Boss Types: Psycho Principal, Old Yeller
Who knew that so many teachers are suffering under terrible bosses? As a continuation of our last psycho principal story, here is yet another story of an atrociously bad principal, submitted by Diane:
I worked for one of the worst principals – EVER! She was woefully underqualified and terribly insecure. She had a home economics degree and no background in formal education – only a personal connection with members of the board. She used to regularly try to hide her insecurity and inability to do her job by screaming at various teachers. I watched as, one by one, all the long-term teachers who had built up the school’s reputation quit. This principal would then lie to the board as to why the teachers were quitting, saying they needed more time with their family or they couldn’t handle the job.
My most frustrating moment with her was during a time when I was waiting for an operation, so I could barely stand. I kept working, though, choosing to teach while sitting on the edge of my desk. One day, I was in my office when the fire alarm went off. As it was in the dead of winter (-30 degrees Celsius) outside and I was in such pain, I grabbed my winter coat and cane on the way out of my office. Upon seeing me in a coat, this pitiful excuse for a principal started screaming at me, saying that I was a poor example for the students (since many of them did not have time to grab their coats). It wasn’t long until I quit as well. What a psycho!
If you know a teacher like Diane, maybe you should give them an apple to cheer them up. Better yet, send them the link to My Boss Is A Lemon so they can expose their lemon bosses!
Professor Umbridge from Harry Potter
Boss Type: Psycho Principal
It seems that last week’s story struck a chord with a lot of people. Who knew that there are so many teachers suffering under the controlling grips of psychotic school principals? It is one thing to be afraid of the school principal as a pimple-covered rebellious teenager, but it is a whole other thing when you fear the principal as a professional adult.
Since last week, we have received quite a few stories and emails commenting on the terrible treatment these passionate teachers have received. As a result, we now have a new boss type: the Psycho Principal. We will have a few stories from teachers in the coming weeks, but to start us off, here is one from Samantha:
I taught in a school where the principal took the “pal” part very seriously, but only for parents and students. When parents would come to him with concerns / complaints, he would listen to their story, and then ambush the teacher with a surprise meeting. Twice I was “called to the office” while an ed assistant was sent to cover my class. I had no idea who was waiting for me and no opportunity to gather my thoughts (or notes) on the situations in question, so of course I looked like an idiot while being berated by hostile parents.
The only course this principal taught was the highest level grade 12 math (smallest class, studious kids, no troubles), when he bothered to show up. During his rec hockey season, his games and bar nights were on Sundays and he was often “sick” on Mondays. That’s okay, because he used the classroom right across from the office, so he would just call in the assignment and have the secretary write it on the board and “look in” on the class. I was hired on with 2 other new teachers and we all resigned before we found new jobs; we’d rather be broke than work for him!