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Teacher resigned over Trans kids and what to call them.


RainbowSky

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WTH? He submitted a letter of resignation but didn't really mean it? And calling kids by their last names instead of using their new names?!

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Wow, what a giant dick. I hope the school stays firm by honoring his resignation. He doesn't belong in a classroom with those beliefs; he only helps create an environment which endangers trans students.  He must be a real gem to any and all other rainbow kids.

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Good riddance.  The students are better off without him.

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I really really hate people who cry about religious intolerance when they’re told not to be assholes.

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Yet another jackass that needs to take a civics class and learn what the First Amendment actually says. SMDH.

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What a loser.  Guess he didn't think through the likely outcome of his resignation.  He should consider applying at a private Christian school, where the pay is slightly above minimum wage and there is no pesky union looking out for him.  Or maybe that's why he's begging for his job back.  As someone said on that link, bye Felicia!

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Also they told him not to resign before a certain date but he did anyway. So not only is he an asshole, he can’t listen to instructions. You’d hope teachers know how basic instructions work. And there’s no takesies backsies when you quit a job.

People have been systematically murdered for their religious beliefs or have been forced to practice in secret. But sure, being told to respect others and not treat kids like shit is the same thing. 

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I have never heard of a "tentative letter of resignation." Unless this is some new thing, this guy is laboring some seriously strange professional guidelines.

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Just FYI, if people read the article and follow the link about the religious group's efforts to inundate the school board with letters, it's then possible to add some information, then edit the message.  There are still intro and conclusion paragraphs involved, so that's worth noting.  I may or may not have added my two cents using their quick email formula, and doing a bit of serious editing along the way...just in case anyone had a bit of time on their hands and some curiosity.

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I'm supposing that he would also refuse to call a student by their new last name if they changed their surname after their parent's divorce? Because I'm betting that divorce is against his beliefs, too. Not to mention the potential horrors of a teenaged boy going by his mom's maiden name?!!!

Idiot.

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Good. Get the fuck out of education if you're going to be a dick to kids or model disrespect and bigotry to them. 

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4 hours ago, apandaaries said:

Just FYI, if people read the article and follow the link about the religious group's efforts to inundate the school board with letters, it's then possible to add some information, then edit the message.  There are still intro and conclusion paragraphs involved, so that's worth noting.  I may or may not have added my two cents using their quick email formula, and doing a bit of serious editing along the way...just in case anyone had a bit of time on their hands and some curiosity.

I wrote a nice couple of paragraphs, but I don't really want to give that group a chance to send me their bigoted e-mails. What to do, what to do....

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You can unsubscribe from their emails immediately if you think your paragraphs would be a good addition to their thoughts (I would suspect so). This kind of institutionally-accepted (muh rights) bigotry is disgusting - people don’t go to school to be broken down for who they are.

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@Jellybean--Or maybe I'll see if I can contact the school board directly, without using that group as a go-between. :) (I already saved my writing. I hate having to start from scratch! :my_biggrin: )

ETA--I found both a general contact e-mail ddress, and the individual board members' addresses. If anyone is interested, the general one is:

webmaster @brownsburg.k12.in.us

(Take out the space between webmaster and the @.) This is from their public website, so I don't think I've broken any rule or common sense. This is their website:

https://www.brownsburg.k12.in.us/School-Board

It has the individual addresses as well.

I'll have to write a beginning and ending, but my paragraphs should serve as a middle. :)

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Quote

Once a student receives the required approvals, their name is changed in the district's online record keeping system. At that point, the document says teachers are to refer to students by that name. 

Kluge said he was uncomfortable with this, feeling that using the preferred name implied agreement with the student's decision to identify as transgender. Kluge said that even though he doesn't agree with some of his students' decisions, he respects them. 

"I really do care for all of my students," he said, "which is why I don’t want to be compelled to speak in such a way that I believe I’ll be encouraging them in something that’s dangerous."

No, you don't. Respecting them would be calling the students by their preferred name even if you don't personally approve of their decision. If you thought the name Elizabeth was a beautiful name, would you insist on calling someone by it, even after she repeatedly told you that she likes to be called Beth?

Let it go, it's not your decision to make.

 

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1 hour ago, Cartmann99 said:

No, you don't. Respecting them would be calling the students by their preferred name even if you don't personally approve of their decision. If you thought the name Elizabeth was a beautiful name, would you insist on calling someone by it, even after she repeatedly told you that she likes to be called Beth?

Let it go, it's not your decision to make.

 

Ideally, yes, a teacher should call students by their preferred name. But it actually gets pretty complicated. At both private schools I worked in and the public schools I sub in and the public school my mother worked in, only parents can sign off on a preferred name. I had students my first few years of teaching who preferred names other than what their parents preferred. The official information I was given only included the parents' preference. So, now, you all are saying, "so what? You still call the kid by the name they prefer!" and you're probably throwing "bitch" on the end of that. But here's the problem: Not every student will tell the teacher what they want to be called. 

We are not mind readers and if students don't tell us, we don't know. When doing my long term sub that ended this school year, I found out that I had been calling one trans student and one non-binary student by the wrong names for two years when subbing in that building. Because they NEVER TOLD ME and the lists teachers leave for subs include only legal names. Once I was dealing with them for an entire quarter, they finally felt like they needed to tell me. I'm grateful they did, but I wish they had previously. I truly felt terrible about it and apologized to both of them. 

Obviously, this is not the issue for this guy. But if you find out that some teacher or school staff member is calling a student "Olivia" who doesn't identify as female and prefers "Joe", it may be that the person doesn't actually know. 

 

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On 6/9/2018 at 5:29 PM, louisa05 said:

Ideally, yes, a teacher should call students by their preferred name. But it actually gets pretty complicated. At both private schools I worked in and the public schools I sub in and the public school my mother worked in, only parents can sign off on a preferred name. I had students my first few years of teaching who preferred names other than what their parents preferred. The official information I was given only included the parents' preference. So, now, you all are saying, "so what? You still call the kid by the name they prefer!" and you're probably throwing "bitch" on the end of that. But here's the problem: Not every student will tell the teacher what they want to be called. 

We are not mind readers and if students don't tell us, we don't know. When doing my long term sub that ended this school year, I found out that I had been calling one trans student and one non-binary student by the wrong names for two years when subbing in that building. Because they NEVER TOLD ME and the lists teachers leave for subs include only legal names. Once I was dealing with them for an entire quarter, they finally felt like they needed to tell me. I'm grateful they did, but I wish they had previously. I truly felt terrible about it and apologized to both of them. 

Obviously, this is not the issue for this guy. But if you find out that some teacher or school staff member is calling a student "Olivia" who doesn't identify as female and prefers "Joe", it may be that the person doesn't actually know. 

 

That is a hard situation as a sub, especially since a kid that might be willing to speak up to a regular teacher might not to a sub, even a long-term one.

It's odd that the parents would have to sign off on a preferred name, though. In the district I attended, it was always roll call on the first day, followed by the teacher asking if there was a nickname or other name that the student preferred, and that was the name the teacher used the rest of the year.

This schmuck with the names, though! If he has ever called a kid by a nickname rather than the full legal name, he hasn't got a leg to stand on. And who gives a "tentative" resignation?! The school should stand firm.

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A "tentative" resignation, huh?  How does that work?  It almost sounds like "if I don't get my way, I'm gonna quit!  That'll show them!"

Also, I believe it's respectful to call others their preferred names.  I prefer to go by my full first name.  My oldest daughter's first name has several nicknames, she prefers one (but is okay with family calling her another one).  My middle daughter goes by her full first name, my youngest goes by both her nickname and first name.  It just goes back to treat others the way you want to be treated.  I'm guessing that's with respect, dignity, and compassion.

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On 6/9/2018 at 5:29 PM, louisa05 said:

Ideally, yes, a teacher should call students by their preferred name. But it actually gets pretty complicated. At both private schools I worked in and the public schools I sub in and the public school my mother worked in, only parents can sign off on a preferred name.

Wow--really? Does that apply even to high schools?

As someone who hasn't gone by my legal first name since I was five, I just can't imagine. (Also, while I'm cisgender, the name I use is a male name, so I can't imagine the potential grief I could get now). 

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6 minutes ago, nausicaa said:

Wow--really? Does that apply even to high schools?

As someone who hasn't gone by my legal first name since I was five, I just can't imagine. (Also, while I'm cisgender, the name I use is a male name, so I can't imagine the potential grief I could get now). 

If the parents sign off on a preferred name, that can be entered into the "official" information for that student, then the teacher will get it on a class list or an addendum to one. If the parent does not, the legal name is the only one which will appear on the lists the teachers get. Most teachers print class lists off of the official attendance or grade book programs for subs which only include legal names or sometimes parent-approved preferred names. 

And, yes, it applies to high schools as students are still minors and schools are required by law to use legal names for record keeping as they appear on birth certificates (in this state, the legal age of majority is actually 19, so a high schooler who is not a minor is a rarity). This is for very valid reasons like ensuring that the person bringing the child for enrollment is a legal parent or guardian. 

As for the first day roll call that @NotQuiteMotY points out, yes, ideally that solves the problem particularly in high school. But some kids, even at that age, simply will not tell you. Especially if you are a sub or someone new to them. Sometimes as an FT teacher, I found out a kid preferred a nickname (say "Jake" instead of "Jacob") only because they put that on homework assignments which made me ask them. 

One other valid reason for being careful with "preferred names" popped up at the last school I worked out where the principal was a colossal asshole. He decided it was cute to call kids by the nicknames they gave each other. In a few cases, those nicknames were not liked by the students they were given to and were derogatory, yet here were teachers and staff members calling them that because the principal decided it was a great thing that proved the school was close knit or some nonsense like that. More than once I asked a kid being called something like "dirt" by the whole school if he actually wanted to be called that and the answer was no. The rules about preferred names give parents a way to put a stop to that. And "dirt" is a real example, unfortunately. That kid left the school at the end of the year. Go figure. 

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4 minutes ago, louisa05 said:

If the parents sign off on a preferred name, that can be entered into the "official" information for that student, then the teacher will get it on a class list or an addendum to one. If the parent does not, the legal name is the only one which will appear on the lists the teachers get. Most teachers print class lists off of the official attendance or grade book programs for subs which only include legal names or sometimes parent-approved preferred names. 

Sorry, I think I misunderstood. My name was never changed on any official documents. The attendance list and my report cards were all issued in my legal name. But the first day of school I would just tell the teacher I preferred to be called "blank" and they would note it in on the list and call me that for the rest of the year. The subs would still call me by my legal name because they didn't know. 

So are high schoolers now not allowed to tell the teacher they preferred to be called "Chris" and must be called "Christopher" all year unless the parent goes in and changes the official information?

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Just now, nausicaa said:

Sorry, I think I misunderstood. My name was never changed on any official documents. The attendance list and my report cards were all issued in my legal name. But the first day of school I would just tell the teacher I preferred to be called "blank" and they would note it in on the list and call me that for the rest of the year. The subs would still call me by my legal name because they didn't know. 

So are high schoolers now not allowed to tell the teacher they preferred to be called "Chris" and must be called "Christopher" all year unless the parent goes in and changes the official information?

No. They can. Whether the teacher does it or not is up to them if the parent doesn't say it is preferred. That's where this problem comes in. But it would also empower a parent to say "hey, the teachers and administrators may not call my son "Dirt" just because the jocks who bully him every day started doing it". 

As a full time teacher, I actually saw this being a problem most with parents who wanted kids to use a step parent's last name. A lot of teens absolutely do not want to do so, so "Matthew Smith-Jones" is writing his name as Matthew Jones. Or Sarah Riley is listed as Sarah Davis on the list because mom prefers step-dad's name rather than dad's. I had a few of those during the long term sub, too. They are only an issue when you don't know the kids well yet and can't find them on the gradebook program in the beginning. But I feel bad for the kids. My nephew's mother tried to do it to him, but her district required both bio parents to sign off in order to allow it. My brother asked his son what he wanted and he wanted to stick with his legal name, so he didn't sign it. 

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On 6/9/2018 at 12:46 PM, Cartmann99 said:

No, you don't. Respecting them would be calling the students by their preferred name even if you don't personally approve of their decision. If you thought the name Elizabeth was a beautiful name, would you insist on calling someone by it, even after she repeatedly told you that she likes to be called Beth?

I knew a few transphobes who would insist that they weren't discriminating they just only called people by their legal names. I'm like oh really? You've never called anyone by a nickname? Ever? :pb_rollseyes:

I really can't understand being so concerned with someone else's name that you would go through all this effort to not call them it. Like, does he think if he refuses to call them by their preferred name they'll stop being trans? 

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On 6/9/2018 at 4:35 AM, WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo? said:

I wrote a nice couple of paragraphs, but I don't really want to give that group a chance to send me their bigoted e-mails. What to do, what to do....

Create a new Yahoo or Gmail account just for that

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