Saturday, February 18, 2012

Celebrated teacher's career over after telling disruptive Mexican student to go back to his homeland?

The student wanted a form written in Spanish and continued to mouth "I'm from Mexico," despite being told that he could go to the office later and get one in espanol.  The teacher eventually told him to go back where he came from.  Despite apologies, she was suspended.

My take is that when what it takes to keep a job in a profession has more to do with what you shouldn't do rather than what you should do, that the profession is in trouble.  As a teacher, I felt like we were judged by our worst performances rather than our best.  If you wonder why the teachers still around schools have glazed over eyes and speak in a jaded manner, it is because they have had to distance their emotions from the dysfunction they see around them.  Otherwise, their nervous system can't take it.

I know I made my share of mistakes in what I said.  It is one thing to look back on someone's speech and point an accusing finger.  It is another to thrust someone into a classroom with 30 or so kids and watch them get pulled in 5 directions at once and have to make quick decisions on various matters while still being bombarded with requests for help/questions, etc.  Ask any quarterback what their job would be like without having to confront a pass rush.  Sitting back and throwing a pass without worrying about this is much easier, and so it is with teachers who have to make a myriad of decisions quickly to keep the class moving.  I take exception to all the Monday morning quarterbacks who would deprive this woman of a job over a comment like this.  She has chosen to work in a human services field where she in on the front line of service delivery to what can be considered a disenfranchised group but she has been judged as "unacceptable" based on a thoughtless, 5 seconds rather than the years of hard work she put into being a good teacher.

We'll see if she keeps her job or not.

No comments:

Post a Comment