Slowly, it Evolves…Victims Can No Longer Isolate Themselves.

I was very reclusive in my youth. I joked around about drinking and partying and such, in the fashion of Cheech and Chong.  I discovered after a while that I was merely trying to “fit in”.  I have since discovered that I don’t have to fit in to any particular niche.  I am who I am. People can accept me or not accept me, but there are two things about me that never change over time. I am honest.  I speak my mind.  Not many people can handle that trait.  It comes from having been through a lot of hell, much I do not really discuss, but when I hear people talk as if their pain is the only one that matters, I can come unglued. 

There are different types of suffering and abuse in this world.  I know it from a place no one should ever have had to experience it–at home.  I am currently writing a book on this, but for those of you who follow my bullying blogs, I don’t see how we can possibly stop bullying or get anything productive done in society by  isolating ourselves from one another.  The pain of the homosexual child being bullied is every bit as real and intense as the child who gets beaten, raped and abused at home–only to come to school to suffer the taunts of those bullies (and sometimes get assaulted even further). 

Here is the point of my post.  Anyone who has ever been bullied has experienced their own type of prison.  That prison was the closest thing to Hell on Earth for many people.  However, as intense as our pain is, we must unite with others who have been bullied and abused to make our voices heard as one voice.  If not, we are failing every generation that follows.   It does not matter if one is homosexual or not, or if one is from another country or not.  What matters is that a united front stands a better chance of accomplishing anything than a divided front.   We are failing our children if we do not address this as one voice, one people and one nation.

I am no activist and do not wish to be so now.  However there is/are voice(s) out there that people  will hear.  You voice might prevent the next Jonesboro.  Your voice might prevent the next Columbine.  Your voice might stop the next child from taking matters into his or her own hands to address his/her abusers and ruin the rest of his/her life.

Where are you?  This country needs you to get together and speak up.  The children are depending on you.  Forget the news networks.  None of them talk much about this until something major happens!  It is time to be proactive and not reactive.  You do not have to have a child in public school to ask a school board what is being done to stop school violence and make them answer.  People around the world must unite to stop bullying on a global scale as well.  

It is time to quit comparing battle scars with each other (and with other groups and unite).   My pain is no less or more intense than yours even if it is a different situation. Being separate does not solve anything.  You will get told what you “want to hear” and then nothing will come of it, but if people who have been severely abused and bullied were to rally together–someone would listen and take notice.

I am going through a healing process myself–even after all these years. I am starting to see some things differently, yet some things are unchanged.  I suppose we will all be evolving and changing throughout life.  Give me time. I am getting there and so will you.  We can work on this together,  can we not?  I do not feel that isolating ourselves as groups from one another is an option any longer.

Entitlement…Where Do We Draw the Line as a Nation?

Did anyone think I was going to talk about Egypt, the radicalism in Islam or some crud in general?  No…This is going to be relatively  simple.  The state of the world has nothing to do with political movements or individual acts of violence or moral turpitude.  It has more to do with the state of the hearts of man.  In general, mankind has embraced a mentality that we are entitled to be “taken care of”.  Pardon me…I thought are all supposed to work and pull our own weight for the simple fact that if we let anyone else “take care of us” like our government “nanny” proposes, then the servant becomes the master over us.  I covet no man’s fortune that he made or any woman hers. I can take care of myself and don’t expect to be taken care of.  I am part Native American and Irish/German and I do not believe even for one minute that because my ancestors suffered, that I should receive someone else’s hard-earned dime.  That is a shameful mentality that spits on the graves of those who did suffer since this generation does not even begin to comprehend their suffering.  It wasn’t their blood that was shed by the crack of a whip or the bullet of a gun.  It was not them who got raped and beaten for wanting to learn to read.  It was not them who had to endure having their families ripped apart because they were sold to the highest bidder either.  My Native ancestors suffered long before any other continent sent their people over here.

If you want to come down to the brass tacks of this matter, then it is only the female that should get any compensation from the world…Why not? They’ve been screwed over since time began, right?  However given that I am part Native American, Irish/German and Pennsylvania Dutch (according to my grandmother), NOBODY should be getting reparations unless I get a five way cut–because of the fact that I am female!  However, let’s get off of the subject of ME. This isn’t about me…

Remember this song?  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Ni_c0IMP-c  “Everybody Wants to Rule the World”…It’s true.

We are seeing it–along with various groups who think they are the ones that should lead the way.  We have the Communists, who are totally out of touch with reality.  We have radical religious groups saying that they will come from their OWN countries and fly their own flag on the White House…Then we have those groups who say they will take land from this nation without firing a shot.  None of these groups have vision.  They cannot make decisions that are best for all when they are only centered on themselves and trying to sell America a “package” that they say is a privilege when in fact it is outright oppression.  What vision they do have is an unrealistic one, based on some idea that they think Americans will just lay down and allow itself to be raped again and again.

Things will change in 2012.  There is a group in control now that believes it is entitled to dictate what is best for every man, woman and child in this country.  They have, in essence started to behave more like monarchs and less like the public servants they were elected to be.  The people have now seen this and are disenchanted with them.   These “servants”–and that is what they are–they work for the PEOPLE and will find that out soon enough.  We as a nation know that they are no “Camelot” and that the last good vestige of hope died with Bobby Kennedy in 1968. 

They also know that many are taking direction and money from one foreigner–by the last name of Soros.  He is the puppet master.  It is time to let these servants know that in 2012, their puppet master will be put on a leash and brought down a few notches into reality.  There are a few key players that should be charged with treason and sedition–not all of whom I will name here, but Soros is one, Chouderay is another.  Both of these men are dangerous to mankind as we know it to be.  They both seek to control the people and deny them the basic rights that our ancestors fought and died for.

Both of those men are of the thought train that they know what is best for the world, and it is the propagators of all of this New World Order crap that are allowing both to run amok and spread anger and discontent.  They know they can’t accomplish all they want on this continent, so now they are focusing on their homelands–and they want to destroy Israel.

Let them try it.  Israel has more than enough weapons to take care of that issue, I’m sure. 

Pardon me, but I think that I know what is best for me.  I will not go back to being chattel, and I certainly will never submit to orders to wear certain attire in this country.  I will not give up my right to vote and be with whomever I please to satisfy the demands of a maddened zealot either.  I want nothing from that entity and that entity has no right to want anything of me or my people–my America. It is time to wake up America.  It is time to fire these people who want to put you and your children on a collar with a leash.  It is time to take back our country, take back our educational system and take back our lives. 

Let me be clear on the education issue.  Foreign Languages and classes on any religions should be ELECTIVES–not mandatory subjects.  Teachers should be teaching students in the fields that they have their specialties in.  If they teach English Literature, they should only be teaching that area–not math, science and such.  They should not have to write separate lesson plans for students that they are not properly trained to deal with either.  If a teacher is only certified to teach English and Social Studies and has no special education training, they should NOT be teaching special ed. students in their classrooms.  This system has become deplorable because there are instances where a teacher is having to write 5 sets of lesson plans per class period.  Why? Because they have to work with all five special needs groups in a regular classroom.  Why?  Entitlement…IDEA has been twisted so now that any student–even those who are higher level are now in a classroom with children who are often disruptive and lower level. I am not talking about learning disabled (LD)–I”m referring to emotionally disturbed (ED). 

On a typical day 4 groups of students will be working on worksheets or other activities while the home room teacher has to take a small group of special needs students and work with them as a group in the back of the classroom.  How is that not segregating?  It has to be done anyway to give each group time, but these teachers should not have to pull a Penn and Teller stunt to be able to teach an entire classroom.  CEO’s and administrators who have little experience with the classroom environment are looking for ways to trim the budgets and cut costs so they unfairly burden less qualified teachers to be all things to all groups.

IDEA has to be revamped.  There is no way around this. What started off as a novel idea does not work anymore. It originated from “entitlement” but there is no way that a single teacher nowadays can be a messianic figure to a group of students. Classes need to be smaller and manageable so that the students can get a real education.  IF this means that the least restrictive environment is a separate classroom for core subjects, with these students getting their socialization during lunch, PE, choir, etc…Then so be it.  There is no reason to put a physically disabled student in a separate classroom if he or she is able to do the work.  However, that teacher should not be expected to handle J-Tubes and Body fluids from diapers and such.   That is what either nurse’s aides or certified personnel are for.  This budget cutting makes it impossible to hire  more teachers and qualified aides, and this  is what is causing the problems in education.

In a classroom environment within corrections, there is no distinction.  If an ED person acts up, they are kicked out of the class.  IF these offenders do not want to go to class and keep refusing–let them drop out but make them serve their entire sentence for refusing to complete their education.  Make it an automatic disqualifier for parole if they refuse GED classes and/or miss a test with no legitimate reason.   THEN they will start taking it seriously. 

Now back to public schools.  It is time to hold the administrators and boards to a higher standard.  Parents need to demand that the DOE and the NEA be disbanded because they DID create the monster that our tax dollars is now feeding.  They are no longer working to properly educate children, but are working to create division in the home and in the community.  Tax dollars are gobbled up by these two entities.  If they demand justification for my reasoning, look at the literacy scores in the US for the past 30 years.  They have gone down steadily since the NEA was allowed to lobby for crap that this country did not need or want put into place.  Look at the countless debates that the textbooks they endorse causes.  Look at the agendas that districts are trying to shove down parents’ throats because of all these entities which feel that they are “entitled” to tell you what is best for your own children.  Is THIS what you really want? 

As far as the recipients of welfare and unemployment, it is fine that you get that as long as you really need it, but to me if you aren’t trying to get a job, they should immediately cut you off when they check that mainframe computer and find that you really didn’t apply to x number of potential employers than you actually claimed.  In fact, you should be prosecuted for fraud if you did that, sorry.  As for welfare recipients, getting benefits should be tied to a debit card that will NOT allow the purchases of alcohol or tobacco.  Now it is true that the food stamp purchases single out non food items, but the welfare funds do not.  It is time to remedy this.  IF they cannot work, they shouldn’t be buying alcohol and tobacco with THOSE funds when they have children living at home .   I saw it almost every day when I worked in a retail business.  Given today’s prices, I say it is abuse of my dime to allow it.

In short, you are entitled to determine how the “public servants” spend and allocate your dime.  Why not take advantage of that and vote them out before they make things any worse?  It is time to draw a line in the sand and fight for what is best for this nation to stay alive–not cave in to what some people think that they are “entitled” to regardless of where they are in this country!  This nation has been bullied long enough by the politicians that have done nothing but proven how self-serving they are and have left border states to fend for themselves as much as they can.  That is something I will address later on.

Bullying a Teacher is not Free Speech!

Bullying a Teacher is not Free Speech!.   And people wonder why there is a teacher shortage…Give me a break!

Mother of 13 Year Old Hailey Dunn Makes Statement

Billie Dunn, the mother of missing teen Hailey Dunn, issued a statement on 1-31-2011.  You can read the article and hear her statement here.  Mrs. Dunn claims that the police have been negligent in not naming other persons of interest in the case.    Here is the link.  The reward is $25,000.00

http://www.ktxs.com/news/26683465/detail.html

Please stay vigilant and on the look out for her.  Her father has been  handing out flyers along his work route all the way to the Mexican border in an attempt to raise awareness and in hope that someone, somewhere has seen his daughter.

Another form of Bullying…

The type of bullying I will address today has nothing to do with children.  It has to do with adults who are supposed to be working in a professional capacity.  This is not an opinion on sexual harassment (although that is a form of workplace bullying that all are familiar with), but of another more devious kind of bullying.  I will call it professional libel.  In this I will address it as it occurs in the educational environment, but whether it takes place in the educational system or in other areas of state employment such as corrections, mental health, etc…It is ever-present in every lounge and in every aspect of state business.

When a person commits professional libel, they spread rumors or talk of something they do not like about a professional in such a manner that it results in the person being unable to teach effectively and/or creates a hostile work environment.  New teachers have their own ideas to bring into a classroom as they are taught new ideas at a university.  If a teacher with years of experience sees a way that this teacher can improve, it would behoove him or her to try to give feedback and/or mentor the new teacher during times when he or she is not busy.  It is a known fact that many new teachers burn out and/or quit the field within five years.  I feel a study should be done on the real reason behind this trend. My opinion is that the new teachers are “outsiders” and often ignored.

An administrator or senior teacher who does not sit and have a talk with that teacher, but goes to complain behind the back of that person is NO professional.  It is not the new teacher that is in the wrong field, but the person doing the complaining.  In some states, that results in complaints of creating a hostile work environment which are successful, largely in part, because nobody has tried to help the new teacher improve upon his/her practices.  Often it is not the practices these people who these complainers  have a problem with, but the fact that the new teacher has his or her own ideas or opinions that do not fit with those of the clique.  Yes you have read that correctly.

When it is found that a “clique” is operating in this fashion against a new teacher, then it is the clique that should be transferred to other schools in the district (different ones) and if an administrator is found to be a part of the problem, demote that person for setting an improper example.  All employees need feedback and if senior teachers and administrators are  not willing to give it in order to address or correct the issue(s), but then work against the new teacher, then they are not leaders.  They are problem children and should be moved or dismissed from their positions.  If that new teacher is not doing anything in violation of a code of ethics and others are willing to slam and talk about this person behind his/her back, it is NOT the new teacher that is violating anything but those doing this garbage behind closed doors. In many states, these people can be also be brought up on ethics charges in front of their state education agency.  This is why they will never leave anything in writing, and will not work to address issues, but junior administrators that are in on this will not renew contracts and/or bully a teacher into resigning their position at the end of the year.  Some superintendents are aghast when they find that a teacher suddenly resigns, only to find out through third parties that one of those under him/or her had been practicing this trend of bullying because the new teacher didn’t tend to “blend” well with staff…THEN that superintendent has to take action against that person because the new teacher was harassed not for what he or she did IN the classroom, but for what he or she did not do outside the classroom, such as attend a soiree at the principal’s house on super bowl night.  What they don’t understand is that if that new teacher is savvy enough to contact their union and the board finds that the new teacher was not properly mentored, trained and then slammed, those who did it CAN LOSE THEIR jobs and certifications (worst case scenario) and probation for that offense is not something that they want on their records.

SO these types of “bullies” (which is what they are) resort to other tactics…They gossip…They complain…they want to feel important so the new ideas being brought in are some sort of threat to them and their ways. They never bother to talk to the new teacher or include him/her into certain things they all do together.  They are resistant to anything new being brought to the school environment because they fear a loss of their own control.  They fear change.  They won’t listen to the new teachers’ ideas for fundraising and such because “the old ways are the best ways”.  If we expect a change in the way we are educating our children, we had better take a very hard look at how new teachers are treated and why.  A five-year burn out rate is unacceptable as is ostracizing a new teacher for not being part of the “clique”.

Perhaps districts should be made to include something that the Wal~Mart Corporation has done.  All new teachers should be given “Grass Roots Surveys” statewide that they can mail in themselves.  This will give the education agencies a good idea of why the new teachers are quitting and whether or not the problems that are causing the shortages are due to the fault of administration or personal circumstance.  Just make the forms to where they are available for teachers to request and then to ensure their identity being protected, allow them to do the survey ANONYMOUSLY.  This way, over the next few years, the agencies can learn more effective ways of addressing the needs of the new teacher and ensuring that the “problem children”  (if a majority of surveys indicate hostility and improper treatment of the new teacher) are properly removed from the payroll.  It will also cut down on lawsuits resulting from such behavior.

A lot of these new teachers are also ostracized for their beliefs.  If they are Christian, Jew, Hindu or Muslim–they are (more often than not) ignored.  Ironically in my careers both in corrections and as a teacher,  the only group of people who seem to be treating these new personnel with any amount of decency are those in the fields who profess to be atheists.  Atheists do not judge by the faith one professes to be but by their strengths and weaknesses and they often try to help them to improve when those of opposing faiths literally shut them off.  Not all atheists are closed-minded and don’t care what one’s faith is because not all of them ascribe to the hate speech given by the likes of Bill Maher and Joy Behar.

Because these administrators don’t have a faith in a supreme being, they are more apt to judge the new person by how the kids improve both academically and behavior wise.  It has been my experience that when an atheist administrator sees a student who was about to end up in jail change because of the positive influence any teacher has had on his/her thinking, that atheist is grateful that someone got through to the child.  In some cases where the atheist is the new teacher, I have seen them get ostracized by those of faith also, which is equally unfair.

Professional libel should be addressed long before it comes to a point where the new teacher ends up going to the board for help. If it gets that far, the administrators failed in doing their own job.  In a professional capacity, it would behoove these people to sit down with that new teacher (whether a probationary teacher or certified substitute) and discuss what they are hearing and make suggestions for improvement.  Many schools cannot keep teachers or get substitutes to stay due to this problem.  For example, when a savvy superintendent sees that there is one school in his/her district that cannot get and keep substitutes (both long and short-term) and teachers are quitting in the middle of the school year he or she should be asking “What is the REAL issue here?” and call the substitutes in that removed themselves from that school’s substitute list.  When a particular school has to resort to using aides as teachers, then there is a big problem somewhere.  Substitutes who removed themselves are more than willing to tell things as they see them.  They are not bound as the regular classroom teacher.  I can personally attest that in the district I work at, a fifth grade math teacher quit in November, and then the long-term substitute  hired to replace her quit two weeks later.  The math teacher was so stressed she left many of her classroom tools behind–ones she personally paid for.  I know because I had her class for about 3 days before the first long-term substitute came in.  I am friends with about 8 teachers there who have known me for years.  I know the real reason behind much of it.

Many of the others subs have taken themselves off of that school’s list–myself included because of what I have seen and experienced.  Everything that is happening is due to a few individuals who don’t know how to NOT complicate things.  The total number of substitutes that removed themselves from that schools list is between 10-20 in less than 6 months.  That is tragic. My parting shot to that school came when a student asked “Why is it that you and Ms… are the only subs who ever come back to work with us?”  Another student said, “Because we are bad.”  I asked, “Did someone say that to you?”  Several students said, “Well yeah…Duh..”  I told them all, “Whoever said that is not being honest.  It is not your fault and you shouldn’t blame yourselves for it.” They had already heard from another teacher that I might not be back next week.  One asked, “You will come back won’t  you?”  I told them I most likely wouldn’t, but it would be because I’m seeking positions elsewhere and my mother needs for me to move close to her.”  IF there is one thing I will not do, it is lie to my students.  The teacher who told them that had already discussed this with me because some of them had already heard about my mother and were upset that I might quit too.

Sadly, there is an ugly truth behind why the other teachers and substitutes drop from that school.  It was even sadder that a group of three are to blame for the whole issue that led to the teacher leaving and the long-term substitutes walking out.  One of them telling the kids that  they are to blame was the last straw for me, but I am sure that those responsible for the powder keg are tenured…They’ll come back until death or retirement–whichever comes first.  That includes an administrator that I once respected, but have since found him to be as hypocritical as those who cause the problems in the first place.

So I will end this with ONE simple question…How are we supposed to create a positive learning environment for the students, when the working environment can be so negative that even the students know what is going on before the teachers who are being hurt by it do?  Four students knew why the math teacher was quitting before the rest of the staff did because they were sitting in the principal’s office while the assistant principal (with his door wide open) was relaying to the math teacher things he was hearing from the “gossip train”.  Hell, no wonder she quit mid-term.  That was VERY unprofessional.  If this happens in other areas of employment (especially state employment), it needs to be swiftly addressed.