What do you do when a teacher lies?

  1. I have a problem and first hello to everyone ... I am beginning my second semester of LPN school and ending the first .. It has been very stressful ..

    We have a great clinical instructor but we have had a awful experience with our teacher in Nursing Fundamentals . I ask a lot of questions and of course would like answers .. After the first month of asking questions that the instructor could not answer in math , I got a tutor but yet during class I still asked questions and the teacher did not know how to answer the question

    The whole class talks about her behind her back , how she grades , how she is ineffienct and doesnt know what she is teaching and her subjective grading


    Finally this teacher went to our nursing director and stated several untruths about me .. I had to go to a meeting and I signed a disiplinary action because I felt I had no other choice

    I was practically hysterical in tears during the meeting .. I have recorded lectures .. Today we were told we could have no more recorders in her lectures . I had felt fairly safe having it on recordings so in case of something I could show the truth of all things stated.

    Bascially I feel this teacher wants me out of the program and I think it would be very easy for her to do .. I am finding a lot of backstabbing in this profession

    IS THIS NORMAL ?
    Bascially several students went in to the nursing director to speak to her about this teacher .. But the teacher feels I have led now an organization to complain about her which is not true .. They have thier own statements and issues with her which they are slowly being brave enough to voice to the director .

    Of couse I am told not to talk about the situation, but my classmates are concerned .. WE are told not to talk to each other about our interactions with the administration to other students and we are told not to discuss grades with each other or any other information with each other . but we practically live together five days a week Is this NORMAL .. I do value this place ..

    Venting is good .. however i am concerned that a teacher could lie and I could be out of nursing school I have worked so hard for . she is a new teacher .. Is my worry for naught ??? Thank you so much
    Last edit by SaraLee on Mar 14, '07
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  2. 18 Comments

  3. by   caliotter3
    What you are experiencing does happen elsewhere. The dead giveaway is the banning of the tape recorders. It is obvious from your post, that the administration is trying to squelch the unrest. You must get on the defensive and try to figure out what exactly it is you need to do to survive this.

    Unfortunately when instructors engage in lack of integrity, as they may very well do, there is little you can do without the aid of witnesses or the tape recorder.

    I would suggest that you pay a visit to the student grievance committee at your school and ask for their assistance. They would be especially interested in your report of being "silenced" by the staff. As long as you and your classmates are not being disruptive in class, nobody can stop you from talking about anything. This is a free country. Exchange phone numbers, and if you have to, talk outside of class. When we had lawsuits going on at my school, you can bet there was discussion going on, but it didn't occur right in front of the school staff. Good luck.
  4. by   emmycRN
    As she is a new instructor I bet she is under as much stress as you are. She is probably very concerned about her performance in class, and therefore wary of the recorders. Try cutting her some slack and addressing your issues to her personally. Maybe ask her for some one on one time to give her a chance to explain some of the things you are struggling with in class. There are a lot of hoops you have to jump through and many difficult personalities to deal with in school and even more so after graduation. Just hang in there and try to meet each challenge with professionalism and a good attitude. If it were me, I would try to get on this intructors "good side". This would help boost her confidence as a teacher and alleviate your own fears of being unable to complete your program.
  5. by   SaraLee
    Thank you Emmy

    I have tried to talk and talk to the teacher .. It has not resulted in very good terms in fact it seems to get worse .. This semester I am going to sit in the back , not ask questions .. I am one who believes in first amendment rights and all ... I just want protection from someone outright lying about me

    I now know that all my talks to her have not helped at all .. She outright lied to the director ..

    One of my dearest friends not in this profession said that in times of stress usually people can tell who is lying. She thinks the director will see thru her lies .

    I have caught her in four lies within the last 4 weeks .. I am just so concerned that beings I signed that paper .. I was under duress ..

    In fact I thought that everything was settled between me and this teacher and then all of the sudden I am coming in for a disiplinary action ..

    So I am trying to figure out how to quell my natural personality to not further inflame the issue but not be a wimp or get lied about ..

    Why is it important to demean nursing students .. It seems to happen at our school

    We have 15 students left out of 20 in 2 months .. We were all A students to be accepted .. We felt good , now we basically and as I say we it is with about 70 percent of the students .. This teacher has singled out about 2 pets ..

    But she espiecially goes out of her way to demean me to almost what I would call abuse ..

    I have tried to apologize for anything I am doing wrong .. I have went that route
    Should I consider a lawyer or wait ? I dont know

    and if so what kind of lawyer would I want to talk to about it in case she does lie again ..

    I am not leading a revolution against her

    and I come to class prepared ... My grades show that and my classmates know this is true .

    Well I appreciate any comments on how to further act or react or not react or what to do

    Thank you so much
  6. by   caliotter3
    A lawyer will ask you if you have followed the grievance procedures of your school. That is why I suggested that you make a visit to the student grievance committee. Every school has some avenue for the redress of grievances.
  7. by   gr8rnpjt
    I am wondering what kind of lies she told? Were they personal, about something she said that you did or said, or did the lies have to do with content-material given in class, wrong answers to questions and such. I get the feeling there was some animosity between the two of you. Did you start out kind of angry and demanding, then realize that you were coming on too strong then apologized? Or is this coming out of left field somewhere? Just trying to understand. I had similar problems with an instructor. She failed me my first time around. When I came back, she was my biggest supporter.
  8. by   SaraLee
    one thing is she put on the paper I was coming to class unprepared.

    I had both of my term papers done ahead of time .. I never was unprepared
    and have had 90's and above in all my test etc.

    Yesterday before the meeting at 2 she stated to me in front of the class that she and I and the director had an appt to meet ( everyone knew what this meant ) and so one of my classmates went at that time to voice her opinions of her dissaproval of this teacher and how everyone was upset in the class ...

    to the director .. At that time she mentioned that she knew I had an appt with her and the teacher and was a little afraid

    AT that meeting I was asked how this other student even knew of the meeting by the director and I said .. x teacher said to me in front of class we have a meeting with the director

    Said teacher said right in front of director " you know that is not true , I pulled you aside outside and told you "

    So therefore she lied directly to the nursing director ..

    I simply said that is not true ..

    She had also said on the paper I was leading a revolution against this teacher

    No I am simply one to speak up .. Others are gathering courage to speak up and of coures we talk to each other

    WE are each others support

    Would my classmates state that they know the truth ? YES I beleivee they would but that would be such a big trial and issue thing and I dont even know if that is allowed

    Now can a teacher stop you from recording a lecture . I was just told by a teacher they cant .

    Thanks
  9. by   gr8rnpjt
    I am not sure about the recording issue, but I saw it done a lot in nursing school. And people who did that got the best grades as well. I would meet with the director one on one and discuss the fact that this teacher is blatantly lying about you. It seems like you and your classmates are on the same page. But be careful about looking like the ringleader of this "revolution". try to take a back seat and voice your opinion, but make sure that your classmates back up your statements.
  10. by   caliotter3
    A supervisor I once had who was suing her employer, was told by her attorney to place a tape recorder in plain sight, working, whenever, she was called in for a group "beating up" when her employer was developing evidence for firing her. He said that the tape recorder had to be out in plain sight. She told me that when she started producing the tape recorder, the group that was attacking her demanded that she turn the recorder off, which she refused to do. It interrupted their sessions so then they had to get more devious in creating their evidence.

    My daughter told me that the schools she has attended do not allowing recording of lectures. I would imagine your attorney would ask you to bring in a copy of the policy that states this in writing.

    Reading your last post, I can see that you have a big problem here. There is something wrong with this instructor beyond just new instructor insecurity. Is there any way you can drop this course and not take any more courses from her? This is worth going up the chain about. How she feels she can lie outright about something that happened in front of the entire class shows that she is lacking in sense. I would want to get away from her. She reminds me of some of my nursing instructors. Good luck.
  11. by   SaraLee
    This is a very small school and they have trouble keeping and getting instructors

    Our classes are all inclusive .. Meaning we have to take them all at once all the way thru .. WE cant drop one and take one etc

    and this teacher will be in my next class .. The only saving grace is that I will be in clinicals three days a week instead of two

    I do intend to sit in the back even tho I like to sit up front to see better

    I will sit in the back

    and every time I have recorded her lectures I sat right in front tape recorder in full view

    Students also know this .. we are a small class

    She then accused me of recording her secretely in front of the director

    So its a serious issue yes

    and I am taking all advice I can and I just need to get thru this program

    I will sit back and let others speak up for themselves at this point

    Perhaps some good will come of it I can hope

    I heard a while ago the director is going to pass out some evaluations of the teacher anonymous

    we dont have to sign them .. Students will be honest ..

    But even so it willl not mean this teacher leaves .. I have to learn how to deal with her

    I read a lot on here how nurses deal with all kinds of things .. and backstabbing etc in these forums

    I am just not used to it .. I was a stay at home mom .. I was in the army but it was different ..

    more back up from your friends and more commeradery .. Please all excuse my spelling I do use spell check .. but havent figured it on here

    I do appreciate all the advice but it is even scary writing on here

    I hate being afraid

    That is one thing I do not like

    and I feel afraid of a teacher
    or afraid of power and abuse of that power

    Thanks
  12. by   Gromit
    Thats pretty much the way ours was (it was very very difficult -nearly impossible- to drop one, and take that part again 'later'., though it WAS possible to do).
    It likely depends on the state as to weather or not they can refuse to allow you to record. In Florida they can refuse it -and we only had one instructor who did refuse -the others didn't mind. I always taped lectures because I could then listen to the tapes at home, or on my way to school, work, etc. over and over and over (god I still have some nightmares about that stuff! ).
    We were fortunate in that we only had one 'bad' instructor (fundamentals -and coincidentally, while he had about 5 yrs teaching time at that school, he was dismissed after our class -he was likeable, just not a very good teacher -would often not bother to show up for class (no warning, just not show up. We were supposed to have quizzes every first class of the week, and sometimes he didn't show up on those days). The other we had was just well, started out being rather nasty (mean), so as you can imagine, it was kind of tense in her class (this instructor singled me out once because I arrived a few minutes (literally) late after work, at the 5pm lecture time, to tell me that (in front of class) it was unreasonable for me to expect to work full time and go to class full time, that I'd better "grow up" (I was in my late 30s) and decide what I wanted more -the job or the school". I was pretty incredulous -and while I'm vocal, I'm not usually one to stir the pot. I asked her if it was 'reasonable' for her to expect to get paid -and mentioned that as far as growing up was concerned, I no longer lived with mommy and daddy, and they no longer paid my bills -including the college one.
    We actually got along fairly well after that.

    In any case, to the OPs question, wow, thats a toughie. You're not in a very enviable position. Typically fundies teachers don't teach other parts of the program -I pray this is true for you. If so, then all you REALLY have to do is survive to the end. Otherwise, even though I never advocate it myself, you might have to just bite your tongue, and try to be uh, less noticeable. You did say you were getting decent grades still -quizzes, assignments done and handed in, etc. It does happen that people just aren't compatible -and all YOU really have to do is pass the course, and that teacher will be rid of you, and you of her.
    I wish you all the luck in the world on it. Hopefully you will be like the rest of us -looking back at it years from now as just a bumb in the road.
    Last edit by Gromit on Mar 14, '07
  13. by   S.T.A.C.E.Y
    What I learned early in nursing school: Keep your mouth shut, smile...nod, and don't stir the pot. It sucks, but its the truth...four years later I'm happy to say I'm nearly done my degree!

    As for wanting to continue to record her lectures, I'd just do it in private anyways. Keep the recorder in an open pocket of your backpack, just dont let her see it.

    Best of luck you.
    Last edit by S.T.A.C.E.Y on Mar 14, '07
  14. by   grandee3
    Sara, I am so sorry that this is happening to you. I noticed that you are 53 years old. I was 50 when I was in LPN school. I had a similar problem with an instructor. This teacher did not like me and it was well known to my classmates. I was their class secretary. I also had a medical background for many years. EMT-A, I and P.
    I tried to figure out why she always came down on me so hard, never would let me be team leader in clinicals. I thought it was my age or my background. I did not act like a know-it-all, but some things were easier for me than for my classmates. I just could not figure out what was wrong.
    One day, about 3 months before the end of the program, I was in the computer room taking the practice test for boards ( we started this after I first clinical rotation). She walked in, no one else was in the room. She turned around and started to walk out when she saw me. I her if I could talk to her, she said "yes". I looked her in the eyes and asked her "why she did not like me". She said it was not that she did not like me but felt I did not need as much attention as my classmates because of my background. We talked for about an hour. When it was over, we both cried. For the next clinical she assigned me team leader. The rest of the time, she was very attentive to me. The duty of the secretary was to plan the capping and pinning. The capping had been held about 4 months before our little talk. For the pinning which was held 3 days after our final clinical, the other officers and I made sure she got the recognition she deserved. When it came time for her to place the pin on me, I watched her eyes well with tears. She gave me a big hug. When she got my board results she called me and said " May I speak to ......, LPN. It was one of the best moments in my life and a lot of it was the support that she gave me those last few months.
    I am so glad that we were able to put aside or differences and move on. I don't know if I would be where I am today if it were not for her. She became my biggest supporter.

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