I was a highly esteemed teacher who everyone respected and parents loved having their child in my class. When I talked at meetings or at the lunch table, everyone listened attentively. A 4th grade teacher was rehired after being a stay at home mom, and I heard that parents kept asking her to do things the same way that I did. She began to be very critical of me at the lunch table and at meetings saying I was failing to teach my students properly.
I had a difficult year with some very spoiled bullying students and their parents, and she would talk with them and say things against me. She told me that she and the students from my previous third grade class laughed together about the fact that one student purposively "had headaches" so he could get out of my classroom and go to the nurse. She said at the lunch table that rewarding students for reading the most minutes was stupid and she would never do that as I did.
She stated she would never inflict upon her students the suffering of going to cheer up the elderly in a nursing home. She would go to a senior center with her class where people weren't "sick and depressing." Of course, my class went to a nursing home with residents that really needed cheering up.
She would state that I wasn't teaching penmanship because lately the boys had not been paying attention, and they wouldn't form their letters correctly no matter how much input I would give them. Then she complains that I am not a team person and I don't work with the 4th grade.
I could go on and on about all of the negative and insulting comments she publicly said, but you get the picture. My reputation is ruined with all my coworkers, especially the new teachers. Nobody listens to what I say and people—especially this teacher, talk over me at lunch and at meetings.
How I have dealt with it is to be the best third grade teacher I know how to be. The next time she tries to ruin my reputation, I am going to say something like, "I use to teach 3rd and 4th grade, but now I am leaving 4th grade for you to teach. I'm sorry it's not working for you." I did teach a lot of 4th grade concepts in the past, but now I just challenge the high students because it was too much pressure for some third graders. I think this is bothering her, because now she has to teach 4th grade.
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