Monday, August 17, 2009

Are Teachers Allowed to Show Biases Towards Students?

Today was the first day of school and my son came home all smiles but declaring he did not like his teacher. I was not surprised to hear this because at the open house he hoped and prayed he didn't have her as a teacher, much to his dismay, he did. I was pleasantly surprised because I felt she was a woman who could keep him in line and plus since my child is somewhat sexist, it was a good fit. Anyhoo, back to the first day, he explained to me that his teacher from last year came into the assembly and hugged all her former students. Noticeably she bypassed him with not even a hello, to get to students in line behind him. Obviously it was deliberate enough for him to make mention of the snub and get upset about it. My response was, "Well you know Mrs. Heirs doesn't like you." My question to all you wonderful teachers out there...Is it ever okay to outwardly display dislike or hatred for one of your students?

Last school year, my son and Mrs. Heirs had quite a few run ins, some were most definitely his fault but others, were not. Mrs. Heirs impressed me as the type of teacher who didn't really want to be there or wasn't enthusiastic about teaching when we met at Open House last year. Against my better judgement, I left him in her class. Now, my child is not a saint and he quickly built a reputation in her class. However, some instances, he was not even present for and was blamed. He got into several fights where he was jumped in the bathroom by multiple boys and that wasn't addressed only observed he was involved. It got to the point where I felt he was just being blamed for stuff because it was convenient. I had several parent/teacher conferences to which I always requested the Principal's presence. Needless to say he hasn't made one yet.

Now as I said earlier, my child is not a saint by any means. He has attitude problems and anger management issues, however he is also a Gemini and has a surprisingly sweet side. Unfortunately for him and Mrs. Heirs, they only saw the bad sides of each other. I hated having to talk to this lady and hear her annoying, "Ms. Kelllllllllllllyyyyyyy, its Mrs.. Heiiiiiiiiiiiiirrrrrrrrrrrrrssssssssssss! Ugh. I was so glad the school year ended and so happy he was able to start 4th grade with a clean slate.

As a parent, I feel that if you are teacher you should be able to put personal feelings aside and teach all the children in your class. You don't treat children like adults and display obvious dislike towards them. I don't care how they act. Send their hind parts home and try it again the next day. When the sight of a child affects your whole mood, that's a problem and you don't need to be teaching. I'm not asking teachers to enter the realm of the Convents and flirt with Sainthood themselves, but I don't expect them to deliberately spew and yell harsh words at students either. At this year's open house Ms. Heirs introduced herself with no facial expressions, no variance in her voice, no personality whatsoever, but explained she was "so excited" about the school year coming up. Whatever Chick! I'm really interested in hearing some feedback from all of you teachers out there. Let me know if my expectations are too high of the person I entrust my child to 8hrs a day or what.

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