Favoritism shown by teachers can lead to an imbalanced and divided classroom



Favoritism in the classroom can cause many issues; some are more obvious than others.

Opinions expressed in editorials on The Central Trend are the view of the individual writer and are not the opinion of the entire staff of The Central Trend or the Forest Hills Central staff or administration.

Many students have teachers who seem to like them more or less than other students; it’s natural for some people to get along more than others due to varying personalities. However, when teachers get along with some students more than others and give them special permissions due to this, education imbalances and unfair advantages come into play.

Social effects are the most blatantly obvious—students who do not get the special treatment feel cast aside and quickly grow to resent the teacher. This is different from teachers who are disliked by the majority of students; the students with such instructors are aware they are in the same boat and can almost become closer with such an experience. On the other hand, in classrooms where some students are treated differently than others when they aren’t deserving of it, the students become divided among themselves rather than a division between student and teacher.

When certain students are being favored, other students who do not receive such attention may begin to hate the favored students. While such students have no reason to be hated since being unfairly treated is no fault of the students. If being themselves is a reason for a teacher to be exceptionally gracious to a student, it is not the student’s fault but rather the teacher’s. However, it is difficult for the other students in the class not to feel slightly jealous and annoyed with the favorites.

If being themselves is a reason for a teacher to be exceptionally gracious to a student, it is not the student’s fault but rather the teacher’s.

This could then cause the mental health of the so-called “favorite” to deteriorate—even if the teacher believes that they are giving the student benefits, the student’s peers might have turned against them, thus harming the student rather than helping.

The other students in the class could also experience a blow to their self-esteem; they may not believe that they are good enough to be the teacher’s favorite. Students who are not given special treatment due to favoritism might feel as though they aren’t as good academically, socially, or physically as others. This is a dangerous mindset that could be prevented by teachers remaining unbiased.

Not only are relationships affected by favoritism in the classroom, but also grades and opportunities. If teachers have taken favoritism to the extent of letting redos, easier questions, or overall better opportunities and chances, students who are just as qualified for a college as a favorite student may not have as high of an acceptance chance if they are not given special positions or have as good of grades due to unequal opportunities from favoritism.

Obviously, this does not apply to instances where a student seriously needs help. If a student is struggling in a subject, it is fully reasonable for the teacher to come to the aid of the student—in fact, one-on-one meetings for this type of situation should be encouraged. Assisting a student that needs a bit of a boost to catch up with other students is a teacher’s job and is not an example of favoritism.

However, if a teacher is making things easier for a student who is not struggling and needs no extra assistance, this is a situation that is unfairly in favor of one student over others. This also applies to situations in which a student is given more leadership because of teacher preference rather than a skill set that pertains to the activity.

While all people have their preferences on who they better connect with, teachers have an important role in being impartial to compatibility and rather focus on each student’s individual talents to find in which way they can support them the most. Without an unbiased learning experience, students could lose more than they gain.