It might be as simple as the way the student sits behind a desk, or a hair style, maybe not as socially able as other students, maybe the student holds a world view at variance with the teacher, or perhaps comes from a different culture.
"This is similar to many other situations that we see in any workplace where people need to work in close proximity to each other, and is sometimes mirrored in popular comedy programs," mused M V Tronson.
He can quickly think of many examples: the two people in a cock-pit of an aeroplane or locomotive cabin, or even doing surgery in an operating theatre, who for whatever reason, just don't hit it off. Then, in the normal workplace, this situation can occur anywhere from an engineering workshop floor to an office to a board room.
Voluntary workers, also are subject to similar situations, and one of these was exemplified in the comedy series 'To the Manor Born', where the character of the rather officious 'control-freak' Audrey Fforbes-Hamilton (played by Penelope Keith) was so independent, and her style so disliked by the other voluntary workers, that she sent herself a thank-you card and flowers after the annual charity show, that she had helped to organise, because she knew that no-one else would do so.
As a Baptist minister, Mark Tronson sees this fictional situation as very close to the bone, as he has seen many similar scenarios within local Church parish work!
Sometimes there seems to be neither rhyme nor reason for the clash; it is just the personal chemistry of those involved. But obviously, something needs to be done so that people can get on with whatever 'job' is at hand, without having emotional breakdowns or being subject to bullying.
"What is best practise?" enquires M V Tronson.
The school teacher's response was that this child has the same needs to be taught and taught well, the student's parents are expecting positive outcomes, and as a teacher, you've just got to get on with it. This becomes more pertinent when marking assignments and examinations.
For those in the work place, there is a task to be done, a profit to be made, a job to be retained and anything else necessarily becomes a side issue.
In voluntary situations it becomes problematic as volunteers as precisely that, and without a wise and experienced leader in the group, it can become messy.
Ministers / Pastors / Priests have a lifetime of seeing such situations, and having to deal with them one by one on an individual basis. When I was a young minister, one of my mentors commented wisely that it is always necessary to have more than one arrow in your Ministry bow as some situations get muddy.
Some years ago now the Department of Fair Trading was holding free seminars for Public Officers of incorporated bodies within the Associations Act – sports clubs, scouts and guides, social clubs, missions, car clubs, and a host of other community groups.
During one of those sessions, the question was raised about individuals 'not getting on' with others on their own board or committee. The response was that the Department of Fair Trading was not involved with dispute resolutions. The suggestion was that sometimes, there needs to be a split so that people with different ideologies can work together, in separate committees.
At that stage, the Department was overseeing 32,000 Associations in NSW, and this official was of the opinion that if there were 32,001, it would not make any difference.
In some sense that is precisely what occurred when Paul and Barnabas split up over John-Mark's inclusion in the mission team. They went on their separate ways and instead of one Mission team, there become two Mission teams.
Sometimes, this is an effective way of reaching a wider audience, by appealing to the 'chemistry' of different groups within the public arena.