We have all heard about students being bullied by other students, but what about teachers bullying students? It’s important to note that bullying isn’t just physical, it can be verbal or emotional in nature as well. Many who suffer from bullying can develop a low self-esteem and they’ll turn their anger inwards. However, others can become violent themselves and lash out at others. The goal of every teacher should be to create a strong student-teacher relationship and help to create a positive peer group for students.
Last year, Kandy Escotto realized that her 5-year-old son, Aaron, was struggling with his self-esteem and grades. Escotto wanted to know what was going on in class, so she stuck a recorder in his backpack for four days, gathering 32 hours of audio from his time at Banyan Elementary School.
The recording captured Rosaliba Suarez – who has been teaching for 33 years and was named the Westchester school’s Teacher of the Year in 2017 – called Aaron and another boy “losers.” Aaron started to behave weirdly and he didn’t want to go to school anymore. He would even start to cry when he knew it was time to go to school. With the help of the recorder, his mom claimed that the teacher insulted Aaron and was belittling him in front of his classmates.
Though you need to listen very closely to make sense of the recording, it’s clear that Aaron’s teacher caused him emotional pain with her choice of words. No child deserves to be bullied and no teacher should use inappropriate language in class because they are frustrated, unsatisfied, or jealous of some students. Teachers must be role models for their students.
All parents need to have a discussion with their children about bullying and the impact that it can have on individuals. Encourage your children to be the one that stands up to those bullying others and the one that extends a hand to lift those who are feeling down. Open up your doors to those who are in need – strong and united families can help bring bullying to an end.