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Please be brutally honest about this letter to the school:

post #1 of 49
Thread Starter 
Dear xxxxxx xxxx Waldorf school:

I got the letter asking for the bond money.

I would like to pay that and have (dd) a permanant student at your school but I have a concern I need addressed first.

The most important thing a school should be is safe. I do not feel this school has a safe enviroment.
There is some serious bullying going on and I feel the staff at your school thinks this is normal kids stuff and that friends fight and they will be friends again the next day.

Sept.25 (dd) was thrown to the ground and punched a couple times in the face by Blank. She scratched his fists and wrists to get him to stop. DD told me this after school and I was stunned. We have Never experienced this before. So we phoned DD's teacher and she gave us to Mr.Blank since he was the teacher that hour. He, unfortunately didn't see the incident. But he did inform dd to please go tell a teacher right away when something like this happens.

Oct. 2 dd was going for a lovely walk with the class, when she mentioned 'hey look there's a car at 10:00' Amery said 'it's not 10:00' Then he punched her hard in the stomach. She wanted to cry because it hurt so much. She remembered to walk over to the teacher, Mr. Blank. She told him what happened. I called him later about this and he told me that he didn't see it but he didn't think the punch was that bad. I spoke to Blank's mother and she was shocked that this happened and upset that the school never phoned her to let her know.

Oct.8 In the class room when everyone was leaving for recess, Blank grabbed dd by the scruff of her shirt. So dd, not being a victum type, she asked him 'Blank why are you doing this to me, I've never done anything to you?' So he let her go but later that day she cleaned her desk after apple peeling and went to the desk next to hers to see if they needed help. That's when Blank spat in her face.

Oct.19 Dd was out making a fort with another girl when a couple boys joined them. One of the boys, Blank threw a stick at Angie. She dodged it, put her hands on Blank's shoulders and said 'please don't throw sticks any more kay?' Well, he climbed the tree, went down the branch and punch on the top of her head. She told the teacher on duty who was Ms. Blank. She spoke to the boy. I told dd's teacher after school. The next day dd told me that the teacher told her to not be so sensitive.

I read the Parent Handbook regarding the Suspenion and Expulsion Policy. I see that when a child has one incident, the teacher is supposed to call the parent to pick up the child. The second incident is the same. Those are great. But when does the Third incident come in to place? The teacher and the grade school department discuss the need for explusion.
I know Blank has been getting the one day suspension a few times. Maybe the children are smart and know that they will not be expelled for bad behavior.

We must admit the problem in order to fix the problem. I don't think this is normal childhood play.

Dd loves the school but not getting sucker punched.

Perhaps the Parent handbook should state that you must do self-defense when you are attacked or you're going to get hurt.
If it said bully or be bullyed then we would not have joined. The Parent Handbook says those types of behaviours are unacceptable. Really?

Dd knows if a child punches her to not hit back because she will be kicked out of school. Do the other kids know this?

Michele
post #2 of 49
I received your letter of October X, 2009, regarding my child becoming a permanent student. While I am in support of Waldorf education and would very much like her to be a permanent student, I am concerned by recent events regarding the bullying of my child and lack of response on the school’s part.

I do not feel that the behaviors that my child has been the victim of are within the realm of normal childhood play and that they must be addressed promptly before a child is seriously injured or suffers long-lasting negative emotional effects. In addition, the Parent Handbook specifically states that these behaviors will not be tolerated and have serious consequences, but fails to address how a repeat offender will be disciplined.

I have detailed the incidents that have occurred at school in my enclosure for your review and consideration in the creation of new disciplinary procedures.

I expect that this will be promptly addressed and am happy to cooperate with the school in order to ensure that it is able to provide a safe environment for all students. I am available at the phone number and email address listed below.

With best regards, I am respectfully yours,

XYZ

Enclosures (1)
post #3 of 49
Most of the grammar is better in dachshundqueen's edit, but

Quote:
Originally Posted by dachshundqueen View Post

I do not feel that the behaviors that my child has been the victim of are within the realm of normal childhood play and that they must be addressed promptly before a child is seriously injured or suffers long-lasting negative emotional effects.
This sentence is awkward.
post #4 of 49
Split into two sentences?

I do not feel that the behaviors that my child has been the victim of are within the realm of normal childhood play. They must be addressed promptly before a child is seriously injured or suffers long-lasting negative emotional effects.
post #5 of 49
Thread Starter 
Wow do I ever suck as a letter writer compared to your wonderful smart letter!!!!
One slightly awkward sentense is better than My whole awkward letter.

But the parent handbook does say that the 3 incident does lead to explusion, but they just Fail to go to that step 3. It says:
The teacher and the grade school department discuss the need for explusion.
post #6 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by MicheleRMT View Post
Wow do I ever suck as a letter writer compared to your wonderful smart letter!!!!
One slightly awkward sentense is better than My whole awkward letter.

But the parent handbook does say that the 3 incident does lead to explusion, but they just Fail to go to that step 3.
That's my passive aggressive way of telling them that their procedures suck.
Plus if they're not employing the existing procedures, they SERIOUSLY need a rewrite that would actually address the problem at hand, right?
Liz
post #7 of 49
Do you really want to keep your child in a school where this type of thing can happen and not be taken seriously? If we lived in a vigilante society where you had to physically defend yourself, learning to defend yourself by fighting back would be good. But if I was "thrown to the ground and punched a couple times in the face" I'd call the police and someone would be arrested for assault.

Being in a environment where you are not safe from violence is not good for kids. I wouldn't trust the school even if they did deal with this current situation. I know people who have kids at a Waldorf school and it isn't like this, but individual private schools can each be different.
post #8 of 49
Thread Starter 
We're way past this ssh.
This is the last ditch attempt.
And I did call the rcmp but they only address children 12 or over.
post #9 of 49
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dachshundqueen View Post
That's my passive aggressive way of telling them that their procedures suck.
Plus if they're not employing the existing procedures, they SERIOUSLY need a rewrite that would actually address the problem at hand, right?
Liz
If you read this Parent handbook, you'd think the school is correct on how they handle these incidents. But they don't follow it at all. So shouldn't we call them on it? Maybe someone higher up from these teachers would tell them to change.
But how does one say that intelligently?
post #10 of 49
Thread Starter 
How's this:

I received your letter of October 20, 2009, regarding my child becoming a permanent student. While I am in support of Waldorf education and would very much like her to be a permanent student, I am concerned by recent events regarding the bullying of my child and lack of response on the school’s part.

There is some serious bullying going on and I feel the staff at your school thinks this is normal kids stuff and that friends fight and they will be friends again the next day.
I do not feel that the behaviors that my child has been the victim of are within the realm of normal childhood play. They must be addressed promptly before a child is seriously injured or suffers long-lasting negative emotional effects.

I have detailed the incidents that have occurred at school in my enclosure for your review and consideration in the creation of new disciplinary procedures.

I expect that this will be promptly addressed and am happy to cooperate with the school in order to ensure that it is able to provide a safe environment for all students. I am available at the phone number and email address listed below.

With best regards, I am respectfully yours,

Michele
1223445 bla bla email





Sept.25 Angie was thrown to the ground and punched a couple times in the face by Nathaniel. She scratched his fists and wrists to get him to stop. Angie told me this after school and I was stunned. We have Never experienced this before. So we phoned Angie's teacher and she gave us to Mr.Stopeck since he was the teacher that hour. He, unfortunately didn't see the incident. But he did inform Angie to please go tell a teacher right away when something like this happens.

Oct. 2 Angie was going for a lovely walk with the class, when she mentioned 'hey look there's a car at 10:00' Amery said 'it's not 10:00' Then he punched her hard in the stomach. She wanted to cry because it hard so much. She remembered to walk over to the teacher, Mr. Stopeck. She told him what happened. I called him later about this and he told me that he didn't see it but he didn't think the punch was that bad. I spoke to Amery's mother and she was shocked that this happened and upset that the school never phoned her to let her know.

Oct.8 In the class room when everyone was leaving for recess, Amery grabbed Angie by the scruff of her shirt. So Angie, not being a victum type, she asked him 'Amery why are you doing this to me, I've never done anything to you?' So he let her go but later that day she cleaned her desk after apple peeling and went to the desk next to hers to see if they needed help. That's when Amery spat in her face.

Oct.19 Angie was out making a fort with another girl when a couple boys joined them. One of the boys, Aaron threw a stick at Angie. She dodged it, put her hands on Aaron's shoulders and said 'please don't throw sticks any more kay?' Well, he climbed the tree, went down the branch and punch on the top of her head. She told the teacher on duty who was Ms. Price. She spoke to the boy. I told Angie's teacher after school. The next day Angie told me that the teacher told her to not be so sensitive.

I read the Parent Handbook regarding the Suspenion and Expulsion Policy. I see that when a child has one incident, the teacher is supposed to call the parent to pick up the child. The second incident is the same. When does the third incident come in to place? 'The teacher and the grade school department discuss the need for explusion.'
I know Amery has been getting the one day suspension a few times. Maybe the children are smart and know that they will not be expelled for bad behavior.

Angie loves the school but not getting sucker punched.

Angie knows if a child punches her to not hit back because she will get kick out of school. Do the other kids know this?
post #11 of 49
edited
post #12 of 49
[QUOTE=MicheleRMT;14568771]How's this:

I received your letter of October 20, 2009, regarding my child becoming a permanent student. While I am in support of Waldorf education and would very much like her to be a permanent student, I am concerned by recent events regarding the bullying of my child and lack of response on the school’s part.

There is some serious bullying going on and we feel the staff has been quite dismissive of our daughter's safety. I do not feel that the behaviors that my child has been the victim of are within the realm of normal childhood play. They must be addressed promptly before a child is seriously injured or suffers long-lasting negative emotional effects.

I have detailed the incidents that have occurred at school in my enclosure for your review and consideration in the creation of new disciplinary procedures.

I expect that this will be promptly addressed and am happy to cooperate with the school in order to ensure that it is able to provide a safe environment for all students. I am available at the phone number and email address listed below. Please contact me within the next 48 hours so we can move forward in a timely manner.

With best regards, I am respectfully yours,

Michele
1223445 bla bla email


QUOTE]

Nice rewrite!

I would have hubby sign as well....

Keep any copies of letter sent.

If there is any bruises or doctor visits that result from school - please document with photos, etc - just in case.
post #13 of 49
Michele, who is the letter being primarily sent to? You'll probably want to cc the class teacher, the class teacher's mentor, the head of the teacher's college or the college itself, the administrative director, if your school has one, and I would personally cc the board of trustees, or at least the president of the board.

What do you think of bulleting the specific events your dd experienced?

FWIW, the school should be contacting you to address your concerns and your dd's safety, not the other way around. She is in their care during the school day, and you have the right to a reasonable expectation that she will be kept safe.

I hope you get a response, not a circling of the wagons. Do not meet alone with anyone.
post #14 of 49
My edits of dachshundqueen's excellent revision:

I received your letter of October X, 2009, regarding my child becoming a permanent student.

I support Waldorf education and would very much like her to be a permanent student. However, I have grave reservations about the safety of my child at XWS. She has been violently assaulted and bullied on several occasions. I am especially concerned by the school's lack of response to these incidents.

I do not feel that the behaviors my child has been the victim of are within the realm of normal childhood play. They must be addressed promptly before a child at XWS is seriously injured or suffers long-lasting negative emotional effects. As her teacher can attest, my daughter has not been the only child to be assaulted at the school.

The XWS Parent Handbook specifically states that violence and bullying will not be tolerated and have serious consequences. Yet it fails to address how a repeat offender will be disciplined.

In my enclosure, I have detailed the incidents that have occurred at school for your review and consideration in the creation of new disciplinary policies. I expect assurances that such policies will be put in place and strictly enforced before I remit the requested bond money [this is the heart of the matter - you need to tell them what you expect from them]

I will be happy to meet further with administrators and teachers in order to ensure that XWS is able to provide a safe environment for all students. I am available at the phone number and email address listed below.

Sincerely,

XYZ

Enclosures (1)
post #15 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by MicheleRMT View Post




Sept.25 Angie was thrown to the ground and punched a couple times in the face by Nathaniel. She scratched his fists and wrists to get him to stop. Angie told me this after school and I was stunned. We have never experienced this before. So we phoned Angie's teacher and she gave us to Mr.Stopeck since he was the teacher that hour. He, unfortunately didn't see the incident. But he did inform Angie to please go tell a teacher right away when something like this happens.

Oct. 2 Angie was going for a lovely walk with the class, when she mentioned 'hey look there's a car at 10:00' Amery said 'it's not 10:00' Then he punched her hard in the stomach. She wanted to cry because it hard so much. She remembered to walk over to the teacher, Mr. Stopeck. She told him what happened. I called him later about this and he told me that he didn't see it but he didn't think the punch was that bad. How does he know it was "not that bad" - when he admits he did not see it??? I spoke to Amery's mother and she was shocked that this happened and upset that the school never phoned her to let her know.

Oct.8 In the class room when everyone was leaving for recess, Amery grabbed Angie by the scruff of her shirt. So Angie, not being a victum type, she asked him 'Amery why are you doing this to me, I've never done anything to you?' So he let her go but later that day she cleaned her desk after apple peeling and went to the desk next to hers to see if they needed help. That's when Amery spat in her face.

Oct.19 Angie was out making a fort with another girl when a couple boys joined them. One of the boys, Aaron threw a stick at Angie. She dodged it, put her hands on Aaron's shoulders and said 'please don't throw sticks any more kay?' Well, he climbed the tree, went down the branch and punch on the top of her head. She told the teacher on duty who was Ms. Price. She spoke to the boy. I told Angie's teacher after school. The next day Angie told me that the teacher told her to not be so sensitive.

I read the Parent Handbook regarding the Suspenion and Expulsion Policy. I see that when a child has one incident, the teacher is supposed to call the parent to pick up the child. The second incident is the same. After the third incident the teacher and the grade school department are suppose to discuss the need for explusion.
I know Amery has had the "one day suspension" a few times. Maybe the children are smart and know that they will not be expelled for bad behavior?

Angie loves the school but not getting sucker punched.

Angie knows if a child punches her to not hit back because she will get kick out of school. Do the other kids know this?
Just a few things in blue....
post #16 of 49
Yay, you wrote a letter!

I like dachshundqueen's version of it, it sounds very official and to the point.

I would add something along the lines of 'I would like to be informed of the specific steps the school is going to take to address this situation' -- just something very specific to invite a reaction and a reply. You could also ask for somebody to supervise playtimes more closely for a while. Make specific requests like these, things that the school can do. Extra supervision at breaktimes they can add straight away -- perhaps a teacher can discreetly watch Angie and these boys for a few days, preferably one who hasn't been involved in this so far and isn't biased one way or another. And they can inform you of the steps they are going to take as soon as they have formulated a plan. You can even set a reasonable deadline, although I wouldn't do that just yet.

It is your letter, and you should do what feels right to you, but I suggest leaving the following paragraphs out of it:

Quote:
I read the Parent Handbook regarding the Suspenion and Expulsion Policy. I see that when a child has one incident, the teacher is supposed to call the parent to pick up the child. The second incident is the same. When does the third incident come in to place? 'The teacher and the grade school department discuss the need for explusion.'
I know Amery has been getting the one day suspension a few times. Maybe the children are smart and know that they will not be expelled for bad behavior.

Angie loves the school but not getting sucker punched.

Angie knows if a child punches her to not hit back because she will get kick out of school. Do the other kids know this?
They don't actually add anything (you have already described the situation, expressed your feelings about it, and made your requests) and they might come across as annoying. I do not blame you for wondering these things, I would be wondering them myself if I were you. But if you want to maximise the chance of the school working with you effectively, and becoming a better place for everyone, you might want to avoid turning them against you. Show some respect for the teachers (even if you aren't feeling it just now) and also place your trust in them (hard as it may be). You are making it clear that you want this situation to stop, but it is up to them to figure out how to stop it. It is their job, at the end of the day! They should do it!

You can substitute them with something more vague, like "I have read the relevant sections of the parent handbook, and I would like to see evidence that you have been following your policies." They should be following their policies!

Also, put the fact that Angie is enjoying her new school for the most part in the beginning of the letter. It would be a great shame if she had to leave over this one thing, and you do believe that the school can solve it effectively, so that she doesn't have to. If this is the tone of the letter, either side of the "this thing here is unacceptable and I'd like to know what action you're going to take to stop it" part, they will be forced to see that you are a sensible and gracious woman (as the other thread has proved), and not out to get them. You just want this one problem solved.


Edited to add: most of this was addressed by others already in the time it took me to write this...
post #17 of 49
it is disturbing that current disciplinary guidelines are not being followed.
post #18 of 49
[QUOTE=kathymuggle;14568856]
Quote:
Originally Posted by MicheleRMT View Post
There is some serious bullying going on and we feel the staff has been quite dismissive of our daughter's safety.
It is our contention that there is a bullying problem at the school and that the staff has been condoning the behavior by failing to follow existing disciplinary procedures.
post #19 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by dachshundqueen View Post

It is our contention that there is a bullying problem at the school and that the staff has been condoning the behavior by failing to follow existing disciplinary procedures.
Oooh...nice!

I did change the word "I" in your letter, OP, to "we". Daschound did the same by using the word "our".

I would go through the letter before you send it and change most "I"'s to "we"s (implying you and your husband). It is sad - but they may be more likely to dismiss you if they feel this is coming from an indivuidual. You will be stronger if you state your concerns as a team.

Kathy
post #20 of 49
Thread Starter 
Here's the refined addition: (I can't thank you guys enough!)




We received your letter of October 20, 2009, regarding our child becoming a permanent student. While we are in support of Waldorf education and would very much like her to be a permanent student, it is our contention that there is a bullying problem at the school and that the staff has been condoning the behavior by failing to follow existing disciplinary procedures.

We do not feel that the behaviors our child has been the victim of, are within the realm of normal childhood play. They must be addressed promptly before a child at Waldorf school is seriously injured or suffers long-lasting negative emotional effects. As her teacher can attest, our daughter has not been the only child to be assaulted at the school.


I have detailed the incidents that have occurred at school in my enclosure for your review and consideration in the creation of new disciplinary procedures.

I expect that this will be promptly addressed and am happy to cooperate with the school in order to ensure that it is able to provide a safe environment for all students. I expect assurances that such policies will be put in place and strictly enforced before I remit the requested bond money.

I am available at the phone number and email address listed below.

With best regards, I am respectfully yours,





Sept.25 Angie was thrown to the ground and punched a couple times in the face by Nathaniel. She scratched his fists and wrists to get him to stop. Angie told me this after school and I was stunned. We have Never experienced this before. So we phoned Angie's teacher and she gave us to Mr.Stopeck since he was the teacher that hour. He, unfortunately didn't see the incident. But he did inform Angie to please go tell a teacher right away when something like this happens.

Oct. 2 Angie was going for a lovely walk with the class, when she mentioned 'hey look there's a car at 10:00' Amery said 'it's not 10:00' Then he punched her hard in the stomach. She wanted to cry because it hard so much. She remembered to walk over to the teacher, Mr. Stopeck. She told him what happened. I called him later about this and he told me that he didn't see it but he didn't think the punch was that bad. I spoke to Amery's mother and she was shocked that this happened and upset that the school never phoned her to let her know.

Oct.8 In the class room when everyone was leaving for recess, Amery grabbed Angie by the scruff of her shirt. So Angie, not being a victum type, she asked him 'Amery why are you doing this to me, I've never done anything to you?' So he let her go but later that day she cleaned her desk after apple peeling and went to the desk next to hers to see if they needed help. That's when Amery spat in her face.

Oct.19 Angie was out making a fort with another girl when a couple boys joined them. One of the boys, Aaron threw a stick at Angie. She dodged it, put her hands on Aaron's shoulders and said 'please don't throw sticks any more kay?' Well, he climbed the tree, went down the branch and punch on the top of her head. She told the teacher on duty who was Ms. Price. She spoke to the boy. I told Angie's teacher after school. The next day Angie told me that the teacher told her to not be so sensitive.
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