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Discussion in 'Scotland - education news' started by segbog, Oct 6, 2011.

  1. I take it from your comment that you are recently qualified and on supply? . I find it really frustrating that teacher deployment is often on the basis of results rather than on placing the very best teachers with those children that require the most support, the consequence of this is that sometimes the least qualifed members of staff work with the children who require the most support - consider the use of classroom assistants as an example of this. Please do not interpret this remark personally, it is not intended in that way. It's impossible to give any useful advice without knowing more of the details but it seems to me that there are two areas that you need to target - inside the classroom but also how you might get support from outside the classroom. You need to start to work with the healthy parts of the body, both in the classroom and outside. If the PT is wshing her hands, is there not anyone in the SMT that you can apporach to have a discussion with? If so it might be useful to go with a very specific problem, preferably one that you think they might be able to help you with. So rather than saying something like 'I'm really struggling with class A and I don't know what to do...'. Ask if you can have some time to discuss a particular inicident/situation as you appreciate their help and experience in addressing it. Then give a particular example of an event, try and keep it as focussed as possible even perhaps to a particular pupil. Describe what happened, don't interpret it, say how the event unolded and waht you did and ask how they might have gone about a similar situation. They may suggest something that is worth trying and if so thank them and say that you will give it a go and let them know how it went. If it works tell them and if necessary build on this with other cases, if it doesn't work go back and discuss it further and see if they ca be drawn into more specific support. Some of the children that you are describing may be troubled youngsters who need support, you should not be expected to do this on your own.

    ( Please stop calling them the 'feral class', it does little to engender
    any sympathy other than from the 'stick them all in special schools'
    brigade )
  2. The problem has already been 'addressed'. They have washed their hands. All they want is to ignore the situation for 2 years until they are allowed to kick these weans out of school.Losing the will to be honest...
  3. Of course some of these "feral" children need support. They could probably all do with specialist intervention but what they have seems to be a teacher at the end of his tether and nothing else. It's easy to say we shod focus on behaviour and not personality but harder to do when the kids make it personal day after day and line managers can't or won't offer any assistance and sometimes offer blame instead.
  4. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    ... from Tunbridge Wells.
    From post 180
    "the majority of teachers are collaborative,
    hard-working, positive and do a fantastic job."

  5. I offered some quite specific advice. As I said, in the absence of any details it is not possible to be more specific. How do you know these children need specialist intervention? What sort of specialist intervention would you put in place if you could? Please tell me what a feral child is because I have never met one.
    We should remember that we are only hearing one side of the story here.
  6. What do you mean "unions not recognised"?
  7. So you have read my last few posts and you come back with this? You are sir, an idiot.
  8. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    Well, if you’re looking for sympathy, don’t tell lies about

    You've had lots of understanding and advice from everyone,
    including me. Stop ignoring it.

    The majority of teachers are collaborative, hard-working, positive
    and do a fantastic job. I thought I'd reiterate that.

  9. Go away Raymond. I would like advice from real teachers tbh.
  10. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

  11. You've had advice from real teachers but you don't appear to be interested in any discussion around it. Have you had a similar experience in school with your SMT by any chance?
  12. It seems to me that you are at the end of your tether and you've probably tried most of what has been suggested and if you feel that these children are 'feral' then you need some space to gather your thoughts. One weeks holiday is not going to do it. If you do not have access to a union rep you can contact an area office for advice. You may also want to contact your GP and a stress management adviser. Maybe an extra period of time out would help. I don't know your employment circumstance so don't know if this will help. Your SMT do have a duty of care and should take your concerns seriously, but without union help I don't see this happening.
    How many other teaching staff in the school have the pleasure of taking this class? Could you all get together and discuss what works or doesn't? Perhaps those who have non contact time could support you in a particular lesson and you could reciprocate?

    Raymond - surely with all your vast experience you should recognize a cry for help, despite your protestations to the contrary you really do come across holier- than- thou.
  13. Ragpicker, you're absolutely right to say I don't know the specifics. The post I was resounding to made me think of some classes I've taught; bottom sets who struggled with most aspects of learning and social skills. I can understand your dislike of the term feral, but in some ways it's not a bad word to describe those pupils who find it impossible to trust or relate to adults, deal with their peers through fear and intimidation and cover up their absolute lack of self esteem with a veneer designed to make sure they never, ever lose face.If you mix a few of them in with kids who just want to push the boundaries to see how far they go, it's going to be a challenge for any teacher to deal with. The sad thing is that classes like this need consistency but they often get saddled with supply or a stream of probationers or the teacher nobody wants to let near exam classes and things go from bad to worse. Yes, there are strategies which may help but you need school systems to back you up, even if it's just another teacher willing to take the worst offender into another class now and again). The last thing you need is someone telling you that you're king of your classroom, with the implication that if you can't deal with this alone then you're a **** teacher or just not using the right strategies. (That last is not aimed at you, ragpicker - I can't get paragraphs here to separate out points)
  14. Hi Airy. Thanks for your reply. I think that the majority of us are in agreement that the OP is clearly at the end of his/her tether and needs support. In my experience the most challenging children require a well-co-ordinated strategy of support that is part of a whole school approach. When effective this is likely to be a team working in a problem-solving way; it does not rest on an individual teacher and most certainly has nothing to do with apportioning blame. From the OP's account this does not appear to be happening, but we are not privy to all the information.

    I would still challenge you on the use of the word 'feral'. I don't agree that it is 'not a bad word to describe those pupils'. I am not in denial of the existence of the group of challenging learners that you describe but why use the word feral? The reasons behind the (inacceptable) behaviours of these children are complex. It does little for our professional credibility if we simply write off children in this way. What impression would you get if a psychologist came in to observe a particularly troubled youngster and left saying something like 'I don't know what you expect me to do he's feral' ? It's challenging I know but our responses need to be professional and constructive. Not knowing what to do is a perfectly acceptable professional response, however not knowing and doing nothing is not.

  15. typo : unacceptable
  16. I wasn't writing them off. I think there is something accurate in the comparison between these children and a feral animal that tries to snap your hand off when you try to help it. I know some people will be offended that I am comparing humans and animals but I really don't mean to imply that they are less than human or not worthy of help.
  17. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    I did indeed recognise a cry for help, Jags, and offered
    understanding and tried to build bridges, encouraging segbog to look
    to the positives and take strength from the majority of children he
    teaches who behave acceptably. But I can’t help someone who keeps
    biting my hand as he does. (Posted this before I saw above post!)

    As for me sounding holier than thou, other than calling out
    segbog's abuse, I wonder in what way my tone is any different from
    other posters on here?

    However, thanks for your observations – they have made me

  18. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    Now you know how I feel about segbog.
    Sorry,couldn't resist... didn't mean it. [​IMG]
  19. Would you write it in a report, in a profile or IEP ? If not please explain why not.
    It is a derogatory term, it is writing them off. If you don't mean to imply that they are less than human then don't use language that implies that they are.
    I saw a brief bit of the obnoxious Ricky Gervais the other night. He was doing a routine about 'mongs '... 'even mongs call each other mongs'. He finished this unfunny routine by saying, 'ahh... you thought was talking about Down Syndrome didn't you?'. Language conveys meaning and often this is implicit. We have enough historical negative and counter-productive language in the field of educational support without fostering and trying to justify the introduction of more recent non-educational negative descriptions.

  20. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    I couldn’t agree more with your feelings about the word "feral",
    ragpicker - and I therefore wholeheartedly apologise to segbog for
    the joke above.

    It's a term that makes me cringe every time I hear or read it;
    unfortunately, our illustrious Justice Secretary, Kenneth Clarke, is
    the latest to give it credence when describing the "feral
    underclasses" in society. They'll do anything for a vote...
    And I also agree with your assessment of Ricky Gervais [​IMG]


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