I wanted to write this blog because I hear a lot about teachers’ negative experiences in Early Childhood. Some of the things teachers have experienced, I have experienced myself, so I get the frustration that they are going through.
As directors and owners, it is important to remember the impact you have on your organization when teachers have a negative experience and quit. Some might think, oh it is just one teacher! But if you do not change the way you do things, that one unhappy teacher can turn into 100 unhappy teachers, and that is not good for your business.
Unfortunately, people talk, I try not to bad mouth any organization have worked for, as I think that is unprofessional. I am a firm believer that the organization will get what they deserve without my negative input.
I understand that not everyone is going to be happy, I get that. But the reason behind the unhappiness is more important.
This is my opinion. If you are not an advocate for students and teachers, do not be an owner or director. You must care about the people you are providing a service for, especially in Early Childhood.
Belittling and scaring teachers are not going to make them stronger. They are going to become withdrawn and afraid of making mistakes. Which will cause them to make mistakes. Their work is going to suffer, which in turn will affect the students in their care.
For some reason, some directors and owners feel like because they are management, they can talk to their staff any way that they like, and their staff is just supposed to take it.
Most staff take it because they are afraid of losing their jobs. Some even stay in this toxic environment because they have convinced themselves that they are staying for the students. Maybe they are, staying for the students. But are you really getting the creative teacher that you hired or a shell of a teacher that is going through the motions? I do not know; that would be something for you to answer.
But if you really want to know, look at the teacher you hired and the teacher you have now. If they are not as enthusiastic as they once were, there is something different, and I bet it comes from how you treat them.
You are probably thinking, well most teachers lose their spark after being in the business a long time. That is not true. I had been a teacher for more than 20+ years and my enthusiasm for the job remain until the day that I decided I did not want to teach anymore.
Please give them the breaks and lunches required by law. If the law says that only one-fifteen-minute break is required, but you can tell they would benefit from another break, give them that. It will do wonders for their productivity which in turn will benefit the students in their care.
This blog is based on what I have experienced and heard from other teachers. There are very good owners and directors in the field and some that are only in the field for the money, and don’t care about the teachers or the students.
If you have a great owner and director, tell them. So often, we only hear the negative and not the positive.
*Darla the Teacher*