Bullies don’t just disappear.
They grow up, become parents and then instead of torturing children, they bully teachers instead.
A study released in December found that school principals in NSW were five times more likely to be threatened than the general population.
In the old days we used to worry about Mum and Dad eyeing our report card and taking their profound disappointment out on us. I swear the strap quivered with excitement every term break when that yellow envelope appeared in my school bag. My lack of application, my preference for Dr Who over Homework, and skating over study resulted in a stinging slap on the back of the legs, and the shake of the head with the mantra ‘you’ve let me down, you’ve let your mother down, but worst of all you’ve let yourself down.’ Oh the guilt. I’d rather be hit with a strap.
These days, Mum and Dad aren’t whipping their kids to improve their performance, instead they are taking their disappointment to the school yard. To be precise, to the school principal’s office.
You see the poor results of one’s progeny are no longer an individual responsibility. Its not poor parenting, a failure to provide adequate role modelling, nor is it the absence of firm and consistent boundaries.
Poor student performance is now the fault of the school.
Some parents out there are operating with the belief that school teachers work for the government and are thus in their personal employ. These same parents have instituted a draconian performance review process in the form of abuse and violence. If little Johnny does poorly, then clearly its Mr White’s fault. Let’s go kick his ass. That will improve Johnny’s prospects, especially if he wants to be a sociopath or a serial killer, like his folks.
Ironically, if you’re abusing teachers because your kid’s an idiot, it’s clear they’ve inherited the ‘idiot’ gene directly from you. Unfortunately, when it comes to ‘insight’ these types of parents score a ‘hardly ever’ on their interpersonal report card.