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Feeling rejected by my co-workers
Old 05-02-2019, 04:22 PM
 
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I am a substitute aid for a SH classroom. There are three other aids, not including myself and one teacher. Teacher seems to be burned out and mostly spends her time in the classroom gossiping about other co-workers, making fun of her students or just talking about her private life. She has worked with two of the aids for roughly ten years...they have a tight bond. They are cliquish and, right or wrong, they back each other up. The teacher does not run her classroom, mostly the two aids she has known for a long time run it. I work very hard and take my job seriously but they rarely tell me when I’m doing a good job. It actually seems to upset them that I’m working while they are talking in the classroom. I treat them the way I want to be treated with respect, dignity and consideration. I treat the students this way too. I don’t make fun of the students like they do. And I think this has created a problem since I don’t act like them and join them, I’m not treated as I’m a part of the group even though I have worked with them for several months. The third aid is fairly new and she misses frequently on Mondays and Fridays, is on her phone when she should be working, isn’t always on top of her responsibilities but she is accepted in the group because she goes along to get along...even if it is wrong.

How can they accept someone who is like this over someone who is passionate about their job, and is always on top of the students making them the priority and who does not miss work? Isn't a hard worker what everyone wants? I thought if you just work your tail off and go above and beyond your co-workers will respect you and this is what every teacher should want but apparently not in this classroom. Another thing, when I dumb down myself they seem to like it and when I’m just being myself and speaking like I have a little bit of education then I get ignored. Seriously, they literally turn their head the other way so they are not facing me when I’m speaking to them about anything that sounds remotely educated and articulate. My gut tells me they are doing ABA on me to control how they want me to behave. I’m trying to keep my head up and not let anyone knock down my confidence and I do my best to focus on any good I see from them to make the situation easier to keep moving forward but it’s kind of getting to me now. I have a few more weeks of this assignment left. I’m confused and deeply hurt. Please, anyone with any helpful advice will be appreciated. Thank you.


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mkesub mkesub is offline
 
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Old 05-03-2019, 08:57 AM
 
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I know it can be hard to not feel hurt, but I think you have your answers in what you wrote. They want you to be something you are not, something that you choose not to be. And rightfully so, in my opinion. If I were you I'd try for being as civil as possible to these co-workers and continue to do the best job you can for the students. It sounds like you can either be friends with these adults or do your job well, and that you've decided which is the best choice. At least it's only a few more weeks. Some people end up in situations like that for years! Stay strong. You are doing the right thing!
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Old 05-03-2019, 06:44 PM
 
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Thank you for your encouraging words. I feel that this type of environment is okay to be dealt with for a short time but afterwards it begins to take its toll on you. I do not feel like I am growing, nor thriving in this environment. It feels like I am being stifled and a bit restricted. Plus, I cannot stand to listen to the harshness the teacher speaks about other staff members...she is a troublemaker; which, leads me to believe she is unhappy with her own life. I donít feel like I fit in and I fell like a totally outsider. This sucks!
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Old 05-04-2019, 02:32 PM
 
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It sounds to me as though you have little respect for them and that you have good reasons for not respecting them so I don't really understand why you are hurt that they don't accept you. In my previous job I had to work with people like that - teachers and support staff who acted like they were in middle school. They were unprofessional, they gossiped about staff and students alike, new teachers and support staff always got raked over the coals and anyone who was highly successful was automatically the enemy. This clique pretended to accept me but I was always aware that I was that girl you always find in a middle school clique who is only accepted so they'll have someone to laugh at and gossip about behind her back. When I was in middle school it would have hurt my feelings but as an adult I just thought they were a bunch of juvenile twits. It was wearing having to make nice with people I didn't like and it was a relief when I left that job and didn't have to deal with them anymore but they really never had the power to hurt my feelings. People only have that power if you give it to them.
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Old 05-05-2019, 02:08 PM
 
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Talk to them firmly, politely, but to the point; set some ground rules.
Make sure you can communicate and be on the same page, acting appropriate and professionally.


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Sirsubalot Sirsubalot is offline
 
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Old 05-05-2019, 02:49 PM
 
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Simply put, the teacher and the aides are lazy, and they do not want someone who actually cares about their job to challenge their lazy apathetic nature.

Your respect for the necessities needed and the dedication required to do the job well is a threat to their laziness. If they take you seriously, they might actually need to confront their own shortcomings, and they have not the respect for themselves, nor the motivation to do so.

You are too good for them, and they resent this.
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subasaurus subasaurus is offline
 
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I've been there.
Old 05-05-2019, 10:40 PM
 
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Ouch.

Sometimes you just don't fit into the school culture or way of thinking. And sometimes the staff are just in their snobby cliques.

This situation sounds like the latter of the two.

For example, I was hired at a school around 15 years ago as a SPED 1:1 aide. I remember vividly that staff were very bossy and unfriendly. If I had a different thought of my own it was not tolerated.

Needless to say I lasted one week. Resigned quickly. Even the principal didn't like me.

I recommend looking into a more accepting district if you're able to do so. Sounds like this district is kind of immature and cliquey.
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