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Why shouldn't school anti-bullying policy apply to teachers as well as pupils?

(24 Posts)
qo Fri 28-Mar-14 09:11:07

I have a huge problem with a teacher using emotionally abusive language to my daughter.
I know I am not the only parent who has a problem with this teacher by a long long way
(I have even found her on rate my teacher website and the comments on there confirm this, examples..... "hates children, why go into teaching?"
"I was obviously bullied herself when younger and now takes it out on her pupils" plus many more)

I've been fobbed off various times when I've contacted school about the way she speaks to my daughter, who is actually a really good girl, timid and getting upset and scared at school because of this teacher.

I have called school again this morning, and quoted from their anti-bullying policy, specifically....
-All pupils have a right to feel safe and respected
-Bullying of any kind will not be tolerated
-T he word „bullying‟ is defined as The conscious desire to hurt, threaten, frighten or _make someone feel uncomfortable
over a period of time, where it is difficult for those being bullied to defend themselves’._

The latest incident involves a breach of uniform policy, her skirt is currently 3 inches above her knee, she wears it with the thick woolly tights and doesn't look indecent at all.
We are currently in a difficult financial situation and school were informed that I will buy a new skirt when I get paid this month (end of this week)

But said abusive teacher gave her an after school detention for it anyway. As well as using mocking and belittling language.

This has been a common theme for almost 2 years now, to the point that my daughter has said she feels like dumbing down so she gets moved from this teachers set.

As I said previously I know for a fact that the academy have had many many complaints about this particular teacher, and feel like going to the local press if it doesn't get dealt with. They act as if it isn't happening or just take the teachers word for it when she says it hasn't happened. I've even been told that although I may not agree with her "methods" they get results.

I just cant understand why the fact that she is a teacher gives her free reign to talk to my daughter and treat her in a way which a pupil would be punished for.

I feel like pupils will not be believed when they report incidents of teachers bullying, although it definitely does happen.

DISCALIMER - I am talking about this one particular teacher, not teachers as a whole

qo Fri 28-Mar-14 11:09:11

Anyone else feel as they or their child has not been believed in these circumstances?

I am still waiting for school to get back to me.

MerryMarigold Fri 28-Mar-14 11:14:15

I am sure she is being dealt with behind the scenes. I think it is the language you should be focussing on, not the detention, as that complicates it. Maybe she didn't get the message, maybe your dd said (in rude tone), "My Mum has already let the school now about that." You paint your dd as a bit of a saint, but such a short school skirt doesn't sound like she is, especially if all the other girls are managing ok. Did everyone suddenly need to go out and buy a new skirt this week or is it a school rule that has always been there and she chooses to flout it?

MerryMarigold Fri 28-Mar-14 11:16:23

PS. You haven't given examples of 'emotionally abusive' language. It would be good to write them all down. I think you may have shot yourself in the foot, phoning the school with the anti bullying policy. A better plan would have been to see the HT, or deputy HT with a list of things she says and does which you interpret as bullying.

Not saying she isn't a bullying teacher (they do exist), but that you have not handled this well. Going to the local paper is just silly.

SirChenjin Fri 28-Mar-14 11:18:04

Can you give some examples of this emotionally abusive language please?

motown3000 Fri 28-Mar-14 11:18:17

qo. Have you read my post on the "Unreasonable" Section Stating I thought it was Unreasonable for a Teacher to say a C Grade was only worth throwing in the bin.

My Youngest DD had got a Detention for messing about with a Piece of paper writing C on it , replying to her friend stating what grades her elder brother was expecting for his Gcses.

My daughter fabricated , the truth ( Said Teacher is Extremely Strict) But everyone of her yr 11 English group ( Grammar) got A*.

You need to ask your DD , did she get a Detention for the "Skirt" or was it a combination of things ?

qo Fri 28-Mar-14 11:37:12

I havent shot myself in the foot at all, I've just had a lovely phonecall from the school - who agree that the anti-bullying policy should apply to everyone in the school, and they ARE going to deal with it.

I'm definitely not painting my daughter as some kind of saint, but without explaining her personaily I couldn't have gotten across how upset she was getting about this.

The guy that called me couldn't have been kinder, and apologised that our complaints have been disregarded in the past. He also confirmed that I am not the only parent who has issues with this teacher. I kind of felt when I posted this that people would think I'm just automatically taking my daughters side "No matter what" - But I can assure you that's not the case at all.

Is it so hard to believe that a teacher could be a bully? or is it because my daughter is a child her words are automatically wrong? there's no chance at all that I and my daughter are telling the truth?

qo Fri 28-Mar-14 11:38:08

And the detention was for the skirt yes, that matter is also being dealt with by the lovely fella that just called me from the school.

SirChenjin Fri 28-Mar-14 11:43:01

No, it's not hard to believe that a teacher could bully a child, absolutely not - but without examples of what was said it's hard to determine whether it qualifies as 'emotionally abusive'

qo Fri 28-Mar-14 11:50:26

She's been called stupid, shouted at, asked where on earth she got her genes from, asked why she thinks she's better than everyone else in the school (because her pen ran out) asked why if she can remember something as insignificant as her own birthday why she couldn't remember a sentence in french, given a detention because the SAM learning webiste was down, I put my foot down about that one and said she was NOT doing it. These are just some that I can remember off the top of my head during the last 2 years.

She's generally made to feel scared and cowed by this teacher and this has been an on-going thing - there is no way I would let any other "professional" treat my child like that, to the point she was so scared she was gong to dumb down to be moved out of the set.

It should NOT be disregarded or disbelieved just because the person in question happens to be a teacher. This is exactly why teacher-pupil bullying goes on.

I wish I could copy and paste the comments from her rate my teacher page to give you a better idea, but it can be easily googled to identify the school, and the teacher - so I can't do that. Also living in the local area I KNOW I'm not the only parent who has these issues with her. I'm so glad that lovely man from the school seems to be listening and taking our views on board.

qo Fri 28-Mar-14 11:52:34

He said there are issues with this teachers manner, and she's going to be spoken to about communicating with more consideration and respect, to all pupils but to my daughter specifically.

The rest of her year group teachers know what a good girl she is, she just is a good girl, I'm not painting her to be a saint - that's just how she is.

qo Fri 28-Mar-14 11:55:36

Merrymarigold, if the school had not taken my views on board - I would have gone to the local press, and would not have felt silly in the slightest. In fact I'm sure there would have been a lot of parents who would have joined me in that - she's been doing this for a long time and nothing is being done.

If the school had disregarded my views, should I have just said oh well ok then, and left it there?

The anti bullying policy should apply to EVERYONE, teachers included, that isn't silly.

HPparent Fri 28-Mar-14 12:12:28

OP I complained to the Head of Sixth about derogatory comments made by a teacher to my daughter and others. He was reluctant to call it bullying, though it would be defined as such if such events occur in my workplace. In the end the teacher was given extra training and mentoring and has generally improved. Your daughter is not alone unfortunately and there are bullies in every profession.

qo Fri 28-Mar-14 12:17:16

One of their own defining points of bullying is "make someone feel uncomfortable
over a period of time, where it is difficult for those being bullied to defend themselves"
Which is exactly what was happening.

I don't want this woman pilloried or branded as a bully, I'm not even asking the school to regard it as such - as long as I feel assured that we've been listened to and the teacher in question will be spoken to.

All I want is for my daughter to feel safe and happy at school

Thanks for your reply HP and it's nice it know that sometimes matters are dealt with appropriately. smile

SirChenjin Fri 28-Mar-14 15:02:15

Qo - thank you for the examples smile. What you've described is absolutely unacceptable, and you are quite right to be furious. I hope you get the support that you need from the school, and that your daughter understands that the teacher is behaving abysmally. Good luck.

qo Fri 28-Mar-14 15:19:20

Sir, the teacher I spoke to today (who is responsible for pastoral care) told me that he had spoken to my daughter himself and absolutely assured her that she should feel safe to come and talk to him at any time if any further issues arise.

I was most impressed with how he's handling it, and most relieved to not feel fobbed off - AGAIN!

motown3000 Fri 28-Mar-14 15:20:19

"Why" has the teacher , "singled" out your DD from the other pupils?

I do not understand, why a teacher would just "Pick" on a decent well behaved pupil , when there are pupils that come with a Capital T -trouble.

The school should not be saying "They have had other complaints about said Teacher". I am Sorry but this sounds, like an Episode from Waterloo Road or "Bronson" from Grange Hill.

It is though unacceptable , to talk about any child's family Gene's . The Comment about being stupid is "Appalling" and is from the 70s/ 80s.

If she really hates "kids" why is she in teaching ?

qo Fri 28-Mar-14 15:22:55

If you read the thread Mowtown you will see she hasn't just singled out my daughter.

And I couldnt really give a fig if that's what you think it sounds like, this is just another example of teacher-pupil bullying being disregarded and even likened to an episode from a TV program!

I'm happy with the way it has been dealt with today and that's quite enough for me, grange hill-esque or not.

Viviennemary Fri 28-Mar-14 15:29:46

You are right to be furious and to pursue this further. Unfortunately there are a few teachers who are nasty bullies and get away with it because nothing is done. And don't be fobbed off.

SirChenjin Fri 28-Mar-14 19:47:54

That's great Qo - sounds like you've got a really supportive teacher there smile

qo Fri 28-Mar-14 22:39:04

Absolutely sir, I can't tell you how relieved I was after that phonecall.

My daughter came home very happy after talking with him as well, she said he is lovely!

treas Sat 29-Mar-14 20:54:54

motown3000 - The why doesn't matter. The teacher shouldn't be treating anybody like that regardless.

tethersend Sat 29-Mar-14 21:02:53

Just out of interest, is the teacher in question French?

Not that it excuses her behaviour, but it seems (or seemed a few years back) to be very common for teachers in France to behave in this manner.

zoemaguire Sat 29-Mar-14 22:35:44

MY first thought was also that that sounds like fairly classic French teaching style! Not that all French teachers are like this, but many are. You just learnt to take insults on the chin (not suggesting this is right, just that as a child in the French system when i was growing up you tended to expect to be treated like dirt!)

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