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stuck in a stand off with a student. wwyd?

(31 Posts)
wonderingteacher Wed 26-Feb-14 22:53:19

Have nc for this.

I teach in FE and had a run in with a student (she's 17, nearly 18) a few weeks ago.

I asked her tthree times to put her phone away in class. The third time (same lesson) I said she'd have to leave if she wouldnt put it away. 4th time I asked her to leave.

She pushed her chair back and said "you're a fucking bitch" and stormed out.

I reported the incident to her form tutor and expected her to come and find me to apologise. She's refused - told my manager 'I'm not saying sorry, she is a fucking bitch"

I've never had a problem with her or any of her classmates before - it was totally out of the blue.

I've refused to let her back in class until she apologises and have handed work over to her at the door each lesson (1 a week so only 3 so far). Manager says she's entitled to come to class and I need to let her in.

I've backed myself into a corner over it and I'm not sure where to go with it. Any advice? ?

littlepurplealien Wed 26-Feb-14 23:20:46

No advice I'm afraid but thank you so much for taking a stand against such vile behaviour.

You did a good thing, she was verbally abusive to you and no-one should have to put up with that. You are also doing her a favour in the long run, demonstrating what is and isn't socially acceptable plus making her see there are consequences to her rudeness in using her mobile in class. (I'm assuming she was using it in some way rather than just having it out on the table/desk next to her)

Does the FE organisation that you work for not have a policy about acceptable behaviour ?

plantsitter Wed 26-Feb-14 23:22:30

I'm really shocked your manager is not backing you up. The last s/he should do is set up a meeting between the three of you and let the student know that her behaviour want acceptable.

Not a teacher though. Sorry not more help.

plantsitter Wed 26-Feb-14 23:22:50

Want = wasn't

wonderingteacher Wed 26-Feb-14 23:26:14

Thank you little

Yes - she was using it. She also brushed her hair and sprayed deodorant in class, in a lesson.

I'm the 'firm but fair' type so she knew it wouldn't be tolerated. College have a policy but managers are too scared to lose numbers to follow it.

Picturesinthefirelight Wed 26-Feb-14 23:33:28

Dh teaches in FE

I'm appalled that behaviour hasn't led to a much more severe punishment. I'd want a meeting at the very least.

MsHighwater Wed 26-Feb-14 23:34:43

Does you employer have a violence to staff/respect at work policy? Her behaviour would certainly breach any such policy and your employer should not, avoidably, put you in a position where you are expected to endure it. Union?

Blondieminx Wed 26-Feb-14 23:34:57

What about the effect this girl's behaviour has on the rest of the class as well?

Have you spoken with the girl's parents?

Management not backing you up in line with the stated policy is very poor sad

wonderingteacher Wed 26-Feb-14 23:37:28

Spoke to mum on the phone who said that 'teenagers kick off sometimes' and that she knew her daughter and that she'd not back down as she'd be ebarassed to.

breatheslowly Wed 26-Feb-14 23:38:13

Is there someone else you can take this to? A form tutor or deputy head?

wonderingteacher Wed 26-Feb-14 23:40:44

I've gone to the form tutor - no deputy head as it's college.

The college is not known for backing staff - I've seen 1 other thread on here about the same college already! Hence the nc.

HerGraciousMajTheBeardedPotato Wed 26-Feb-14 23:46:32

What do you mean by 'manager'? (Sorry, I'm not a teacher.)

I'm shocked that you are not being supported over a fundamental point of discipline!

If she is embarrassed to apologise, would an acceptable way out of the impasse be to accept a written apology from her?

In ds's school, phones are confiscated for the duration of the lesson if they appear or make any sound during lesson time.

wonderingteacher Wed 26-Feb-14 23:48:51

I'd be happy with a note but she's refused that too.

Manager - 3 rungs above me, oversees our large department

Glad I'm not just being petty holding out for the apology.

Blondieminx Thu 27-Feb-14 00:02:45

shock at the mother saying her DD would be embarrassed ... Dear god, I would count my blessings at not having the charming madam in class for the forseeable then.

In all seriousness it sounds like the girl needs boundaries and assistance with managing her responses. Will the college support with that?

Greenrememberedhills Thu 27-Feb-14 00:07:46

Your manager is unreasonable. Paranoia over funding and numbers is NO excuse. Otherwise they have to spit it our and discipline you for poor student management- and I bet they won't.

Clearly madam's mother is an apologist too.

Don't back down.

DailyBread Thu 27-Feb-14 00:10:33

Hope you are able to stand your ground. What a shame the parent won't support you. My god, if I'd said that to a teacher...shock

BrianTheMole Thu 27-Feb-14 00:13:03

She needs to apologise or she doesn't come back. What sort of message does this give if she's allowed back in otherwise? What are you going to do op? Why the heck should you put up with that? Thats not how the real world works. She needs to learn a valuable lesson here.

FamiliesShareGerms Thu 27-Feb-14 00:20:08

It's the student who has backed herself into a corner by refusing to take the various opportunities to put the incident behind her. Hold your ground (and maybe speak to your union about the support you should be getting from your management)

bellabelly Thu 27-Feb-14 00:21:47

You need a one-to-one meeting with her - possibly with a colleague (the manager?) sitting in so that you are covered against any allegations... If an apology is given, in private, to you - away from her peers - she might not feel so embarrassed.

I think you should kill her with kindness - explain that she has made a silly chice in the heat of teh moment but what's done is done and you'd hate for her to miss any more lessons as basically you are on her side and want her to do as well as she can in her exams. Which of course she won't, if she continues to miss her classes. But (smile sweetly), she understands, doesn't she, that she can't use her phone during classes and that you (firm but fair) have a right to remind her of this without being called a fucking bitch? She will find it terribly hard to argue at this point.

The mum sounds completely inadequate and unsupportive. Don't waste any mre energy looking for help from that quarter. Your manager's attitude is crap. You are going to have to sort this - hope you can make it work.

averyyoungkitten Thu 27-Feb-14 06:23:26

The problem as I see it here is the factthat the other students will be watching the outcome here closely. You lose, they will all be on their phones.

I would tell my manager that abusive behaviour of the kind displayed by this student is not accepted anywhere else - from the check out at Tesco to a call centre operative. All would refuse the girl service.

The girl needs to understand she is rude and she needs to be removed. Not just for her sake but because her behaviour stops the teaching and learning of other students. She is disrespecting them too.

Is she clever? Is she worth keeping on your course or is she likely to fail her exams? If the latter, point it out.

If I had to allow someone like this back I would be far from kind to her. I would make it clear to the class that I dont like it and we are all stuck with it. I would be looking forany opportunity to get her kicked out a second time (permanently if possible).

Yes, I am a teacher and a mum. I am ex FE and I work in an independent - where this would not be allowed. As a mum I wouldnt want my DC having to put up with this in class.

BranchingOut Thu 27-Feb-14 06:27:47

I think the meeting is a good idea.

But you need to remind her that using that kind of language in a workplace would get her disciplined. Using it to a stranger or official in a public place is, I think, a crime.

Rosa Thu 27-Feb-14 06:33:27

If it was my child I would be pleased that you made a stand as it might teach her something and certainly help her in the future. Good luck

nameuschangeus Thu 27-Feb-14 06:43:11

Just wanted to say well done OP for standing up for the right thing. Your manager sounds like a wet lettuce. Stand your ground and maybe give her the chance to make a private apology face to face but if I were your manager I'd be supporting you. It's the slippery slope. I write this as a (mature) HE student constantly driven insane by other people's use of their phone, iPad etc. I wish you were my lecturer.

ChaChaDigregorio Thu 27-Feb-14 06:52:19

I am manager of behavioural programmes in FE. I can't believe that this incident has been allowed to get this far!

You should be supported to meet with this girl. If you're not, arrange it yourself. Let her lead the conversation. Be positive towards her. Say you want her to come back in, that you were surprised by what happened and you want her back because she is a good student. Give her the space and time to say what was wrong that day. Tell her how it feels from your perspective. Let her know that it's not ok.

Clearly your manager is crap if they haven't sat down and talked this through with you.

Good luck.

WeAreDetective Thu 27-Feb-14 06:58:05

I'm a teacher and totally support your actions. It's insane that this has not been followed up. I am very shock and you are not over reacting at all.

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