Harassment...

BwayTheatre11
Broadway Legend
joined:6/25/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/25/03
Harassment...#0
Posted: 1/26/04 at 12:05pm
So, today it finally came to me WHY I do not like to participate in my schools drama/musical theatre department (but I still do, because I do not CARE!). Let me know what you would do.

My school's director has been harassing me like CRAZY ever since I joined musical theatre class. He makes comments that most people would not catch, but I do. Comments about my sexuality. Things like saying that I am a girl or boy, singing Deck the Halls (Don we now our gay apparel), etc. I find this very offensive and do not look foward to something I love anymore. I spend my theatre time now in community theatre. Anyone have any suggestions of what to do?
CCM '10!
SueleenGay Profile PhotoSueleenGay Profile Photo
SueleenGay
Broadway Legend
joined:6/9/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/9/03
re: Harassment...#1
Posted: 1/26/04 at 12:16pm
This is very serious. You MUST report this to a counselor or principal at once. You do not have to be made to feel embarrassed or self-conscious when you go to school. This is intolerable coming from anyone, but especially a teacher. I donít understand why this kind of thing is still happening. Promise me you will tell an authority figure or a parent or adult friend of the family. Do not avoid doing what you love to do because someone is making you feel uncomfortable. I know it may be hard to talk to someone, but believe me, you will feel so much better and also keep this terrible person from doing this to someone else. Please let us know what happens.

Sueleen
PEACE.
papalovesmambo Profile Photopapalovesmambo Profile Photo
papalovesmambo
Broadway Legend
joined:11/4/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
11/4/03
re: harassment...#2
Posted: 1/26/04 at 12:25pm
bway, you seem like a reasonably well adjusted young man so i would suggest speaking to the director in a reasonable manner. without seeming accusatory, try to let him know that some of his comments make you uncomfortable. give him the benefit of the doubt, as it's possible that his comments are entirely innocent and the context and manner have conspired to give them a hue that they were not intended to convey. perhaps he's unaware of how these comments are perceived. whether intentional or not, the knowlesge that his comments make you uncomfortable enough that you felt it necessary to bring them to his attention should be enough to make him think a little more before he speaks, not just to you, but to all the students with whom he works.
r.i.p. marco, my guardian angel.

...global warming can manifest itself as heat, cool, precipitation, storms, drought, wind, or any other phenomenon, much like a shapeshifter. -- jim geraghty

pray to st. jude

i'm a sonic reducer

he was the gimmicky sort

fenchurch=mejusthavingfun=magwildwood=mmousefan=bkcollector=bradmajors=somethingtotalkabout: the fenchurch mpd collective
iflitifloat Profile Photoiflitifloat Profile Photo
iflitifloat
Broadway Legend
joined:10/10/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
10/10/03
re: re: Harassment...#3
Posted: 1/26/04 at 12:26pm
Sueleen said it all. This is unacceptable coming from anyone, but when a teacher is acting this way, the wrongness (is that even a word?) is magnified. Please keep us informed.
Sueleen Gay: "Here you go, Bitch, now go make some fukcing lemonade." 10/28/10
Mister Matt Profile PhotoMister Matt Profile Photo
Mister Matt
Broadway Legend
joined:5/17/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/17/03
re: re: re: Harassment...#4
Posted: 1/26/04 at 12:34pm
A teacher, perhaps more than a parent, willingly assumes responsibilty as a role model for many teens and/or children. This kind of behavior promotes bigotry for all his/her students. I would report the behavior immediately. Hopefully, there is an faculty member that you can trust to be supportive and proactive with the information. It can be a counselor, principal, or even another teacher. For your own protection, try to find someone with whom you feel can keep your anonymity. I don't know what it's like for teens in high school today, but I came out in the mid-80s in high school and I know it can be scary. Sounds like this teacher never matured beyond age 17. And they're teaching DRAMA nonetheless! What world are they living in?
"What can you expect from a bunch of seitan worshippers?" - Reginald Tresilian
MasterLcZ Profile PhotoMasterLcZ Profile Photo
MasterLcZ
Broadway Legend
joined:5/12/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/12/03
re: re: re: re: Harassment...#5
Posted: 1/26/04 at 1:28pm
Listen to Mamma Suleen. This is TOTALLY inappropriate behaviour on the part of your teacher.

The previous posters said it better than I could.
"Christ, Bette Davis?!?!"
rlbgbc Profile Photorlbgbc Profile Photo
rlbgbc
Broadway Legend
joined:5/22/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/22/03
re: re: re: re: re: Harassment...#6
Posted: 1/26/04 at 1:30pm
I think your HS theatre director sounds like a raging closet case. You got to a catholic boys school, staffed by priests?
TheaterBaby Profile PhotoTheaterBaby Profile Photo
TheaterBaby
Broadway Legend
joined:5/11/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/11/03
re: re: re: re: re: re: Harassment...#7
Posted: 1/26/04 at 2:47pm
I think people who fear someone else's sexuality are not very secure about their own.
My guess is he was a jock when he was in Highschool...or better yet, he was made fun of for his own sexuality and is repressed.

I would speak to him as an adult first, and if the problem continues then I would report him to a higher authority.
"It's the little things; the details, that distinguish the Barbra Streisands from the Rosalyn Kinds."~Gilmore Girls~
BwayTheatre11
Broadway Legend
joined:6/25/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/25/03
re: re: re: re: re: re: re: Harassment...#8
Posted: 1/26/04 at 6:24pm
Did I mention that he favors females? That is "hott" females...that has everything to do with him likeing you. Good thing is he retires in a couple years. He is atleast 60 years old.
CCM '10!
NativeNewYorker
Broadway Legend
joined:7/29/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
7/29/03
I am so sorry this is happening to you! Keep us posted!
CJR Profile PhotoCJR Profile Photo
CJR
Broadway Legend
joined:5/14/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/14/03
Definitely follow the advice of Sueleen. It's completely unacceptable from anyone, let alone a teacher. You must talk to your counselor or someone in higher authority in your school at once.

That's completely inappropriate. Want me to go kick his ass? re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: re: Harassment...
"You're every gay man's wet dream!" ~ MA

If in Heaven you don't excel, you can always party down in hell...

JoizeyActor Profile PhotoJoizeyActor Profile Photo
JoizeyActor
Broadway Legend
joined:9/29/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
9/29/03
I'm surprised that someone who is directing musical theatre would be harassing someone for their sexuality. I live in a small, ignorant town, but even our musical and performing arts teachers are more than comfortable with the one openly homosexual guy in our school, as well as the topic in general.

I don't know, I just can't see someone in theatre being ignorant to homosexuality. That's pretty sad.
PJ Profile PhotoPJ Profile Photo
PJ
Broadway Legend
joined:5/15/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/15/03
I'd expect that sort of thing out of teenagers, not an educator. Follow the advice of the others...they're right.
SueleenGay Profile PhotoSueleenGay Profile Photo
SueleenGay
Broadway Legend
joined:6/9/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/9/03
Your second post about the hot females is just as disturbing. Imagine what they have to endure. This makes it even more important that you tell.
PEACE.
Lorelai Profile PhotoLorelai Profile Photo
Lorelai
Broadway Legend
joined:5/17/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/17/03
I must agree with attempting to talk to this teacher first in a calm manner.

A friend of mine actually had a similar situation, and he wanted to take steps to handle it, because (obviously) no one deserves to be treated in that manner. I am NOT saying you should exactly follow what he did because there are many ways to deal with this type of thing. This is just how one individual chose to deal with it.
He approached this professor one on one, and explained that the comments made him very uncomfortable. But, it did not help things at all. So he chose to give the professor the benefit of the doubt and wrote the professor a short note (dating and photocopying it) and went to the school office, asked the secretary where he could leave a note for this professor to be sure that he got it and left it. I don't know how stupid this professor is but even after that letter, it continued.
So my friend went to a higher authority (the dean, in this case) to explain the entire situation and brought the photocopy of the note he had written the professor.
The professor had the nerve to deny all of it, saying he never got any letter etc. But the secretary he spoke to was able to vouch that she saw him leave the letter.
Also if you know some people who have witnessed all of this, all the better.
With my friend, the professor ended up having to give my friend a written apology, go to some sensitivity thing and was put on probation. He was removed from any type of lead/head position, in this case it was coach of the soccer team.
I hope things work out for you, no matter what you end up doing and definately keep us posted. Good luck.
(formerly bronte604) "You really just love money and power and capitalism? You know they're never going to love you back." "Things happen for the best...I don't even believe that myself."
BwayTheatre11
Broadway Legend
joined:6/25/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/25/03
Do you want to know what makes me more uncomfortable...other kids laugh, so I think he talks about me behind my back.
CCM '10!
PJ Profile PhotoPJ Profile Photo
PJ
Broadway Legend
joined:5/15/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/15/03
Teenagers will be teenagers. The one's whom are currently laughing at you now will be telling their children 20 years from now how they went to school with a Tony Award winning lighting designer. Keep your head up and take all the necessary steps to ensure your own personal comfort in the classroom.
BwayTheatre11
Broadway Legend
joined:6/25/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/25/03
Mister Matt Profile PhotoMister Matt Profile Photo
Mister Matt
Broadway Legend
joined:5/17/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/17/03
All the more reason to take action. If he's doing this in the company of other kids, then he must be asking for a discrimination lawsuit. If you have any friends in the class that are not afraid to stand up to this moron, talk to them. The more witnesses you have, the better. The toughest part is going to be proving that his comments were mailicious as he will most likely claim that they were misconstrued. That is the importance of having witnesses who can testify that there was no confusion to the meaning of his behavior.
"What can you expect from a bunch of seitan worshippers?" - Reginald Tresilian
Broadway Legend
joined:12/31/69
Broadway Legend
joined:
12/31/69
BT11, I don't know your age but I've surmised your in high school. If you're not an adult in a work environment follow the advice suggested to you by the very smart Sueleen. I can't stress that enough.

Immediately speak with your school's Guidance Counselor or Principal. Do not be concerned about any retaliation or further comments by your teacher. He will be told that he cannot take any retalitive action against you.

If you were an adult and could have a conversation with him on a level playing field a private chat with him might be a first softer approach. But from what you've said I don't feel you need to be that sensitive to his feelings.

Speak with the Guidance Counselor/Pricipal and be prepared to give very specific examples of comments and the context in which those were made (who, what, where, etc.) and how those comments made you feel. That is very important.

I'm not a lawyer (but I play on on TV). I have dealt with these types of scenarios before.

Best wishes! Bulldog.
Dollypop
Broadway Legend
joined:5/15/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/15/03
This all constitutes sexual harassment.

One of the few good things that President Bush has initiated is the "No Kid Left Behind" program. Under this program this kind of behavior WILL NOT BE TOLERATED in any school!!!!! Report this to your counselor. He or she will write up a report and THE TEACHER WILL BE REMOVED FROM THE CLASSROOM pending and investigation.

This is serious stuff.
"Long live God!" (GODSPELL)
BwayTheatre11
Broadway Legend
joined:6/25/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/25/03
But I am the only kid who does not like him...
CCM '10!
Mister Matt Profile PhotoMister Matt Profile Photo
Mister Matt
Broadway Legend
joined:5/17/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/17/03
Popularity does not excuse behavior. I fully agree with dollypop and bulldog on this one. You need to speak to a counselor about this. Otherwise, he will continue to torture you and any other student for years to come. It is the same as making racist remarks to an African American or Hispanic student. And the fact that he does it in front of other students just infuriates me to no end. What he is doing is ILLEGAL. It is sexual harassment. Hopefully, knowing that he is a narrow-minded immature bully will help to give you some strength. Much more strength is required to come out than to terrorize. I'd like to see how long he could last at a gay bar with that kind of attitude. Of course, he's probably terrified that he would like what he sees.
"What can you expect from a bunch of seitan worshippers?" - Reginald Tresilian
iflitifloat Profile Photoiflitifloat Profile Photo
iflitifloat
Broadway Legend
joined:10/10/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
10/10/03
I think we all need to be very careful in advising BW11. We each assume, or hope, that other kids, teachers, or administrators will rush to his defense. High school is a rough crowd, by any standards, and it's a rare kid who will risk drawing the wrath of teachers or other kids for something that does not directly affect him or her. And that can be true of teachers, as well. And if I'm not mistaken, we are talking about the somewhat rural/suburban midwest here..where I grew up...and i remember how things can be...

This teacher might just be a clueless jerk or he may have deeper issues. Whatever BW11 does...he has to protect himself, bottom line. He has another year or two in that school system. Legal rights don't mean that the social fallout won't be bad.

I'd say this... Find ONE strong, trustworthy adult...parent, teacher, guidance councellor and consult with him/her one on one. I'd avoid confronting the teacher publically...that will only get his back up and cause the other kids to take sides. Its a complex, nasty situation. Something clearly has to be done because the teacher's behavior is unacceptable. But BW11 needs...and deserves... backup and support when he confronts the problem.
Sueleen Gay: "Here you go, Bitch, now go make some fukcing lemonade." 10/28/10
Dollypop
Broadway Legend
joined:5/15/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/15/03
At least in NYC, it only takes one student's word to start the investigation. The investigation doesn not mean the tteacher is guilty, but it takes him/her out of the classroom until things are resolved. ACT NOW!!!!!!!
"Long live God!" (GODSPELL)