My Cooperative Teacher Threw Me Under the Bus!!

Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by Teacher41, Nov 8, 2012.

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  1. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 10, 2012

    Thank you for your post. I can see that you read my posts and see where I'm coming from because any criticism you gave me, wasn't written in an attacking way at all. I appreciate your insight and feedback. Yes, I do feel like a majority of the posters here attacked me from all sides, even if it was well-intentioned criticism. If you see that your approach isn't getting a positive result, then try another one. The posters here who criticized me were doing it more to state their opinion of what they would have done instead. I don't consider that as supportive communication- telling me what I did was wrong, and what you would have done instead was right, etc. etc. That comes across as judgmental to me, not supportive. Supportive criticism isn't, "act your age," or "I think this was the last straw for the mentor teacher," those are judgmental opinions. Those are not supportive comments. Those were mean comments. I have never spoken to a student or to a coworker or my mentor teacher that way, and never would.

    Supportive criticism is "sorry that happened to you. what have you done so far to deal with your situation?" etc. So the majority of posters here who claim I'm being defensive, are the ones who just criticized me without seeing my point of view. You can catch more bees with honey than vinegar. There's a lot of vinegar in this thread from other posters (minus the ones who actually wrote supportive posts to me).

    I wasn't offended at all by your comment about attending law school instead. Actually you're not the first person to tell me that I'm better suited for law school instead of teaching. Unfortunately, law school is not a realistic choice for me financially-speaking as I'm in so much debt since I started grad school. For example, I had to file bankruptcy last year. So I have to take that into consideration moving forward. If my spring financial aid isn't enough to cover the cost of my student teaching, then I can't finish it. I only had one masters class left to take in the spring. So this "delay" is going to literally cost me and put me into greater financial strain than I was prepared for.
     
  2. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Nov 10, 2012

    :dizzy:
     
  3. msufan

    msufan Comrade

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    Nov 10, 2012

    I would urge you to not teach. Teaching is a profession where you will often feel wronged or disrespected by someone. An inability to turn the other cheek is a clear sign that this profession is the wrong one for you.
     
  4. charlottesome

    charlottesome Rookie

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    Nov 10, 2012

    Why does your department chair 'have it out' for you as well?
     
  5. iGirl

    iGirl Rookie

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    Nov 10, 2012

    Sorry Teacher41...I wasn't really talking about other posters, but your actual situation. I wanted to focus on that instead, to get you focusing back on that instead of feeling defensive on the forums. Unfortunately I don't think focusing on the perceived tone of posts will help at this point. You are under an enormous amount of emotional and financial stress, and that is going to taint all of your online and RL social interactions for now...and that is understandable.

    I would certainly take the advice offered in the posts though. Talk to whoever is in charge of your teaching placement, and let them guide you. If you feel unsure of their commitment to you, then ask around and find someone (a lecturer or tutor you trust?) who you feel comfortable and safe with. Someone you feel respects you, at this point, because I think you feel like not a lot of people are respecting you or your situation. Whether that is true or not, I cannot determine, but the fact remains that this is how you feel and you are going to act and react based on these feelings so they are vitally important to take into account moving forward.
     
  6. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Nov 10, 2012

    This is the reply I received.

     
  7. iGirl

    iGirl Rookie

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    Nov 10, 2012

    While I respect this sentiment, we can't really say that without understanding the pressure this person is under. Would you be an effective and understanding teacher if you felt like your world was collapsing around you? I know I wouldn't be...that's why teachers take leave.

    With her rigidity in terms of policy and following guidelines etc, she may actually be a very good teacher. We cannot determine that, and it isn't for us to decide either.

    In different circumstances the OP may be demonstrate a stronger ability to 'turn the other cheek', but right now she is learning, and we all know that student teaching is difficult and presents unique challenges. It's also very different from teaching in the 'real world'.

    The fact also remains that she is in no position to change her profession at this stage in her life. What we think personally is of no consequence in the matter, because this is the situation she is presented with and she's coming asking for advice. She may not like the way in which it was delivered, but she has received various bits of advice that hopefully will allow her to move forward and prove herself to be a solid teacher.
     
  8. BioAngel

    BioAngel Science Teacher - Grades 3-6

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    Nov 10, 2012

    My thoughts as well.

    Your posts are coming across as if you have some kind of anger issue and you will really need to deal with that BEFORE you start teaching.

    ^ Btw, I'm not attacking you- I'm just sensing something that could cause a fellow educator set backs and I do not want that for you or an other teacher.
     
  9. Ethel989

    Ethel989 Rookie

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    Nov 10, 2012

    I totally agree with iGirl - she just said it in a more eloquent way than what I was thinking in my head. OP is in the middle of a frustrating, stressful situation. I'm a little sad to see the general lack of empathy.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2012
  10. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 10, 2012

    I don't think it's productive to go back and forth about the other posters' comments here anymore, or whether or not people in my situation are supportive or critical. Everyone here or IRL is entitled to their opinion and to continue debating the perceived tone of my posts or others' posts here isn't constructive.

    As far as the consensus of advice that I need to take a calm, professional approach moving forward; while I agree that is in my best interest, I don't know how to achieve that when my dept. chair already has a negative opinion of me.

    I think THAT is why I posted here. Maybe I should have just posted that question and nothing more. Because that is what I need guidance on. How am I supposed to proactively advocate for myself with someone who doesn't respect me or like me as a person? I can bring all of my evaluations to the meeting, and try to keep the focus on the conversation on that.

    After all, if you have to repeat your student teaching, it's because you made mistakes. I got high scores on my formal evaluations, even from my mentor teacher. So the focus needs to remain on that, or at least I think it should. Yes, I did make a mistake at the parent-teacher conference but that's already done. I apologized to the parent before they left. So I tried to fix the situation then and there at the conference. But I still made a mistake responding personally to the criticism I was given. I don't want to argue about that anymore on this thread. I'm well aware of that being a mistake. Criticizing me for that doesn't really help me at this point. Obviously, I won't do that again if I student teach in the spring and have to attend parent-teacher conferences. I'd make sure that my mentor teacher doesn't leave me alone with the parents, and that if a parent complains, I will probably go find the principal or assistant principal to observe the conversation so that the parent, mentor teacher and I feel like the conversation remained positive.

    So my question is (to posters who care to answer): how do I keep the conversation focused on my achievements ? How do I advocate for myself in my upcoming meeting to make sure the goals for my repeated clinical practice are based off the evaluation form requirements, and not the biased opinions of the higher ups who will have nothing but negative criticism for me?

    I already posted earlier in my thread about enlisting the help of my program's academic dean, to make sure that all involved are on the same page. I like your idea of contacting a trusted professor. I may email one whom I've known for 20 years, who knows about my situation.
     
  11. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

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    Nov 10, 2012

    It sounds like your college is standing up for you, so that is great. I would go through the steps that they have told you to go through, and if you don't get the desired result, I would hire a lawyer. This is so not right. This teacher sounds like a complete nightmare! Good luck, and let us know what happens.
     
  12. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 10, 2012

    Thank you Ethel and thank you iGirl for seeing my situation more clearly than the other posters here do. There is a definite lack of empathy from the posters here who have criticized me.

    iGirl is very eloquent and very respectful, so I will listen to what she has to say because she shows empathy whereas the others really haven't bothered.

    So thank you to the posters who showed me empathy. I do appreciate it.
     
  13. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 10, 2012

    Thank you ecteach for your support. My mentor teacher is a complete nightmare. I"m disappointed that she did what she did (aside from my obvious mistake) because I thought she and I had a great rapport. She always complimented me, and if I had an isuse with her, she for the most part did listen, except when I asked her to stop interrupting me during my lesson plans. She didn't like that. And she didn't like that I complained to my supervisor that she wouldn't stop interrupting me, or stop making negative comments to her students about my use of handouts or technology. I hope I can be placed with a student teacher who uses technology or doesn't mind it or doesn't mind the use of handouts. I know well established teachers who use handouts still, or technology because its' their style of teaching. I think those are my strengths and help me communicate my lesson plan objectives clearly to students. Plus, the K-W-L chart is a way to see what students know or want to know about a topic. Anyway.

    I did contact my state's teachers union and spoke with a rep about any legal actions. Unfortunately, since its within my university, they can't help me. I even contacted a private education lawyer and he said that I should do my best to try to resolve the situation without legal help, because he said that he charges $300 an hour minimum. So now I just have to finish emotionally processing what's happened, find some means of employment, and once I get rid of that stressor, I can focus on how to be calm-minded, professional and focused on my goal of completing my student teaching (if I can financially afford it).
     
  14. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Nov 10, 2012

    This will be my last post on the issue. Others understand the situation clearly—we just didn't necessarily come to the same conclusion as Ethel and iGirl. You are choosing to make that mean our opinions are less valuable, although I don't think that is the wisest decision if you were in fact coming here for advice. If you noted, my first response was that I really didn't see the big deal in your reaction to the parent. It has been everything else since then that leads me to believe that perhaps your response to the parent was more "passionate" than it should have been because, frankly, your follow-up posts are touch dramatic and defensive. I also said in my first response that your mentor teacher made a major mistake in allowing you to meet with parents alone. Now I think it was even a greater mistake.

    Truly, I wish the best for you. I cannot imagine how stressed you must feel being so unsure about your immediate and long-term future.
     
  15. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Nov 10, 2012

    Your CT SHOULD NOT have left you to conduct conferences on your own. It was an irresponsible decision on er part and I'm somewhat confused why the school isn't reprimanding her for this.

    That said, I have jumped in on ST's lessons when incorrect information was being taught. Ultimately the students' learning is te regular teacher's responsibility...not sure if that is the reason your CT jumped in. As far as technology, it's a tool...your CT may or may not be completely comfortable with technology. Regardless, technology should not replace good teaching...it should complement it.

    Good luck to you.
     
  16. Tutor

    Tutor Comrade

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    Nov 10, 2012

    At my university if a student teaching experience wasn't working, you got a different placement and it didn't effect your time at all. I had a friend who was moved half-way through her st and she finished on time with the rest of us.

    I would focus on being able to finish your st experience, somewhere, as soon as possible. You shouldn't have to repeat the entire thing. Acknowledge that it was a bad situation and find out how to move on, quickly.
     
  17. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    Nov 10, 2012

    Teacher41, I'm sorry that you feel that you haven't been supported on this site. I'm a moderator here, and, like TeacherGroupie stated, I don't see harassement. I do see posters who don't necessarily agree with what you are saying. I see posters who are trying to show you the other side of your situation, and I know when you feel that you've been wronged, you don't want to see that other side. That's natural. We all do that. You will find this site has a lot of great people who eagerly reach their hand out to you. There's some tough love in there. You are learning and sometimes when we're learning, we have to take a step back and look the situation over again. Sometimes we have to eat a piece of humble pie, be it a little piece or a heaping piece. I hope you continue to visit this site and see that the posters who are responding here are doing it with your best intentions. I hope that your situation improves and I wish you well on all future steps that you take.
     
  18. mommafran

    mommafran Companion

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    Nov 10, 2012

    I am a first year teacher(second career, so I am older too) and in many ways I get your point about needing/wanting compassion. I will be completely honest, in letting you know that in the "real world" compassion/empathy can be hard to find in buildings and your worst critics will be other "fellow teachers."

    Hang in there and keep your goals/objectives in mind.

    Best wishes and please keep us posted.
     
  19. Special-t

    Special-t Enthusiast

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    Nov 10, 2012

    Having to do a second round of student teaching would have been a huge financial hardship to me, so I understand your distress. I hope this works out for you.
     
  20. charlottesome

    charlottesome Rookie

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    Nov 11, 2012

    So at this point you'll have to wait to see what the board says and if they approve, you'll do another 7 weeks at a different school?

    In my opinion, the best thing you can get out of your student teaching experience (besides the knowledge), is your letter of recommendation. So hopefully, best case scenario, you get approved, you learn from the situation, and get a great letter from your next cooperating teacher.

    That being said, you DO need to have a thick skin to be a teacher. You were wronged, but try not to take things so personally. Don't internalize negativity. If you do, you will have a hard time teaching. Again, not something they teach you in grad school. Don't get offended by what the people on this board say, because they are speaking from experience and no one is here to criticize you. If you ask for advice, you should be open to hearing what other professionals have to say. It's okay to disagree, but you don't need to become defensive. As someone else on here said, that comes off as unprofessional. YOU are not unprofessional, your behavior may have been. We all make mistakes, don't be so hard on yourself. Good luck to you.
     
  21. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 13, 2012

    I just learned today that I won't have financial aid for the spring semester, which is when I'm expected to finish my student teaching. Supposedly, I'll receive an "I" for a grade (Incomplete), since I'd be finishing my student teaching in the spring. Obviously it would have been ideal for me to have been placed at a second school this semester, as there are only 8 weeks left in my student teaching, but that's been delayed until the spring semester which has negative academic and financial consequences.

    The negative academic consequence is that I won't be able to complete my degree program (there are 2 capstone courses left for the masters degree portion), if my financial aid ends with this semester. I would need to take an elective course in the spring to maintain my financial aid status, so that I could get the refund to use for my rent and living expenses, and also to defer my loan repayment so that I could complete the two masters capstone courses.

    The likelihood of my MAT faculty approving an elective course is slim to none, although I know many other MAT students who took classes while they student taught. But considering how I clash personalities with my dept. chair, I don't foresee an elective being approved. If that's the case, so ends my time in my MAT program. There's just no way I could find full-time employment right now to save 3 months of rent with only 3 1/2 months until spring student teaching starts. That's not realistic.

    I emailed the academic dean and program director to ask permission to take an elective. So far, no response. I explained the financial aid consequence of not being enrolled in the spring while I finish the Incomplete. But I don't know how sympathetic they will be to my situation. After all, my financial straits are not their problem. Why would they care? And why would I expect them to?
     
  22. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Nov 13, 2012

    Why wouldn't you be able to take an elective?
     
  23. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 13, 2012

    2 reasons I wouldn't be able to take an elective:

    1. My financial aid counselor said there are financial aid regulations that prevent students from taking courses outside of their required coursework. I'd have to get an elective approved by my grad program, before financial aid would approve it.

    2. I'm not in good standing on a personal level with the dept chair who doesn't like me. Our interactions haven't been positive ones (the reason I requested a meeting with my program's academic dean and the dept. chair) either. So I don't anticipate approval for an elective, despite knowing that many of my fellow MAT student teachers have taken classes while student teaching.
     
  24. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Nov 13, 2012

    Ah, I understand. I hope things work out for the best!
     
  25. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Nov 14, 2012

    This is rough. I'm really hoping for the best, or at least a timely response one way or the other.
     
  26. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 14, 2012

    "Rough" is an understatement.

    I'm going to have to go back and talk to my state teacher's union rep again, if I'm denied access to an elective this spring. She has access to education lawyers who could possibly take me on as a pro bono case.
     
  27. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Nov 14, 2012

    I don't know about the wisdom of starting off your career with a reputation as a known legal hazard.

    I'm sorry things aren't going well though. Maybe think about taking out financial loans? It's not ideal, but may be the only option.
     
  28. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Nov 14, 2012

    I think there are a few lessons to be learned in all this. Keep calm, follow the rules, and don't burn bridges.

    It's a shame that you might have to resort to getting an education lawyer involved. I think there could have been much easier paths. I hope you understand that if you burn too many bridges now and make too many of the wrong people angry with you, you will have a very difficult time when it comes to actually getting a job. Don't think that your reputation won't follow you.

    I hope you find a solution to all this.
     
  29. hbcaligirl1985

    hbcaligirl1985 Cohort

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    Nov 14, 2012

    Exactly. I understand you felt you were wronged, but it sounds like the only person that was truly on your side and was there for you was your Supervisor. By going against her request to keep quiet during the meeting, you could have very possibly ruined her chances in assisting you in future crisis'. Please be mindful if you do find a way to complete your student teaching experience next semester to be polite to your CT. Listen to what your supervisor says even if it irks you. Just bite your tongue. It sucks, but these people hold the key to your career.
     
  30. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Nov 14, 2012

    A couple of questions: 1.) You say that you are retaking student teaching in the spring, 3 months away. Is there anyway you can do it in the winter? I ask because I don't know how your semsters run.

    2.) You have 2 capstone classes remaining. If things had gone as planned, would you still have these 2 classes remaining & no financial aid? Would you still be taking them in the spring?

    3.) When did you email asking if you can take an elective? I'm guessing that that is not a quick yes or no answer.

    4.) As a student teacher are you part of a union? Especially since you're not currently student teaching.

    As others have said, legal action before your career even starts may not be in your best interest. Every school that I have received a degree from has had some sort of grievance process when there has been an academic problem. Have you looked at that? Getting an attorney involved seems extreme.

    Think carefully of the ramifications of your actions and how to best proceed. The last thing you want to do is further alienate those who are in the best position to assist you in reaching your career goals.
     
  31. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 14, 2012

    Hi kap1b2:

    You ask good questions. I'll try to answer them as best as I can.

    First, my student teaching ended the week of Halloween. It's been two weeks since my supervisor, program director and dept chair met behind closed doors to discuss my student teaching.

    What should have happened: I should have been placed at another school by now, or, I should have met with these people to find out the length of my student teaching (do I repeat the whole thing or just finish the last half).

    What has happened: I have been asking questions via email but not getting any responses.

    The orientation for spring student teaching is December 11th, 12th, and 13th in my program. Over those three days, student teachers learn who their mentor teacher will be and what school they will be placed.

    However, I have not received notice to attend these orientations yet. And that worries me. There is no reason for my program faculty to delay information, if indeed I am allowed to finish my student teaching in the spring.

    The question is: why haven't I been notified of my new placement, or the length of my placement already? Why haven't I been told "yes" or "no" to my question regarding permission to take an elective.
    An answer to that question shouldn't take more than 24 hours.

    Student teaching only occurs in the fall or spring semester. The January term of my program is only 4 weeks, and there is no school during that time. So I can't student teach over the winter or summer.

    If things had gone as planned, I would have received financial aid for both my capstone courses, because those are 3 credits each. So I would have had to register for 3 credits per semester and that would allow me to receive financial aid to cover the cost of the class and provide me with a refund for my living expenses.

    Like I said, I emailed more than two days ago asking whether or not I could take the elective. The fact remains that no one has responded to my email which is unacceptable.

    Yes, I pay student dues and have a student membership with my state's teacher's union, which gives me access to their legal aid. I have been working with a union rep who is advising me on my situation. I have no brought in a lawyer yet because I just want to be treated fairly in my program, and allowed to complete my student teaching and two capstone courses without any punitive requirements.

    Today I reviewed with the teacher's union rep the grievance process. The union rep has all of my email communication between my program faculty and former mentor teacher, to get the whole story.

    While I agree with you that I do not want to alienate myself from the faculty in my program, I have to disagree that advocating for myself by filing a formal grievance is the wrong move. I most likely will not bring in a lawyer; but will just file a formal grievance. My university has a general counsel who is the contact person for all grievances. What happens next is that a committee will review all email communication, interview all the program faculty, interview me, take a statement from me and then a formal hearing will take place with myself, the entire MAT faculty and the grievance committee.

    Do I want this to occur? No, not really.

    I just want to finish my MAT program and be treated fairly. So far, I'm not being treated fairly as no one is answering my questions. So in that sense, I believe my rights are being violated.

    There is no reason why the academic dean or program director can't simply respond to my email requests for answers. My state union rep says that by not responding to my requests for information, that my MAT program faculty are violating my rights to finish my program in a timely manner; esp. if they don't approve an elective course for me to take in the spring while I student teach, so that I can keep my financial aid active and stay active in my program.

    What should have been a simple solution - meet with me within a week to confirm my new placement length for the spring - has become complicated by the program's refusal to respond to my requests for information.

    If a student came to me with a problem, I would not make them wait indefinitely for an answer. I would give them a timeline out of respect for the nature of their problem, and then communicate with them so that they weren't left wondering what the next step is.

    I realize that many teachers who've posted criticism in my thread probably can't relate to my situation because they've never been in my shoes. And for those who have, it's easier to see why I feel the need to advocate for myself.

    Should I have interrupted my supervisor at the end of the meeting with my former mentor teacher et al? In hindsight, no, that was a mistake. But that's over with so there is nothing I can do to remedy that now.

    During my student teaching I was always polite with my cooperative teacher. Like I said, for all intent and purpose I thought we had a good rapport. I'm not a mind reader and to expect me to anticipate how my mentor teacher is going to react is not only unrealistic, it's not possible. I was never disrespectful to her or her students. I was always on time, professional and had great rapport with most of her students. Did I make a mistake at the parent-teacher conference? Yes. Did my former mentor teacher, by leaving me there alone, unsupervised? Yes, that was a huge mistake on her part. But it's over and I just want to move forward.

    I deserve a fresh start without being shackled to punitive measures. Sometimes student teaching placements don't work out. Does that mean you punish the student teacher? I don't think so. Student teaching's purpose is to put theory to practice; to use the classroom of a mentor teacher to practice what you know and see what works and what doesn't work, and use the mentor teacher as a guide or facilitator for your learning.

    If my MAT program faculty want to really assist me with finishing my program, then they should not leave me hanging the way that they have, by not answering my questions. That gives me the impression that they do not in fact, have my best interest in mind.




     
  32. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Nov 14, 2012

    So your CT 'threw you under the bus'. It's been two weeks since your supervisor, program director and dept chair met behind closed doors to discuss my student teaching. The school where you student taught didn't back you up and it seems neither is your university...I'm left wondering why so many would be unsympathetic to your problem...is there more to the story?
     
  33. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 14, 2012

    No, that's all there is to my story. Sorry to disappoint you. I've never been a student teacher before, but I've heard that student teaching placements can end for a multitude of reasons.

    Have you ever hosted a student teacher, czacza?

    ETA: It is possible that my mentor teacher didn't like being told by my supervisor to give up more control of her classroom.

    Also, my mentor teacher complained about the paperwork involved (she was required to complete an online portfolio evaluation in addition to 6 formal lesson plan observations and a final evaluation, so yeah, a lot of paperwork).

    And maybe she didn't like having to deal with an angry parent because of my verbal flub at the parent teacher conference (despite my efforts to apologize to the parent at the conference too).

    I didn't see it coming, and felt blindsided by the way I was treated by my mentor teacher because it happened so quickly.
     
  34. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Nov 14, 2012

    2 weeks & you haven't heard anything? That doesn't sound good. I have to admit, as I'm understanding things, it just doesn't add up. Why are the not responding to you?

    I did not have a great student teaching experience. In fact, it was extended into the next semster.
     
  35. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 14, 2012

    For instance, one of my cohorts told me the story of a student teacher who lost her placement when she told her 5th grade class, "Well, I was going to show you this movie, but your teacher said it wasn't appropriate. So I guess I'll show you this other movie that I think is dumb." That single comment to a class of students is what ended it for that student teacher, according to my cohort. She was asked to leave her placement that same day.

    So I think student teaching placements end for a multitude of reasons, which are endless.
     
  36. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 14, 2012

    Sorry to hear you had a bad student teaching experience too, kpa1b2. How did you get through it the second time around? If you're not comfortable sharing it, you can always message me. Did you have to do an Incomplete as well? How did you keep your financial aid since your student teaching was extended to the next semester, exactly like my situation, actually.

    Yes, it doesn't add up as to why my program isn't being straightforward with me, and leaving me in the dark as to what the next steps are. If any of them had just sent me one email, to tell me the gist of what's going on, I wouldn't be wondering. I'm very stressed because of the financial impact that this is having now and will have if I don't get to register for an elective while I finish my student teaching in the spring.
     
  37. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Nov 14, 2012

    I really don't get it. The only thing you've done wrong was to get into it with a parent. (I don't even know how badly). Even if you have screamed at that parent, that situation would probably remove you from your current student teaching, and have to redo it. But that shouldn't cause you to have to stop and throw away everything.
    It just doesn't make sense. everyone seems to ignore you. That would only make sense if for example you hit a child, or put your hand on them, etc and everyone would basically conclude that you're not fit for teaching. But your actions? that seems strange.

    I hope they get back to you soon.
     
  38. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Nov 14, 2012

    I've been a CT to 4 or 5 student teachers, a mentor to 2 new teachers and I've worked as a coach with teachers in other districts.

    CT teachers generally expect to share and turn over some/all of the teaching responsibilities to a ST during their placement. Assessing the ST is part of the CT's responsibility and ultimately the learning of the classroom students falls back on the regular teacher...because of that, it's sometimes difficult to turn over that responsibility to a novice ST if the CT feels that the students are not going to be well served.

    It seems your CT must have had SOME confidence in you as she let you take over part of the conferences (which I still don't understand)...other than your difficulty with the conferences, I'm not understanding why all of those who should be supporting you are not doing so...
     
  39. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 14, 2012

    You've mentioned e-mailing the university to ask about financial aid, taking an elective, etc - having attended a large university, it's my experience that information like that is often easier to gather in person. Are you able to go to the offices during business hours (I would guess mornings would be better) to try and gather the information in person? That might be more effective than e-mailing.
     
  40. Teacher41

    Teacher41 Rookie

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    Nov 14, 2012

    I don't get it either. While I agree that I made a mistake in the way I took the parent's comments too personally. I would think the fact that I apologized to the parent would have shown my mentor teacher and the parent that I realized my mistake and immediately wanted to rectify it.

    I really don't know why I'm not getting responses to my questions and it's causing me a lot of anxiety as this is the first time I've ever been in this situation in the three years of field experiences I've had in various middle school and high school classrooms with other mentor teachers. I always received praise and constructive feedback in areas where I needed improvement.

    Okay, so is my mistake of taking a parent's comments too personally, then reacting defensively to that parent, then apologizing to that parent reason to end my placement?

    I agree with you 100% that the students' learning is the CT's primary responsibility and that the ST like myself is just a student-guest in the classroom. Supposedly I was the 3rd ST of my former CT. She took me on at the last minute when her colleague who I was assigned to, left for another job about a week before I was to start. Maybe you're right - maybe my CT didn't think I was serving her students well, whereas I thought that I was.

    I think she did have confidence that i could handle myself for that block of time while she left. I was naive to think I could handle the parent-teacher conferences alone. The one parent who complained did so in the presence of my CT. Otherwise, the parents who sat down to talk with me while my CT was gone, didn't complain about me at all but asked me a lot of questions about their teenagers. Since I had the class lists with me and a printout of the homework assignments that helped me be specific with my feedback.

    And before the parent-teacher conference was my "triad" meeting with my supervisor and CT. That would have been the perfect opportunity for my CT to discuss any concerns she had with me, with my supervisor there. But she didn't raise any red flags at that meeting. Rather, she just listed a few minor things for me to make my goals to work on, which my supervisor and I agreed with. So I thought everything was fine.

    After the parent -teacher conference, the first day back was awkward because when I went to ask the principal if I could meet with her and my CT to process what happened, the principal told me she had to meet with my CT alone first, which I thought was weird. Then the next day my supervisor and I met with them and that's when my CT said those things I posted about that just weren't true. What she should have said was that my mistake at the parent teacher conference was the reason, but she didn't.

    Then my supervisor scolded me in the parking lot for not staying silent at the end of the meeting which I understood was a mistake because it didn't change the fact that my placement had ended.

    So I don't know why I"m being kept in the dark these past two weeks, unless I'm not going to be approved to student teach in the spring after all - despite the fact that technically, they have to let me finish since my scores were high enough to pass. So I'm just as confused as you all are.
     
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