Did you make anyone cry today? Did you break their soul? Did you demean them? Did you send someone over the edge? Did you humiliate somebody? I hope you can answer no to all of these. I hope I can. The horrid reality is, I can’t answer accurately because I don’t know. You don’t know either!
Recall your day. Recall every second of every dialogue. Recall every facial expression. Mimic your body language. What have you said? How did you say it? Really, backtrack your whole week. Remember every single thing you did and said etc.
Can you not do this? If you are a teacher you have to learn to do this. More than learn, you simply have to do it! Examine all that you may have taught and said. Why? Because you are in the public arena. Not only in this brutal arena, you are on trial constantly. If the Romans saw school’s brutal systems today, my God they’d be impressed! They were amateurs! Teaching can be analogous to being a gladiator in the ring or an early Christian thrown to the lions.
We compose parental reports regularly but wouldn’t it be refreshing if we composed daily or weekly reports? Dear parent, your child has reduced me to tears three times this week. Your child has made me cry! Your child has disrupted every lesson and I have no power to do anything. Your child has prevented a lesson from flowing and thus taken away the right of other students and their right to an education. Your child has sworn at me. Your child has been downright rude and I phoned you and talked to you and you laughed and said you’d; “Have a word”. Your child has humiliated me at my place of work!
What did I do? I attempted to teach a lesson. I took all your childs needs into consideration. I spent my weekend planning this lesson. I researched it. I talked calmly and professionally. I did my utmost to model reasonable behaviour. Despite previous problems I put them aside and most of all I cared and still do and always will.
What you don’t know yet is that your child has complained about me. Complained because I have high standards and expectations? Complained because…….
Who have you hurt today? Who has your child hurt and you don’t yet know? It’s a crying shame, a shame on us all. A shame because as I spent almost a week crying I wonder how many other teachers are like me spending their weekend worrying and crying?
The content of some lessons in any subject could be considered controversial. Do we wrap children up in cotton wool or prepare them for the real world? Children get away with telling teachers to; “Fuck off”, but it seems to be acceptable.
It’s a crying shame that no one at the moment has the balls to stand up to anyone and shout out; “YOU ARE WRONG”.
False accusations are a very serious thing and I know that I for one will be pursuing this issue because it really is a crying shame people are treated as guilty in some institutions simply because it makes life easy or it makes us look good. We, as a society ignore the fact that some folk are sadly nasty, yet they are heard! That’s a crying shame!