Panic of a bullied teacher

30th April 2004 at 01:00
The tale of emotional distress induced by bullying in "Give the bullies a battle" (TES, Friday magazine, April 16) struck a chord with me. I could feel the pain, the insecurity, the fear that it was your fault for being inadequate.

In 1997 when I was a newly-qualified teacher I could not stand firm and assert my competence. I was being bullied by my immediate line manager and the head. I had a very small child who did not sleep.

My immediate boss put me down systematically. She continually criticised and denigrated me and ignored any positive contributions I made.

I was inexperienced and vulnerable. I could not give her a battle because she was too successful in browbeating me, and because the head supported her.

Happily, I now work in a sixth-form college and my immediate bosses have been wonderfully supportive women, who know how to appreciate (and channel!) my independence, analytical mind and subject knowledge. They have recognised that I care deeply about education.

So far my students have gained very good grades. I feel that I am doing a good job. In some aspects very good. But the panic returns.

Name and address supplied

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today