Originally Posted by Geofizz
The teachers do not communicate much about the kids from year to year.
This has been the case for us, too, with both children. One (previous) teacher complained to us that the principal (not sure why she didn't hold the previous teacher responsible?) had not told her more about our DD before entering her class . . .by then it was late November (this was a typical conference) and the teacher said she was just starting to realize DD's capabilities, was going to attend a conference/classes/etc. to learn more about her needs. So, in many ways, she was JUST getting started in not only understanding DD but in figuring out what to do. After that we homeschooled for 3 years, so there is no way DD's teacher from last year (other than me :) ) could share information. DD only started back in school this yr.
In the case of the other DD, it seemed like the teacher had to start from scratch. She was very thorough in doing so, but I sort of think it's a waste of that precious time resource for her to have had to do that . . .not sure why the previous teacher did not communicate better. I did not, however, bring in any samples for her, since I knew the teacher was informed and had plenty of samples for me. With her, it was a matter of the teacher understanding her behavior (teacher brought it up) . . .I was concerned about it, asked the teacher questions, and then gave feedback as needed-- just more info to complete the "puzzle" that we as people are.
As for listening, believe it or not, I did most of the listening and not much of the talking during the conference. It took less than 5 minutes to communicate what I wrote in my OP. I give full credit to everyone reading this thread not to follow my advice blindly, so I would never have presumed I needed some sort of disclaimer.
CCLady-- that sounds like a nightmare. Please try to write down what the teacher said, what you said, etc. as objectively as possible. Keep notes with dates and such. There is no way that eye-rolling should be going on, or as a pp said, that she was held back without any sort of evaluation, conference, etc. You are 100% correct that it is not your job to get your DD to talk in school-- this is a need that THEY need to be handling. However, in our district, what I've heard is that they will not evaluate children because then they are responsible for getting the needs addressed! Instead, they tell people to go to their private doctors and the school stays out of it. Not for all children, of course, but even for some of the more serious cases.
You are an ECE so probably already familiar with this site, but just in case . . check out Wrightslaw for good info.
ETA: Homeschooling is a great option, but it shouldn't be because your DD has been stuck with some bad teachers . . .it just depends how much you want to fight, though. Sometimes it's just too hard to change the system. (My mom would kill me for writing that! She's all about changing the system-- she even went on TV to say this!)
Maria, that is an interesting question to ask. I would never have thought of it! And what a great idea to take notes for the future!
I asked in my OP and got sort of lost if anyone answered this (sorry!)-- how often do you communicate with the teachers? Personally, I am not planning on having any more conferences with the teachers until the 2nd/final one of the year. Based on what they told me during the conferences and the gaps I was able to fill in, there is not anything else I want/need to address. Whatever they do with the info is up to them. A book I read suggested MONTHLY conferences, but there is no way I would want to burden the teachers with that unless there was a serious issue, and I think the teachers would be contacting me if that were the case.