Is it Just Me or Does Everyone Think You’re Not the Boss of Everything?
Is it just me or does everyone think you’re not the boss of everything?
Specifically, your child’s education. I spoke on the radio yesterday about a new book ‘A Letter to the Parents of Australia.’ Which begs parents to back off and let teachers and principals do their job.
Our phones melted down. Stories of car park delegations declaring the principal, ‘Has no right to punish my child.’ Parents hanging around the classroom to monitor what goes on in class and telling their kids, ‘The teacher is wrong, you don’t have to do as she says.’ In the worst case I heard, a parent followed a teacher home and berated her in her own driveway.
Parents only have their child’s interest at heart but they have to remember educators are there to look after all students. Sometimes they act for the greater good. The school is not always right, while they aim to be democratic, sometimes that means they don’t listen to parents and controversies can escalate when better communication might have solved it early. But not every issue is worthy of a fight with the school. A teacher your kid doesn’t like can be a blessing, a chance to talk to them about horrible bosses.
The marking system isn’t a punishment, it’s designed to show how a student is performing.
Stepping in every time your child is unhappy or doesn’t do as well as you were hoping is stunting their emotional growth. These kids grow up not knowing how to stand on their own two feet, solve their own problems, advocate for themselves or bounce back from adversity. And that doesn’t mean you abandon your kid or stop paying attention, it just means asking them what they need, or why they think they getting into trouble so often?
When my son Gabe was in Grade 5 another parent told me he was spending a lot of time banished from class. I gathered my courage and knocked on the classroom door one Friday after school. The teacher looked down her nose at my enquiry and told me very firmly it was none of my business, she and Gabe were working out their differences and should she require my assistance she would be in touch. I don’t think they ever fell in love with each other, but both Gabe and Mrs Plunkett survived the year and she was right, it was none of my business.
Learning to act for the good of the group, wear a uniform with pride, survive the playground argy bargy and occasionally bloody well do as you are told is how we make good adults.
If we really love our kids, we’ll stay out of all that and let them prepare them for the very real challenges that life has in store.