I attended Parents’ Evening at my son’s secondary school for the first time last week.
Overall, it was a positive experience. Regular readers will know how concerned I have been about my son’s education and the way that I just seem to have lost all sense of what he is learning and what is required of him.
Talking to all his subject teachers in turn made me feel better. It was clear so many cared about him a lot and also many recognised just how very bright he is. It is not easy to be super intelligent and it is probably not simple for teachers to manage either.
There have been problems with my son brought on I think by relocation, bereavement and a new school happening all at the same time. That would challenge an adult never mind an 11 year old boy. Teachers did mention those issues and asked for my support in saying that some behaviours were out of line which I gave wholeheartedly. All except one saw an improvement in recent months.
I am pleased that I have visited school prior to Parents’ Evening about my concerns and that help is being provided such as special pens and an Alpha Smart. I am saddened that you have to kick off to get these things but we are moving forwards.
We knew there was one teacher that my son does not like at all. Here is what that teacher had to say.
“He’ll never be the world’s greatest writer”
“I would praise him if there was anything to praise”
He did not discuss my son’s current and target levels until I insisted that he do so. He did not say anything positive about my son until I pushed him to do so when he admitted that my son could listen well sometimes. Which is odd as he had told me that my son never listens and talks all through lessons.
I think it is wrong of any teacher to write off a child. My son may yet be the world’s greatest writer. That is an unknown. I don’t like my son being labelled as abysmal and think this is bad teaching practice.
As we walked away, my son said “Well what did you think of him?”
My reply which some of you may not like was …
“He’s an idiot and he does not like how you have sussed that”
Frankly, I think the pupils in the class would do better to listen to my chattering son than this poor excuse for a teacher.
I am linking up with the lovely Tanya who every Friday hosts a linky all about having a good ol’ rant.
Good grief, that’s appalling. Every child has talents, even if they are not the usual ones, and to write off someone as abysmal (talking about the person) rather than something more specific is way off line! How do you go about tackling being abysmal?! The teacher should have said something that your son could work on (like listening, maybe, if that is an issue he has). He’s not going to be the worlds greatest writer – well, was he aiming for that? Is your son good at writing short pieces, or poems? Is it the longer essay type things he struggles with? To say he’s not the greatest writer is not constructive. And as for “I would praise him if there was anything…” I can’t believe this, there is always something to praise. How about the fact that your son turns up to these miserable lessons every day. Why isn’t the teacher looking for the good instead of concentrating on the bad? Not very inspirational, is he, especially as your son has gone through so many changes recently. i thought this type of teaching went out with the ark, and to find it’s still going on makes me very cross indeed. Grrr.
How very dare he. He needs reporting. I used to teach and ALWAYS found something positive to say to parents. Grrrrr
That is outrageous. Did he say this in front of your son? Not that it’s acceptable to say it at all, but if her heard that can only do more damage surely?
That’s awful; maybe have a word with the head teacher? I know sometimes they really do have to be honest and admit that your child isn’t behaving well or not as smart as you may have thought and whilst it’s never an easy conversation to have, i’m sure it does take a lot of thought so not to upset or offend, the words and phrases that teacher came out with is not on at all! Did your son hear all this?
I would ask to meet with the head teacher. How can your child be expected to learn if this is the teachers opinion of him. Teachers are there to encourage, nurture and to care as well as teach. I would be furious if this had been in a report about my son, even more if this had been said in front of him. Every child has infinite potential.
Terrible example of a teacher, whatever happened to finding the positives?
The pre-teen and teen years can be tricky to navigate anyway, your son needs support from the staff not criticism.
Talk to the governing body Kate.
Reading this, I get the impression that your sons teacher is a complete kn*bhead! You should speak to the head and make a complaint as soon as you can.
It is really wrong of him to have said those things – but sadly it doesn’t surprise me. My son’s teachers used to call me over at the end of each day and find all the negatives to tell me and it broke my heart. Since leaving school he has made the newspaper headlines on several occassions with his acheivements – one of the headlines being “Autistic boys thrives since leaving school” which says it all really about where the real problem lay. i’m so glad that the other teachers were pleased with your son’s progress. xxx
That is despicable. And makes me very very angry.
THere is some very interesting research about teenage boys and having respect for teachers. The findings show that if the teacher shows a lack of respect towards the children the children will never respect the teacher. Which then starts a vicious circle.
Why is this teacher in the profession if this is how they are behaving? For a child to hear those things is appalling.
We had a similar experience and complained. Loudly. And then left. Not an easy solution for everybody but I really think you should make your anger known.
I’m sorry, but this is completely unacceptable. I’d be complaining. The teacher has every right to talk about the challenges for your son, the areas that need focus and subjects he can’t grasp, but his use of language is awful. He needs to go on a course pronto. Constructive criticism is what you and your son need and that’s with ignoring the fact he sounds like a complete arse wipe!
Unbelievable. You entrust your child’s education into the hands of people like that. It makes my blood boil. You keep doing what is best for your son as you have been. I don’t know why teachers like that even entered the profession.