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Angelo Angelo is offline
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 1,170
Senior Member

Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 1,170
Senior Member
I get it
Old 12-15-2018, 06:09 PM
Clip to ScrapBook #14

I've worked with teachers who volunteered to take on a ST for all the wrong reasons. Most aren't like that where I come from, but a few are. There are teachers who don't appreciate that teaching is craft that can be learned, honed, and developed. They seem to think you either "have it or you don't" and that those who "don't" will never be effective teachers no matter how much coaching and encouragement they receive. Therefore, these teachers see their role as "gatekeeper to the profession." If someone doesn't pass their "smell test" on the first day, they make it their mission to keep that person out of the profession by whatever means they have at their disposal.

I've heard a few people rationalize this perspective and even try to frame "failing" student teachers as a "coup de grace" or "tough love." I was sitting at the lunch table a few years ago with a colleague who had a ST and who was callously remarking that "she's never going to pass" even though she was only a few days into her placement. The colleague shrugged and said, "If she's not cut out for it, better she find it out now when she's still young and has time to pursue another career path." I was thinking, "Gee... someone certainly has a high opinion of her opinion." What was worse was that she fully intended to string the ST along and go through the motions for the next four weeks even though she wasn't open to changing her mind about the ST. Brutal.

And I've known a few ST who had host teachers who judged them by an impossible standard. When they scored them, they did so on a scale used to judge fully qualified teachers, so the ST always came up with low scores. That's like giving someone the final exam for AP Calculus when they're just finishing their first quarter of Sophomore Algebra.

As I say, most teachers who take on student teachers aren't like this, but those who are certainly are a vocal minority. If that's what you're dealing with, you have my sympathies.
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