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*Vent Warning* Superiority Still Exists...

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mommysubs mommysubs is offline
 
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*Vent Warning* Superiority Still Exists...
Old 11-16-2020, 03:49 PM
 
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...even in a pandemic where "sub" shortages are the norm. (Yes I did actually encounter a folder left for me by a classroom teacher a few weeks ago with no words just a picture of a submarine sandwich on the front cover, but I digress..) For example, today I go in early to review the plans of the teacher I am in for. Not in there for more than a minute when a snotty sped co-teacher storms in and asks me what I am doing there. Before I even have the chance to speak, she tells me that she will be teaching the first block and that I need to call the office to find out where they should send me. Before I can get a word in edgewise about wanting to see what the plans are because I am in for the day, she walks off. Two minutes later the phone rings and it's the office..."excuse me but Miss----- just called to tell us you are available first block we want you to go to room blah blah blah and be so and so. She took it upon herself to call the office on MY BEHALF while I am trying to review the day's plans. Then icing on the cake I go to the other room to be this support teacher for a block and this nasty lead teacher who probably should have retired a decade ago since she clearly hates the kids and other staff grills me in front of the students... "What is your name? Why are you here? Do you even know what you are doing?" Watching how she treated a second full time aide in the room in similar fashion said alot about her character. I love how people in our "line of work" are treated like subhuman swamp creatures with the IQ of a rubber band. No this gig is not my life. I am not doing it because I am mentally challenged. Yes I am a real teacher with a MS. Yes I teach part-time online as well and only do this miserable gig twice a week to pay the fraction of my bills not covered by my online job while I am homeschooling my children the majority of the time. Yes I am dreading the possibility of picking up the virus and bringing it home to my family everytime I go in.

Honestly if I could get more work online I would! But yeah...I applaud the superiority committee for making it so much easier for me to come into their school to make barely minimum wage with high risk and no benefits... And yes, those two individuals just made my "DoNotSub" list for the year...good luck to them on getting coverage when they want days off...



Last edited by mommysubs; 11-16-2020 at 04:23 PM..
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*Vent Warning* Superiority Still Exists...
Old 11-16-2020, 08:59 PM
 
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I think the best thing to do in these situations is to just walk out the door. Maybe a follow-up letter to the principal and superintendent would help. If enough people would do this, this type of behavior would change. Of course, the school or district might ban you. I have subbed for enough districts that I have no problem writing off a teacher, school, or entire district. I have stopped subbing at a few schools because of rude secretaries. I ignore one HS English teacher because she wrote outrageous lies in her Aesop review. These people are worth my time. OTOH, the majority of people I deal with are good human beings.
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Oh no...
Old 11-17-2020, 04:54 AM
 
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I bet that teacher with the sub sandwich picture thought they were being cute... They arenít.

I am always amazed by how much other teachers just take over for subs. I get that you arenít the person who is the most familiar with the classroom, but thatís what sub plans are for...to get you through the day as smoothly as possible. Our teachers check up on subs and ask if theyíre doing okay, but otherwise donít intervene without a good reason - like the one time it was literally Animal House next door.

I wouldnít go back to those rooms again, either. I hope today is better!
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Old 11-17-2020, 05:24 AM
 
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I'm so sorry that you encountered such rudeness when subbing. You certainly don't deserve anything less that "Thank you for being here!"

It seems that you handled it with grace and dignity, something which should make you proud.

Once agin I'm sorry.
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Old 11-17-2020, 07:52 AM
 
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The only thing I can say is that the best thing we have going for us is choice. The choice to not go back.

I wouldn't complain to principal or superintendent unless you don't want to go back to that school, at all. If you don't want to go back, then go for it. Maybe if the complaint didn't involve the office, only the other teachers.


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Old 11-17-2020, 11:13 AM
 
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I feel for you, mommysubs. I've had similar experiences...more often than I care to recall. If not with other teachers or aides, then other school staff or kids' parents. (Seldom is it from students. )

I've taken a good look at who is being the jerk, and it's never someone who is "superior" in any way I can see. I have an M.A. myself and have many years of teaching experience...both with adults and children. As I see it, it isn't a matter of being inferior to these idiots. It's their deficiency, not ours.

Unfortunately, people with shaky self esteem like to concoct pecking orders to make themselves feel "above" someone else. And part of being a substitute teacher is that we are at the bottom of everyone's pecking order merely because we are part-time, temporary staff.

It doesn't have to do with your education, qualifications, competence, or even how much you're paid. In the past, I've worked as a corporate contractor, was paid well, did good work, but because I was the "non employee" at the work sites, there were always those morons who labeled me as a "temp" and behaved rudely because I wasn't one of their "tribe."

I don't see anything improving for substitute teachers unless at some point we become full-time, permanent staff and are assigned to specific schools. Having a union may help with protecting our rights, but the pecking order crap would still exist.

As far as complaining, I wouldn't unless you've decided to never return to that school. The regular staff are the ones the administration will listen to, not you. And the offenders may well lie and falsely accuse you of some BS just to get themselves off the hook (it's happened to me). If they file a report, then it goes in your HR file and may cause you to get blocked.

Sadly, substitute teachers are considered expendable, and many districts would rather just ban subs who cause or raise issues instead of investigating the issue and getting to the truth. If it's important to you to expose the issue, then do it. But be realistic about the possible consequences. Have your running shoes on and your eye on the exit.

Last edited by luv2teach2017; 11-17-2020 at 11:37 AM..
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Thank you
Old 11-17-2020, 02:30 PM
 
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Thank you for your empathy and kind words. I am glad to be able to vent here. It makes it more bearable to bite my lip and return for the next job. No I am never one to complain---as a simple hoagie I know my "place". And unfortunately I do need the job flexibility and money to fill the gap where my other job is lacking. However, Karma was good to me today as a new job appeared for next week before the holiday. And who else would it be for other than Ms. "Morning Greeter" from yesterday. I am sure it is horrible to say, but hitting the "reject" button never felt so good...

P.S. Today was a great day. Got to be at home doing what matters most to me right now...teaching my own kids!

P.S.2--Yes the students at these schools are always kind and respectful. It's just a select few of the adults who act like jerks.

Last edited by mommysubs; 11-17-2020 at 03:16 PM..
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Took me a while
Old 11-17-2020, 08:13 PM
 
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To get the submarine sandwich folder. How bloody Rude.

Today I was at a new school. Asked a group of teachers where the office was. They told me, I could hear one say, "omg that was my sub" i was running late,

But the kicker was the VERY strange way the yard duty eyeballed me when I asked if I was on time to leave the children for recess, and where would they be when recess was done. I pulled out my I.D. and showed it, never felt someone acting wary of me like that before. Protective of the kids I am guessing.
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Old 11-18-2020, 04:32 AM
 
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One school that I avoid is a ďprimary centerĒ where all the teachers are women. I think the custodian might be the only male there.

One time I was there I was one teacher in the morning and another in the afternoon. I go to the afternoon teacherís classroom early to review the lesson plans. There is a group of teachers in the room eating. Iím asked why Iím there and told I can review the plans in the hallway because they have ďduty free lunch.Ē After they are done with lunch Iím allowed in to review the materials and read through the teacher manuals. Then the teacher says ďYou. Need. To. Get. My. Class. From. Recess.Ē Like Iím mentally challenged and she has to say things slowly so I understand. I get to the recess door and Iím early.
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Old 11-19-2020, 12:24 AM
 
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Do not return to this childish district again. I wouldn't.

Some schools don't realize it, but we're aware of how they treat us. And if treatment is condescending or dismissive we don't appreciate it.

Vote with your feet. Only show up to schools where the work environment is (at least attempting to be) respectful to outsiders.

And during a pandemic, schools can't afford to be snooty. They need all the help they can get right now.



Last edited by subasaurus; 11-19-2020 at 12:42 AM..
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@Nietzsche
Old 11-19-2020, 12:46 AM
 
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I've thought about waking out the door on several occasions, but never had the guts to do it.

Your point is a good one.

If subs protested against crummy conditions and treatment, I bet some schools would actually catch on that they needed to change their ways. And I don't just mean getting a union involved.

Unfortunately, schools know they have the upper hand when handling substitutes. And it shows.
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Old 11-19-2020, 11:25 AM
 
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Maybe when the teachers get tired of having to cover other teachers' classes, the schools will take note.

There's always new subs, though, that don't know what they're getting into, with that school or class.
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choosing our battles
Old 11-20-2020, 07:25 AM
 
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Quote:
If subs protested against crummy conditions and treatment, I bet some schools would actually catch on that they needed to change their ways. And I don't just mean getting a union involved.

Unfortunately, schools know they have the upper hand when handling substitutes. And it shows.
I totally agree with you, subsaurus.

But as history has shown, those in the front lines of any movement that challenges the status quo are the ones who will get mowed down first. They're generally not the ones who are there in the end to reap the final rewards.

I don't mean that substitute teachers should tolerate bad treatment. I don't believe that at all. But for each individual, I'd caution "Choose your battles." And I'd add, be wise in which weapons you use.

As a substitute teacher, I've suffered all the abuses other folks here have posted about (and then some). When I tried to directly assert myself and address the abuser, there were damaging consequences (false accusations and banned from schools being the most common). I've reported issues to principals and HR, to no avail (or I got labeled as a "trouble maker.") And I've "voted with my feet" by blocking individual teachers, schools, and even quitting entire districts.

But after 5 years of this, I've realized that it's an endless battle. The districts all have pretty much the same unfair policies, and the schools all have their petty, mean people (i.e. bullies) who can make your life miserable. The real problem is that it's a low-wage, part-time, temporary job, with minimal hiring requirements, where most of us are gypsies. And as such, we are treated as pariahs. Does this system work? Nope.

That said, who among us wants to be a hero and choose to fight? Frankly, I think most of us took this job largely because it's pretty easy to get hired (if you meet the few requirements), and it offers the flexibility that we want or need. The main perk? We can choose when and where and how often we want to work, and we can work for multiple districts. Not many jobs allow that flexibility and autonomy. But it comes at a cost...all of the abuses we've endlessly posted about on this forum.

If at some point districts choose to retain a staff of good substitute teachers by hiring them as employees and providing guaranteed hours, job security, benefits, and a decent wage, it will also elevate the status (and improve the treatment) of those substitute teachers. But in turn, the districts will raise the bar and demand more. They will ramp up the professional requirements and become a lot more selective in their hiring practices. In addition, substitute teachers will have to pay a tall price...namely a loss of that very flexibility and autonomy we sought. There will be more demands that come with the job...increased workload and expectations.

Sorry if this is a bit long winded. I don't have any answers to offer. I'm just hoping to provide a bigger picture.

Last edited by luv2teach2017; 11-20-2020 at 08:10 AM..
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Old 11-20-2020, 11:55 PM
 
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Very very true .
Job switching .
Pay missing .
No lesson plans .
Now added covid worry also .Surviving each day is hard
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Old 11-21-2020, 12:11 AM
 
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If/when subs protest against crummy conditions and treatment, they're not subs, anymore.

I just don't see why schools don't learn that it is clearly in their best interest to treat us at least decently. Maybe if we tie into their sense of greed, they'd listen more, but I know we've tried that.

...no more teachers having to cover other classes on their prep, more regular subs going to the school, that know the routines better (since they weren't run off the first time there), etc.

If they treated us better we might not find the paltry pay as bad, so it's not like they're draining their budget on us, in the first place.
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