Friday, June 15, 2012

Students Screw Up, Teacher Takes The Blame

I find this statement fucking unacceptable.

Here's what happened yesterday.

Every week during assembly, the three top cleanest and prettiest class will be announced, and certificates will be handed out, plus cash rewards.  The class teacher will be invited to do the honour of accepting the prizes.

The worst class will be announced as well.  The worst class will receive 'encouraging prizes', as in stuff you could use to decorate your god forsaken class.  No black flags, brooms, or dirty old clothes to embarrass the students, which is probably good.  Still prefer the black flag idea though.

HOWEVER.  The most horrifying thing is that the class teacher of the worst class will also be called upon to receive the condolence prize.  Which I think is stupid a million times.

Because it embarrasses the teacher.  Because the students won't feel like they have to be responsible for their crappy class.  Of course it is the teacher's job to guide the students - but it is not his or her duty to decorate the fucking class themselves.  Therefore,  if the class turns out looking like a pile of cow dung, it is NOT the teacher's responsibility.  The teacher can only do so much.  Fuck, I don't even remember my class teachers so much as guide us in decorating our class.  It is all on the fucking students, not the teacher.  Therefore, I find it highly unreasonable why the class teacher has to take the fall for the irresponsibility of the students, and why can't the class monitor just be called upon to receive the 'award'.

With the number of 'fucks' I used, you can probably guess how pissed off I am.

So one fine day during assembly, I already predicted that my class would be the worst class of the month.  During exams before the holidays, I did notice that my students took down the curtains, and all the other stuffs like timetable, organisation charts and whatnots, for whatever reasons, leaving the class basically empty.

I thought to myself, if that happens- if I'm going down, hell, I'm taking them with me.

And then my class was mentioned and my name was really called.  And so I did what no teacher has ever done.  Before receiving the prize of shame from the principal, I walked up to the mike and invited the whole class to go up on stage to 'escort' me, to much of every teacher and student's surprise, including Mr Principal.  So yeah, all 38 of my kids did their walk of shame on stage, doing their due.  To add insult to injury, I have go up and receive the prize twice, because my class was the worst for two months in a row.  I invited to come up the stage once again, but it seems that Mr Principal kinda pity them. THEM. NOT ME.

And so I also demerited each and every of my student 50 points.  Losing 20 points is already considered dangerous.

That's how much a monster I can get, if not bad ass.

If I have not given single fuck about the appearance of their class, I'd feel a little remorse.  But I did.  My assistant and I have helped them by sponsoring some cash, cloth for curtains and providing stuff like a wall clock, and I sacrificed one beautiful Saturday morning just to be with them when they decorated their class.  In which NONE of these thing were done by any of my class teachers when I was in school.  And this is what I get.  Or any teachers who had to undeservedly do their students' walk of shame.

Maybe I'm not like the other teachers who are obsessed on winning and decorating, who'd spend hundreds to a thousand Ringgit on their class.  Maybe I'm not like the other teachers who'd go to school every single weekend to decorate their class.  Maybe I'm not like the other teachers who'd do all the fucking work themselves, and students just sashay in a already beautifully decorated class.

But I'm one who wants her kids to take responsibility, to be independent and to learn to do things on their own, allowing their decoration, no matter how awful, to be a reflection of their creativity, individuality and effort - not the teacher's.

This may seem like a ranty post and it makes me sound a little nuts too to be so furious about a really petty thing, but this is one of the serious effects of a tragic education system.

Tragic because in today's education system, teachers are blamed for the failure of students, without taking account of the shortcomings of the students themselves or upbringing, and that fame and status are now more important than students' autonomy and learning experience.

Fuggle nuts.


Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, this incident also happened in my school. Some of the teachers spent so much effort in this event, rather than planning their lessons, or even worse, entering their classes. What is the point when your classes are oh-so-pretty-and-tidy but the results of your class is full with red numbers?

Amanda Christine Wong said...


Haha. Guess it happens everywhere then. Very true. Some even spend their period decorating classes instead of teaching. WHY.

Anonymous said...

next time 'decorate ' the students' chairs with thumb tacks - that will show them!

Ms Chalkdust

Amanda Christine Wong said...

@Ms Chalkdust:

Now that's a brilliant idea!

TaQuiLa said...

"Tragic because in today's education system, teachers are blamed for the failure of students, without taking account of the shortcomings of the students themselves or upbringing, and that fame and status are now more important than students' autonomy and learning experience." very well said! which really defines our edu.system nowadays!

Amanda Christine Wong said...



Joan said...

This is one of the reason why I "buang" the task of being the form teacher this year.

Amanda Christine Wong said...


Wah, boleh ka? But mesti ada bigger tugas la tu kan...

Tonight's gonna be a good night. said...

In my school, the worst class' monitor and assistant monitor will be given a 'prize' which is their own class' broom and dustpan. And being the assistant monitor for my class, we worked our ass off to make sure we won't end up getting the 'prize' every week. Should instill that idea. Embarrassment in front of our own peers is more effective than sticking black flags in our class.

Amanda Christine Wong said...

Right? Embarrassment always works.