Whatever terrible thing that middle schoolers can do to you—they did.

    Stupid me took another job there a few days later. I thought that maybe I had a rough group. Nope. Those kids on my second go-around were MUCH worse. They came to homeroom and just acted like a bunch of animals...throwing desks, chairs, whatever. Then the language started. This sixth grader was talking about how she was going to “beat someone's f*ing a*s” and blah, blah, blah. The worst thing was when the neighboring teachers would come in to try to help, but it ended up being a “buddy-buddy” thing. They didn’t even try to help me corral them. Never going back. NEVER.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2019
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  27. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    You’ve made the right decision. It sounds like you were working in a zoo with wild animals.
     
  28. taylor914

    taylor914 Rookie

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    I quit and left a descriptive resignation letter for my boss.
     
  29. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    I hope you can find a better place to work. Nobody deserves what you went through.
     
  30. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Aficionado

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    If they say the "F" word it is a warning??? I don't get it. A student who says the "F" word to a teacher or substitute teacher, that is a very big thing. I'd change that policy immediately. I subbed in the "hood" in the worst neighborhood you can imagine with middle school students. I was called a "honky" and some other names, but no one ever said the "F" word to me. If they did, they'd be out the door in 2 seconds.

    I wish you luck and hope you find a better school. As a sub. I'd be twice as strict as you expect a regular teacher would be. Triple that if you are in a bad neighborhood.
     
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  31. taylor914

    taylor914 Rookie

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    I have been strict. That is the sole reason for the friction. I heard F this, F that, N this N that, literally all day long in every single period and on most days heard them curse at me conversation with each other (F that stupid A sub / Man he a dumb N**** / This sum bullsh** I cant go to the RR / ETC). Just so happens that, after the worst day there in terms of the number of students I had removed, my boss emails & said he wanted me to come to the downtown office to "talk about substituting matters." After I said I wanted to know why & what the exact purpose was, he said only "I think you'll find the meeting purposeful."

    .......................... really.

    So you want me to miss half a day of work, buy gas, drive 35 minutes to downtown, and do not have the decency or respect to inform me why you want me to do this. Ofc, we can all speculate why but that was the last straw.

    But hearing the F word happened so many times, you had to give warnings at first. If I kicked it every students for saying it, I'd literally kick out 1/3 of the period, every period.
     
  32. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    Had a student to write f Ms. ____________ and the principal did nothing about it. But we're told to write it up if it happens, pfff..........
     
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  33. Nicolebeason

    Nicolebeason Rookie

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    Yep, been There as a substitute for a while - Substitutes are the "Rodney Dangerfields" of teaching - most get no respect.
     
  34. Teacher234

    Teacher234 Cohort

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    In some locations, absolutely. However, in my school district (can only use my school district because it is the only school district I have personally experienced), the majority of the students are respectful to the substitute teachers in high school. Middle school kids are usually rambunctious. Elementary students try to get away with interesting behaviors. (I have been teaching this particular class for 8-9 years now.) I have only had a couple instances where I was given a negative note about a student. When I can not be in school, my aide usually takes the reigns and directs the class. Substitute teachers, in my class, can not write up my students (But neither can I).
     
  35. zmp2018

    zmp2018 Rookie

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    I know your response was over a month ago, but for some reason, I overlooked it originally.

    It seriously was like working in a zoo with wild animals.

    I talked to some of my former teachers there and asked them how they think the culture of the school has evolved. They all had negative things to say about it. Part of the issue is the principal does not like disciplining the students or does not effectively discipline. When I was there, we had a different principal that was not afraid to lay down the hammer if she needed to do it. Of course we had some issues with certain students, but those issues were dealt with swiftly and effectively.

    I see different stories on my social media accounts about issues at this school, and it seems to be getting worse.
     
  36. UpperMidwest

    UpperMidwest Rookie

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    What you have described is terrible. I have been there. I sub in 4 districts and have had exposure to a variety of students. It my area, schools in the big city (public) are really rough. Students in higher performing schools act much, much better. In fact, I would go so far as to say it is child abuse to send one's kid to a low performing school IF one has the option to bus out, move out, or go private.
     
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  37. Teacher234

    Teacher234 Cohort

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    I feel that is a little harsh and unfair. I understand your point that having your kids at a low-performing school when you can afford a better option is may be not wise. However, it is not right to call it child abuse.
     
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  38. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    This will keep being encouraged as long as you have spineless administrators.
     
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  39. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Yep. I think superintendents should sit all the principals in a room at every school in their district and just let them have it. P’s and VP’s need to stop giving students grace all the time and actually drop the hammer. I constantly hear about admin not disciplining students and I’m sick of it.

    I’m glad my admin lay into students when they misbehave — the students deserve it.
     
  40. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Aficionado

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    Agreed, but there is one problem. Superintendents are often the ones that are so concerned about their reputations that they are often even a bigger problem than the principals. Not saying all superintendents are like that, but from what I have seen and heard, superintendents tend to be more the problem than the answer.
     
  41. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Good grief, does it ever end?
     

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