Calling all teachers

Earlier this week I wrote about how my seventeen year old son  is struggling in several of his classes and how his father and I have two very different ways of going about making sure our son brings up his grades.

His way : you can lead a horse to the water but you cant make them drink it too. His own destiny is in his hands.

My way :  by rewarding the “horse” (not calling my son a horse) with amusement parks, video games, computer privileges, phone, his girlfriend, fun outings with family   instead of being held accountable for all his missing work then of course he is going to have a no care attitude about things.  He is 17 …I just feel we need to keep on him until he is an adult.

I assumed that since he is a teacher and teaches at the same school that my son attends that he would want our son to excel. Knowing my ex-husband, he would not like anyone to think bad of him …… so why would he want to have his co-workers think that he is ok with his son failing several classes? In a way I see my sons failing grades as a reflection of his home life…..I believe if his father sat with him to see exactly where he is having the problems and  explained it to him then I think a light bulb would go off in our sons head and if he (ex) didn’t understand the lesson then there are tutors at the school.  Shit, I had to do this a few times when I couldn’t help my children with their homework.

I was baffled when I read this part of my ex’s email:

“We (teachers) only tell the parents what the parents want to hear so they know we have done everything we can”

Really? is that true?  I truly believe that there are teachers out that that don’t blow smoke just to get the parents off their back. I want to believe that they are just as frustrated as the parents and are glad when a parent contacts them.


4 thoughts on “Calling all teachers

  1. I have two little ones, and I just hope that when my children go to school, they don’t tell me what I want to hear. I really believe teachers are concern as any parent would be, and this is why they contact parents to improve what children lack. Your ex could be telling the truth but I don’t think it goes for all teachers. What that might do is have all parents question teachers indefinitely about anything and everything.

  2. I used to teach English to 12-16 year olds. Not once did I tell a parent what I thought they wanted to hear. I don’t believe that helps the student at all. All teachers I know are usually very grateful for parental involvement and will happily work closely with them to try and improve the students grade.

    I’ve always said that when it comes to dealing with your child’s school/teachers, be the pushy parent! Make demands, nag the school, drive them insane if you have to…after all, the school is in your life for a matter of years, but your child is in it forever!

  3. Oh boy. Okay, I don’t know of teachers who say what parents want to hear although sometimes we have to be careful about what we say for legal reasons. We get frustrated too when students don’t work/ won’t put in the effort – see my post from yesterday for evidence of this! We do what we can but our sphere of influence is limited. We love for parents to be involved in an age-appropriate way (giving more responsibility to the kid each year) and when there is follow through. The biggest issues in schooling comes when parents and/or teachers take the easy road rather than make the effort of establishing and upholding boundaries. It’s a balance – our job is to make them independent but we have to get them there one step at a time.

  4. Ok, Jolene. a two pronged effort here. As a teacher I choose not to blow smoke. Who does that help? No one. As a parent I have tried several tactics. And I think you have to. A bit of bribery and corruption never hurts. 😉 But. I have had some of mine still go their own merry way regardless. And, do you know what? They were right. My twenty year old wanted to work before going to uni. She did for two years. She’s now in a flat, applied off her own back to Uni, started this year and is working part time to help herself. My eldest son had two bites at it with my encouragement. But he bit and spat it out. Worked for a few years. Has gone part-time in his job and now at uni at 23. And at home. 😦 Eldest daughter, straight from school to 4 years at uni. Now working but wishing she had had some time out.
    My 18 year old did a one year course. Now has changed his mind. Wants to work or go to college or …….something. 😉
    You have to do everything you can. All carrots and sticks to the fore. And then let them do their thing. They will anyway. But no smoke up anyone’s arse. No, never.x

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