Thursday, July 10, 2008

Teachers as "legislator bullies" left off of yesterday's post.

Yesterday I had a post titled The Teacher As Bully I left off teachers as "legislator bullies." If you take a look at both the house and the senate you will find a disproportional number of "educrats" compared to the percentage of "educrats" in the general population. Why are there so many "educrats" who are legislators? There are at least two reasons, number one is the teachers' unions, they are an extremely wealthy, large and powerful group and they throw millions of our tax dollars annually at candidates that will push their agenda. The second reason is they have the time, with a short work year and retirement ranging from age 55 to 60 there are plenty of them who have the time to do the unions dirty work.

We saw this, this past year with legislation regarding "adequate education", education until age 18, legislation regarding kindergarten and legislation effecting home schoolers. Legislators are doing everything in there power to get more children in public schools because more children means more money and more money in the pockets of "educrats." It also means less money in taxpayers pockets.

Cathy Peschke

The Teacher As Bully

One of the biggest problems in schools today is Bullies - not student
Bullies but Teacher Bullies. Students' biggest role models after their parents are teachers, in part due to the amount of time they spend in a classroom. We will continue to see an increase in student bullies until we address the problem of teacher bullies. We see teacher on teacher bullying with unions and we also see teacher on administrator bullying with insane teacher contracts that tie administrator's hands. We see teacher on student bullying because teachers often do not know how to properly handle difficult students. We see teachers and paraprofessionals bullying with their attacks on parents and students with the "labeling" of children. Lastly we see teacher on parent bullying through the PTA, the push of tax increases on parents in town meetings, through the children via book bags and classroom conversations, and holding towns hostages with the possibility of strikes during contract talks.


Bill Page, Education Consultant has an excellent article titled The Teacher As Bully online at

The Teacher As Bully
By Bill Page Educational Consultant Published 12/2/2007

The Teacher As Bully
The current focus on the problem of "bullying" has produced a flurry of programs, mandates, legal action, books, articles, and web sites; but I have yet to see research on the insidious behavior of the biggest school bully of them all—the teacher.

By Bill Page
Education Consultant

Students who don't conform, don't hand in assignments, don't abide by rules and procedures, and who are disengaged, apathetic, and oblivious to bad marks, test results, and low grades, are the scourge of every teacher, though such students exist to varying degrees and numbers in every classroom. Two or three such "troublemakers" categorized as "at-risk" can create havoc, and cause inordinate frustration, off-task time, management problems, and discipline concerns for hard-working, well-intentioned teachers. In too many schools such students are in the majority.Attempts to get the interest, to correct the behavior, and to change the attitude of these recalcitrant, uncooperative, intractable students frequently cause teachers to resort to classroom control strategies that are not only counter productive, but that actually transform teachers into the biggest bullies in school.

Three particular problems form the basis of the teacher as bully: First, many teachers, who were good students when they were in school, fail to understand such misbehavior as defense mechanisms of students who are embarrassed, bored, or fearful of showing their incompetence.Second, in their own school experiences and teacher training, they had little opportunity to learn alternative responses to uncooperative students.Third, teachers frequently employ teaching strategies based on faulty assumptions and erroneous beliefs about negative motivation, reluctant learners, and the underlying causes of students' hostile, anti-learning, anti-teacher attitude.

Believing that punitive responses, withholding approval, using embarrassment, teasing, shame, sarcasm, and failure will cause students to improve their behavior, teachers frequently employ the very same control methods used by student bullies to intimidate their victims. Probably only a few teachers resort to deliberate bullying, humiliation, or intimidation, but too many others use these techniques thoughtlessly, automatically, subconsciously, or because they have learned that bullying, without naming it as such, is an acceptable form of student control and classroom management.

Teachers Have Power
Although teacher's intentions, reasons for control, and feelings are quite different from those of student bullies, the effect on the victim and the methods used are precisely the same.But, since teachers are role models who possess overwhelming power, authority, and influence in school, their bullying is far worse than that of notorious schoolyard bullying.In addition, teachers' lack of awareness, unwillingness, or inability to acknowledge their role, makes their bullying all the more insidious and deplorable

School culture itself can contribute to bullying. Teacher bullying behaviors are driven by the demand that individuals conform to academic and behavioral expectations whether or not those demands are appropriate or even possible.I was reminded of student perception of teacher behavior, as I observed one of my daughters, a fourth grader, playing school with three of her friends in front of the apartments where we lived.As the game began, everyone wanted to be the teacher.It is no fun being a student.Shannon, a sixth grader, who was a grade level or two above the other three, easily won the starring role.

Her performance was absolutely stellar.Whatever anyone's stereotype of the portrayal of teacher might be, Shannon played it flawlessly.From the yardstick she used as a pointer to slam against the knee-high wall, which served as her imaginary desk, to her voice inflection, intonation, gestures, and exaggerated articulation; she was a teacher. She gave orders reminiscent of my old Army drill sergeant and meted out punishment fast and furious along with nonverbal gestures and hostility that caused me to cringe.As I expected, because the students, unlike in real school, were volunteers there to play and have fun, the game didn't last long.

With the intimidation by schools and teachers, with the labeling, name-calling, judging, belittling and intimidating aspects of the No Child Left Behind Act, it seems all too logical that the punitive, coercive pressures should be extended to students in individual classrooms wherein teachers can take on the role of "Big Bad Bullies".Teachers, serving as role models, condone bullying behavior in those students eager to identify with the teacher, gain approval, and who avoid identifying with the failing and fearful students.

To view the rest of the article visit

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Croydon School Board Meeting.

The Croydon School Board meeting is scheduled for tonight, Croydon residents are still awaiting answers to the tuition scandal. Will Croydon residents get the answers they need? Croydon residents were sent questionnaires this past spring. The SAU sent out the questionnaire to the residents of Croydon. Residents have yet to hear the results of the questionnaire and no further news has been heard as to when the next planning committee meeting will take place.

Cathy Peschke

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

NEA Convention

Mike Antonucci of the Education Intelligence Association has updates of the NEA Convention on his BLOG Intercepts. Intercepts is a must read this past week. Obama has labeled himself the candidate of change. The NEA has endorsed Obama by the lowest margin of any other democratic presidential candidate, they appear not to be ready for the changes Obama wants to make. The NEA booed Obama when he mentioned both charter schools and merit pay. The videos can be seen on the EIA website, what is most interesting is that in later videos the NEA rewrote history and took out the comments about charter schools and merit pay that Obama made.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Debbi Tepper

Lennie Jarratt a fellow education reformist and tax fighter requested I share the following story. His neighbor Debbi Tepper died May 28th, 2008 after contracting bronchitis, that same day the government was declaring a Sherriff’s sale on her home. If you are inclined to help and learn more about Debbi please visit the website set up by friends.

Lennie Jarratt also works for the Sam Adams Alliance.