Friday, November 23, 2012
The Bullying Teacher:Can the Damage They Cause Be Fixed?
My car was hit the other day. I'm not worried about it. I was fine. My insurance will cover the damages and my car will be fixed.
The damage to my car caused an "education connection". It made me think about that kid who is being bullied by their teacher or teachers and no one knows. We have all seen videos of the extreme cases where teachers are bullying kids.
But what about the student who is bullied every day and it's not recorded? These poor kids are subject to whatever abuse that the small minded,big bully, teacher can throw at them.
I knew a team of bullying teachers. You know how it is when a group of students seem to feed off each other? That's what it was like with these teachers. They would sit around the table like witches around a cauldron, their mean-spiritedness providing the ingredients for their potion of mean. They would discuss how they would treat particular students,(You know bullies always know who to pick on), with unbelievable relish. They didn't hit them, or get in their face, they were just mean. It seemed like they were vying with each other to see who could make that child's life more miserable.
Their poor students couldn't catch a break, because whatever class they were switched to, that team teacher was ready to dish out her own brand of bully. The sad part was that when one of the teachers was replaced in the hope of breaking up the Bully Dream Team, the replacement seemed to drink from the Kool-Aid.
The parents would complain. Teachers would complain, but nothing really seemed to change.
Teachers bully. I am sure you know one, two, or three. It doesn't have to be physical, it doesn't have to be that intense. But that day in, day out, ridicule, non-supportive, demeaning attitude can damage a child. It can leave them feeling powerless, hopeless, and suffering from low self-esteem. Can the damage be fixed? Do these students carry that scar around with them forever? Does it become baggage, hidden away , but heavy nonetheless?
What can we do when our colleagues are bullies? What can we do to prevent the damage that may be done to our students?