The Waiting Room

This could take a while...

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Another One Bites the Dust

Posted by Seeking Solace |

Another instructor quit today. This one sent an email ten minutes before class started saying that she just couldn't do it anymore.

What the hell?

Seriously, who just quits a job like that?

The instructor said that she just could not teach "those people". Hmm, that's the second time this semester that someone has quit for that reason.

The student demographic at my college is not what one would consider as "traditional". Many of the students are older, have GED's or barely graduated from high school. They would be considered as lower socioeconomic status and primarily minority. Many of our students have deficiencies in writing and math. Some lack "home training", meaning, no one taught them basic rules of civilized behavior.

But that does not mean that they do not deserve a good education.

I am not going to lie. There are challenges teaching this demographic. But, I have also found that the rewards do outweigh the frustrations. It does take a special person who is patient and understands how to reach this particular demographic. It has taken some time for me to develop. But, I have found that you have to show them that they can be successful. These students have little experience with positive feedback and reinforcement. They have heard "You can't because..." for so long that it is a learned belief. Sometimes, you can break through. Sometimes, you can't. But, you have to try.

We have new instructors hook up with veteran instructors, as a mentor-mentee relationship. I don't know if this particular instructor worked with her mentor. I know her mentor and he is a fabulous instructor who is always willing to help a new instructor. I know he would have given this person some great insight.

I am making a point to check in with my two adjuncts, just to make sure all is well. I don't want to get blindsided.


RageyOne said...

That's just awful. Quitting like that doesn't help your student demographic, at all. It kind of reinforces the notion that they can't be successful.

One has to wonder if that instructor knew what she was getting into prior to taking the position.

Seeking Solace said...

You know, we tell them about our students during the interview process. I think their teaching demo should be with a group of students, so they can see what they will be dealing with on a regular basis.

Arbitrista said...

Wow that's totally unprofessional.

RageyOne said...

Yeah, that may be the way to go...the teaching demo. I guess they don't believe what you say about the students. If they see for themselves, maybe that would help.

Scrivener said...

I cannot imagine quitting on the spot ten minutes before a class starts. That's really astounding. She didn't need to stay and teach there forever; if it wasn't for her, fine--give notice, finish out the semester, and then move on.