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Old 08-29-2007, 07:27 PM
 
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If you are so sure that your child's teacher are sooo shallow and judgemental, why would you trust them with your child all day long at all?????
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Old 08-29-2007, 07:44 PM
 
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mom to sam arlo (5), olive loretta (3)....and twin girls Annie and Ramona Jean, born 3/10.

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Old 08-29-2007, 07:58 PM
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If you are so sure that your child's teacher are sooo shallow and judgemental, why would you trust them with your child all day long at all?????


For me at least, it is not about trust. It is about respecting an individual's privacy. Only a sith thinks in absolutes. Just because I don't want them in my home does NOT mean I find them shallow or judgemental.
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Old 08-29-2007, 08:00 PM
 
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It's rude.
It's very difficult to be a "community" when someone ignores the rules of respect that need to exist between and among individuals within a community and assumes they have the right to dictate that they will visit you in your house when they want.

Sorry. Don't let the doorknob hit you too hard in the back.
I find it rude. I find it an invasion of privacy. I also find it potentially prejudicial. Here's what I mean: My DH and I both have excellent educations -- graduate degrees from a very selective private university.

Well, basically, that and five bucks will buy you coffee at Starbucks. Whoop-de-doo, in other words. Long story short, we live in a lower-class area of town, one not considered "nice." Our house, by the standards of the city we live in, is very small and modest. Our neighbors have untrimmed grass and the occasional car on the lawn.

We chose this house and chose to live modestly out of our own convictions of what was appropriate and affordable for us and I am not for one minute sorry that we're not living in a stucco McMansion. However, what would embarrass me would be the judgment of someone else and far more importantly, how that judgment would affect how she would treat my child. I don't think I need to paint anyone a picture about how rich, middle, lower-middle, and poor people are treated differently in this society, do I?
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For me at least, it is not about trust. It is about respecting an individual's privacy. Only a sith thinks in absolutes. Just because I don't want them in my home does NOT mean I find them shallow or judgemental.
I was referring to posts like the one ablve yours.

And again, why would you hand over your 5 year old to someone you wouldn't want in your home. I cannot wrap my mind around that one.

I am not a sith, BTW.
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Old 08-29-2007, 08:04 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Meg Murry. View Post
It's rude.
Well, basically, that and five bucks will buy you coffee at Starbucks. Whoop-de-doo, in other words. Long story short, we live in a lower-class area of town, one not considered "nice." Our house, by the standards of the city we live in, is very small and modest. Our neighbors have untrimmed grass and the occasional car on the lawn.

We chose this house and chose to live modestly out of our own convictions of what was appropriate and affordable for us and I am not for one minute sorry that we're not living in a stucco McMansion. However, what would embarrass me would be the judgment of someone else and far more importantly, how that judgment would affect how she would treat my child. I don't think I need to paint anyone a picture about how rich, middle, lower-middle, and poor people are treated differently in this society, do I?

I hear this, completely. Our home is comfortable, safe and cozy, and sometimes clean, but costs about a third of the houses that many of dd's classmates live in. I wouldn't be embarassed to have her teacher visit - provided I had enough warning to clean first - but I would certainly be aware of the differences between my (again, perfectly fine, but not fancy) home and other homes the teacher might visit.

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Old 08-29-2007, 08:08 PM
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I am not a sith, BTW.

No, no- of course you are not I apologize for the inferenace (and my spelling!).


Not to speak for MegMurry, it appears she stated three main reasons why:


Quote:
I find it rude. I find it an invasion of privacy. I also find it potentially prejudicial.

And as I think it about it, this all about "getting to know" the child and family. Therefore its desired outcome is to form opinions on your family and child.
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Old 08-29-2007, 08:09 PM
 
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We had home visits in Kindergarten and first grade for both of my two daughters. So it was a total of four visits.

I went along with it. I have to admit that I went crazy cleaning before they came. I had mixed feelings about it. On one hand, it was nice and very personal (it was a kind of "bonding" experience and I spent more time talking to the teacher one-on-one than I would ordinarily.) On the other hand, I did wonder whether they were making mental notes about the kind of homes that kids lived in. I felt a little weird when one teacher commented that he was "glad to see there were a lot of books in our home" just because, even though it was meant as a compliment, I did feel a little bit judged.
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Old 08-29-2007, 08:26 PM
 
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Can you not see how it can be considered by some an invasion of privacy and a hardship if they have to take time off work
I don't see why the teacher wouldn't/shouldn't work around the parents' work schedule. If my kids went to school, I could see having the teacher over for dinner.

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Old 08-29-2007, 08:54 PM
 
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I think it's a wonderful idea.

As a future teacher I would like to make home visits to get to know my students and their parents better. I also want parents to know they are not alone in raising their child. I want to be a partner with parents so we can work together.

BUT, there is NO way I would go into the home of students if my employer thought it was a good way to spy. I'd quit before I did that.
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Old 08-29-2007, 09:43 PM
 
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I haven't heard of this being done in my area.
I wouldn't necessarily mind a home visit from a teacher. I would mind very much being told they were required to come and would be taking pictures.

Kim ~mom to one awesome dd (12)

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Old 08-29-2007, 09:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, again thank you for the different perspectives.

I just typed out like a 10 paragraph response that of course got eaten. : : :



Well the gist of it is, yes, *I* could probably decline based on the former year's relationship. However, it's not *me* and *my* family I am super concerned about the home visit not being good thing. I really do care very much for my community on a whole, and I don't like to see anyone be put in a position of hardship, like missing a paid work day, to jump through hoops the school wants to impose on everyone.

Also, I think teachers are great. This is not something I think the teachers all sat around and thought of to impose upon people. I think it is a new thing the district is doing, and it probably makes a lot of unnecessary work and headaches for the teachers.

This school schedules everything for you and sends home a not with the time and date you will show up. If that time and date doesn't work for you they give you some pre scheduled option and you must make one of those work. Say if Fri is good for you, but they are only doing things Mon, Wed, and Thurs, you must accept and make something work on one of those days. You sign some kind of parent/student/teacher agreement in the student handbook at the beginning of the year saying that as a parent you will participate in your child's education and I am not sure what would happen if you don't (I can't imagine not) but you do sign a *contract* about it.

Again, I don't really mind the teachers coming over, I planned on having them to ds's birthday party anyway, but I loathe the intrusive way they are doing it.

I love the optional meetings that a few of you have talked about.
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Old 08-29-2007, 10:41 PM
 
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well, i would be seriously uncomfortable with the whole thing, but then again, we homeschool If my kids were in PS, i would go along with it, but i'd be nervous about the way that teacher would percieve me and my family based on assumptions made from the neighborhood we live in, the stuff we have, etc etc.

People can't help but make judgments like that, and while there's a great chance that teacher is a good person with good intentions, there's always the off chance they're a <ua violation> and bent on stirring up trouble. this is a new year's teacher, so a total stranger as of yet.

interesting opinions all around... :

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Old 08-29-2007, 10:43 PM
 
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Invasion of privacy. And putting pictures up in the classroom of different kid's houses is extremely insensitive.
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:05 PM
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I hear this, completely. Our home is comfortable, safe and cozy, and sometimes clean, but costs about a third of the houses that many of dd's classmates live in. I wouldn't be embarassed to have her teacher visit - provided I had enough warning to clean first - but I would certainly be aware of the differences between my (again, perfectly fine, but not fancy) home and other homes the teacher might visit.
As a teacher, from my perspective, personally I think your fear about being judged for lack of money is unfounded. I never visited my students' homes uninvited, but you know what? By the middle of Sept. I knew exactly where every kid stood economically, pretty much. Kids talk, and I knew that Janie had a movie theatre in her basement with a real popcorn machine, who had been to Europe for the summer, that Billy's dad had addiction issues, that so and so's father was never around, etc. etc. Then there is the free lunch voucher, which pretty much sums up a family's economic status in one little cardboard ticket.

You get a very clear picture, very early on, from what kids say, what parents say, from talking to parents and meeting them at school, etc.

A child's economic standing made no difference to me whatsoever in how I saw that child. There were rich parents who were incredibly unsupportive and who had serious entitlement issues. Then there were poor parents who got their kids to school on time, helped make sure the homework was done, and volunteered faithfully in my class. Guess who had my respect from the get-go? Teachers are not stupid, and they are not going to judge parents on how much money they make. They are more likely to judge parents on how they treat their children, conduct themselves, and how seriously they take the education of their children.

Parents hard on their luck who were ill, in trouble financially, working too many hours to volunteer at school, etc. but still clearly doing their darndest to raise their child well also had my support and compassion. Honestly I would say that the parents I had the most trouble relating to were those who had a lot of money and expected that it would buy them whatever they wanted--and expected to be treated differently or better than others because of it.

In fact I would say that a good teacher will vow to work even harder to help a child who may come from a disadvantaged background. Helping a child who may seem to be lacking in financial resources or support at home is a challenge that any teacher worth her salt is ready to take on. It is very easy to teach a child who comes from an educated, well-off background. Almost anyone can help a child like that! The real test of an educator's talent is helping EVERY child--esp. those who may seem to be at a disadvantage of any kind. It is kind of an unspoken badge of honor among teachers to be the one who helped THAT kid--the one that perhaps everyone thought was a lost cause.

That being said, helping EVERY child was my goal and I didn't care who their parents were. Maybe I just worked in really good school districts, but that is how my colleagues were, too.

Just want to add that I am in no way implying that anyone's child HERE is at ANY kind of disadvantage, financially or otherwise. Just making the point that teachers are, um, actually in the biz to help a child reach his or her fullest potential!!! Rich or poor!
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:12 PM
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You sign some kind of parent/student/teacher agreement in the student handbook at the beginning of the year saying that as a parent you will participate in your child's education and I am not sure what would happen if you don't (I can't imagine not) but you do sign a *contract* about it.
That type of contract is a good faith effort kind of thing. It just is supposed to get everyone off on the right foot (whether or not that is the right way to do it is debatable, of course..) and kind of get parents thinking about the school and their role in their child's education. It's not a "real" contract...just something to kind of bond parent and child and school together...
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:16 PM
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If you are so sure that your child's teacher are sooo shallow and judgemental, why would you trust them with your child all day long at all?????
I don't.
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:20 PM
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I hear this, completely. Our home is comfortable, safe and cozy, and sometimes clean, but costs about a third of the houses that many of dd's classmates live in. I wouldn't be embarassed to have her teacher visit - provided I had enough warning to clean first - but I would certainly be aware of the differences between my (again, perfectly fine, but not fancy) home and other homes the teacher might visit.
Yes -- and for every five teachers I know who are nonjudgmental and kind, I know three who aren't. Odds are not good.
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:23 PM
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We had home visits in Kindergarten and first grade for both of my two daughters. So it was a total of four visits.

I went along with it. I have to admit that I went crazy cleaning before they came. I had mixed feelings about it. On one hand, it was nice and very personal (it was a kind of "bonding" experience and I spent more time talking to the teacher one-on-one than I would ordinarily.) On the other hand, I did wonder whether they were making mental notes about the kind of homes that kids lived in. I felt a little weird when one teacher commented that he was "glad to see there were a lot of books in our home" just because, even though it was meant as a compliment, I did feel a little bit judged.
That's part of what I mean -- I appreciate the true story here. Hey, speaking as a human being, I'd doubtlessly be relieved/glad to see a home full of books because I know what impact that tends to have on a kid's future literacy. Sure, I might say to myself, "Hey, Meg, just because a family doesn't have a ton of books around doesn't mean that they're not loving, thoughtful, innovative, creative people with a lot to offer experientially," but it would be more intellectual than heartfelt. OF COURSE it would affect my perception of the child; how could it not? I assume other people are similar in this regard.
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:27 PM
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Invasion of privacy. And putting pictures up in the classroom of different kid's houses is extremely insensitive.
Yep. I'm thinking of little McKenna's enormous bed shaped like a dollhouse in her 300-square-foot bedroom versus little Jake's used bunk bed in a small room he shares with his three brothers.

And BTW, what if you (in your house) have pictures of your wedding -- to someone of the same sex as yourself? What if you are Pagan and have an altar with an athamé and a lingam on it? I can think of other issues as well.
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:39 PM
 
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That being said, helping EVERY child was my goal and I didn't care who their parents were. Maybe I just worked in really good school districts, but that is how my colleagues were, too.
What a great post, Rainbowbird. I love your location, too!

As a teacher, I really have seen the full spectrum of family dynamics. Believe me, a messy yard and a sinkful of dirty dishes aren't going to set off any alarm bells for me.

Furthermore, I'm a public school teacher, folks. It's not as though I'd be pulling up in my Ferrari to make snotty judgments about your family while dressed in a Chanel suit. My students mock my car!
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:50 PM
 
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Yep. I'm thinking of little McKenna's enormous bed shaped like a dollhouse in her 300-square-foot bedroom versus little Jake's used bunk bed in a small room he shares with his three brothers.

And BTW, what if you (in your house) have pictures of your wedding -- to someone of the same sex as yourself? What if you are Pagan and have an altar with an athamé and a lingam on it? I can think of other issues as well.
Well, I definitely would wish I didn't know about the dollhouse bed...that gives me the creeps! However, if I were an elementary school teacher, I would want to know about the family composition or religious beliefs, so that I could be sure to foster an open and welcoming atmosphere. Why would you not want your child's teacher to know these things? Your child probably won't keep them a secret.
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:51 PM
 
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esylvia- excellent points. Teachers I think, would be the last people to judge others economic status.

You should see the cars some teachers I know drive

my husband for instance drives a 1989 Chevy caprice that is rusted out, has a huge dent in the right door and is full of crap. Oh and the drivers side front tire always goes flat about every three days.

And...we live in the ghetto. In a 800 sq. ft house-with sugar ants invading our kitchen, and three indoor cats, and 14 dollars in the bank. Um, I could go on
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Old 08-30-2007, 12:02 AM
 
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I haven't read the whole thread yet but I am interested to see the range of responses. dd is in her 2nd year at pre-K and this year we were told there would be home visits.

I was not comfortable with the idea, especially because the reason was never made clear. It was NOT an assessment (that occurred at a separate time) but a way to "connect to her family life". I eventually declined and that was fine. My husband teaches in the same school so there wasn't really any way they could argue with us.

Later, a friend and long-time pre-K instructor told me that she was required to do home visits in her previous position. She said she hated it. She gave me a list of what she was told to write up-- including things like-- Where does everyone sleep? Do mom and dad live together? Do mom and dad sleep together? Are there pets (especially something like a large dog)? What type of discipline is used? Any obvious safety hazards?

Obviously, this made me glad I had listened to my gut. I feel that this home visit would have provided the school with a whole lot of unnecessary information about my private life. It would just be stored away somewhere IN CASE someone ever decided there was a need to pull it out.
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Old 08-30-2007, 12:03 AM
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Well, I definitely would wish I didn't know about the dollhouse bed...that gives me the creeps! However, if I were an elementary school teacher, I would want to know about the family composition or religious beliefs, so that I could be sure to foster an open and welcoming atmosphere. Why would you not want your child's teacher to know these things? Your child probably won't keep them a secret.

Bolding mine to highlight the question. I love questions :

Shouldn't the teacher already be "fostering an open and welcoming atmosphere" regardless of whether they know who is of what religion or has two mommies? Do they have to go into the home to create that enviornment?

Once again, no matter how many arguments I hear, none has adequately addressed the invasion of privacy issue and the blowback a child my have if a parent does not want the teacher in their home.

It's like this: I have nothing to hide but still do not want my phones tapped.

I have nothing to hide in my home either but still do want the teacher over unless I am the one doing the inviting.
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Old 08-30-2007, 12:16 AM
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Well, I definitely would wish I didn't know about the dollhouse bed...that gives me the creeps! However, if I were an elementary school teacher, I would want to know about the family composition or religious beliefs, so that I could be sure to foster an open and welcoming atmosphere. Why would you not want your child's teacher to know these things? Your child probably won't keep them a secret.
How about because they are our business and not yours unless we choose to share that information -- just as you would not wish me to know your family composition or religious beliefs without being invited either.

For what it's worth, my child would keep confidential information confidential.
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Old 08-30-2007, 12:41 AM
 
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FTR, I loved dd's kindergarten teacher, and have great hopes for her 1st grade teacher (school just started.) I guess I'm just reflecting on how it might be for me to know that my kid's teacher could, if she wanted to, make mental comparisons between my modest home and other very lavish homes. I'm a little sensitive about it, I guess, because there are some marked class differences in our 'hood even though it's technically a middle class kind of area.

I do volunteer at the kids' schools, but so do many of the moms whose behavior can sometimes make me uncomfortable about money issues. IME, being rich and entitled doesn't preclude being room mom, yk?

I feel worse about this because I know how petty it is and how much I have to be grateful for.

Can't give up actin' tough, it's all that I'm made of. Can't scrape together quite enough to ride the bus to the outskirts of the fact that I need love. ~ Neko Case

 
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Old 08-30-2007, 01:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, I definitely would wish I didn't know about the dollhouse bed...that gives me the creeps! However, if I were an elementary school teacher, I would want to know about the family composition or religious beliefs, so that I could be sure to foster an open and welcoming atmosphere. Why would you not want your child's teacher to know these things? Your child probably won't keep them a secret.
Bolding mine.

That's not anyone's business. And this is why I am partly uncomfortable with it.

I am Pagan. My dh is Christian. Being a dual religion household there's a lot of things that are very difficult for us, ESP in this very very small town where most people have never even met a Pagan. It's hard on me as well as my children since it keeps people from allowing their kid to be my ds's friend.

Since we do have weekly visits into our home, my altar, and other things are kept in a part of the house that no visitors have access to. There are a few things scattered here and there that if someone were to really pay attention to all the details they would see that there was not just Christian symbols around. But, there's nothing overt. I am always very nervous about people not speaking to us after they visit, which has happened.

So, our personal beliefs which I have never been so guarded about before in my life, are now considered on a need to know basis. We only share them with people we know and trust in the most highest levels of our personal lives. And even tho I do trust my ds's prek teachers, I am not going to go tell them about any family dynamic issues I have with my parents and siblings, or have deep religious converstaions with them, or invovle them in my personal life unless I become best friends for life with them, and even then I don't share all that information with my best friends either.


Also, I do worry about being judged on where I live. I know I am. I do not dress like the other women who live where I do dress. And I have found people at the school treat me better if they don't know where I live and where my dh works. When that information makes it way around, I do notice the change. I usually notice before I find out that someone found out my address. I am judged on how much I donate or don't donate. I am judged on how much I particpate in fundraisers or don't participate, and I am judged on the gifts I give the teachers or don't give. Yes, I have had these conversations, so I am 100% sure it's true. Not everyone does. Only some, but it happens.
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Old 08-30-2007, 01:48 AM
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Originally Posted by peachpie View Post
Later, a friend and long-time pre-K instructor told me that she was required to do home visits in her previous position. She said she hated it. She gave me a list of what she was told to write up-- including things like-- Where does everyone sleep? Do mom and dad live together? Do mom and dad sleep together? Are there pets (especially something like a large dog)? What type of discipline is used? Any obvious safety hazards?
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Meg Murry. is offline  
Old 08-30-2007, 02:03 AM
 
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I'm in California and I've never heard of this sort of intrusion. Then again, I didn't do any kind of pre-k or preschool or what have you.

This would NOT be happening in my home. Absolutely not. Not out of fear, my landlord who lives on the same property as I do and comes over somewhat frequently just to say hi (we get along well, she is AP/NFL/crunchy and all that) is a mandatory reporter. So are my parents.

But a school just telling me that the teacher is coming into my home as a matter of procedure, and TAKING PICTURES???? ummmmmmmmm no.
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Old 08-30-2007, 02:19 AM
 
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I've never heard of this happening here, but it wouldn't bother me. I kind of like the idea of having the teacher over to meet DD on her own turf and to open up communication.
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