Sunday, December 23, 2007

No Talking Please

What kind of responsibility does a religious school have to its teachers? How do things work out when a parent, who is a large donor, sees things differently than the teacher? Where does the administration come down? These are tough questions, tough choices that have to be made.

At the religious school where I work, two students were chatting during one session. The teacher, trying to teach and having a tough time of it, separated the two students. Apparently this was a wrong move. The mother of one of the student’s came in and was furious. She started balling out the teacher in front of the other students. The parent pointed out that this wasn’t regular school, this was religious school and students, after spending a full day in regular school, should be allowed to talk.

The teacher directed the parent to talk with the administrator of the religious school. Now, I have all this information second hand, and only through one source, one side, but apparently the administrator told the teacher that certainly there is not a need to separate children at religious school.

I am not sure if the parents of this student are big donors to the shul. I am not sure exactly what was said, or even if the administrator agreed, but certainly that was what the teacher told me. Even if it was not exactly what happened, it certainly is the way the teacher perceived things to happen.

The result? The teacher left midyear. I understand the frustration on everyone involved but I do think when a teacher leaves mid-year, the ones who really suffer are the students.

Hopefully everything will work out for the best!

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