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"You're a great teacher, but..."

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by mrajlong, Oct 8, 2015.

  1. mrajlong

    mrajlong Senior commenter

    I swear if I hear a sentence start with these words again, I'm gonna snap! Surely there should be full stop, not a comma. When did being a great teacher stop being enough?
    TEA2111 and cat2611 like this.
  2. monicabilongame

    monicabilongame Star commenter

    "You're a great teacher""Thank you!".............. and walk away..........
    solvacrime and lydia_rose like this.
  3. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    It probably goes along with what the kids get nowadays. I'm sure in the good old days you were allowed to say "This is a really good piece of writing; well done." Now you have to tell them how it could be even better, and I'm sure some of them feel like nothing's ever good enough too.
  4. stmha

    stmha Established commenter

    If you were talking to an athlete that would be a prefect response, why should it be any different to any other learner. Can't really see a problem with that approach. Striving for excellence is sound, striving for self improvement is sound...complacency is trouble.
  5. Noja

    Noja Senior commenter

    Why the heck should we all have to strive for excellence? Who says that is sound? Striving for self improvement? Pah!
    solvacrime, mikedavis and stmha like this.
  6. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    Lake Wobegon always began (or perhaps still does) with an introduction which said "Welcome to Lake Wobegon, where all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking, and all the children are above average."

    We know it's impossible for everyone to be above average. Similarly, how can everyone be Outstanding?

    So why do schools, in their Person Specification for a post, ask for An Outstanding Teacher.


  7. stmha

    stmha Established commenter

    Now that is funny, assuming it was meant to be. We should all strive to under achieve..yes
  8. RedQuilt

    RedQuilt Star commenter

    Notwithstanding the fact that being anything less than Outstanding means that some schools and colleges seem to think that equates to 'a bit rubbish', what on earth does it do to the health and wellbeing of a teacher who is trying hard to achieve that glorious label but can 'only' get Good? We know the answer don't we :(
  9. stmha

    stmha Established commenter

    ...hold on, teachers are not children, nor are they imbeciles.

    Most teachers know when they deliver a good lesson as opposed to an outstanding one (not that we use those terms now anyway). Since when does it destroy us to get feedback, just because it isn't outstanding.

    Suddenly teacher's are precious and cannot be judged..of course not. The majority of teachers appreciate we have to be accountable..what they object to is pointless hours spent on pointless tasks which have...no point.

    Liberate teachers from the rags to riches soap opera that goes on in trying to leap frog each other in the league table and you will get even more teachers achieving outstanding learning within their lessons...and who knows the teacher may even start enjoying their job again.
  10. stmha

    stmha Established commenter

    stmha what is a prefect response... i think he means perfect
  11. monicabilongame

    monicabilongame Star commenter

    "Outstanding" = exceptionally good, or excellent; standing-out from the norm.

    "Exceptional" = being an exception; uncommon; well above average; extra-ordinary (as in outside/beyond the ordinary.

    By definition, every school can NOT be outstanding just every teacher can NOT be outstanding.

    Being 'good' at what you do is good enough. Even being 'satisfactory' is ok - because it is satisfactory:
    giving satisfaction sufficient to meet a demand or requirement
    solvacrime and drek like this.
  12. stmha

    stmha Established commenter

    ...really if the teacher was teaching my children I wouldn't be happy with a satisfactory, nor would any parent. If you were due an operation by a doctor, would you consider having a satisfactory doctor or an outstanding one?
  13. snowyhead

    snowyhead Lead commenter

    No doubt you would not be impressed if your child was making satisfactory progress either.

    How would you know if your surgeon was satisfactory, good or outstanding? Do the NHS publish league tables for individual doctors and consultants? The only data I can find pertains to in-hospital mortality rates.
  14. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    solvacrime and stmha like this.
  15. mrajlong

    mrajlong Senior commenter

    I welcome constructive feedback, always. The feedback I struggle with is when it's stuff that has minimal to no impact on children's learning e.g. a clerical error in my plans or not enough evidence in my science books. Also, when that feedback comes from someone who hasn't been in a classroom for twenty odd years. I never shy away from feedback that could improve learning in my class. There is no such thing as a perfect teacher and I am not naive enough to think I will ever be perfect.
    snowyhead and stmha like this.
  16. stmha

    stmha Established commenter

    if carlsberg made teachers mrajlog
    mrajlong likes this.
  17. snowyhead

    snowyhead Lead commenter

    That's the data I was referring to. It isn't designed to assist prospective patients make an informed choice based on a rating of satisfactory, good or outstanding: it is actually designed to inform good practice within the profession. It gives factual information such as number of procedures performed and in-hospital mortality rates.

    I don't know about other posters on this site (even with my experience of working in the NHS) that information would not help me decide if a particular consultant was satisfactory, good or outstanding.
    solvacrime and sabrinakat like this.
  18. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    Perfection is over-rated - I'd rather someone (as a teacher) who is willing to work hard, learn from their mistake and try again. If all we strive for is this so-called perfection, then many people are going to be miserable - also who defines perfection?

    Perhaps we are confusing perfection with experience - that's the type of doctor I would want (or indeed any healthcare professional) or in other professions.

    damnant quod non intellegunt
    solvacrime, drek and monicabilongame like this.
  19. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    Surely its better than 'you are ****!' At least those that start by saying you are great have done Psychology 101 when it comes to constructive criticism, positive, criticism then back to a positive!
  20. mrajlong

    mrajlong Senior commenter

    Not when the words that come after the 'but' make you walk away thinking what the hell am I doing and considering resigning. I.e. the 60 hour week your doing is gonna have to become a 70 hour week to address the 'buts'. Breaking point anyone?
    monicabilongame, TEA2111 and drek like this.

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