Lance’s teachers

So you should probably guess that this is probably going to turn into a long rant with a title “Lance’s Teachers.” I am sorry. It is just what it is. I will confess to secretly not liking either one of his teachers from a point very shortly after school started. I will even confess to the fact that I did actually like the one teacher from the day I met him. I wanted to like him so badly. Then I sat down across the table from him during a parent teacher conference and that desire to like him quickly faded. My desire to like his other teacher never really existed from day one. Why? She never made the effort to get to know my child or his needs. Lance is not a child that needs a lot, but how about we just talk to the parent before we dismiss those needs and assume we know what is best in the classroom for all the children. When I sat across the table at the very same parent teacher conference as already mentioned, I pretty much decided that she and I were going to have a dislike for each other the rest of the year no matter what happened. To this day, that is pretty much been the case. That being said, it has not been the case that I have not tried to be the nice mom and I have tried everything in my power to get along with Lance’s teachers. I have.

Here is the problem…

Lance feels that he is being picked on in the classroom. He might even feel like he is being down right attacked in some ways. That is something I as a parent cannot stop. Only they, as the teachers, can stop that. Maybe he is a little overly dramatic about describing things or whatnot, but the truth be told is that I am getting stories about what is going on and I honestly do not always want to blow them off as being “unrealistic.” My kid cannot always be written off as a story teller. I do have to take his word sometimes and believe him. If I do not, what am I? How good of a parent am I? I am no better than the ogre teachers he has day in and day out. Please note that I am the one using the word “ogre” here, not him. He has never resorted to that word in his life as far as I know. See, I am capable of keeping my opinion of people I do not like to myself and away from my child. He does NOT have to know how I feel about the people HE has to deal with day in and day out.

The fact is that HE has to deal with these people in spite of their ignorance and stupidity. Let me tell you that it is in fact stupidity sometimes. Today, I wanted to reach across the table and smack them both for ignorance. Pure ignorance. It would not have helped. You cannot tell me things like “it is about perception” and then be blinded by your own. Do not tell me you have my child’s best interest at heart and then flat out refuse to budge on anything that would help my child pass the two classes and ultimately give a better view of his perspective.

What bugs me most is that at the very parent teacher conference that I had with them at the beginning of the school year, I told them that we were going to have the very problems with him that we are having. “It is almost like he checked out.” HELLO?!. I told them he would months ago. I told them he would be had to keep motivated once he knew that we were moving. In Lance’s mind, anything he did here at this school was NOT going to matter to him, he was going to get a fresh slate to work with at his new school. In some ways, he will. In other ways he will not. His grades will go with him. That is what he does not understand.

What his teachers did not take seriously is that Lance really was going to check out. I warned them. Where I needed them to be the support at school and encouraging him, they checked out too. So I have been dragging him through all these emotions about how he did not want to move and how he did not have a choice to just not being the highest priority all the time because mom and dad had to get things ready for the house to sell. These are real and raw emotions. These were serious emotions for a kid that was already struggling at school. For a kid that already struggled daily with pain from his migraines. He just gave up and checked out. Here was mom barely holding it all together and punishing him for his grades and he checked out a long time ago because he could not cope and his teachers checked out right along with him.

In all of this I have had NO communication outside of his weekly Tuesday folder about anything that is going on. Nothing. No communications about how badly he was truly struggling. Maybe we would have caught it sooner than when I finally caught the chance to sit down and breathe – finally. Maybe it would not have been yet another stupid, petty reactionary thing that alerted me to the other things that were really going on.

I just do not understand how when you have a child that is consistently failing, a teacher makes NO attempt to contact a parent outside of a weekly Tuesday folder. None. No phone call. No email. Nothing. Then I am considered the bad person, like I have done nothing here this whole time. I was judged for my punishment “technique not working out for him.” The truth being, it is working just fine, Lance just does not care. He does not care that he gets a bad grade. He does not care that he does not do an assignment. He does not care. That tells me that his teachers’ punishment is failing…why? His teachers’ lack of disappointment in him is not enough to motivate him to do better. That or his teachers’ lack of encouragement is not enough to motivate him to do better.

See, me…I’ve got a carrot dangling in front of him. Just like a donkey and a carrot on a stick. I know what he likes. He cannot get enough of them. It is the same thing that all little boys his age want – computer games. He cannot have access to them until his grades come up. He is failing. He has to be “not failing.” No F’s and he can have his computer games back. F’s and there are no computer games in this house for him. There is no iPod.

After today, however, I am thinking that he’s just not having a motivation problem he’s having a problem with the fact that he feels like it is unobtainable because no matter what he does he gets knocked back down by unreasonable expectations from his teachers. At least the one teacher. He hates to write physically with a pencil. Put him in front of a keyboard and he can generate ideas on a page without problems. It does not mean that it will not need editing, it just means that he can get them out on paper where he could not with a pencil and paper. Know the child.

They even went to question his reading. I was pissed off at that. Do not question his reading. If I tell you that he will read for an hour and half in the afternoon, then he read for an hour and half. There is no reason for you to question whether or not he was actually reading during that time. I just told you that he read that time. Do not question the parent who has seen him do it.

I am so mad at his teachers right now. I am so mad. It is not their place to question me. It is their place to educate my child. With 2 F’s and a D, you cannot tell me they are educating my child efficiently. After the pencil box incident, I am more concerned that they have too much time on their hands at this point. Too much time to call out students on what they have done wrong or not doing than to take care of business in the classroom.

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