Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

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shopaholic
Posts: 71
Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2017 11:42 pm

Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

Post by shopaholic »

How common is it at your school for admin to 'encourage' teachers to 'help' students so much with IB work that the teachers are basically doing the work for the student? In particular, the kind of work or writing that will be externally assessed.

interteach
Posts: 204
Joined: Wed Nov 29, 2006 2:25 pm

Re: Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

Post by interteach »

It's low-level (or higher) corruption and could end badly.

shopaholic
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Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2017 11:42 pm

Re: Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

Post by shopaholic »

So what would you advise doing if you found yourself in that situation?

interteach
Posts: 204
Joined: Wed Nov 29, 2006 2:25 pm

Re: Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

Post by interteach »

If the IB Coordinator is complicit, I'd make quiet contact with the IBO. If they get involved, it may not be pretty.

sid
Posts: 1187
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2006 11:44 am

Re: Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

Post by sid »

Can you define "help" with a little more detail?
If the teacher is asked to do the typing (or the dictating) for a student's assessment, that's bad.
If the teacher is asked to give formative feedback that suggests where the student needs to pull up their socks, that's generally good. Unless it reaches the level of "in paragraph two, write this instead of that".
I'm currently working with a teacher who is of the mindset that "good IB teaching" means that the teacher hands out a task sheet to 6th graders, tells them it's due in 2 weeks, and sits back to watch and see what happens. In her mind, since the IB wants students to learn independence, this is a required approach. This teacher is quite upset that she has been asked to interact with the students throughout, provide formative feedback along the way, teach relevant lessons or mini-lessons, etc etc etc. I do think that she thinks that she has been asked to assist the students in cheating.

Heliotrope
Posts: 863
Joined: Sun May 13, 2018 1:48 am

Re: Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

Post by Heliotrope »

sid wrote:
> I'm currently working with a teacher who is of the mindset that "good
> IB teaching" means that the teacher hands out a task sheet to 6th
> graders, tells them it's due in 2 weeks, and sits back to watch and see
> what happens. In her mind, since the IB wants students to learn
> independence, this is a required approach. This teacher is quite upset that
> she has been asked to interact with the students throughout, provide
> formative feedback along the way, teach relevant lessons or mini-lessons,
> etc etc etc. I do think that she thinks that she has been asked to assist
> the students in cheating.

Perhaps that teacher is @shopaholic...

shopaholic
Posts: 71
Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2017 11:42 pm

Re: Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

Post by shopaholic »

sid wrote:
> Can you define "help" with a little more detail?
> If the teacher is asked to do the typing (or the dictating) for a student's
> assessment, that's bad.
> If the teacher is asked to give formative feedback that suggests where the
> student needs to pull up their socks, that's generally good. Unless it
> reaches the level of "in paragraph two, write this instead of
> that".
> I'm currently working with a teacher who is of the mindset that "good
> IB teaching" means that the teacher hands out a task sheet to 6th
> graders, tells them it's due in 2 weeks, and sits back to watch and see
> what happens. In her mind, since the IB wants students to learn
> independence, this is a required approach. This teacher is quite upset that
> she has been asked to interact with the students throughout, provide
> formative feedback along the way, teach relevant lessons or mini-lessons,
> etc etc etc. I do think that she thinks that she has been asked to assist
> the students in cheating.

"Unless it reaches the level of "in paragraph two, write this instead of
that". Yes, this is what it is, except more: not just 'paragraph two', but all paragraphs. And no, I am not like the teacher you describe.

sid
Posts: 1187
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2006 11:44 am

Re: Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

Post by sid »

That does sound like too much. Don’t do it. Your integrity is worth more than that. Don’t sign the various forms unless you agree with what you’re signing. Speak with the coordinator about your concerns and intent. Contact the IB if needed.

sid
Posts: 1187
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2006 11:44 am

Re: Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

Post by sid »

Long ago, in the annals of teaching history, I was involved in two relevant situations. Both were ultimately solved with the same strategy that I suggest you use now.
In the first one, I discovered that the grade on a student's report card was significantly higher than the one I had posted. Figuring it was "only" an error, I alerted the "appropriate person", who assured me he would fix it. But a week later, I went back to check, and her report card had reverted once again to the higher grade. This time when I spoke with the "appropriate person", he was a bit cagey, and mentioned what a hard worker this student was, and wouldn't it just be nicer to let her have the high grade? But I said it wasn't right, considering all the other students, etc, and he said he would fix it. This time, I mentioned the incident to a few colleagues, who mentioned it to a few colleagues, and within a few hours there was an avalanche of people checking up on what grades were on the report cards. The "appropriate person" was on a plane homebound before morning, and the school had to bring in an external auditing company to check all the grades and certify they were what they were meant to be. (The official outcome of the audit was that no hankypanky had ever occurred, but since all my colleagues reported that grades had been magically raised for the same 5 students across all subjects, and then magically lowered again before the audit... I can't claim that the school was squeaky clean in the way they approached the audit, but the outcome for the students and their report cards was what it was meant to be.) I never suffered any blowback from the incident, and left the school when I felt the time was right.
In the second case my director directed me to sign off on falsified records, indicating that a student had taken courses at a higher level than he actually had, so it would be easier for him to get into a certain uni. I refused. When my colleagues heard that I refused, they likewise refused. The director tutted, but nothing happened. Frankly, she was too weak. The parents had asked for this, and she was too weak to say no even though there was no reason at all to say yes. Then she was too weak to put up a fight with the teachers. She appeared almost relieved that she could go back to the parents and blame it on other people, that the teachers had refused and what could she do?

So go to your colleagues. Trust in them. Teachers don't want to be involved in this sort of nonsense. It's not why we went into teaching. And if everyone quietly says "thanks, but no", you can all just carry on teaching. The way it's meant to be.

Good luck.

Thames Pirate
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Joined: Fri Jul 05, 2013 8:06 am

Re: Is it low-level corruption if IB teachers are made to 'help' too much, or is this widespread?

Post by Thames Pirate »

There is stretching the guidelines and there is actual dishonesty. For example, you are only supposed to meet with a student a certain number of times on a certain assignment. But the student stops you after class and says "We talked about X, so I implemented these changes. Is that right?" Is that a meeting? It's a grey area at times. In those cases I would consider the spirit of the IB (making sure the student's work is independent and authentic) and of teaching (helping a student figure out how to be independent) as well as the goal of the assessment and whether your input will influence the assessment of that skill or content. However, if you are clearly being asked to go beyond the parameters allowed, I would consider reporting through either internal or external channels.

PsyGuy
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Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:51 am
Location: Northern Europe

Response

Post by PsyGuy »

Its not corruption its fraud.
Whats your exit plan?

The IB will not investigate anonymous and unsubstantiated cases of academic fraud. They dont have the resources and its incredibly difficult to investigate and the reason why is your ISs leadership isnt going to confess. There wont be any IB agents repelling down a rip line from a helicopter. The most extreme investigative tool the IB inspectorate has is a no-notice site visit. What are they going to see really? Assume they are standing behind an IT instructing a student in exactly the way you claim. The IT sits down and spills the whole story that they were directed by leadership to do what they were doing. Leaderships just going to feign astonishment and deny it. At that point you better have emails, or video, or audio or other written documentation (evidence). The ISs leadership is just going to say youre of low professional character or you suffer from a lack of training competence. The IB only has two enforcement tools: monitoring and withdrawal of authorization. The latter is the nuclear action, at that point without any evidence from the IT or a couple of ITs speaking up, the IT (you) is going to be dismissed for cause.

As to @Sids response, you can refuse to comply and you can refuse to sign documents. Again, whats your exit plan? If you refuse to provide the 'instruction' you expose yourself to disciplinary action up to and including dismissal. The IS has an expectation, right or wrong you either have to change the expectation (a tall order, especially if by yourself) or hope your not more trouble than you're worth.
If you refuse to sign documentation the IS will just find someone who will, assuming this is a systematic practice of leadership.

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