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MMingE MMingE is offline
 
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MMingE
 
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How Can I Save My Job?
Old 02-21-2017, 11:01 AM
 
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(I apologize for the mini-novel that I wrote but I just need to write everything in order to understand what I need to do to improve and continue my career.)

I'm a first year 6th grade Integrated Co-Teacher. In addition to that, I am also responsible for writing the IEP's for my students and teaching two enrichment classes. This year, I have struggled with all aspects of the job: lesson planning, differentiating, classroom management, connecting with my students and communicating with the other teachers both in and out of the classroom. Part of the problem has been that the other teachers haven't been timely with providing me with their lesson plans and classwork. I'm sent a vague unit plans at the beginning of the cycle or objectives of what the lesson plans for the week will be and I'm expected to come up with a differentiation or a small group activity. Most of the time, the teachers will send me this to me the morning of, leaving me little to no time to do anything.

Over the last two months, I've been having a serious problem with the 6th Grade Math teacher. When I used to work as a substitute teacher at this school and she started teaching, I used to help her with a few of the difficult classes that she taught. From there, a friendship formed and she became one of the few teachers who I communicated with outside of school. That started to change when the Principal switched my daily enrichment class to her room, a decision that she was not happy about since she had to give up her classroom during her prep period. At first, she told me that she wasn’t upset at me but over time her tone began to change.

On multiple occasions, she's tried to prevent me from using the projector in her classroom and the school laptops. She's even suggested that I start ending my class 5 minutes early so she has time to set up for her next class. On one occasion, she told me not to use her dry-erase markers, but then complained that ones that I used were too dark and messy. She blames the students in my enrichment class for every little piece of garbage that is left on the floor and tries to get me to stay after class to clean up her room.

During the class, we co-teach, she minimized my role in the classroom. During a meeting with our Math consultant, she accused me of being unfamiliar with Math material and not asking her for lesson plans or clarification in activities, even though when I have emailed her for lesson plans, she’s replied with a snide remark at how “I should’ve asked her in person” or told to “figure it out on my own”. She's yelled at students for being disruptive who were asking me questions about Math problems and told the class to come directly to her if they were struggling with anything in Math. When one of my mentor teachers came to assist me, she didn’t have a problem with any of my students asking questions.

Recently, the tone turn downright hostile and disrespectful to me. During conversations, she makes derogatory comments about my qualifications, teaching style and lesson plans. She always points out every little perceived mistake that I make, even if it’s something that she does on a regular basis. At the beginning of the most recent marking period, she accused me of being unprepared because I did not have a small group activity, despite not sending me her unit plan or lesson plan for that day. The next day, she did the same and later told me that “she wasn’t required to send me her lesson plans.” When I did come with a small group activity, she made sarcastically claimed that it was too simple and had my students work on the regular independent activity instead. Later that week, she got into a huge argument with me after she tried to make me take down her bulletin board during the middle of class and “claimed that I didn’t do any work and that the other 6th grade teacher felt the same way about my job performance.”

Since then, I’ve noticed a sharp decrease in the level of cooperation among the students in my class. Students keep talking about how I was “roasted” by the math teacher and has made my struggles with classroom management even more difficult. I feel horrible. Working at this school was my dream job and this year has been one big nightmare. Between this and the 3 already bad observation ratings that I received, along with several struggling students, makes it seem like the writing is on the wall as far as working here next year.

How can I improve my teaching practices and improve? Is it all but impossible to save this year from being an even bigger disaster?


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Tounces Tounces is offline
 
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Improve
Old 02-22-2017, 05:52 AM
 
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First of all, it sounds like this teacher doesn't like to share the classroom with you. Do you stop 5 minutes early for clean up like she asked? That sounds reasonable to me. Make sure the room is the way you found it before you and the class leaves. Make them responsible for cleaning up after themselves. Maybe it wouldn't need cleaning up if you reminded them they aren't leaving until the classroom is the way it was found. Don't use her materials at all. You need to bring your own. Put request for plans in writing by emails. Make them due by the same day every week. Ask the principal if this should be expected or not. You can then cc the principal in your emails.
Do you have a mentor teacher? Have you been put on any kind of program to improve by your principal? Look at what was marked down on your evaluations. Ask the math specialist for advice by email again. You need to document what is going on. Have you talked to the principal about the teacher who doesn't like you using her room? If not, do so. Ask the principal for advice on how you could make the situation better. Tell the principal what you have tried. The remark about you not being a good teacher was unprofessional, especially if it was in front of your class. You need to talk to her in private about how that made you feel and what the kids did. If this doesn't work you may want to ask the principal to sit down with you and her to discuss what's going on. If you feel the principal doesn't want to help you, you may want to contact your union rep for ideas on what you can do. At least get some info from them.
Best of luck.
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MMingE MMingE is offline
 
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Old 02-26-2017, 07:40 AM
 
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I do have a mentor teacher who has very helpful and has offered me advice that has helped but I still continue to struggle with behavior management. I always email all of the 6th Grade teachers for lesson plans and/or objectives for the week and every email that I send to them, I always BlindCC my mentor on, so he can witness that I am making the effort to reach out them regarding lesson plans.


I have made efforts to try to compromise and cooperate with her but she continues to be a jerk to me and my students. Every day, she always makes a snide remark about my teaching style or my behavior management struggles, which is strange because she first started teaching at the school and I was a substitute, I always had to assist her with a few of the challenging classes that she struggled with.
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Snide remarks
Old 03-05-2017, 04:14 AM
 
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Does she make the snide remarks in front of the class? Document what she says. Does your mentor know about the remarks?
I think the next step would be to talk to the principal, maybe your mentor could go with you. See what s/he says about the remarks. S/he may want to handle it themself. If you are asked what you'd like to see done about it, ask for a meeting with the teacher and principal.
Has your mentor suggested anything for classroom management? Have you been trained on the same methods the other teachers have? Could you observe a class that you think has a good handle on it?
I'm sorry that the teacher is putting you down. That shouldn't be happening. If the principal doesn't do anything about it, you may want to contact your union or union rep in your building.
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needsadvice needsadvice is offline
 
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Get out when the gettins good....
Old 03-05-2017, 04:48 PM
 
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I am a veteran special ed. teacher and this is one reason co-teaching doesn't always work out. Principals believe it or not, back the teachers that have been at the school the longest, regardless if they are good for kids or hard to get along with. I co-taught with a 9th grade high school English teacher that basically showed movies all year round. The kids were on their phones, drinking coffee that he provided, goofing around. It was basically a zoo in his class. I taught more in my pull out English than a regular Ed. teacher did. It was a joke. I tried to speak to the principal and he was of no help. This teacher was the announcer for the football games and it was basically a "good ole boys' network, so who was I to try to improve things. I tried the union. I was at this district for 15 years and they were of no help. I decided to quit and try to find a job elsewhere. I went on 25 interviews. I think probably because of my years and age, districts don't want to hire old teachers. I was the first in my school to use Google Classroom and I am not good with computers. There is a misconception that because I am older I am stuck in the past, or have no interest in learning or doing new things. This is not true with me. Anyways, what I am saying is get out when you can. You deserve to be respected and treated like a professional. I had migraines and was worried about losing our home. But I did get a job with a commute and everyone is nicer. I switched to elementary with a pull out program. I think in some cases this works. Co-teaching doesn't work for everyone and every teacher. Where is the "I" in individualized, when they do the same with every special ed. kid. I was bullied out and hope to God I am never treated this way again. We have such a hard job and people need to realize this. Our class and kids are different and we need to be supported by everyone. Hope this helps. Sorry to ramble on.


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triedandtrue triedandtrue is offline
 
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just a couple things..
Old 03-11-2017, 06:36 PM
 
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I agree with the prior comments.

More ideas:

1. Do you have access to any behavior specialists? Ask your mentor teacher. They can be in your district, or special ed department. they can also be contracted by your district, and you might not know about them.

2. Keep trying to get better. Follow your mentor's suggestions.

3. Start looking for a more worker friendly enviornment. NOW. some schools are like messed up families, ya just got to get out of there. They will not change soon enough for you, or anyone else.

4. Meditate, do yoga, or what ever gets you moving! Your mind also needs a huge break to release some of this stress. It's a major part of being a teacher. It helps us in the short and long run.

We're behind you. Let us know how how it's going.
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