Saturday, 17 January 2009

I Gotta Get Outta This Place!

OK, so I have been ineffective in getting my point across to my boss. He hasn't noticed that I'm not speaking to him, and I'm guessing that my plan to work to rule will just get me into deeper trouble. I did go and speak to my Union about his behaviour and we have clarified that as I only work four days a week i.e. 0.8, then I am only obliged to work 0.8 of directed time (after school meetings etc). Given that our school is run on the principles of a dictatorship, my hope of actually getting out of some after school meetings or duties is destined to failure. It matters not one iota that it is within my rights. The upshot of even suggesting that I do anything other than work myself into an early grave is met with a frosty stare. More than once, when I have been in tears at the events unfolding in front of me, I have been told to "Just get on with it" or that I will "Just have to cope". It really is an evil system, that I am in.

My colleague, a quiet, well educated women, with a crippling lack of self-confidence, is suffering from the institutional bullying that pervades our school. Somehow she has managed to draw the fire of the powers that be. In addition to this, the kids have also been picking on her, and making false claims about her teaching prowess. In any normal school, the teacher would be believed above the stories that vindictive teenagers can make up, but not in my school. Oh, no. Here the lies and exaggerated complaints are presented as evidence, detailing how crap you are.

Senior management have offered to 'help her improve' (ha! not to stop the bullying we note!). With one hand they are promising to support her, and on the other they made her read a pile of nasty comments made by the students! Excuse my sarcasm, but how the hell is that supposed to help?? I did the decent thing and burnt the pile of poisonous papers for her, (without reading them).

Anyway, this is my point: if I decide to work the hours I'm entitled to i.e. not attend certain meetings, then I imagine a similar document will be compiled about me. Every time I forget to do my duty after school, someone will write it down; every time I fail to keep up with the impossible marking policy, it will be noted; every time I type data into the wrong column, I will be making a noose for myself. Do I really want to do that? Do I really want to be bullied like that? What are my options here?

I've just got to succumb or leave.

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