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The Last Straw - Page 3

post #41 of 97
Thread Starter 
Lillian, et al:

What do you think if I confronted HER about the situation but wrote a letter to the school board? A nice, "this is why I am pulling my three kids out of public school" letter and CC it to the principal? That way, I'll still get to vent a bit to her (nicely of course) but still make a few waves that will hopefully cause some change.....


I dunno. I'm tired and going to bed....gotta big day tomorrow.
post #42 of 97
I know I'm a little late in the game here, but I just loved this response:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coyote star View Post
I had the same question. How, exactly is revoking the mealworms a logical consequence for talking? What? are the mealworms super sensitive to sound and they'll go insane without silence? Sheesh.
laughup

I fully agree ... and am still laughing at the analysis as I type.

Have fun homeschooling, Jen!
post #43 of 97
Thread Starter 



Ok....seriously....last post tonight. I just thought this was funny. My friend is also a cancer and sends these random horoscopes to me......LOL

Thursday, December 20th, 2007

Cancer Horoscope
(June 21 - Jul 22)
It can be quite a challenge to explain yourself to others, yet you may be so inclined over the next few weeks with talkative Mercury in your 7th House of Relationships. It may be easier to open a discussion on a difficult matter today because your thoughts are clear and you are blessed with the gift of gab. But don't try to do it all at once; start now and bit by bit you can tell your story.


post #44 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by 636Jen View Post
(I promise, I'm not trying to argue with your point....just trying to show you that I hate teachers!!)
Ouch. That felt like a stab in my heart. I hope you don't hate me simply because I am a teacher. After all, it is truly a thankless job much of the time and I make mistakes just like any other human does. Every day I reflect on what went right and what went wrong and try to do better the next day. Some of us really do care about the kids.

By the way, I've been enjoying the homeschool board for a long time and I've gotten a lot of great ideas from you homeschooling mamas. You're all teachers too. Have you ever sat back at the end of the day and reflected on your interactions with your children and said "I shouldn't have done that. Tomorrow's a new day and things will be better." Bottom line is, you love your kids and you want what's best for them. This is the attitude that a good teacher needs to have. Mistakes will happen but a teacher who loves the kids will get better and better.

That being said, Dakota's teacher sounds like she needs to do some reflection.
post #45 of 97
Well said WantRice... I am : with you!
post #46 of 97
I love to write letters,but am a bit spent after a flurry of them in the past week(bully issue at school posted in school forum). I am not sure what I would say in your case.As you write it will come to you.Lol,I would write and revise,and then revise again and again till it just sounded right to me.

The one thing I remember in areas of conflict is to try and not say you,you,you.That shows anger when a person says you did this,you did that!Better to use I a lot.Such as... I feel this way or I feel that way about how this situation was handled.My son feels....We are saddened by the turn of events....or the way discipline is handled in the classroom.

And use that spell check.I hated when I made a spelling mistake.It just ruins the effect.

As for the homeschool notice last year I only called the ps once I had our letter from the super accepting our hs notification(I provided all the necessary info in a correct manner). Law might be different in your area,but maybe you just have to say you are removing your child,and return all books.
post #47 of 97
Thread Starter 
OMGOSH!! I meant DON'T hate teachers! That was seriously a typo. I have a lot of respect for teachers and I have many friends who are teachers. Please accept my apology because I did NOT mean to say that. I'm going to correct that now.



Jen
post #48 of 97
Thread Starter 
I'm going to change a few things in the letter and tone it down. I'll take the word disgust out and put disappoint. Does that sound better? I'll use a few more "I" sentences instead of "you" to get my point across better. I'm honestly more hurt than angry. She just seems to go out of her way to be nasty to him and I feel this strong urge to defend him, know what I mean? I'll post up the new and improved version shortly.

Thank you again for the kind words of wisdom.


post #49 of 97
My last ditch effort, and then I'll shut up, I promise.

Speaking as a former teacher, I advise you to not give this letter to your son's teacher. Particularly at a class party. If she reads it right there, it will raise tensions sky-high, both on your part and her part. Add that to the stress already existent at classroom parties (have you ever tried to keep 20+ excitable children calm enough to keep them safe? When there's SUGAR to be had?) and you have a recipe for both of you saying something that you might regret later.

Speaking as a former teacher, I beg you to let this teacher know, in as emotionally controlled manner as possible, that linking a rightly won lottery prize to punishment for talking is illogical, particularly for the reasons mentioned (i.e. that Dakota's talking marks him, somehow, as unable to control himself around animals). I would put it something like this:
"Hi there, Mrs. X (or Ms. X, I don't know). The party was great. I know Dakota and the other children really enjoyed it. I just wanted to let you know that I did receive the letter you sent home the other day, and I discussed it with Dakota, who was very upset and confused by his talking somehow indicating that he wouldn't be able to care for the worms. He has several pets at home, and they're all thriving, despite (or maybe because of) his talking. I'm sure this time of year, all the students are excitable, and maybe in the future, taking away a lottery prize because of exuberance might not be the best course to take."

But I would definately 1. say it in person, not in writing (not at first) 2. wait until the party was over for your son's sake and 3. use as controlled and detached body language and voice tone as possible. It is much easier to write off a hysterical parent than one who is articulate and in control of herself.

Afterward, I would write two letters to the principal. One detailing the mealworm incident. And a separate one briefly notifiying your son's unenrollment.

Anyway, I'm not trying to discount your anger. I'm just offering advice that is most likely to effect any change. Again, trust me, an angry letter sent just to me from a parent wasn't going anywhere but the garbage can. A calm conversation however, and a controlled letter copied and sent to my principal, however! Whew!
post #50 of 97
Poor baby!! How heartbroken he must have been!! I believe your son is 7?? Well, I have a 7 yo dd and right now with all the Christmas excitement, she is about to jump on the roof!! I mean seriously, she is super duper hyped right now from dawn till 11 at night!! :::! I would not though, let them think that that is the sole reason that you are pulling him out of school (bc it's not!!). I would make sure that they knew that I had several reasons to hs. It really floors me that there are people like this that are teaching our babies. I have heard stories that would make your hair stand on end!! Like my nephew. He was in a nursery school in the 4 yo old class (he was 3 about to be 4) and the first week, he came home with a sheet he had colored, and did well actually for a 3 yo , he had stayed in the lines about 90% and this teacher, wrote on his paper "Please talk to him about staying in the lines". Just goes to show you how the system will treat our babies, so I thank God everyday that we homeschool!! (BTW dn was pulled from that so called school!!)
post #51 of 97
I think if you send a letter filled with emotions that is a good way to not be taken seriously. Stick to the facts. Be professional. I bet that, in fact, nobody over there really cares how you feel and filling a letter full of emotions is only going to make you look a bit crazy.

If you must say something about the mealworms do that in a separate note to the teacher. The withdrawl letter and the mealworm issue should be addressed in two separate letters.
post #52 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by 636Jen View Post
OMGOSH!! I meant DON'T hate teachers! That was seriously a typo. I have a lot of respect for teachers and I have many friends who are teachers. Please accept my apology because I did NOT mean to say that. I'm going to correct that now.
I was just rushing to post that it was late and you had just missed typing the word "don't" - I know it was late when I went to bed before you posted! Funny thing is that those of us who've been following your threads knew what you meant and didn't even notice the missing "won't" - funny how the mind fills things in... - Lillian
post #53 of 97
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PumpkinSeeds View Post
I bet that, in fact, nobody over there really cares how you feel and filling a letter full of emotions is only going to make you look a bit crazy.

That would extremely sad and give me even more reason to take my child out. I don't want him being taught by people who don't care.


post #54 of 97
I'm jumping in late (haven’t been on the board–what a week!), but I want to first send my support to you. Withdrawing your child is a huge step. It is a very emotional time.

I agree with all the ppt's who advise sending a short letter, without details. I'd suggest mailing it. I agree with Coyote Star's advice that you not give a letter to the teacher in public and at a party. Could result in a huge, ugly scene. Not a good last day memory for ds.

I also agree that if you want to talk about the mealworms you should talk to the teacher in another communication.

It's important that ds doesn't think that he's pulled because of one incident--or that it was because the teacher thought he was a bad boy. And, that the school doesn't dismiss you as a wacko hot-head overprotective parent who snapped and yanked her kids out of school. If you keep the two separate there's more of a chance they'll take your concerns seriously.

It is SOOOOOO hard to walk away from such a mess without having a final say. We sent a basic letter (we're withdrawing). We'd already, many, many times, expressed our concerns to the teacher/administration, to no avail. We knew that nothing we repeated in a letter would make a bit of difference for ds or any other children. And, for ds's sake we needed to wrap it up and move on.

Is ds excited about the party tomorrow? If not, there's no need to go to school at all (you could go to the school sometime to get his things). He could invite his friends over to play in the days to come and continue those friendships as he homeschools. Instead of the school party, you could have a fun homeschool day/party.
post #55 of 97
I think Coyote Star said it very well. A separate letter (later, in my opinion) about the incidents and atmosphere in that classroom would probably be more effective. In fact, showing that you still care to comment on the situation later might be more likely to show that you're not acting impulsively or in anger now. I think you'll want to cut out superlatives like "very" - and there could be other things you'll find to change that will give it more impact and the touch of more neutral authority.

Looking at the clock and wondering what time zone you're in - it's getting closer... We're all there for you in spirit. - Lillian
post #56 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by sofiabugmom View Post
I know I'm a little late in the game here, but I just loved this response:



laughup

I fully agree ... and am still laughing at the analysis as I type.

Have fun homeschooling, Jen!
I was kind of wondering how you'd know if the mealworms went insane anyway. Do they come with teeny mealworm straight jackets?

And here's another welcome to homeschooling for Jen!
post #57 of 97
I'm going to go against popular opinion and say ...

Go ahead and send the letter. Maybe staple it to the note you were supposed to sign.

But!

Make sure you send a courtesy copy to the principal and any other school official that you can think of. Teachers have been known to "lose" unflattering letters from home. I know this from experience.

If no one says anything specific to this teacher, she's just going to keep doing the same things to other children. If her behavior is pointed out she may still keep doing things, but at least an attempt will have been made.
post #58 of 97
Thread Starter 
I'm in Michigan, eastern time zone. Right now it's 1:00.

I have a feeling that I will not be able to talk to her at the party. This isn't just a class party though. All the parents and siblings are invited. The room will be crowded, kids will be doing crafts and all the parents will be helping. It won't be the atmosphere where I can take her aside and have a discussion. She will definitely come up and ask me if I got her letter. Perhaps at that point I can tell her calmly what I thought about her decision. I will be unable to stay after class to discuss things with her because my other son will be coming home on the bus.

I read this today. I know it pertains more to kids with ADHD (or ADD), which he has been diagnosed with but I thought it was worth sharing with everyone.


Quote:
For boys, you need to closely scrutinize whether sitting in a classroom
for 6 hours, being a “good quiet little boy” is a reasonable expectancy.

After struggling with strong ADD for my entire life and not understanding
what I had, I only realized in my late 20’s that my entire schooling was
off-base and ill-suited for people like me— male and with ADD.
The cruel comments made by many of my teachers were because
they thought I had to conform to a mold that I was not created to conform
to.

I do not understand what causes ADD, nobody does. I haven’t found a
sufficient treatment, either. But I have learned that I learn in a hands-on
environment due to being male and having ADD. Public School is NOT a
hands-on, mentor-to-apprentice type environment. Rather, it is a mass
manufacturing industry designed to jam all kids of all types through one
rather insufficient and ill-suited mold.

You can’t use a hammer the same way you use a pencil, and you can’t use
garlic the same way you use vanilla. Kids come in different flavors,
you need to realize you and your child are BOTH individuals of different
flavors and have different tools in your toolbox. Individuate your
child’s environment to set them up for success and don’t exasperate them
with unreasonable expectations. Help them along, don’t nag the death out
of them!
post #59 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by 636Jen View Post
For boys, you need to closely scrutinize whether sitting in a classroom for 6 hours, being a “good quiet little boy” is a reasonable expectancy.
I think that's supposed to say "not" a reasonable expectancy, isn't it? - Lillian
post #60 of 97
Quote:
Originally Posted by 636Jen View Post
I'm in Michigan, eastern time zone. Right now it's 1:00.
Okay - getting really close. So back away from that letter for now and go ignore her. - Lillian
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