Principals who have a lack of principles:
There are a multitude of problems with education here in the NT but one common theme that keeps rearing its ugly head is that of ‘problem principals’.
Almost everyone has worked with one at some time in their teaching career: aggressive control freaks who micro manage you to death, lazy daisies who do absolutely nothing and then everything in between.
Mismanagement makes things 10 times worse:
Remote bush schools are particularly vulnerable as their geographical isolation can often cultivate petty dictatorship-like qualities but they don’t hold a monopoly on these terrible tyrants who terrorise teachers.
Having a principal with no principles is bad enough but when they are supported by their Director of School Performance (DSP) boss then it’s double trouble for the poor teacher below. Add to that an Executive Director (DSP’s boss) who also allows the equivalent of professional waterboarding and it can quickly become game over for the unlucky staff member on the coal face.
This regularly costs the Educ Dept a ton of money and pisses the educational outcomes of the children up against the wall at the same time…but NT DECS people don’t care about either of those things.
So what’s a person to do when they come up against a bully in a position of power (often directly over you)?
>Firstly and most importantly – DON’T EVER EXPECT NT DECS TO DO ANYTHING TO HELP YOU. You’re just a teacher – you’re expendable.
>Make sure you do not suffer alone and see that your psychological wellbeing becomes your No.1 priority.
>Document as much as you can, either write it all down and/or audio record angry outbursts, threats and insults *see below
>Tell all your friends, inform your doctor, take time off on stress leave and talk to a counsellor.
>Get everything in black and white as a timeline can come in very handy further down the line.
>Tell the Union however don’t expect them to do very much for you. Apart from having no balls, the organisation lives in fear of NT DECS and its senior officers. Be wary what you tell them though, some of your enemies are their personal friends.
>Send lots of FOI requests and gather as much data as you can. >Speak to a lawyer on your own for specialist advice – we don’t recommend the Union’s choice of Halfpennys, we find them uninterested and unsympathetic.
>Continue to send Cardfightback your stories, files and documents. We’ll help get your story out to the public.
Finally, for all you government decision makers out there reading our blog, here’s some of the knock-on effects bad principals and the constant mismanagement of them are having:
~NT loses another great educator:
“I think she just wanted to leave in peace in the end. It’s a shit story though….she’s a strong woman and a great teacher, valued by her kids. 6 months with a new, totally incompetent and bullying shitty principal made her feel unsafe for her career so she’s decided to leave altogether. The principal doesn’t care that her kids will miss her, the principal doesn’t care about anything really other than herself.”
~NT loses more great teachers:
It was ‘every man for himself’ when this principal decided to cut the teacher loose when asked to support them in the face of more cowardly and potentially illegal actions – in the background as usual – from senior NT DECS staff. Not forcing NT DECS senior staff to be responsible for such actions only means that more and more teachers suffer from this kind of behaviour in the future….but some people don’t care about that:
“This can only severely damage my professional reputation. I have no memory of your quote.”
~NT Govt wastes over a million of your tax dollars dealing with the mismanagement:
Of course, who can forget the Aboriginal Principal at Gapuwiyak who took money off her staff for years and years then threatened to kill anyone who dared to complain about her doing so.
And Alyangula’s principal who called her staff a “trained tattooed monkey”, “vermin” and conspired with the DSP to withhold the teacher’s reference so they couldn’t get a job easily elsewhere while calling them “mentally unstable” in official emails *see below
A common attack in the background, see this other principal without principles who did the exact same in an email to her boss:
“I am concerned about *******’s state of mind”.
~NT principal could invite more legal cases:
We’ve also heard of a principal who encouraged his staff to try to circumvent Freedom of Information requests and legislation – potentially career ending and illegal. If anyone has the emails please pass them to the relevant authorities.
~NT loses more teachers and spends a fortune on medical bills as a result:
Lastly, these little nuggets of bullshit from the screaming principal in the audio file below:
“I am trying to develop a culture of care and safety, mutual respect and acceptance of differences in the school.” – THEN CUE PRINCIPAL SHOUTING AND SCREAMING.
“This morning ****** came to clarify an issue with me regarding yelling in the classroom indicating poor classroom management. She asked if I believed that, which I affirmed.” – THEN CUE PRINCIPAL SHOUTING AND SCREAMING.
Protect yourselves fellow teachers because as you can read, no one else is going to do it for you.