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What's their agenda?

Discussion in 'Trainee and student teachers' started by Childish, Nov 26, 2010.

  1. I'm currently a GTP Primary School Trainee and am having a hard time. If I was a school, I would be on 'special measures'. I'm the only bloke on the staff of a small rural primary school and it seems everything I'm doing is wrong. What I can't understand is what is the school's agenda? It's like they want me to fail, all I get is criticism, so much so that I'm currently writing this having been given a verbal warning and told to take the rest of afternoon off to 'reflect'! (The good bit being, the weekend stats here!). Is there anyone else out there in similar circumstances or who can offer any advice?
     
  2. I'm currently a GTP Primary School Trainee and am having a hard time. If I was a school, I would be on 'special measures'. I'm the only bloke on the staff of a small rural primary school and it seems everything I'm doing is wrong. What I can't understand is what is the school's agenda? It's like they want me to fail, all I get is criticism, so much so that I'm currently writing this having been given a verbal warning and told to take the rest of afternoon off to 'reflect'! (The good bit being, the weekend stats here!). Is there anyone else out there in similar circumstances or who can offer any advice?
     
  3. I've noticed in this forum that some men who teach in a primary school have to state their gender randomly amongst their question...
     
  4. I know it shouldn't matter, but it's the professional opinion of my Uni course tutor that it might. I'm just interested in others opinions.
     
  5. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    You school, especially your mentor, will not want you to fail. Believe me, I currently have a student with me and am woking night and day to get them to a point where they might pass. If what you are doing isn't good enough, they need to tell you. There is no point them glossing over it and pretending it doesn't matter.
    If you have been given a warning and sent home, it does make me wonder what on earth you did. My student has, on occasion, displayed some totally unprofessional behaviour, such that I have asked my HT for advice on what to do about it. But nothing that would mean they were formally warned or asked to go home.
    If I were you I would make a list of how you are going to address the concerns your school has about your performance. Do everything you need to do for next week to the highest standard you can, without exception. Then go in on Monday and apologise profusely to whoever you owe apologies to.Show your plan for addressing concerns to your mentor and ask for advice.
    Show humility and a real desire to improve and they will almost certainly support you.
    Being male is totally irrelevant.
     
  6. Thanks minnie,

    This is very good advice. You're basically saying that there's no benefit to the school in me failing as it will reflect badly on them. This is what I thought. I think the issue is that I was originally interviewed by the retiring HT who I shared similar opinions to in term of ethos i.e. creativity over discipline. However...the new HT has a totally different outlook. Everyone knows that behaviour management is probably the hardest craft to get right. This is what I'm struggling with but seem to just get hammered rather than be given constructive advice. It's like they're expecting me to be the 'finished article' not, what I am, which is a TRAINEE. Anyway, I'm going to 'dust myself down', be humble and put in the work to get through this

    Yup. I also accept that gender doesn't matter.

    Thanks again.
     
  7. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    No, not really. I'mactually saying that they want you to pass as their job is to help students learn how to be good and outstanding teachers. They chose to have trainees to contribute to maintaining the workforce for good and altruistic reasons. They won't want you to fail as they do want you, and every other trainee, to pass.They want you to become a good teacher.
    Perhaps your ethos isn't theirs, but the basic idea that a class must be under control before any teaching can take place is true however creative you want to be.
    Behaviour management can be hard. Pointing out to someone that what they are doing isn't good enough,in a vaguely kind and tactful way, is equally hard. Believe me!
    Do not 'put in the work to get through this', put in the work to become a fantastic teacher who has learned all that their placement school could teach them.
     
  8. OK. I accept that I should take the 'long term view' as regard being as good a teacher as I can be. This is absolutely my aim. However, the rationale behind my comment on 'getting through this' is due to my 'Cause for concern' status which the school have officially logged with my training University. I have been given a 6 week action plan for improvement. If I can 'get through this', I'll at least emerge to the heady heights of 'satisfactory' then move on. Unfortunately in the meantime, I've now had my 'verbal warning' from the school. (Naively, I confessed to telling a boy to 'stop being like some of the girls' when he was crying due to the cold during an outdoor games lesson. Not very bright on both counts admit, but is an example of being punished rather than guided by the HT). So things are tough at the moment.

    One small piece of good news, I'm desperately trying to learn from my errors and am still slightly 'high' on the back of a successful and very enjoyable PE lesson yesterday, which was, shock horror, praised by the HT!

    Based on the assumption that you're 'only as good as your last lesson'...No more self pity. Onwards and upwards!
     
  9. gavcradd

    gavcradd New commenter

    I disagree that you failing would reflect badly on them. Schools are fair places (well, mine is) - if the trainee works hard and keeps on improving, they'll get all the help they need. However, trainees need to understand that schools have a moral responsability - if they pass you, they're saying that you are a suitable person to hold the destiny of hundreds of students in your hands. If you don't have the work ethic, attitude, knowledge, application, maturity, whatever, then they'll have to fail you. The only trainees that I ever known fail (from various schools) have complained that they haven't had enough help, etc. Strangely, the ones that pass never mention this!
    Take heart of whatever's been said to you, focus yourself on improving whatever needs improving and good luck with everything. However, don't for one second think that you are guaranteed to pass.
     
  10. Thanks for taking the time to comment. I take the basic point that I shouldn't bleat about the school being unfair, I should just concentrate on getting my own house in order, then the support should follow. Cheers.
     
  11. I understand how u feel I am on a 6week plan and it's as if I feel more pressure than before I still feel really fed up with it I feel for you really I do the paperwork is killing me; I know they have don e this before us and we are trying to get where they are but sometimes I think they forget that we are in training humph back to more work good luck 6&23s
     
  12. I'm sorry to hear that you're in a similar predicament. Let's keep in touch. The basic message seems to be: keep positive, be humble, listen to and act on advice. Hopefully we can then reach the 'promised land' of having our own class next year. As a teacher friend of mine said, "being in someone else's class is like cooking in someone else's kitchen". Chin up.
     
  13. There's two things here. Yes, you're a trainee BUT you are being paid a decentish salary by the school and they expect professionalism. Not being in control of behaviour by this stage (creativity over discipline being a worrying comment - you need both not one) and saying things like 'stop being a girl' isn't professional. The behaviour management thing : you need to do some specific observations where people obviously model behaviour management strategies for you. It's not something you always notice in someone else's lesson when they've been with their class for a while. I went into my GTP student's class and taught a lesson in maths specifically modelling managing behaviour of a class not known to me so she could see some ideas to try out for herself. As for something like this so you can get on top of it, once you've got that sussed then your lessons can be as creative as you like, it's very difficult to start with creative teaching and then get good behaviour afterwards.As for being professional and not saying daft things to students - this is a massive one. Some schools really don't like children being refered to as 'kids' for example, you need to respect the people you teach and your comment showed lack of respect for half the school. You need to apologise for it, humbly. Having a formal warning is pretty severe and makes me wonder if there are other incidents that have led up to this, might be time to ask for some straight talking feedback that you can act on even if it's harsh.
     
  14. Thanks for taking the time to respond. Yup, you're right on most counts. When I wrote the original post, I was understandably feeling pretty raw. Frankly though, now that I can put some perspective on it, this was probably what I needed. a metaphorical 'kick up the ****'. I think my problem was that I was still acting like a TA & being a bit too 'down with the kids'. Obviously the children were treating me as one of them & I consequently wasn't getting their respect. Meanwhile the teaching team, my colleagues, were perceiving my actions as undermining their behaviour policy. I had unwittingly created my own 'perfect storm'. Since then, I have taken all the advice on board, been humble and tried to create some distance with the pupils and the early signs are that it's beginning to pay off. The children are becoming easier to manage, but the main benefit is that I feel as if I'm beginning to win over the staff. Tension has noticeably reduced. I'm certainly not there yet, but I do feel positive about the future. Now for those pesky skills tests...
     

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