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7- Life During Wartime (Removing our Heads from the Inside of our Asses)

02 Apr

 

happy bunny

…I think the title speaks for itself…

…I think the title appropriately illuminates my life as a “teacher” in the inner-city…

Who would have thought that the Talking Heads would be able to sum up a year of my life…the WORST year of my life…within three simple words?

I am writing this in response to a claim from a friend who said that what I’m doing on this site is demoralizing and shameful. Is it? Is it really? …Because this is the stark reality and truth of my life. What you read here is not staged or contrived…it’s REAL! It’s the stuff you do not hear about on the radio or see on the television.

The truth is ugly sometimes.

This ain’t no party, this ain’t no disco,
this ain’t no fooling around
No time for dancing, or lovey dovey,
I ain’t got time for that now

(a little more Talking Heads)

Yes, I do have students who:

  • Think sexually harassing a teacher is okay
  • Curse the teacher out on a daily basis. For example, I was asked during the first week of school, “Why we gotta do this shit? I don’t wanna read this. Dis shit boring!” …referring the Elie Wiesel’s Night
  • Defecate in the trash “can” instead of the toilet
  • Curse the principal out
  • Tell the Assistant Superintendent of the school system, “You betta stop talking to me you old, white-ass honkey”
  • Plug their cell phones up to charge while “class” is in session
  • Wear red, orange, yellow-blond, or blue weave


…Shall I continue? Demoralizing?

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7 Comments

Posted by on April 2, 2008 in Work

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

7 responses to “7- Life During Wartime (Removing our Heads from the Inside of our Asses)

  1. crittle73

    April 2, 2008 at 3:38 pm

    Honey, I’m living it everyday. Your blog is real. Isn’t that the point? Don’t we want people to know what’s REALLY going on in some of these “schools”? Quite honestly, I get sick to my stomach when I constantly read those “feel good” “I taught in the hood and made a difference” teacher stories, after working in this environment. Yeah, you can make a difference in couple lives here and there. But at what cost? Your mental and physical health, your personal time and money, your life? Without support from the powers that be, a teacher’s hands are tied.

    This system is set up so that these “students” fail! There are no consequences for anything they do. They aren’t held up to expectations, but the teachers better get those test scores up! Who cares if the kids come to class 30 mins late and leave 10 mins early? Who cares that fights are breaking out in the classroom? Who cares if “students” are cursing out the teacher? Just don’t send them to the office!! It’s your job as a teacher to break up fights, stop constant name-calling, bullying, and cursing, AND to produce a 70% pass rate on the state test!

    When you see day in and day out how an entire system doesn’t care what kind of non-productive citizens come out of it, you tend to lose respect for the system and the people in it. It is mentally, emotionally, and physically draining. It has turned me into a person I have never been and truly don’t want to be.

     
  2. crittle73

    April 2, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    Whew! That felt good! I think I need to write a blog!

     
  3. jess

    April 3, 2008 at 12:34 am

    yes, m’amm.

     
  4. Hotness Von Lictencracker

    April 3, 2008 at 11:16 pm

    I’m not amazed that you have a colleague who accused you of being demoralizing — thinking like his/hers (or the lack of thought) is exactly the root of the problem.

    I mean your entire blog is about demoralization — of you most people charged with caring for children in this country. If your friend were more “friendly” he’d be as concerned for you and the children you are asked to work with as he is his own self-righteous conclusions. Oh well — the important thing is that a fast and thoughtless dismissal of the truth still makes people feel better about themselves.

     
  5. Hen

    May 12, 2008 at 10:24 pm

    What do, or would, you do about students sexually harassing the teachers? It seems complicated, from a legal standpoint.

     
  6. msfriendly

    May 12, 2008 at 11:16 pm

    Hen,

    That’s a tough one…the REAL test is the backbone of one’s administrative team. I suggest (and what I have done before) is to first verbalize to the student that what he/she is doing makes you uncomfortable…tell said student that you feel as though the teacher/student line is being crossed and that it is sexual harassment. After that conversation with the student, email your administrator…clue them in on what’s happening and the way in which you attempted to diffuse the situation. Some administrators will recognize the situation as severe (because it is) and will then take over…some will allow the student a chance to prove him/herself before acting. Also…a parent phone call should be made.

    I hope this helps! I have had to deal with this TWICE!!!! Once at my current school, and once at the prior school before my stint in Junkies-R-Us High School…the OTHER school handled it well. That particular administrator had me fill out an Incident Report and then got right on the case! I wish the best of luck to you…let me know how it works out.

    Ms. Friendly

     
  7. msfriendly

    May 12, 2008 at 11:18 pm

    Hen…has the situation already escalated into a legal situation?

     

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