Business vs Education
I am sure you are thinking hanky, panky happens in business too. Let me explain some of the differences.
In business, the bottom line is profit. Lawsuits are unprofitable so they are avoided as much as possible.
In education, the bottom line is taxpayers will pay, kind of like when you were a child and you didn’t really value things because mom and dad would pay for it anyway.
In business, they can fire an employee without cause. Therefore, subsequent employers do not consider termination as a sign of a disastrous employee and will still consider them.
In education, teachers have tenure to protect their rights against unreasonable parents given that teachers have to give grades. Therefore, if they want to dispose of a teacher, they have to create a case against her. Tenure is a double-edged sword. It results in teacher abuse as the only way to get rid of an unwanted teacher. However, unwanted can be anything from a personality clash to a power trip and the teacher is left with a false case that makes it nearly impossible to secure another job. Furthermore, any subsequent employer looks negatively at a fired teacher, as it is an automatic sign that this teacher either stood up to her employer or was incompetent. But without tenure, just think what the turnover rate would be in education considering the self-serving administrators running the show.
In business, employees do not have First Amendment Rights or the right of free speech as it pertains to their employment.
In education, employees have First Amendment Rights since public employees serve as a check and balance for abuse of the public trust and teachers need to serve as protectors of their children. This is another double-edged sword. If a teacher tries to assert them, she will be abused, yet if she does not speak out about wrongdoing, she will feel she is betraying her wards. The rights are there for a reason.
In business, employees have other civil rights and employers attempt to avoid lawsuits.
In education, teachers allegedly have civil rights, but administrators are comfortable changing the laws knowing they can always bury the employee in court.
In business, if an employer dislikes an employee, he still hesitates to bad-mouth her to a future employer, as he wants to avoid lawsuits emanating from improper communication about an employee. Lawsuits cost money and money is the bottom line.
In education, if an administrator dislikes an employee, he doesn’t hesitate to make slanderous statements to the new administrator since he knows the Good Ol' Boy Network supports this, and if by chance he finds an ethical administrator who supports the teacher, he figures “let the teacher sue.” Administrators freely discuss unsubstantiated issues with future employers, and fabricate additional ones without hesitation. They don’t care because the taxpayers pay for lawsuits should they arise, and money isn’t the bottom line.
In business, an employer cannot blackball an employee from every other corporation although they may be able to blackball them within a given field. Business skills carry over into other businesses, so the employee can switch to a new industry.
In education, an administrator can make sure a teacher never teaches again due to the incestuous network. Teaching skills are virtually non-transferable in business, and a teaching degree serves as a red flag to a business employer that the person is not made of what it takes to survive in business. It takes significant effort to break into business after teaching, so a teacher feels captive in her profession. It is most difficult to leave teaching and start at the bottom in business since a teacher starts at a point lower than a recent business college graduate does. She will have to do menial work until she can prove herself. (Businesses have no idea that after several years in the battlefield of education, teachers are versed in every nasty, competitive tactic known to mankind.)
In business, leaders need to maintain consumer satisfaction to stay on top in their industry.
In education, consumers have to attend by law, and given few viable alternatives, most do. And administrators can engage unions to lobby against alternative schooling, to make the choices even smaller. Therefore, consumer satisfaction is not an issue.
In business, leaders have to prove themselves to keep their jobs and they are judged on profits unless they are related to someone in charge or have some unique situation. Even with political advantages, when the profits slip, they are forced out. It is most difficult to cover up impending bankruptcy and if they do “cook the books”, there are criminal consequences.
In education, leaders need only to stack their boards politically and their cronies will look the other way with their hands out, even if the test scores slip. They can cover up “bad news” with propaganda with no concern about criminal consequences most of the time. (Occasionally, administrators have been caught cheating on test scores, but they are rarely caught because teachers know that if they report their superiors, their career is over. Other than teachers, there are few people with enough inside information to report any cheating.)
In business, people expect employers to deal with employees or suffer strikes or other work conflicts. Few would feel sorry for a company that has losses over work stoppages. This includes judges who would view a conflict as possibly caused by either side.
In education, people expect teachers to put their students over themselves and if they consider striking or doing anything that could harm the children, teachers are criticized. Teachers are expected to not be about money first. This includes judges who view a teacher who sues as betraying her duties to her children and “wasting” tax payers’ funds.
In business, when there is a conflict, an employer may suffer a financial loss.
In education, when there is a conflict, children, parents and the entire school suffer an emotional loss and the teacher is held accountable for it. In fact, administrators need only to fan the flames and make the teacher appear to be an ogre to unsuspecting parents.
THE PLAYING FIELD IS NOT LEVEL IN BUSINESS OR EDUCATION AS BOSSES HAVE THE UPPER HAND. HOWEVER, LAWS AND PUBLIC OPINION LIMIT BUSINESSES FAR MORE THAN THEY LIMIT SCHOOLS. THUS, THE PLAYING FIELD IS ALMOST VERTICAL IN EDUCATION AND ABUSE OF POWER THRIVES.
"I always figured that someday I would retire from business and work as a teacher so I could get away from the office politics and backstabbing in the business world and live in peace. I am shocked at what goes on in education after hearing your story."
Response from a fellow writer in one of Horwitz' writing class.
The true nature of our schools is one of the DEEPEST, DARKEST, secrets left to uncover. MOST PEOPLE BELIEVE YOU CANNOT FIRE A TEACHER; Bill Maher must have repeated this mantra a dozen times on his former show, "POLITICALLY INCORRECT," His guests carried on discussions as though this were true, while almost any other "GIVEN" was challenged by at least one or more of his guests, many of whom were highly educated. People also believe that SCHOOLS ARE EASY STREET compared to business, with politics at a minimum. NEITHER IS TRUE. IF IT WEREN'T FOR TEACHER ABUSE, PEOPLE WOULD KNOW THIS.