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#1 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I want to know if *this* is becoming a regular thing in other areas. I am posting this in TAO because I couldn’t figure out whether it belonged in the Tribal area for NC, education, activism, or where. This is mostly a rant about how “the man” is inserting himself into our lives and homes in new ways with the question of is this happening other places.

My ds2 is going to PreK at the local primary school for the second year this year. He aged out of 0-3 EI last fall and started then. It has done wonderful things for him and helped him blossom so I am very happy with him going to this school. The school itself I really like. We are both home school and public school friendly in my home. We have done both and we go with what works for our children on an individual basis.

They stagger enrollment for the PreK dept, meaning that while school may start for the county, they delay the PreK kids and bring them in to meet their teachers one on one, then pick a day and have them come in to stay one full day with their teachers and just a few of their classmates (you get a letter with what day your child is scheduled to come in) you are welcome to stay to help them adjust and watch. Then they don’t come back until the next week and when they do they just start as a regular school year. I really can appreciate that they take it slowly and want the kids and parents to be comfortable.

Here’s my concerns for what is happening now, this years as a *new* thing. We went in for our one on one meeting with the teacher. Ds was in her class last year and all went really well, until we get to the end and she tells me what time I am slotted for the “home visit”.

This year the PreK teachers (the teacher and the teacher’s asst) are *required* to go to each one of their student’s homes. I immediately ask why. She tells me that they do this in all the other counties and that this was the first county that didn’t do it. Again I simply ask why. She tells me it is to help “anchor the lines of communications” from the beginning of the year. I have the Scooby-Doo “AROOO!” look this whole time and she said that it is really informal that they just come in and let the student show them some of their favorite things and places and they take a couple of pictures of the student and a few of their favorite things. “AROOO!!!!!” They want to come in and take pictures?!?! So I ask why pictures and she says just to post around the classroom in getting to know you activities. I don’t understand why they simply can’t bring in favorite items or draw pictures or have mom and dad take a picture and send it in. So then she says that they only have 3 days to complete all of them and it will be this week.

I am not worried, and feel I am not in a position to say no. I have been having a state appointed therapist coming in my home once a week for the past 1.5-2 years for my children’s EI. And since one ds aged out and one ds is getting ready to age out of EI, the school’s SN dept has been welcomed into my home several times in the last year and this summer. I also have a friendship with one of the SN dept heads and live next to the other. I am not feeling threatened by this, but however, I am concerned for other parents. I feel this is a very thinly veiled attempt for the teachers being mandatory reporters to go into the home and asses *risk factors* for the children. Can you believe this? So does this happen elsewhere? Is this normal? Should we be helping to organize and keep this from happening?

What do you think of that?
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#2 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:26 PM
 
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nak.

: :
I have never heard of that sort of thing. We just put my stepson in pre-k last week, and if that would have been part of it, I don't think my husband would have agreed to it.

I'm in NC, too.

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#3 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:28 PM
 
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I haven't heard of that (I'm in TN), but my little ones are still a couple of years away from school age. That would freak me out!
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#4 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:33 PM
 
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I think it's a fantastic way to get a bond started between the student and teacher, and for the teacher to get a realistic idea of the child's home life. If you ever read Neufeld's Hold On to Your KIds, he actually describes this very set-up (teacher visiting their future student in their home) as being ideal.

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#5 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:35 PM
 
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As a teacher, I see home visits as being beneficial. For one, it brings me into the child's territory. The child may feel more comfortable showing me around their home, letting me play with their toys etc....makes for a nice connection when they come to class.

However, I am not coming to your home to see how clean it is, what it looks like or where you store your adult toys. (just kidding about the last part) Seriously, it has nothing to do with seeing your home but rather it gives me a chance to see how your child functions in an envrionment that is safe and familiar to him.

If you told me "no" it wouldn't bother me in the least and wouldn't reflect on your child either.

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#6 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:35 PM
 
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No f'in way. I would not allow it. Do you get to go to the teacher's house?
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#7 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:35 PM
 
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I have heard of this being done. In parts of MN, the teacher visits all the all day kindy kids.
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#8 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:37 PM
 
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Why does it bother you?

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#9 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:38 PM
 
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I'm in NC too. What county is this?! While we plan to homeschool DD, I'd still like to know. How intrusive! :

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#10 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:41 PM
 
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The prek program i work with is state/federally funded and it is a requirement for ALL of the students getting free prek.

I thought it was weird too and i thought only headstart did it. But now for "extra" federally funded programs it is a requirement to keep funding.

I have to say the kids love it. They loooooove to show off thier rooms/yards/pets etc.
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#11 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:44 PM
 
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I think it would be a deal breaker for me. My home is my PRIVATE space. I would be uncomfortable with being told I had to allow someone who is in fact an agent of the government to inspect it. Do they bring a warrant?
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#12 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:44 PM
 
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Not a chance in Hell I would allow a teacher in my home like that.

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#13 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elyra View Post



This year the PreK teachers (the teacher and the teacher’s asst) are *required* to go to each one of their student’s homes. I immediately ask why. She tells me that they do this in all the other counties and that this was the first county that didn’t do it. Again I simply ask why. She tells me it is to help “anchor the lines of communications” from the beginning of the year. I have the Scooby-Doo “AROOO!” look this whole time and she said that it is really informal that they just come in and let the student show them some of their favorite things and places and they take a couple of pictures of the student and a few of their favorite things. “AROOO!!!!!” They want to come in and take pictures?!?! So I ask why pictures and she says just to post around the classroom in getting to know you activities. I don’t understand why they simply can’t bring in favorite items or draw pictures or have mom and dad take a picture and send it in. So then she says that they only have 3 days to complete all of them and it will be this week.

I am not worried, and feel I am not in a position to say no. I have been having a state appointed therapist coming in my home once a week for the past 1.5-2 years for my children’s EI. And since one ds aged out and one ds is getting ready to age out of EI, the school’s SN dept has been welcomed into my home several times in the last year and this summer. I also have a friendship with one of the SN dept heads and live next to the other. I am not feeling threatened by this, but however, I am concerned for other parents. I feel this is a very thinly veiled attempt for the teachers being mandatory reporters to go into the home and asses *risk factors* for the children. Can you believe this? So does this happen elsewhere? Is this normal? Should we be helping to organize and keep this from happening?

What do you think of that?
Sorry, but the Big Brother Thought Police have no place in your home. You ARE in a position to say no -- they have no warrant and are not invited. NO WAY.
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#14 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:46 PM
 
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I rather like this idea, a bit like the old time village school where the teacher would drop in on various neighbours and so on. It would definitely help for some children to see the teacher as a family friend rather than this alien in front of the classroom.

It would also be a good way to have communication between the teacher and parent.

But then I guess, from other posts I have seen here, that many Americans have a much more "closed" attitude about friends and neighbours. Just dropping in seems to be seen as very bad manners
So I guess the idea of having the teacher over for tea would not appeal.

nothing more to say I guess :
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#15 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:48 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Elyra View Post
What do you think of that?
: :
Quote:
This year the PreK teachers (the teacher and the teacher’s asst) are *required* to go to each one of their student’s homes.
Required by whom? That's the first thing I'd like to know.
Quote:
I feel this is a very thinly veiled attempt for the teachers being mandatory reporters to go into the home and asses *risk factors* for the children.
Ya think? Not even all that thinly veiled, actually.
Quote:
Can you believe this?
What I can't believe is that parents are going along with it!
Quote:
So does this happen elsewhere?
Not around here, so far.
Quote:
Is this normal?
Normal? For total strangers to come in, nose around our house, take pictures of our family and belongings, and give no plausible reason for it? It's better than normal - it's doubleplusgood.
Quote:
Should we be helping to organize and keep this from happening?
With all possible speed. I'd start by insisting that school parents be allowed to "anchor the lines of communication" by inspecting the homes of all teachers, teaching assistants, principals, and school board members. Be sure to check their dresser drawers for porn and get snapshots of their liquor cabinet and unwashed kitchen floor while you're there.
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#16 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by brendon View Post
Why does it bother you?
I don't know why it would bother the OP, but I'll tell you why it would bother me.

For one, although we homeschool and our house is clean and presentable and free of illegalities that I know about, I am not comfortable with a perfect stranger who will have control over our daughter and therefore our lives seeing our home when she has not been invited to do so, but rather has invited herself using the school as a strong-arm crowbar to do so.

Secondly, it smacks of policing parents.

Thirdly, it smacks of policing students.

It's an invasion of privacy.
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#17 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:49 PM
 
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I guess it would be okay with me if we also get to take a trip to the teacher's house to visit the teacher's family and take photos. I think that would also be a helpful bonding exercise for the child and open up lines of communication. Then the teacher would be less intimidating to the child.

Something my SIL just told me about her school (just started high school) weirded me out. She has to wear a heartrate monitor around her chest which will provide data to the teacher for her heartrate for the entire class. It also shows up on a wrist monitor the student's wearing. If her heartrate isn't above 130 for at least 20 straight minutes, she gets an "F" for the day. I think that's ridiculous. Not to mention that it's hardly likely to happen when they play volleyball. But either way it creeps me out and would feel like an invasion to me. I would be very unhappy if I was required to do that. Big Brother watching over your shoulder, kwim?
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#18 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Calidris View Post
I
So I guess the idea of having the teacher over for tea would not appeal.
The idea of MY INVITING the teacher over for tea would appeal just fine.

I object to the teacher and the school inviting her FOR me.
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#19 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 03:58 PM
 
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Normal? For total strangers to come in, nose around our house, take pictures of our family and belongings, and give no plausible reason for it? It's better than normal - it's doubleplusgood.
LOVE that.

And yet at the same time I think it's a great idea. I can totally see how this would be good for the kids, but it loses all its appeal the minute it becomes a requirement. I think I would love it if the teacher called me up personally and said, "Hi, I'm going to be your kid's teacher. I would love to come and meet your kid in the safe environment of your home if you're comfortable with that and think it would be beneficial for YOUR kid" Of course, my kid is 6 months old, so we're a ways away from that
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#20 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 04:02 PM
 
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No f'in way. I would not allow it. Do you get to go to the teacher's house?
My brother's favorite school memory is when his kindergarten teacher had a spend the night party for everyone at her house.

My niece teaches kindy, and she has all the kids over for an end of school party.

Don't know if they do this everywhere, though.
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#21 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 05:10 PM
 
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There's a difference between be invited over vs mandatory visit. No one likes being told "I am coming over be ready for me", not the best foot to start off on IMO. Maybe if she gave OP the option of picking a day/time vs telling her when she and the aide were showing up.

We don't do that in our school system. Wonder if any of the parents have refused.
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#22 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 05:13 PM
 
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I remember my Kindergarten teacher coming to visit me at my house. I was SOOOO excited and when she finally pulled up I was beside myself. I think it was the most exciting thing that happened to me in elementary school.
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#23 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 05:26 PM
 
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I would not be comfortable with that at all. It's one thing if the parents invite the teacher to their home it's a whole other thing for the school to mandate such an arrangement.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Meg Murry
For one, although we homeschool and our house is clean and presentable and free of illegalities that I know about, I am not comfortable with a perfect stranger who will have control over our daughter and therefore our lives seeing our home when she has not been invited to do so, but rather has invited herself using the school as a strong-arm crowbar to do so.

Secondly, it smacks of policing parents.

Thirdly, it smacks of policing students.

It's an invasion of privacy.
: Although my home is not always presentable.

OUR DAUGHTERS ARE PROTECTED SHOULDN'T OUR SONS BE TOO! :
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#24 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 05:26 PM
 
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The "thinly veiled CPS" thing is crap, IMO. Don't read so much into a home visit. If there is a threat in the home, the teacher is going to get far more information from the child at school, outside of the home, than coming to the home.

It's just to get to know the child, to associate the teacher in the child's world - nothing more.

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#25 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 05:35 PM
 
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I just enrolled my ds in headstart, and there was a mandatory home visit that they didn't even INFORM me of until they showed up at my door. : Can y'all imagine what my house looked like? I didn't invite them in! We sat on the porch and filled out paperwork, and I flat out told them that they wouldn't be visiting the interior of my home uninvited.

I don't think it's a good idea to make it mandatory. Like someone else suggested, if it's a way for my child to meet his teacher before starting and if that works for my child then great. If not, then that should be an option. Some people are going to be thoroughly embarrassed by their homes and that shouldn't factor into whether or not a child gets to attend preschool.
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#26 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 06:16 PM
 
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Originally Posted by KimProbable View Post
If you ever read Neufeld's Hold On to Your KIds, he actually describes this very set-up (teacher visiting their future student in their home) as being ideal.
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Originally Posted by Calidris View Post
I rather like this idea, a bit like the old time village school where the teacher would drop in on various neighbours and so on. It would definitely help for some children to see the teacher as a family friend rather than this alien in front of the classroom.
The problem I have with this view of things is that, to the best of my recollection, Neufeld was talking about a situation in which the teacher was already known to the parents and the rest of the community. The teacher probably was a family friend, or at least acquaintance. These days, the teacher is a stranger, and while I think it's great for teachers and parents to get to know each other to at least some extent, I don't see any reason why that has to be in my home.

I don't let random strangers into my space, and the teacher who will be teaching my child is a random stranger. I don't know if I'd refuse the home visit or not...but it would make me horribly uncomfortable, and it wouldn't allow me and the teacher to get to know each other at all. The picture-taking aspect of it bugs me. Some of my family members have pictures taken in my home, as do one or two of my friends...but I don't let people I've never met come into my house and take pictures. This is my space.

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#27 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 06:21 PM
 
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My son's teachers are doing this this year, too. Frankly, it weirds me out a little because I'm not really comfortable having company. I have an anxiety disorder, and having people in my home can trigger it. However, I'm going to let them come over if it works out with my schedule because I figure that it's good practice for me. I need to get over it so my kids can have friends over more frequently. I also see the value in it for some of the reasons mentioned above. As well, I already know one of his teachers fairly well (he was ds' teacher last year and I actually went to the same high school as he did, and knew him in passing there) and it's a small co-operative school and I like the idea of fostering community. Still, it squicks me out a bit, too.
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#28 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 06:21 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride;9024858I don't let random strangers into my space, and the teacher who [i
will[/i] be teaching my child is a random stranger. I.
This opens up another line of thought - why would one be okay witha a perfect stranger teaching their child? I would much rather meet the perfect stranger before school starts, on the home court with just me and my child there, rahter than sending my child off to some strange building with a bunch of other strangers to meet the perfect stranger who will be his/her teacher....
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#29 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 06:22 PM
 
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yeah that IS weird. how is it not illegal, also?
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#30 of 177 Old 08-28-2007, 06:22 PM
 
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If it were optional, or heck, even recommended, then I'd have no problem with it. But REQUIRED?? What are they going to do if you refuse? Get a warrant? Refuse to let your child go to preschool? Will it go on his "permanent record"? (snicker)

Um, no. Even though my house is sanitary and we're not doing anything illegal, I'd probably refuse just on principle. People have to be invited to my house, they can't strongarm their way in, even if they are an "authority figure" (which I don't think a teacher is, tbh).
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