Monday, November 21, 2016

Justice Only in Injury or Death

     This is an old case and related to an old post but it is still an issue and still wrong. My son was denied his life saving medicine while he was incarcerated for using said medicine. The case was dropped because, well, they had nothing against him but, the fact still remains that he could have died while in jail. The other fact that remains is that no one cares unless someone is physically damaged or dies.

     I have tried to find an attorney to help with this case. All we wanted really was justice against Montezuma Country Jail for denying my son his inhaler while he was in their jail. They were blatant in their denial and the only reason he did not die was because he knows relaxation techniques that calmed him enough to give him breath. But, there are times that does not work for him and he did feel like he was going to die several times. They had no right to deny his medicine when he begged for it and then deny him medical treatment when he begged to go to the ER because he could not breathe. They are not physicians so they do not know what his needs were and were not qualified to determine his need for medial attention.

     What makes me most upset is that the attorneys I called regarding this matter said what the jail did was wrong but that there's no recourse against them unless a person suffers injury or death. Well this jail has done things that resulted in the death of inmates before. So I wonder how many people have to die at their hands before something is done.

     My son did not deserve to be denied his medicine while in the jail, he was wrongly placed there to begin with but that is not the issue with this post. The issue is that he could have died and if he had then something would be done. That is wrong and it is too bad no one will step up to promote the change it takes to stop these jails from endangering people's lives. It should not take an injury or death for change to happen. Change should happen because it is right and justice should not only come in injury or death.

Stomping on the US Constitution

Sunday, November 6, 2016

When Teachers Bully Students

With all of the bullying in society today I have touched on bullying in the workplace and now want to touch on teacher bullying. Kids are not just bullied by their classmates, I have seen many teachers bully students and it is wrong. These young people need their teachers to care about them, to nurture them. They do not need the teacher to also be a bully. I wrote this article several years ago and wanted to share it here on my blog. 

As Bobby walks down the hall, the other kids taunt him and tease him. They call him names and make fun of him for how he looks. Sadly, though, the torment does not end there. He is constantly bullied when he enters the classroom too, but not by the other students, this time his tormentor is his teacher. The one person at school who is supposed to prevent bullying, is tormenting students.
Teachers may not be aware that the way they sometimes treat students is bullying, but it is as tormenting to kids as being bullied by other students is.
Bulling is defined as repeated acts over time attempting to create or enforce one group or persons power over another. Some teachers do this very thing to students on a daily basis, and may not even be aware that what they are doing is bullying and can be very damaging to some kids.
When a student is late to class, many teachers have the other students taunt and tease him as he enters the classroom. The teacher will stand in front of the classroom saying "oh everyone, look it’s Johnny, he's late. Say hi to Johnny." The kids will laugh and tease him. Some kids may not be bothered by this, but there are kids who feel very intimidate when treated this way. Sometimes they become very anxious about going to class and may even be late because they are so anxious. There are also children who may reach a point where they have panic attacks and are unable to attend the class at all. The teacher may think that this approach is going to stop the tardiness, but it is only bullying to some students who feel inferior already. The teacher should point out that Johnny is late to him by having him stay after class. It is not the other students business and the teacher should not use them as a disciplinary tool.
Teachers tend to think that embarrassing students will make them do better in class. If a kid does poorly on a test, many times the teacher will tell the class that everyone did great on the test except for Johnny. The teacher will embarrass Johnny not really knowing whether or not Johnny tried his best. This makes him feel stupid and many times he will never try again. He will just shut down and feel inferior to the other students.
There are students whose parents are very involved in their education. They talk to the teachers and try to stay informed. Some teachers do not like to be bothered by parents. They use this against kids and tell them that their mom called in front of the other students, they say this because it annoys them that the parent is involved. Or the teachers spout off personal issues about the student in front of the other students. Some kids do not handle this well and it is a form of bullying to them. Teachers do need to remember that all information about each kid is confidential and they should not use it to discipline. It is not discipline, it is bullying.
Some teachers make it a point to embarrass students every chance they get. They never stop to think that these are just kids and maybe they are feeling insecure and scared. The might just need one person to be nice to them, to actually care. There may come a day that of the kids who is being bullied by the teacher might have thoughts of suicide because he is also mistreated by other students. If the teacher bullies him, then he just might go over the edge and end his life. Teachers do need to discipline students but not to the point, it becomes bullying.
+bullying +teacher +classroom +teacher bullying

Friday, November 4, 2016

Integrity and Honesty Only Lead to: Bullying in the Workplace

     With all the talk of bullying regarding children I wanted to touch on bullying in the work place. It might not seem that bad to some but if you are on the other end of the bullying it is extremely difficult and can cause a person a lot of undue stress and pain. It certainly makes it hard to get through each work day and lets the wind out of your sails.  I speak of this because it happened to me this year and I lost a position at work that I am good at and I love.

     Last year was my first year teaching and I landed my dream job, teaching gifted education. I got in on a waiver and was told I had two years to complete classes and take the gifted exam. I tried to start my college classes at a college in the state where I work  the first year but they cost $900+ for out of state tuition, there was no funding, no loans, just me paying cash up front because I hold an MA degree. Well, I could not afford that. So I asked my superior at work if I had to take the classes the first year and he simply said "you have two years" in the tone of " I told you that you have two years, what part of that did not not understand?" That said,  I assumed that I had the two years. I did try to sign up for classes again at the college my supervisor suggested in the spring but found they would only be offered based on enrollment.  So, I began classes in the form of a Master degree this past summer at the same online university where I completed my Master degree in education and will be done within the two years my superior originally said that I had.

     I loved my job, I was excited, enthusiastic and ready to "change the world."I had so many plans for my students, I had great ideas and could not wait for them to unfold. Once the bullying began I began to struggle with making it through the day but still had that enthusiasm...for a while. In the end though, they have deflated me and taken the breath out of my passion. So now I will tell you all about the bullying I experienced that has taken me from and excited new teacher to a burnt out teacher after only a year. A once enthusiastic and passionate  teacher  who is now struggling just  to make it through the year.

     My license is for K-8, my new superior, not my principal but a person from administration, told me I had to case manage high school kids. I contacted someone at state level for other reasons but asked her about case managing gifted high school students with a K-8 license, she told me I should not do it because it would  violate my license. I told this to my superior and showed her the e-mail I received from the lady at state level but she told me I had been deceptive with the lady at state and ordered me to case manage the high school students again. I then called the state licensing bureau and was told by three people at the licensing bureau it was a violation of my license to even case manage any students at the high school level. I was not qualified since I hold a K-8 license.  The superior at administration in a round about way told me I was a liar, told others in administration I am a liar. This person also accused me of being insubordinate and my job was on the line. I was told that her superior had stated if I did not do this I would lose my job. I was accused of not wanting to work. All because I was trying to do what was legal and right. All because I also cared about my school district and did not want them to be fined either because in the end if they are fined the kids are the ones who suffer.

     This bullying lasted for almost two months. The administrator would tell me that I was being dishonest and that I had to do what she was saying I kept telling her to call the people at state but she for some reason she would not call or message anyone at state level.until after I involved the union.

I had been trying to get documentation from the licensing bureau in regards to what I had been told but no one was responding to my messages. I finally messaged someone different and received a written response confirming what I had been saying all along. Once the lady at administration received that information she did order me to stop working on the paper work for the high school students. I had finally given in to the bullying and was doing what I believe was illegal and wrong because I was given a direct order from other superiors. I was told I would lose my job and I could not afford that.

     I had a meeting with union, HR and the lady in administration. The lady at administration stated that the licensing bureau and people at state level were wrong and I could case manage high school students. She said she was having the entire issue researched.

     That very afternoon my gifted waiver was denied. I believe that the woman at administration worked hard to have my gifted waiver denied for this year and well, I am no longer a gifted teacher.  Union and the state worked on things so that I could have gotten my waiver approved because I proved I had tried to take classes and was working on classes currently but the district would not give me back my positron so, that was that state said there was no need to renew my waiver this year.

     The woman at administration who bullied me caused me many tears, she caused me to feel inadequate, she made me doubt myself, I had sores in my mouth and  suffered high levels of stress. The only things that kept me going were my family, the students and friends at work. But it has not been easy. Those in administration above this woman never came to me to find out what was going on, they just believed her, threatened my job and told me to do what was illegal or else.

     This entire thing did not only effect me, it caused other staff a lot of undo stress and did in the end effect the students too. No one seemed to care about them at all. Those in administration did not appear to care about their needs. They just wanted to be right, legal or not, and were going to get their own way no matter who it harmed.

     If this type of bullying and treatment had happened to someone who was maybe emotionally unstable, who knows what they might have done. If it had been someone suicidal, yes I can see how they might have decided that it is not worth it. It was that bad! Thankfully I am not a suicidal person but there were many times I just wanted to lay in bed and not get up. I am OCD and noticed a lot of my issues that have been gone for years resurface. I also have been off of Prevacid for years but felt the need to start taking it again.

     It is very sad that those at the administration level do not want those who work for them to be honest people, they don't want teachers who are thinking of the school district and the students (if the school is fined, the ones who will suffer are the kids), they don't want someone who really cares about what is legal, right, honest and best. It is apparent they just want the "yes" man or woman who will do what they are told no matter what.

      I am no longer being bullied but that is because I am no longer the gifted teacher, they not only bullied me but stripped me of that too. I was told that the district heads have a horrible impression of me as someone who just does not want to work and yes that hurts and yes there have been many tears because that is not the person I am

. Tears because all I wanted to do was what was right, tears because I only wanted to protect my license, district and the kids and tears because I lost a position I love.

    One of the people at administration even had the nerve to  stop me in the hall one day and tell me  this was all God's plan. She said it all worked out how He wanted it to.  I was floored, God wanted me bullied, He wanted me to lose my passion for teaching, He wanted our kids hurt,  I don't think so and I was extremely offended that she would even mention God in this. She had no right at all.It actually worked out how they wanted it, they were playing a game that they were going to win no matter what the cost. God does not play those kind of games.

     I have not received an apology either but then they do not think they did anything  thing wrong,  they feel justified in all they did. This makes me wonder if that is how all bullies feel? I wonder if that is how they justify their bullying?

     Would I do it again? Would I stand up for what is legal, honest and right again? Nope, if I had it to do over again I would just be the "yes" man and do what I was told. I would make sure my own license was protected but I would not worry about anything else but myself because integrity and honesty only lead to bullying in the workplace and it is not worth it to fight the bullies because in the end they will persevere over honesty and integrity.