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Author Topic: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74  (Read 3428667 times)

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Cami

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3270 on: January 16, 2013, 02:23:33 PM »
Here he is, the same co-worker from the SS thread (eating breakfast during a parent teacher conference, to refresh memories).  Aside from the story I'll relate below, he has recently brought a pair of javelins in to work (carrying them over his shoulder on the way into the building) with the intention of "practicing" with them on the field after school.  Admin luckily caught wind of this (probably because he was talking to the kids about them since they were propped against his wall) and told him this would not be possible.  Sheesh.

I have a student this year we'll call Tim.  Tim has very mild autism, he is very brilliant (not just memorizing, but analyzing and arguing) but has serious self-esteem issues.  Even a mild comment of, "Please stop doing that" can get him down for the rest of the class period.  We're trying hard to get him to separate a correction from thinking he's just a terrible person or a bad kid.

Yesterday, Tim arrived in my room in a total tizzy.  This isn't unusual but when he's in a state like this it can be hard to get him settled into what the class is doing.  He explained to me that in his previous class (with SS teacher), he had a few coupons for Krispy Kreme.  He was waving these around in people's faces, being a little obnoxious (not unusual for Tim) so the SS teacher took them away (fine).  Instead of setting them aside and moving on, SS teacher proceeded to tear the coupons up, throw them in the trash, and tell Tim, "Your arteries are jumping for joy."

Tim told me that he is a "fat freak" who "can't eat any more donuts."  Tim is overweight, maybe 25 pounds or so, but I told Tim that is arteries are strictly between him and his parents and if SS teacher comments on them again, he should reply, "thank you for your concern."  I cannot BELIEVE SS teacher made this remark to any student, let alone one who we are really watching in terms of self-image.  It's fine for him to put down the coupons, take them away, call home, whatever, but an ELA teacher in no way has any business commenting on someone's ARTERIES with no invitation.

Yes, I reported the incident to the counselor because I know the parents are going to wind up calling the school, and I don't blame them!!!!
As a parent of any child, I'd be on the phone with the principal if a teacher destroyed my child's property. Absolutely unacceptable.

TurtleDove

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3271 on: January 16, 2013, 02:43:37 PM »
... and tell Tim, "Your arteries are jumping for joy."

Tim told me that he is a "fat freak" who "can't eat any more donuts." 

I don't see how Tim made this leap?  I agree the teacher handled this poorly, but she made no comment about his weight.

GSNW

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3272 on: January 16, 2013, 02:48:52 PM »
... and tell Tim, "Your arteries are jumping for joy."

Tim told me that he is a "fat freak" who "can't eat any more donuts." 

I don't see how Tim made this leap?  I agree the teacher handled this poorly, but she made no comment about his weight.

Tim is smart enough to understand that donuts are not healthy, which equals clogged arteries.  I think ANYONE who is insecure about their weight would take a reprimand about food choices to mean that someone thinks they are too fat.  Especially at this age... middle school is a terrible time for many kids in terms of insecurities and self-image.  Teachers have to watch what they say and think about how it will be received.  A snide remark like that - in front of the entire class, no less - is so many kinds of horrible.

Tea Drinker

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3273 on: January 16, 2013, 06:09:36 PM »
... and tell Tim, "Your arteries are jumping for joy."

Tim told me that he is a "fat freak" who "can't eat any more donuts." 

I don't see how Tim made this leap?  I agree the teacher handled this poorly, but she made no comment about his weight.

Most likely he has heard jokes and/or insults (maybe on television) that connect what people "should" eat and being fat. There's a lot of association of donuts with fat people.
Any advice that requires the use of a time machine may safely be ignored.

Hillia

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3274 on: January 16, 2013, 09:30:28 PM »
Re: outsourcing guy.  He could also have landed his company in big trouble.  I know at my company, we have clients that very specifically forbid sending any work overseas (we have a large workforce of developers in India).  We could lose some large contracts and face major fines (my company does a lot of work with state governments) if we were to do that - or if one of our employees did it unofficially.

WolfWay

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3275 on: January 16, 2013, 10:23:40 PM »
Re: outsourcing guy.  He could also have landed his company in big trouble.  I know at my company, we have clients that very specifically forbid sending any work overseas (we have a large workforce of developers in India).  We could lose some large contracts and face major fines (my company does a lot of work with state governments) if we were to do that - or if one of our employees did it unofficially.
I'll see you one better than that, my company has strict rules with the clients not letting us send any of their confidential data outside our countries borders. Where do they put the fall-over relay for when our network goes down? The other side of the planet. <face palm>
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greencat

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3276 on: January 17, 2013, 01:02:22 AM »
You know, I really read dishpit wrong and... well, I was initially surprised you'd call someone that AND that it made it past the filters...
^This.^

Actually, when I hit Traska's post, I thought the word was the dirty anagram too!

BB-VA

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3277 on: January 17, 2013, 06:06:35 AM »
You know, I really read dishpit wrong and... well, I was initially surprised you'd call someone that AND that it made it past the filters...

Ha!  It took a few read-throughs of the original post and yours not to wonder the same!

hmmmm....could that be a new addition to the EHell vocabulary?   ;)

edited to make more sense
"The Universe puts us in places where we can learn. They are never easy places, but they are right. Wherever we are, it's the right place and the right time. Pain that sometimes comes is part of the process of constantly being born."
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Ginger G

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3278 on: January 17, 2013, 07:56:21 AM »
Quote
As a parent of any child, I'd be on the phone with the principal if a teacher destroyed my child's property. Absolutely unacceptable.

This brings back unfortunate memories of my third grade teacher, someone who SHOULD have been subjected to Professional Darwinism (in my opinion).  For some reason, this woman decided she didn't like me.  I have no idea why, I was a pretty shy kid and did fairly well in school.  I had changed to a new school that year and didn't have any friends to act up with yet either.  Anyway, a couple of events from that year stand out in my memories.  One time, we were getting ready to start a math subject and she told us to get our rulers out.  These were wooden rulers that had holes spaced along them for some reason.  Pretty much every student in the class proceeded to stick their pencils in one of the holes and twirl the ruler like a helicopter blade.  Wanting to fit in with my new classmates, I of course did the same thing.  Out of a class of 20+ students, she walks up to me, snatches my ruler and breaks it into pieces.  I was humiliated and had a difficult time not crying in front of everyone.  I told my mom I lost it so I could get another one.

The second event, and this one I did tell my mother about...It was a "free period" and everyone was working on various things.  Prett much everyone was talking, and some kids were out of their seats, milling about.  The boy in front of me turns around and starts talking to me, I couldn't hear him due to the noise in the classroom, so I stood up to lean forward to hear what he was saying.  She comes up out of nowhere and HITS me, hard, on my bottom.  Once again, she singled me out for punishment in front of everyone.  This time I was so upset, I told my mother about it when I got home.  She was infuriated and immediately called the school.  The teacher ended up having to apologize to me and she left me alone after that.

Hazmat

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3279 on: January 17, 2013, 08:15:22 AM »
Quote
As a parent of any child, I'd be on the phone with the principal if a teacher destroyed my child's property. Absolutely unacceptable.

This brings back unfortunate memories of my third grade teacher, someone who SHOULD have been subjected to Professional Darwinism (in my opinion).  For some reason, this woman decided she didn't like me.  I have no idea why, I was a pretty shy kid and did fairly well in school.  I had changed to a new school that year and didn't have any friends to act up with yet either.  Anyway, a couple of events from that year stand out in my memories.  One time, we were getting ready to start a math subject and she told us to get our rulers out. These were wooden rulers that had holes spaced along them for some reason. Pretty much every student in the class proceeded to stick their pencils in one of the holes and twirl the ruler like a helicopter blade.  Wanting to fit in with my new classmates, I of course did the same thing.  Out of a class of 20+ students, she walks up to me, snatches my ruler and breaks it into pieces.  I was humiliated and had a difficult time not crying in front of everyone.  I told my mom I lost it so I could get another one.
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Kaora

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3280 on: January 17, 2013, 01:55:44 PM »
... and tell Tim, "Your arteries are jumping for joy."

Tim told me that he is a "fat freak" who "can't eat any more donuts." 

I don't see how Tim made this leap?  I agree the teacher handled this poorly, but she made no comment about his weight.

I can see it.  I'm PDD-NOS (Pervasive Development Disorder - Not Otherwise Specified, or, high functioning on the autistic spectrum), and I've always had self esteem issues.  I once had a really mean third grade teacher who just decided she didn't like me, and when she asked me of my opinion on a field trip to the BLM [Bureau of Land Management] Office and I was quite honest with her.  I said it was "Boring."  Blunt honesty is an autistic trait, though I've learned differently later. :-\

Let's say she got angry at me for some reason I still don't understand, that she sent me home right there and then, and told me I was going home.  My third grade mind didn't connect home with office, so I started walking him, taking the literal interpretation.  My mum found me, crying, and I'm not kidding if I said it was in the middle of a rainstorm.

Generally, she just singled me out on a lot of things, but that really stuck out.

If its any help, though, I ended up getting the stomach flu the same year.  I ended up barfing six or so times in her classroom.  I didn't mean to, it happened, but I'm a tiny bit giggly of it now.

jayhawk

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3281 on: January 17, 2013, 03:57:24 PM »
Well-played, Kaora.

Ceallach

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3282 on: January 17, 2013, 04:28:08 PM »
The thing that disturbs me about a lot of the recent PD stories here, is that so far in many cases the darwinism part doesn't seem to be effective.  I gotta say, if the managers of those employees worked for me, it would be the managers who would be committing PD by their actions, or in this case lack thereof.   There is no excuse for ignoring such blatant performance issues, it's unfair to the other staff, unfair to the company (costing money & resources) and these incompetent ineffectual managers should all be fired IMHO.  It is their job to deal with employees who are not doing their job!

Management is not hard.   It's not for everybody - you have to be decisive, strategic, and not afraid to make the unpopular decisions - but it's not hard.    People seem to forget that there is no downside to performance management / coaching of staff!  There are 2 possible outcomes - either they improve and everybody is happy, or they leave (either voluntarily because they can't handle the coaching or because they don't improve enough and are terminated), so addressing problems is really a win-win scenario.  Now, I admit there are rare situations where an employee is so indispensable or have such criticial skills that a manager has to tread with care in performance management, and tolerate issues that wouldn't normally be put up with.   But that's unusual.    It blows my mind that there are so many people in management roles who are unwilling or unable to take such basic and necessary action to manage their companies and their teams effectively.
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Dr. F.

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3283 on: January 17, 2013, 05:31:31 PM »
The thing that disturbs me about a lot of the recent PD stories here, is that so far in many cases the darwinism part doesn't seem to be effective.  I gotta say, if the managers of those employees worked for me, it would be the managers who would be committing PD by their actions, or in this case lack thereof.   There is no excuse for ignoring such blatant performance issues, it's unfair to the other staff, unfair to the company (costing money & resources) and these incompetent ineffectual managers should all be fired IMHO.  It is their job to deal with employees who are not doing their job!

Management is not hard.   It's not for everybody - you have to be decisive, strategic, and not afraid to make the unpopular decisions - but it's not hard.    People seem to forget that there is no downside to performance management / coaching of staff!  There are 2 possible outcomes - either they improve and everybody is happy, or they leave (either voluntarily because they can't handle the coaching or because they don't improve enough and are terminated), so addressing problems is really a win-win scenario.  Now, I admit there are rare situations where an employee is so indispensable or have such criticial skills that a manager has to tread with care in performance management, and tolerate issues that wouldn't normally be put up with.   But that's unusual.    It blows my mind that there are so many people in management roles who are unwilling or unable to take such basic and necessary action to manage their companies and their teams effectively.

It's not hard, but it always astonishes me just how BADLY most managers do their jobs. The ones that do it well really stand out, at least in my experience.

snowflake

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #3284 on: January 17, 2013, 05:48:25 PM »
The thing that disturbs me about a lot of the recent PD stories here, is that so far in many cases the darwinism part doesn't seem to be effective.  I gotta say, if the managers of those employees worked for me, it would be the managers who would be committing PD by their actions, or in this case lack thereof.   There is no excuse for ignoring such blatant performance issues, it's unfair to the other staff, unfair to the company (costing money & resources) and these incompetent ineffectual managers should all be fired IMHO.  It is their job to deal with employees who are not doing their job!

Management is not hard.   It's not for everybody - you have to be decisive, strategic, and not afraid to make the unpopular decisions - but it's not hard.    People seem to forget that there is no downside to performance management / coaching of staff!  There are 2 possible outcomes - either they improve and everybody is happy, or they leave (either voluntarily because they can't handle the coaching or because they don't improve enough and are terminated), so addressing problems is really a win-win scenario.  Now, I admit there are rare situations where an employee is so indispensable or have such criticial skills that a manager has to tread with care in performance management, and tolerate issues that wouldn't normally be put up with.   But that's unusual.    It blows my mind that there are so many people in management roles who are unwilling or unable to take such basic and necessary action to manage their companies and their teams effectively.

I'll amen this.  It might just be me but I actually held up my own career because I frankly would rather take Organic Chemistry over and over than have to manage.  And for me, organic chemistry ranks sort of between surgery and broken limbs.

I finally bit the bullet and I'm making a go at it - and it's even harder than I though it would be.  The worst part?  HR!!!!  But to be fair, in the long run being a bad manager turns out worse for you than not wading in and tackling the problems head-on.