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How to complain about my son's Kindy teacher

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I just emailed the principal to set up a meeting, and I want to go in prepared. The problem is that I don't have any very specific issues, just that his teacher is VERY disorganized, wastes tons of time looking for things, has terrible classroom management, and yells way too much. Not to mention the endless, mind-numbing worksheets, the constant self-interrupting she does, how she can't remember any of the kids' names, and how she never follows up on the projects she initiates.

 

My son is miserable and cries and begs to stay home every morning. I don't know if we should try to switch him to another teacher, as that might be kind of traumatic for him, or if my complaints will result in any changes. I strongly doubt it, but I'd love some advice on how to diplomatically tell the principal that the teacher SUCKS!!!

post #2 of 8

Well, I wouldn't just go in and say, "this teacher SUCKS!!" LOL.  Maybe explain that you feel this teacher is disconnected from her student's and appears to have difficulty in classroom organization. Explain how this is affecting your son and say that you honestly feel she may be struggling and that is what is affecting your son's outlook on school.  Ask out of concern, not out of anger.  This way the principal can see this as a parent trying to help out a teacher as opposed to simply complaining. 

 

Now, just so I can be sure, you are positive that her abilities are what is affecting your son's enjoyment of school, right?  Have you been a volunteer in the room and seen these things or are these things you are getting from your son's explanation?  I would assume, due to the detail that you saw this with your own eyes, but you never know. 

post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Petie1104 View Post

Well, I wouldn't just go in and say, "this teacher SUCKS!!" LOL.  Maybe explain that you feel this teacher is disconnected from her student's and appears to have difficulty in classroom organization. Explain how this is affecting your son and say that you honestly feel she may be struggling and that is what is affecting your son's outlook on school.  Ask out of concern, not out of anger.  This way the principal can see this as a parent trying to help out a teacher as opposed to simply complaining. 

 

Now, just so I can be sure, you are positive that her abilities are what is affecting your son's enjoyment of school, right?  Have you been a volunteer in the room and seen these things or are these things you are getting from your son's explanation?  I would assume, due to the detail that you saw this with your own eyes, but you never know. 


Yes, that's a good idea! I am angry, so it will be good to approach it from that point of view for myself, too.

 

And yes, these are things that my dh and I have witnessed in the classroom. My son complains about her, but he can't really verbalize what bothers him, other than saying she yells at them a lot. He didn't really know what to expect, you know? It sure isn't like preschool, he knows that much!

post #4 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuamami View Post

I just emailed the principal to set up a meeting, and I want to go in prepared. The problem is that I don't have any very specific issues, just that his teacher is VERY disorganized, wastes tons of time looking for things, has terrible classroom management, and yells way too much. Not to mention the endless, mind-numbing worksheets, the constant self-interrupting she does, how she can't remember any of the kids' names, and how she never follows up on the projects she initiates.

 

She really cannot remember *any* of the kids' names? I have a child (and a husband!) who has difficulty with names. I've posted about it a couple of times, but even he now knows the names of most of the kids in his class. I find it pretty hard to believe that a teacher (kindergarten?) does not remember any of her students' names. She simply couldn't function if that were true. To be honest, if I were the principal, and you said that to me, I probably would think you were just exaggerating and discount the rest of what you said as a parent upset because her kid's unhappy.

 

To me, the problem with the other things you've listed is that they're all vague. She "wastes tons of time." How much? Is this everyday? Once a week? The day after her daughter took something from her school bag that she needed? I would want really specific examples of what these statements mean. To some people, yelling once is "too much." To others, yelling several times a day would be permissible. (If she does yell frequently, I'm sure they know about it. I've never been in an elementary school where you couldn't hear the teachers outside the classrooms.)

 

I'm not questioning you to make you defensive, but this would be my response if you set up a meeting with me and said what you're saying here. I really would want something more substantive than just generalized statements about what you think of the teacher's style.
 

post #5 of 8

Have you spoken to the teacher about your concerns already?  Usually the principal won't take you too seriously unless you have "gone up the chain of command" so to speak.   

post #6 of 8

I agree with VisionaryMom.  Even with specific examples the principal probably isn't going to do much and he will probably side with the teacher.  I had very specific examples and had tried to address things several times with the teacher before asking the principal to sit in with both the teacher and I in a meeting.  It still did no good.  I found out later that the teacher had several complaints from several parents, had a history of complaints from parents, and still nothing was being done to address things.  I wound up pulling her out to homeschool for the rest of the year then sending her to a charter school this year.  I think you need to voice your specific concerns, but you also need to have a backup plan for if things don't improve or get worse.

post #7 of 8

I am going to assume that you met with the teacher already and have witnessed your concerns on numerous occasions and not just once or twice in passing. Failing to have done so is going hurt your credibility with the principal

 

The first thing you need to is write down all the key points you want to cover.  Meetings such as these can easily get off track and you want to make sure that you stay focused and the conversation stays on point and on topic..

 

You should also make sure that you have prioritized what the "big" issues are and what you hope to accomplish with this meeting. Do you want the teacher fired? Sent for re-training? Do you want your child transferred to a different class/teacher? Do you think they need teachers aid? 

 

Most the of examples you gave are *really* vague and not sure what you would expect the principal to do.  Make sure you  re prepared with what you want to happen.

 

  • "she wastes too much time":what do you mean by that? give examples ie: the classroom is not cleaned up/organized at the end of the day so the next morning too much time is wasted getting the class ready for learning.
  • "she has terrible class room management": give examples. Do the kids not follow rules? Is the classroom often out of control and she can't reel them in? Are tools/toys/books not organized?
  • "endless, mind numbing worksheets": Did you have a curriculum night? Was this covered and is part of the wider/state wide curriculum or is it just this teachers lesson plan?  Is there more than one kindergarten class or another school in the district?  Do they use the same worksheets? Maybe she is required to be "teaching the test"
  • "No follow thru on projects": again you need to be very specific ie: in September she started a program on farming and the children were supposed to do xyz. It is now January and it has not been done.

 

Good luck!

post #8 of 8

I'm having probablems with my DS's kindy teacher, too!  I don't have the same issues that you do, but we do seem to share the "endless, mind-numbing worksheets"!  That's ALL he brings home.  No artwork, nothing fun and creative, just boring worksheets.  My son also seems to be getting in trouble a lot for things I think are trivial.  I have spoken to my principal once and I'm getting ready to do it again.  Just this week, my son started crying daily about not wanting to go to school.  I'm so upset about it!  I want him to learn to love school, not hate it!  Please keep us posted on what you decide to do and how it turns out.  I'm in the process of deciding if we should change schools for first grade, or even now.  I just don't know what to do.  Thanks for making me feel like I'm not the only one with this issue!

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