Student teachers forced to bribe teaching staff with cake

In a recent post on TES Forums, a student about to start a PGCE asks for some hints and tips.

The part I find concerning is that the OP then writes this:

"I had a bit of trouble in my last placement school on my degree because i didn't quite fit in... unfortunately as a degree student rather than a student teacher on pgce the teachers didnt want to include me in their 'group' and relegated me to lunching alone in the classroom and getting grumpy with me when i asked questions relating to their teaching techniques and experiences and the TA's at the school didn't want me in their camp because i was a 'teacher'! it was all very confusing and a bit upsetting!"

There is then lots of advice on how to deal with cliques within the staff at work, including:

"Make an effort with all of the staff, particularly resources (this will make all the difference in a cliquey school) "

"Try and go to an after school club that isn't in your subject (less relevant for you but maybe helpful for someone who's doing secondary...) it's a good way to meet other teachers and can make a big difference in your relationships with your students as you see each other in a different setting."
"Ingratiating yourself into tricky schools? Bake! Big Smile "

Why is this sort of thing even necessary? Are we not all professionals there to achieve the same goals? I can understand wanting to forge good working relationships. I can even understand how and why some other jobs are like this, in business for example.

But in education? Where we are supposed to be setting a good example but treating each other like this? Do new teachers really need to bribe the other staff with cake just to avoid being treated badly?


Anonymous said...

True they shouldn't need to be bribed but in a predominantly female environment (like lets face it a lot of staff rooms are) women are as manipulative, and can be manipulated as much as the girl groups in the classroom. Sadly it’s not something that we grow out of.

The Edudicator said...

Thanks for the comment!

I think if we're talking about primary they are predominantly female, but that's not been my experience as an 11-18 teacher at all.

I agree with you that there are a lot of childish elements of teacher's conduct at work that are allowed to creep in.

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