The Nonconformist Teacher
Memo from the Dean
Dear Prinicpal/Director (sorry, I never know what to call you these days);
I wonder if you would speak to one of my lecturers who is causing me some difficulties.
Ok, he has not been teaching for long, but his scores in the feedback exercise from the students are unusually low. Apparently he uses no technology at all – that interactive white board which cost us so much just sits there idle through his classes. He has posted no notes on our college server – which is not surprising, as he seems not to produce any notes for the students at all.
I have tried to get final marks from him, but he just says he believes in formative assessment only, and he doesn’t want to mark one student higher than another. As you can imagine, that attitude would bring down the entire system. We should not forget that next year’s renewal of our accreditation is imminent.
He probably is in need of some formal training in teaching methods. Some of his classes, so I have been told, are hardly more than a series of stories, one after the other. Not that he is always in class. One time the students had to go and find him and his excuse was that he was praying. He also does quite unconventional things in class. One day he brought a child into class as a visual aid and since it was not his child, I had to rebuke him for breaching our child protection policies.
I also have some problems with his activities outside the classroom and this is serious because they could easily erode our support base in the churches. He has been seen talking to prostitutes and others of a similar sort. He has also, unfortunately, begun to involve his class in his extra-curricular activities. The other day he took them all to the wedding reception of a friend. Not only did the wine flow freely but, apparently, he seemed to be in charge of the wine himself.
Look, it’s not all bad, all but one of his students love him. One was even heard the other day to say that he would die for him, but of course that it is just talk.
He doesn’t seem to respect me either. Do you know the other day he actually offered to wash my feet? – Cheeky fellow (do they really smell? You can tell me).
What do you think? Could we change him enough so that he became the sort of lecturer we want at our college? Maybe the best thing to do is just give him his three years and then get rid of him. It has been done before.
I look forward to hearing from you.