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NCteacher NCteacher is offline
 
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Old 11-01-2017, 06:37 PM
 
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I have a practicing student in my class this semester doing her math and science methods. She failed it the first time around. She has been in my class for a month and a half. She does nothing. I know she's supposed to observe quite a bit, but she never offers to help kids or interact with them, except in e hallway when I'm trying to get them silent, or at recess. She has some chronic health issues, and I don't want to discriminate against her for those, but she leaves early at least once a week and has missed a day each week she has been with me except for two weeks when she was present every day. She must pass this class in order to be able to student teach. She taught a couple of lessons and the planning was really good, but the execution was not. She has no time management skills. The lesson that was supposed to take 45 minutes took over two hours. I am a newbie to Number Talks, but I thought they should be quick, and then move on. Hers are an hour. The last time she did one, she called in the same 5 students over and over while the other 21 sat.

I sent her professor an email today and told her I was thinking of speaking to my student about the realities of teaching- you just can't miss that much school. She doesn't realize that where we are, she can't just leave when she feels sick. She has to find a sub and write the sub plans, have everything copied and ready to go when the sub walks in. In my email, I told her I understood that she has no control over her chronic health issues (I do not know what they are), but that teaching in a public school may not be for her. I know some of you suffer with chronic health issues- if you don't mind sharing-how do you handle that when you can't come in frequently? Is there a special leave granted to you with a doxtor's note?

We earn 1 sick day each month. She's been with me 6 weeks and would have used half of the sick leave allotted to her for the year!

I don't want to hurt her, but I feel like I should say something. If I don't, I think I am setting her up for failure after she graduates. The Dean had to speak with her about the 2nd week in my class, because she missed 3 days in the first 6.

I know I'm rambling, any opinions, suggestions or thoughts?


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Haley23 Haley23 is offline
 
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Old 11-01-2017, 07:00 PM
 
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I agree with your thinking. Of course it will be hard to confront these issues now, but no one is doing her any favors by continuing to pass her along knowing that she may not be able to handle a teaching position. It's possible that she's exaggerating the health issues/taking off more time than is absolutely necessary. If that's the case, if she better understands the realities of taking time off when teaching, she'll get her act together and only take off when absolutely necessarily. If the issues truly are that severe, to the point where she isn't going to be able to hold down a full time teaching job, it's much better for her to find that out now than go through with student teaching.

I had a ST last year who didn't do well. She had a documented disability and had received accommodations all throughout school. I felt badly for her because she was a really nice girl and the disability obviously wasn't her fault, but she simply couldn't handle a teaching position. When she really put in the work, my ST also could plan well, but in practice everything fell apart. She couldn't process what was going on in the room fast enough to react appropriately, and she needed a significant amount of time to complete basic assignments. "Extended time" just isn't an option in teaching! She was with me for the full year.

I tried to talk to her program in December about not allowing her to continue...I knew it was a waste of her time/money at that point and in the end was not fair to her. Unfortunately, they didn't listen and insisted she could improve in the second semester. Long story short, she didn't and eventually came to the realization on her own at the very end of the school year that teaching wasn't for her. Now she has spent a lot of money and time on a degree she can't use .
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Old 11-01-2017, 07:14 PM
 
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Haley23-

Thatís what Iím afraid of! And that sounds like this young woman. She cannot read the room and adjust as she goes along based on her student needs. She already failed this class once. Her professor said sheís improved from the first time she took it, but the professor just doesnít feel like she should be going into teaching.
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Be honest with her.
Old 11-02-2017, 10:27 AM
 
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It doesn't sound like she can handle the realities of teaching. It's not a profession that is compatible with chronic health issues or lack of time management skills.
She has already been through this once. If she possesses the skills necessary to teach, she should have been able to adapt and correct her issues.

I would be honest with her, and tell her that she doesn't have the skills necessary to be an effective teacher. It might be hard to take, but she needs to understand the reality of it all.
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ConnieWI ConnieWI is offline
 
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Old 11-02-2017, 01:02 PM
 
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Is it really up to you to have this conversation with this student teacher?

I think her college supervisor and you should have this conference together.

Begin with topics and questions.
--Tell me about your attendance. Then point out the days she has missed. Do you think a full time teacher can have this much sick leave?
--Tell me about your interaction with students in our classroom. How else could you be interacting with students? You do a lot of observing. What else could you be doing?
--Tell me about the lesson you taught. What went well? What did you need to improve?

I would lead her to draw her own conclusions. If she does not, then it will be time for her supervisor to drop the bomb.


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Old 11-02-2017, 01:19 PM
 
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Her supervisor has talked to the student twice already about attendance and all of it. She was hoping that hearing it from someone else might get the student to really think. She replied to my email and said that she's passionate about teaching and will just "grin and bear it". So onward we go.
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