Language in the staff lounge

Avatar for guili12737
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Registered: 08-23-1997
Language in the staff lounge
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Sat, 09-26-2009 - 5:19pm

How's the language in your staff lounge? In my school each team (I'm in a MS) has their own lounge. There's a teachers' cafe but, that is usually used only for staff breakfasts or celebrations. The team I'm on has quite the potty mouth and I find it kind of off putting. I'm no prude and can swear a blue streak and will swear among my friends but, I think it's kind of tacky to speak that way at work. Am I getting to be an old lady? And the thing is most of the people on my team are not young. The worst offenders are around 60. We even have a guy who used to teach shop but now teaches computers who makes lots of off color jokes which I find down right creepy. We were looking at some test scores from the state and we had to share a sheet and he said to me "I don't know if I can control myself." I'm pretty sure he meant something sexual by that. I know he was only kidding but I think it's really inappropriate. The band teacher spilled some water down her shirt last week and he said "Can I help you wipe that up?" To me he's teetering right on the edge of what could be construed as an hostile work environment.

What are your opinions about this and have you experienced anything similar?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 06-13-2008
Sat, 09-26-2009 - 9:01pm
I don't mind swearing once in a while. (Although, I admit, if anyone in the lounge is going to swear, it will be me. :p) But there is an older, part-time teacher who occasionally purrs at me and makes odd comments ("La profesora es caliente!"). I find it weird, but basically ignore it. I think he's just teasing and is a harmless, old man. Is there somewhere else you hang out instead of the lounge?
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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-24-2003
Sat, 09-26-2009 - 9:56pm

I've been in a situation, in a HS, where there were a few things said occasionally, but no one that was consistently off color or out of line with a specific person. I've never been in a day to day unconfortable situation.

Sherry

 

Avatar for caraleas
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-06-1997
Sun, 09-27-2009 - 7:22pm

Does your state/district have annual anti-harassment training? It is state law here - every year! I can't imagine anyone on our staff talking like this to another employee anywhere, let alone in the staff lounge! We don't have a lot of older male teachers, though, and the ones we do have are not slimy like yours sound!

If I were you, I might print off this page:http://www.eeoc.gov/types/sexual_harassment.html and put it in his (their) box - anonymously. If he has any sensitivity, he might guess that his behavior is bothering someone, and curb it. Doubtful, because if he would pick up on it that easily, he would probably be perceptive enough to realize it in the first place. In any case, I don't think that would hurt.

If Mr. "I'll get that for you" says stuff like that all the time, then it would definitely be considered a hostile work environment.



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Avatar for guili12737
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-23-1997
Sun, 09-27-2009 - 8:00pm
Yes, it does but, I think he's clueless. He talks about drinking all the time too. I think he lost quite a few brain cells along the way. He actually told a story about how he was drunk at school many years ago and lay down on the counter (he was a shop teacher) and took a nap and told the kids to wake him at the end of the period. He's quite the prize.
Avatar for caraleas
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-06-1997
Mon, 09-28-2009 - 9:09am

Dear Lord, if this guy is still teaching, it is no wonder teachers (and unions.....) get such a bad rap! Is he buddies with administrators, or what????

Sorry you have to deal with this! Makes me grateful for my relatively professional staff!!!!



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Avatar for judy_joey
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Tue, 09-29-2009 - 1:30pm

I'll admit that I've thrown out the occassional 4 letter word in the lounge - but only in company that I know will not be offended (because they are far worse than I am, lol). Once there is a "group" in there or anyone I'm not close to I'm

Avatar for guili12737
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-23-1997
Tue, 09-29-2009 - 9:51pm
Here's two examples from just this week. The (female) gym teacher was eating pretzels and she bit one so that it looked like the letter T and she said "let's make words with the pretzels." So the (female) band teacher bites a couple more pretzels and makes a T and an I and guess what word they made? Kinda crude right? Then today the same pair were joking around when another teacher was coughing and the gym teacher says "I can do the Heimlich maneuver if you need it." and the band teacher says "What, you're a hiney licker!" This is the stupid juvenile stuff I have to listen too. I'm not a 14 yr old boy. My level of humor is slightly more sophisticated.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-24-2003
Wed, 09-30-2009 - 10:51am
This sounds like a definite situation where you either avoid, ignore,
Sherry

 

Avatar for guili12737
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-23-1997
Wed, 09-30-2009 - 5:49pm
I'm going to have to ignore because I can't avoid. These people are my team members and we have mandatory team meetings every day as part of our schedule. About 80% of the time they are a waste of time but, in my school each teacher gets one prep, one lunch, and a mandatory team mtg. everyday. For the academic teams they are supposed to talk about their students. We rotate the students as UA teachers so many of us don't have the same kids at the same time and truthfully we speak of them very little. I hate when schools make UA try to fit in the academic team mold. It's that way with so many things.
Thanks for your support.
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-04-2003
Wed, 10-14-2009 - 10:32am

Again another issue where I want to defend everyone in the pack. And I'm sorry but "hiney licker" that was funny to me. Sorry!! *blushing*

Everyone gave good advice. When it is personally directed to you, defend yourself respectfully, walk away and if it continues, putting the sexual harassment info in the mailbox like someone suggested is a great idea.

I do think we have become a knee jerk society where everything you can say and do comes under attack now, so sometimes I think we should get over it and other times I think we are right to protest. But hey that's me. Hard to find a happy medium in these situations.

GT32

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