Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The Most Character Building Experience is ......

To read through a report generated by the GIPA (FOI) from the NSW Department of Education and realise if it wasn't so tragic and some ill-informed comments driven by so much malice and prejudice about one's self, it is hilariously funny. I have material for some of the best comedy skits ever.
I also have now in possession a scanned copy of my NSW teaching certificate which I was supposed to have been awarded in 2004 the exact date is 30/1/04 and the date of issue is 01/02/06. I never received it. Part of the  reason was or the main reason I did not receive it was probably because I made a complaint of discrimination against a principal in September 2005 which resulted in a trail of malicious lies and half truths being perpetuated ad infinitum by a less that competent principal who, as he was fond of informing me (when I was trying to talk to him about strategies to deal with a group of good but difficult students), had 37 years experience in the NSW Teaching Service. Good I say, give the man a wooden spoon and hit him on the head with it, rattle what little brains he had and hopefully they will resettle in a more ordered fashion.
Things I found out through the GIPA are incredible. I found out that the retired principal who did my initial interview for the NSW Education Department obviously from the tone of his comments did not like me. He figured that he would give me casual approval, probably because he could not think of adequate reason to disqualify me.  In the scenario that he had denied me casual approval to teach in NSW he reasoned correctly that I would appeal and then his prejudice would be exposed. I do not know what I did to raise his ire, but he commented that I was confident to a fault.
I do know that the principal I complained against and had my complaint upheld had a real problem psychologically and that is what I did not understand then and to this day I cannot understand how such a person can be put in such a position to destroy the careers of others for no good reason except to protect their own egos.
I have two glowing reports from two female principals and was also highly thought of by the Deputy who was a man at Fairfield High School. I had a rather unpleasant report from Sheena James Head Teacher of English Macquarie Fields High School which is no surprise considering that the Daily Organiser hired me and dumped me on her and she stated as much from my first day in the school and made it quite plain that she did not want me for the position and had had someone else in mind for the replacement position I was filling. I think if I had known what she was going to do to me and the lies and the games, I really should have told Maquarie Fields , thank you very much but the school I am currently at Fairfield High School have offered me a position to the end of the year. The sad truth was that I had taken the position at MacQuarie High School from the 13th of August 2001 and that was in July. Meanwhile I took a two weeks casual job at Fairfield High School. At the end of the second week, the DP asked me to come back and even suggested I tell MacQuarie that I have a position which they want me until the end of the year. I did not, feeling honour bound to fulfil my commitment to MacQuarie. I had already accepted the job and felt that I really could not ring them two days before the 13th and say 'sorry guys, I am staying at Fairfield'. I wish I had done so. My time at Fairfield was fantastic. I had both English and ESL classes.  The staff of 13 in the English faculty were dedicated and professional.  I can say the same of Eskine Park where I taught for a term and Northmead. Sadly the same could not be said of Maquarie Fields. That was my personal experience of MacQuarie Fields which may be coloured by the fact that the HT felt I was somehow 'foisted on her department' and she made every effort to ensure that my time there was uncomfortable to the extreme. She was condescending and excluded me from information that was necessary for my  functioning as a teacher in the system. She bawled me out for no reason in front of students, taking a permanent teacher's word about an incident which smacked of rampant anti semitism and anti Israel sentiment. He was of Lebanese Heritage and he an another Leb teacher would make rather disparaging and vile comments about Israel and Jews when only they and I were in the staff room. Not wishing to make a scene and feeling very uncomfortable I would leave the staff room as afterall it was my word against theirs. And as this James woman pointed out to me, 'who do you think you are? You are just a bloody Temp. And Mxxx is a PERMANENT teacher. Do you know the difference. We should report you to the union.' Report me to the union for what I might have asked, but I was too shocked because I was being bawled out like a naughty junior high school student in front of students and colleagues alike. I was in a rather fragile state due to sickness in the family and other things happening in my personal life so I think I burst into tears. What I should have said to this idiotic Head Teacher who doesn't deserve the title Head Teacher was ,'Right, Ms James, go right ahead and report me and I will also have some things to say about the way I am being treated.' Trouble was, in those days I was too sensitive.
I can't publish a book on bullying but let me write my story out. At least I will have a healing and some others may learn from my mistakes in dealing with my bullying in the NSW department of Education and handle it better.

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