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KKAB KKAB is offline
 
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Para went overboard
Old 09-26-2012, 06:10 AM
 
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I am subbing in a single middle school classroom all week. There is a para in one of my classes and on Monday and 1/2 the period Tuesday she sat in the corner and played on the computer. Yesterday I was handing back papers and told her the next group I handed out were the kids who needed a bit of extra help. She then informed me that she was only responsible for one student in the class. I smiled and said ok. She later made it a point of actually picking on this poor 6th grader who she is responsible for. She actually yelled at him for 2 minutes in the middle of class. I want to wait for the regular teacher to get back and talk to her about it, but I am afraid this kid may be getting punished for his 'unruly' behavior in the meantime. Should I wait or talk to the team leader? I am not new to this school, but have never had a situation in my 8 years of subbing quite this extreme.
Thanks for your thoughts!


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Tough problem
Old 09-26-2012, 07:21 AM
 
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First I would clarify with the 'office' what the para's role is (without complaining about her yet), then I would ask the para what I could do to help out with this student since she knows him better than me (that might make her feel less defensive), and I would definitely let the teacher/team leader know either in my notes or whatever form of communication is appropriate.
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I think
Old 09-26-2012, 08:42 AM
 
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I think I would let this go. However, I would make the time to figure out who her supervising teacher is if I worked in that building often. If she works one on one with a particular student my guess is that classroom teacher is not her supervisor.

If I came across her again and saw her mistreat a student I would put a stop to it by seperating them (such as if she is yelling at them) then put in a call into her supervisor as to how to handle the situation.

I would note the situation in my report to the regular teacher in this current situation.
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Old 09-26-2012, 01:39 PM
 
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I think you need to sit on this for a while before you decide what to do. As a sub, our "take" on situations is not always appreciated. If I saw it happening again, and there appeared to be a pattern, then I might decide to talk to the regular teacher.
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my thoughts
Old 09-26-2012, 02:25 PM
 
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Everyone gives such good advice. I am going to side with those who are advising to sit on this and think it out or just let it go. I would focus more on the mistreatment of the student in the incident you spoke of. I would maybe mention it first to the regular classroom teacher when you return to the school and discuss the situation you witnessed and how in your opinion you felt the para could have handled the situation better. As far as the para being lazy and brushing you off on working with some students, there may not be much you can do. I'm thinking that her job descreption is to focus on the one student. However, to never help any other students and instead be playing on the computer shows that this para doesn't enjoy educating like we do.


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Old 09-26-2012, 02:44 PM
 
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Agree, that's a tough problem! Being a sub (therefore not a regular with this para and school), it may be best to wait a bit. I know it's disturbing! I've had a similiar situation when I 1st started subbing. The para sat on the computer all the time and then was irritated with kids. She completely dismissed one child's legit. concerns,. This was the 1st school I started working at regularly and I didn't know what to do. I talked to a friend who worked there, but in a different department, she advised me not to make a stink. I really needed the pay and was worried. But, also this woman just didn't get an attitude when I was around (it was how she was as a person), so I knew other people saw it. Actually one day she was yelling at a child in the hall in front of teachers. They went along.

The para you're with sounds selfish and entitled, so you'd think others have seen her behavior. What a hard spot to be in though! I think you've gotten some good advice from others and maybe you should try those routes while you continue to observe and make a decision. I feel for the kid! Good luck, hope it works out!
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What if it was your child?
Old 09-26-2012, 03:55 PM
 
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Would you find it acceptable for a para to talk to your child that way? If you really feel it is disrespectful for her to treat him like that I would talk to someone. Maybe a teacher you know in the building? Or wait until the teacher is back. I think if I were at one of my regular schools I would probably talk to the p - but I have a good relationship with them where I feel safe in doing so.
Could this be a cultural difference? I know I am often taken back at how some cultures will talk to students.
I would say listen to your heart. Did it give you an icky feeling hearing her?
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Thanks!
Old 09-28-2012, 08:28 AM
 
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Thanks for all the ideas. The following day, the para actually asked me if I could encourage her student to do more work. She helped out with the rest of the class for a few minutes even and she didn't get on the computer once! I ended up talking to another teacher in the school about it, and I will visit with the regular teacher when she gets back.
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Old 09-28-2012, 11:59 AM
 
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This day and age, the best advice I have for you is to keep quiet about everything and just collect your paycheck. We don't have a "Union" to back us up no matter what the situation even if we're right, so I have learned to say as little as possible. I have seen a teacher throw a garbage bin at a student once.......but she was tenured AND the supervisor of the department! You think I said anything? Hell no......but guess what, I'm still working there! I barely send students to the office anymore for disruptive behavior, cause that backfires on you too.
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so sad
Old 09-28-2012, 02:06 PM
 
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And I thought SUbs were only treated poorly in my district. From reading these discussion topics, It appears subs are treated like dirt across the whole United States. It's sad that subs cannot speak up when they see something wrong for fear of losing thier jobs. I hate being a 2nd class citizen.

It's like NJsubteacher said, "Keep quiet about everything and just collect your paycheck." You hit the nail right on the head with that comment, and it's so sad that it is true.


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Collecting the paycheck
Old 09-28-2012, 08:12 PM
 
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isn't just in subbing. I have worked plenty of jobs with stuff that is absurd. Retail - watching a manager steal merchandise and money. You have to protect yourself and just deal.
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