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An I overreacting to think that a swearing teacher is unprofessional?

(54 Posts)
mysterio1 Mon 18-Mar-19 18:11:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LordProfFekkoThePenguinPhD Mon 18-Mar-19 18:14:40

I’d not be overly bothered about a ‘bloody’ in front of older children but no f’s in the classroom!

cardibach Mon 18-Mar-19 18:18:26

Members of staff should not swear in front of chilfpdren. I’m a right sweary mare but I manage not to. However, he is a TA not a teacher so YABU for talking about unprofessional reachers in this thread.

TeenTimesTwo Mon 18-Mar-19 18:20:01

Yes it's unprofessional, but they are 14 and will hear worse in the playground.

TAs aren't teachers and aren't paid as such.

If he was taking the class as a TA he was probably stressed.

As a second offence, I'd maybe go for a request the TA be reminded they shouldn't be swearing, but I can't get overly worked up about it.

modgepodge Mon 18-Mar-19 18:20:31

I find it hard to believe any school would find this acceptable. I remember in year 7 a teacher standing up in front of our class and saying ‘CUT THE CRAP.’ Before lecturing us about our (frankly appalling) behaviour. It shocked us in to silence and we listened to him. I’m a teacher and would not do this, but then I’m primary so it’s different. However the f word is next level in my opinion and is just being thrown in to conversation for no real reason in the example above, so I’d say unacceptable.

woodhill Mon 18-Mar-19 18:22:55

Just no, makes no difference being a TA, you are meant to be professional and set a good example.

Your ds in bu

havingtochangeusernameagain Mon 18-Mar-19 18:23:16

It doesn't matter whether it's a TA, a teacher, the caretaker or school receptionist. If you are in a professional environment, you don't swear. Unnecessary and rude unless you've stubbed your toe!

justmyview Mon 18-Mar-19 18:24:52

I agree it's unprofessional IF IT'S TRUE

burgundyjumper Mon 18-Mar-19 20:01:28

What justmyview said.

ponyprincess Mon 18-Mar-19 20:06:55

I hate the 'of they will hear worse in the playground' defense. Yes they will but it does not make this okay.

Would it be okay for a 14 year old to tell a teaching assistant to close the fucking window?

QueenofCBA Mon 18-Mar-19 20:08:29

Not acceptable. Swear words can slip out, we’re only humans, but they really shouldn’t. I would expect a bollocking from my line manager if I swore in front of a class.

Kolo Mon 18-Mar-19 20:10:35

When I was teaching (left 3 yrs ago) a student would be in real trouble for swearing at me or to me. If we expect children to use restraint and understand how to use profanity appropriately, then the staff at the school should definitely not be swearing!

Holidayshopping Mon 18-Mar-19 20:12:42

Not acceptable.

Neither is your post title which accuses a teacher of swearing when they haven’t.

Chosennone Mon 18-Mar-19 20:15:27

Not professional. Not acceptable.
But I have to question why a TA is covering a class? That wouldn't happen at my school. We have Cover supervisors or supply and at a push teachers.

MitziK Mon 18-Mar-19 20:16:16

Nobody taking it further?

Makes me suspect that they know damn well that they were being horrendous to the bloke.

It's not great, but a TA isn't a teacher; to put somebody in the position of being a teacher - and one on cover, for that matter - is probably incredibly stressful.

ZippyBungleandGeorge Mon 18-Mar-19 20:18:11

In that context unacceptable. My teacher once stapled her thumb to a display board, it bled a lot and as she did it helped fuck. Then apologised profusely for her language. I think that was ok

ZippyBungleandGeorge Mon 18-Mar-19 20:19:00


ponyprincess Mon 18-Mar-19 20:20:00

MitziK so would it be okay for a child to swear at a teacher because they are incredibly stressed?

The teacher, teaching assistant.. They are adults acting in a professional context. It is important to be able to control and adjust languageyand behaviour to the context. And teach children about this by example

chocolateroses Mon 18-Mar-19 20:22:04

I sort of think in this political environment with such a teacher and TA shortage at least the TA was nice enough to take the class - it's not something a TA should be expected to do, and my first thoughts would be to be grateful they stood up when they didn't need to.

However, no, swearing isn't ok. But it's not like he was swearing at your DS, so I think I'd not get too bent up about it. I children will her these words, but if they are raised properly they know they shouldn't use them too.

I don't think people realise how stressed and over worked all staff are in state schools these days and how desperate the teaching shortage is sad

Comefromaway Mon 18-Mar-19 20:26:55

It’s abdolutely unacceptable.

My son has autism and has a real problem differentiating between appropriate and inappropriate language. He has been in trouble several times for swearing at school (usually when highly stressed) and for an adult member of staff to swear would blur the boundaries even more.

Blissx Mon 18-Mar-19 20:34:15

Oh goody. Another ‘let’s all lump teachers together to have a collective moan at them’. Except your thread title is misleading, OP. A TA is NOT a teacher. Good grief, even when a teacher hasn’t done something, they still get the blame!!

TAs are certainly not trained or paid as one. Which is why they shouldn’t be covering your DS’ class and is very unfair on them and yet I know it is rife due to school’s struggling budget wise. I’d be complaining about that first.

ponyprincess Mon 18-Mar-19 20:37:18

I see, so let's tell all the children it is fine for a TA to swear at them as they haven't had proper training to know they shouldn't and the children should accept that and presumably not swear back?

burgundyjumper Mon 18-Mar-19 20:41:09

I wouldn't want to be a TA and have to deal with the hunting-pack instincts of teenagers.

I also don't think it happened.

llangennith Mon 18-Mar-19 20:48:02

Report the TA to the class teacher or HT. No adult in school should be swearing either at or in front of pupils whether they're cleaners, dinnerladies, teaching staff or volunteer helpers.

onthenaughtystepagain Mon 18-Mar-19 20:52:02

I see, so let's tell all the children it is fine for a TA to swear at them as they haven't had proper training to know they shouldn't and the children should accept that and presumably not swear back?

Unless a parent can honestly say they have never sworn in front of their children or in their hearing then they have no place criticising others. there seems to be some inane idea on here that schools exist in a parallel, perfect universe. Looking at the casual use of language on here I wouldn't believe people who say they don't!

MitziK Mon 18-Mar-19 20:53:12

@ponyprincess strangely, I can differentiate between a child swearing in my presence because they're upset/stressed or swearing at me. So it's a daily occurrence to adopt strategic deafness. If I (and others) didn't do that, there would be constant threads on here complaining that somebody's child had been put in internal exclusion when they were just upset and it isn't fair that they should be punished when they didn't actually swear at the teacher/couldn't help it/don't believe it.

I haven't ever sworn at a child (or in their presence), but I can completely understand how somebody not experienced in classroom management left to deal with an entire class of teenagers on cover could be pushed into lapsing.

Personally, I think the OP should be more miffed that they stuck a TA on whole class cover because it would be cheap, rather than somebody on PPA covering or bringing in an experienced Cover Supervisor/supply teacher. But that's a whole different can of worms.

dirtystinkyrats Mon 18-Mar-19 20:58:33

No an adult shouldn't swear in school. And if he has lost it so much that he is swearing then he definitely shouldn't be in charge of a class again.

HaventGotAllDay Mon 18-Mar-19 21:03:27

I am invariably horrified at what MN deems teachers' appropriate behaviour to be.
This time, despite the misleading title, and whatever the context, I would probably take it further as it is way unprofessional and inappropriate. Mind you, I'd also make very sure it was true first.

ponyprincess Mon 18-Mar-19 21:10:03

onthenaughtystepagain I do hear what you are saying and I get that people swear and children will hear it

But I think there is a double standard that it is okay for the TA not the teacher (both are in positions of authority)

It is okay for a stressed TA but of a child told a TA to follow fuck off?

Everyone does get frustrated but the OP asked is this professional - - no I think

Is it understandable? I agree we all can get frustrated and express but I do still think if that was the case the TA should acknowledge the language was not appropriate in the context

ponyprincess Mon 18-Mar-19 21:15:28

MitziK the examples.given were aimed at the students - not oh fuck I stapled my finger as a PP said.

It is unprofessional so while maybe understandable I think it is fair to raise the issue

If it is a matter of schools mangaging classrooms and TAs not having training then isn't it better to highlight this ao they get support?

LJdorothy Mon 18-Mar-19 21:32:07

I don't think anybody was saying that it's okay for a TA to swear. But they are not teachers and so the OP's title is wrong. I think teachers on MN are perhaps a little tired of being slagged off, and it's even more annoying when no teachers are involved in this scenario and they are still being called unprofessional.

ponyprincess Mon 18-Mar-19 21:40:03

LJdorothy my comments were about how children should be respected in school and not a comment on the OP's title or engaging in a slagging of teachers or TA's

Cherrysoup Mon 18-Mar-19 21:43:01

Strictly no f bombs in front of kids. Bloody is my max, so I’d expect a complaint if I said fuck.

LJdorothy Mon 18-Mar-19 21:44:01

I wasn't commenting on your comment, ponyprincess! TAs shouldn't swear in front of pupils. I agree completely with that.

FunkyKingston Mon 18-Mar-19 21:48:34

What a little telltale tit your 14 year old is being about this. They were sworn at or told to go fuck themselves or that they were useless fuckers, but heard a TA use 'fuck' in a sentence. I doubt that any 14 year old will faint from hearing fuck or its derivatives in conversation. I find it impossible to believe anyone in the class room took genuine offence.

No the TA shouldn't have sworn, but I'm more askance at your offspring trying to land the TA in trouble by running to tell you about it.

Blissx Mon 18-Mar-19 21:48:57

Exactly LJDorothy

ponyprincess. No, it is not ok to say fuck in front of a class. Of course it isn’t and if you read back, no one has out and out said this. But teachers are sick of the MN threads about teachers (there have been many in the past few days alone) and this one isn’t even about a teacher! It can’t be ‘unprofessional’ if it’s not about a profession. It is unacceptable though, as is. TA covering a class but it isn’t even clear if the OP has brought the swearing up with the school or is even true.

Aragog Mon 18-Mar-19 21:50:40

Not acceptable for any adult to be swearing in hearing distance of school children, regardless of their role in school. Doesn't matter if they are unpaid volunteers or the headteacher. It's just not in and is totally unacceptable. It would be a potential disciplinary incident in every school I've worked in, though various factors would be taken into consideration regarding the result of the chat with the head teacher.

MitziK Mon 18-Mar-19 21:51:11

They won't get support. They'll get a bollocking if it's true (if not formal disciplinary action). And still be dumped on by having to cover for a qualified teacher/experienced cover staff.

Having said that, I'd at least have spoken to the TA or their line manager if I'd heard it - if it was exactly as told here - but 'training' will not materialise - training budgets are largely seen as being for teaching staff, not support.

Mind you, I do remember the investigation where one child and his mates swore blind to his mother that I'd told him to Fuck Off when he was just sitting and minding his own business. Unfortunately for him (and his Mum, because she was incredibly embarrassed about it afterwards after the fuss she'd made), others in the class confirmed that what actually happened is that I had walked into a mass pile on he'd instigated and I'd told him very clearly to move back whilst retrieving his victim from underneath a table. Teenagers can be right gits when hunting in packs - so is it worth 'trying to get the TA some training' when it might not be true?

ponyprincess Mon 18-Mar-19 22:17:31

Sorry I misinterpreted

ponyprincess Mon 18-Mar-19 22:20:15


I am not teacher bashing

I expect adults in a work environment to be 'professional'

I understand the difference between teachers and TA's but I still expect a basic level of behaviour of adults to children

Mammajay Mon 18-Mar-19 22:27:22

Absolutely wrong. A TA has a role as a significant adult and should understand boundaries.

ponyprincess Mon 18-Mar-19 22:58:27

MitziK teenagers are lying gits are they?

And TAs seem to be some unprofessional group who are stressed and unable to act respectfully to children but what is the point of giving them support /training?

I am surprised at the views on this thread!

PerfumeandOranges Mon 18-Mar-19 23:22:47

It is not appropriate for a teacher, or a TA, to swear in front of children.

If other professions can refrain when on duty, then so should teachers. One would be amazed to hear a judge shout 'fuck' at a defendant or a GP to declare he was 'fucking tired'.

If teaching staff, including TAs think they are an exception to this, then it won't be long before the profession slips even further down the rung.

MitziK Mon 18-Mar-19 23:40:02

Are you deliberately misinterpreting things?

SLT don't use a limited training budget on TAs if they can avoid it. They prefer to use it on Teaching Staff and TAs/other support get what's strictly necessary (and preferably provided for free by somebody in the school so it costs them nothing beyond some photocopying). It's not fair, but SLT don't have to be fair. They just have to decide what they will or won't fund from the budget - and they will inevitably choose to fund Teaching Staff training over Support Staff.

TAs are not teachers. They shouldn't be expected to perform the role of a teacher. It's unfair to them - and I'm sure most parents would prefer their kids were taught by somebody who has actually qualified to teach.

Being a TA is not being employed in a profession. It's being a TA. It is possible to gain qualifications, but in reality, it's as open to somebody with a couple of GCSEs as it is somebody with a degree. And of course they're under stress when they're expected to perform the role of a completely different, highly qualified member of staff. Just like I'd be pretty stressed (and prone to swearing) if my ability to generally keep 30 kids from tearing lumps out of one another meant I was put in in charge of a UN Peacekeeping brigade in an active warzone.

What I actually said was that teenagers can be right gits. And yes, they can lie. Normally it's to their Mums, but it can be to staff - some are so convincing, they get their Mums to come in and shout the odds over how the nasty teacher was picking on them when they weren't even there - right up til the point at which Mum gets shown the CCTV of precious child being the instigator. I'm sure they are absolutely lovely at home, but stick a bunch of them in together, give them a sniff of vulnerability from having an unqualified person put in charge, and they can and do act completely differently.

Moreover, a complaint wouldn't mean the TA received extra training, it would mean that they potentially lost their barely above minimum wage job. Considering the same kids whose parents are so offended by the word Fuck have probably used it, Cunt and Piss at least 30 times that day, it seems a bit rich that there are such strong reactions to it allegedly being said.

Gth1234 Tue 19-Mar-19 00:48:04

swearing anybody is unprofessional. I hate hearing bad language. Far too much on TV. It's one of many things that's leading to a coarsening of society.

FunkyKingston Tue 19-Mar-19 02:18:15

swearing anybody is unprofessional. I hate hearing bad language. Far too much on TV. It's one of many things that's leading to a coarsening of society

Where the fuck did you escape from, a regency costume drama? In my experience it is only dullminded prudes who object to swearing on principle.

Learning how to swear imaginatively and in an appropriate way is one of the best lessons a young person can learn, and sometimes a fuck, a bastard or a cunt is needed for emphasis in a way that bother or fiddlesticks won't do. My love of the English language was deepened by my expanding vocabulary of profane words. I'm a hisrory lecturer by trade and my favourite piece of 19th century vernacular is the term cunt-struck to descibe a man obsessed with sex. Bawdy language has been around with us for a long tine and to think society has become corsened by bad language is counterfactual bollocks, a glance at Chaucer or a look at any of the songs actually sung by troops during the world wars would tell you otherwise.

ArmchairTraveller Tue 19-Mar-19 06:06:24

Not a teacher.
Not OK swear in front of children. Parents shouldn’t do it either, they are their child’s most significant role model.

Qwertylass Tue 19-Mar-19 06:09:38

If that was my T.A I wouldn't have her in my class. That is disgusting.

Qwertylass Tue 19-Mar-19 06:29:18

I was recently told to piss off by a yr 5 girl which is disgraceful. This however takes the biscuit and I bet she will be the first one to reprimand a child for swearing.

Blissx Tue 19-Mar-19 06:29:31

MitziK teenagers are lying gits are they?

Ah. The usual response on these threads. hmm Again, all humans have the potential to lie and all that has been said is that this should be investigated, yes, to hear the other side of the story because yes, teenagers have the capacity to lie/embellish the truth (as do adults).

And TAs seem to be some unprofessional group who are stressed and unable to act respectfully to children but what is the point of giving them support /training?
And again, you are deliberately not reading the points posters are making when they are explaining the differences. Empathy is an important trait in people, you might want to fine some. Doesn’t mean that it is ok to swear in front of young people (Thought I should highlight that again for you). These threads annoy me because they always bring out posters like this. Can only see things as black or white.

I am surprised at the views on this thread!

I’m not. Always happens. And the fact the OP has not returned after deliberately providing such a click bait title, casts huge doubt over the whole thing anyway.

Qwertylass Tue 19-Mar-19 06:35:27

From the sound of it this isn't even a one off where she has snapped she is using it regularly.

Blissx Tue 19-Mar-19 07:06:50

The OP says it is a bloke, Qwertylass. Doesn’t make a difference to the swearing of course but not all TAs are female. However, I don’t think the OP will be coming back to clarify with any updates on exactly what happened but I hope they do. Threads like this do a lot of damage to people’s opinions of staff in school, if not true.

Comefromaway Tue 19-Mar-19 09:28:57

Learning how to swear imaginatively and in an appropriate way is one of the best lessons a young person can learn,*

Tell that to my son with asd who has had numerous detentions, and other school disciplinary for "inappropriate language" . As an autistic child with PDA and an innate sense of unfairness it is hard enough to try and instil that he must not swear at school without staff doing it. I even had the school phone up to tell me that after one instance he had said but my dad swears and they said that it was unacceptable to encourage swearing at all. (He was 14 at the time)

If a TA had sworn to my ds that would have been it for at least the rest of the day and possible led to a meltdown and he would never have any respect for that person again.

WFTisgoingoninmyhead Tue 19-Mar-19 16:11:29

I think it is completely unreasonable for a TA to be taking the year 9 class, irrespective of his language. Did he say F ing or fucking? that is the question?

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