A Piece Full World

Kim's Blog

"Ten Steps to Some Sanity" for Bullied Educators
Bullied By Your Principal? Start Here.
An Abuse Full World: Kim's Personal Story
Kim's Blog
Apologies to Dr. Seuss
A District's Bullying and Harassment Policy.....
A School District's Workplace Violence Policy
Kemp Mill ES
NEA Articles About Bullied Educators
The "Bully" Movie
Services/Contact Kim
Helpful Links


Archive Newer | Older

Sunday, October 26, 2014

From the Edvocate Blog...

 "Fast forward to high school and the stakes have the power to destroy lives. Students can have an A average, be accomplished musicians and community leaders, but if they don’t score a 3 or higher on the Florida Standards Assessment, they will be thrown into hours of remedial classes and lose all access to important college-related electives. Every year Florida keeps tens of thousands of students from moving into adulthood by denying high school diplomas based on a single high stakes test score that may not be real."
The Edvocate Blog ~ Standing up for Public Education

Florida stakes are mighty high
23 Thursday Oct 2014

Posted by kathleeno2014 

Florida politicians, Governor Scott and his appointed Board of Education expect every parent to rely on blind faith and believe that their child’s test score is true. Our children are the only people who ever see these tests. Teachers and administrators are held to a hostile and humiliating security process that screams, “we don’t trust you!” Children are forced to repeatedly sign an oath swearing not to cheat. They’re badgered not to discuss the test, even with their Moms and Dads.

No one is allowed to see the test or look at the answer sheets, so there’s no way of knowing if the score the computer spits out truly belongs to your child. Why are we wasting years of instruction time teaching to a test no one can ever see?

Parents learn whether the state views their child as a success or failure based on a test score of 1,2,3,4, or 5. For some this means the devastation of automatic grade retention, a proven drop out predictor. The state of Florida is happy to mete out a life altering catastrophic punishment to a very young child based on a single score that no one can prove is real.

Fast forward to high school and the stakes have the power to destroy lives. Students can have an A average, be accomplished musicians and community leaders, but if they don’t score a 3 or higher on the Florida Standards Assessment, they will be thrown into hours of remedial classes and lose all access to important college-related electives. Every year Florida keeps tens of thousands of students from moving into adulthood by denying high school diplomas based on a single high stakes test score that may not be real.

The Florida testing game is fixed. Goals and rules are changed on a whim. The same kids almost always score a 1 or a 2. The Florida Department of Education can predict scores before our children ever take the test. It should come as no surprise that every child’s test booklet has a bar code. The data contained on that bar code is a mini dossier of who that child is: status as a free/reduced lunch student, zip code, ESE status, race, gender, English language learner, etc.  Before ever scoring a child’s test, the computer reads this personal identifying information.

Florida has been obsessed with sorting children for years, so it follows that the tests get sorted too. Is there a link to a child’s bar code information and how well they score? Given the atmosphere of secrecy, there’s a good chance that a child who belongs to a group who is predicted to perform a certain way will end up with a score that reflects that prediction.

The Florida statutes empower Florida’s high stakes testing and accountability scheme with thousands of ways to hurt our children and harm their teachers.   Every single one of them is based on a single test score that not one of us can prove is true.

Had enough? VOTE.


Kim Wernersaid:October 26, 2014 at 11:14 am
“Public Education is being mobbed and bullied.” I wrote that on my A Piece Full World site (www.apiecefullworld.com). There I tell my story of having been bullied by a principal. Bullying administrators are a part of this madness as well. Principals will do anything for the “A”. And nothing will stand in their way; certainly not truth… Thanks for speaking up. Kim W.

7:24 am edt          Comments

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Pondering about hats and lives...

 A country song's lyrics heard today..."That's a life you can hang your hat on..." 

Pondering, then, about hats and lives...

How might a bullying principal justify his abuse to his superiors?  

This, of course, supposes that his boss is not his good friend and on the school board.  That was the case for me.  My former principal is a friend of one of my district's school board members.  That member--before he knew that I was "the one" who reported his buddy--seemed to like me a lot.  Once when he was visiting my current school--and I did not yet know how close he and my abuser were--he and I had a lovely discussion about how to end bullying for children. He and I laughed together. It was such a great and invigorating encounter that I decided to share with him my having been bullied by one of his principals.

He, sadly, did not, appreciate that.

He now doesn't look at me or talk with me at my school.  He was there last school year.  I greeted him twice. I made eye contact and I smiled. Each time he looked through me...as if I wasn't there; as if he'd just as soon I disappeared...

No smile of course, and, he has a nice one.

I think I am perplexing to him. I think he does me; likes my enthusiasm; likes my authenticity.  I got enthusiasm and authenticity--man, I can wax on and on about how to stop bullying.  I am articulate and focused when that's the topic at hand.  But start talking Common Core and Florida Standards and testing and data and my eyes glaze and water.

I am just not much interested in that.  Well, I am actually interested in Common Core.  I am interested in getting rid of it.  I am interested in researching it and finding out the "Who's Who" players in that debacle destroying our public schools' teachers and students' vibrancy.

But that's a topic for another blog... Today's is devoted to (Oh yes!  Again!)  bullying principals; men and women who should be arrested and instead lead schools, torment teachers and emotionally abuse children.

"She's not a team player," my former principal might have said about me to his boss buddies, as he ruefully shook his head.  In his testimony after charges of ethics and responsibilities violations were brought against him, he and his assistant principal stated that I had an "assertive way" and could be "confrontational".  I still marvel at that.  I was simply trying to help children.  He (and she--for she follows his every lead; her name on so many documents against guiltless teachers) was not.  He screamed at children--now that's "assertive". He used profanity--now that's "confrontational".  

Now, all of that is sarcasm and I'm not good at sarcasm.

Saying: "No" to his demands to commit fraud is neither assertive nor confrontational.  It's courageous.  It's rare. 

Saying: "Please treat me respectfully" when derisively called "honey" over and again is not confrontational.  It, too, is rare.

Helping a colleague who was scared out of his mind that his night shift boss might physically harm him was not meant to be confrontational--oh no!--it was meant to honor a man who'd come to me as his only source of assistance.  He'd reported an incident of his night shift boss threatening him with a hammer; following him in his car (remember there were only two men and one woman working at night) to our administrators only to be told in essence that he was the problem.

He, too, folded,though, and wrote a letter of apology to the principal.

"That's a life you can hang your hat on..."  You'll not, at least, hang the hat of accepting abuse on this life of mine.  

You will though, I hope, hang the hat of working hard to help other abused educators on this life...

Ah, now that's a pretty hat!

11:41 am edt          Comments

Saturday, October 11, 2014

NEA Provides Educators with Guidance on Preventing Workplace Bullying by Cindy Long

Kim Werner’s former principal was identified by her union as the most abusive principal in the district.
“He has been targeting educators for fifteen years,” she says. “He lies. He coerces.  He intimidates.  He screams and uses profanities.”
And he’s still a principal, while Werner is now an Olweus Bullying Prevention Program Trainer.
After a year and a half of constant abuse, Werner took medical leave and reported her principal. She was covered by the district’s Bullying and Harassment policy, and while on leave, requested public records about complaints filed by other educators at her school.
“I soon discovered the horror other educators had experienced under his leadership,” Werner says. “I was shocked and sick inside.  These were simply people who spoke up and addressed his intimidation tactics. They suffered greatly–both professionally and emotionally.”
Bullying leadership is often based upon fear, Werner says, and because bullying principals are scared they “disperse that fear throughout their schools.”
“They are afraid that some piece of bad news will ‘get out’ about their schools and so they manipulate people and data to meet their needs,” she says. “It’s happening throughout the nation.”
She says that when she was bullied, she felt very scared and alone, but ultimately decided to take action. What others do in response to bullying, however, can vary greatly.
“Some align with the bullying brute.  That feels safe,” she says. “Most hide.  A few stand up and say, ‘That’s not right,’ but very few of the ‘hiders’ will support those who stand up because they think it’s not safe, and they’re right.”
To help local NEA affiliates support members who are being targeted by administrators, delegates to the 2012 NEA Annual Meeting and Representative Assembly passed a resolution to “Defend the Rights and Dignity of Educators.”
It calls for NEA to inform its members on ways to challenge administrator abuse of teachers and education support professsionals, and to support local NEA affiliate efforts to defend the rights and dignity of teachers and education support professionals.
“There is no way children will ever be safe from bullying if adults in schools aren’t safe from the same.  Until we assure safety for ALL–children and adults in schools– we will continue to lose the battle,” says Werner.  “It’s treating others with respect and kindness and patience and love.  That’s the real work.”

10:07 am edt          Comments

Archive Newer | Older

Click here for my district's bullying and harassment policy. You will see I have made comments....