Friday, August 19, 2005

Stupid Grownup Tricks

I want to do a post to answer eatmisery's good question. The answer is too long for just a comment. She asked which was worse at my school, student behavior or office politics. I thought about it this evening, and I would say that rather than office politics don't seem to weigh in as much as adult foolishness. Office politics aren't as bad. I can recognize the game and either play along or ignore it, foolishness is another story.

See, I expect kids to act up. I expect to have to teach them, that's what they hired me for. I have a whole set of policies for when they don't meet expectations. We don't have that for adults because our expectations are that they will naturally be well behaved and have a certain set of skills. We expect that they will have surpassed the kids.

But oftentimes they don't. They talk during meetings and then ask the same question that was just answered. They raise their hands to speak only so they can tell long stories. They don't read materials they are asked to review and there's not much we can do about it.

So perhaps this makes me a bit of a control freak or a snob, maybe both. When a kid acts foolishly, I can either forgive it because I know they are children or I can deal with the behavior with a predetermined set of procedures. I have to deal with and forgive adults as peers, politely forgiving and ignoring behavioral indescretions.

I should work on it, but it wears me out.


eatmisery said...

I guess it's the same no matter where you go.

Susan said...

When I taught high school (in a girls' boarding school, no less) I had a colleague who slept through EVERY SINGLE FACULTY MEETING. And snored. Loudly.

The worst part? The headmaster often asked the rest of us to 'keep it down' when we were discussing students and school business, so that we wouldn't wake Joe. DURING THE FACULTY MEETING.