Sunday, September 11, 2016

Teachers are bullied, too

Dear Rhonda and Dr. Cheri,

I’m a high school teacher. I used to be friends with students and their parents.

Last year, I had a student bully me on social media, by text, and email. I couldn’t stand that my reputation was coming into question. I decided to move closer to my own kids out of state.

I started teaching in my new home and gained attention for being a good and caring teacher. I won awards for it. I thought I had hit the jackpot until this new school year.

I live in an entitled area, and not just because people have money. It’s all about status and parents trying to be friends with their children.

The kids are so entitled that parents act like their kids should get whatever they want, whenever they want it.


One of my students, Molly (not her name), walked out of class when she didn’t get the grade she wanted. She did this after she berated me, coerced me, browbeat me, and finally decided she’d go the “victim” route.

I believe Molly then used social media, texting and instant messaging to slam me for being “dumb, mean, and an enemy to our school.” Molly intimated that I was jealous of her and she wouldn’t stop until I leave and never come back.
 
I’m afraid of Molly and afraid kids will learn where I live.

Signed,
Teachers get bullied too!

Dear Teacher,

We applaud you for reminding us that children are not the only ones being bullied. We have a culture that needs to change in every arena of life: corporate, education, treatment of seniors, recreation, and all stages of family life.

We recognize that some high school students have ramped up their entitlement and are intentionally intimidating, threatening, harassing, gossiping, and ruining teachers’ reputations and their ability to be effective in their classrooms. The results of this bullying are just as detrimental to teachers as bullying is to students.

We have received too many reports of students starting campaigns like creating fake online accounts just to humiliate their teachers because they didn’t get what they wanted, be it grades, attention, or control.

We give the same advice we would give to kids who bully others kids – STOP!

You may not harm a teacher. It’s physically, emotionally and morally wrong.

Teachers-do the following:

• Search your name online often
• Search Facebook and Twitter (even if you don’t have accounts – someone may create one)
• Privacy, privacy, privacy – keep your name, address, family info, and life private
• Report, report, report – just as we tell our kids, you must report actions against you by parents, students, other teachers, and anyone else intending to destroy you

Until our culture develops more civility, you won’t be able to create friendships with students and their families the way you used to.

Take satisfaction in knowing your own values and virtues are honorable. Take satisfaction in helping change your grandchildren’s lives with your stories of a past generation of civility.

Thank you for taking on such a difficult occupation in our most difficult society.

Parents, be a parent, not a friend. We need fewer entitled kids and more adults with boundaries. Boundaries curb privileges that aren’t earned.

Signed,
Rhonda and Dr. Cheri

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