Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Are Parents Ruining Everything? Part 1

Maybe. I've read two articles lately that have me thinking that parents may very well be ruining everything for their kids. Both articles are in the Boston Globe. I'll cover the first one in this post.

The article, How Parents Make Teachers Miserable was written by a 27 year old teacher who has no intentions of returning to the profession. Who can blame her? I was amazed at what some of her parents had to say to her during parent conferences.

Take a look:

"During my first parent-teacher conference, I had several parents simply yell at me for the duration of the meeting, enraged by their children’s grades. One mother said her child had never earned a grade as low as a B+ in any class and implied poor teaching must be to blame. Although the student ended up with similar grades the following term from other teachers, I had suffered the brunt of her anger.
I had parents rip grading rubrics out of my hand and tell me the grade their child actually deserved. Another parent questioned me on how English Language Arts was relevant to his daughter’s life. At this point I’d had it, and I told him it was probably the most important subject his daughter was taking. Knowing how to communicate effectively is vital in the world outside the classroom walls. Parents who forget that in their blind push for undeserved higher grades do their children a grave disservice."
Are you kidding me? When I was growing up, it was my responsibility to learn what my teachers were teaching. It was the same for the lovelies. Any time one of them received a grade less than what they were capable of getting, it wasn't that the teachers weren't teaching. It was because my lovely daughters weren't holding up their end of the deal. 

In all my years in school, I can recall only three teachers that probably should have considered a different profession. And, when considering my four daughters and all their teachers, the odds were not in favor of the teachers not teaching. I did the math once and I think it came to something like 67 DIFFERENT teachers throughout their k-12 years (they did have some of the same teachers) and, out of those (I know the number was in the 60s) there were only 4 whom I feel should not have been teachers. Considering that information, the failure to make a good grade fell on my kids NOT their teachers. 
Let's be real here. And honest. We would all love to believe that we have perfect children who are above average in every way possible--like at Lake Wobegon..Ha! The truth is, our kids are no more perfect than we, ourselves, are. People are not perfect. And that's ok. 
What's NOT ok is blaming someone else. How will the kids learn to accept responsibility for their failures? Or for falling short? How will they learn to pick themselves up and try again and again and again, if need be? It's rather difficult to pick oneself up when one hand is busy pointing a finger at someone else, don't you think? 

No wonder that poor girl has no intention of returning to teaching. I'm not sure I would either if I had to deal with that accusatory mentality. Of course, there's no way in hell I would teach above the elementary level either so... :)

Ok, what do y'all think about this?


  1. Finger pointing and blaming goes on in elementary grades, too, just not quite as much. (Today's parents are BOLD, I tell you!) It's a brave soul who takes on teaching and dealing with today's society--not to mention dealing with our government's interference in what and how they teach . Teachers have an uphill battle to fight.

    1. Bold? That's a nice way to put it. LOL I've just never heard of such.

  2. Ohman, don't even get me started on parents....I had one tell me the other day that because I use a bell in my room, I should be fired.....Kids learn their behavior from somewhere, and it ain't from their teachers. The reason I keep going back for more abuse is because I'm not a quitter and I'm going to make a difference in one of two of those yahoos if my life depends on it....I'm a glutton for punishment...

    1. You are a glutton for punishment for sure. Anyone who teaches kids older than elementary school is. LOL

    2. Oh, I meant to ask whether or not you hit the parent in the head with your bell. LOL

  3. Oh my goodness....this is a hot topic with me right now (well, for a while since I am an educator of future educators and all...). It is just getting worse and worse in terms of this ridiculous parenting style. I am dealing with a student now that has a major helicopter parent...and he's in COLLEGE. Ugh. I could go on and on.

  4. Oh no! I have a friend who teaches on the college level and he has told me stories of those parents on that level. I just can't believe it. This has truly gotten out of hand. When did parents start pointing their fingers at others for the behavior and failed accomplishments (in the parents' eyes) of their kids? I do not understand.


Welcome, friends! Please spew forth some wisdom for me. I'm quite certain I need it!