Friday, March 23, 2012

SOLC 23 Truth is...

Truth is I'm feeling deflated. While I know some years you get those "classes" that are more challenging than others. Truthfully, I am ok with that. I work in a high needs district. I expect these things. I have been teaching for 23 years now. Challenging students I am up for. Students who need me to rethink how I do things, well that is my job.
What I am finding difficult, deflating and downright disheartening is the lack of respect from administration and the parents. In my 23 years this has got to be the worst I have ever seen it. This week alone I have either received emails, phone calls or written letters with the following sentiments:
1.) Cursed at & called a very unkind word for letting a parent know their child was threatening another student with bodily harm and this other student was now afraid to come to school. (I teach Kindergarten)
2.) Written a very nasty letter telling me how upset a parent was at me for sending their child to the nurse when their child had green stuff running down their face and their child could not keep their head up in class. The note explained that I needed to know the difference between allergies and illness and their child was certainly not sick after all when the child came home, she was fine, however, the child was up all night with a bellyache, so she did not get much sleep so expect her to be tired today.
3.) Emailed berating me because their child was not drinking enough water during lunch time. I should be monitoring this more closely. I am to remind their child to take the water bottle out each morning and to remind him to drink all day, them remind him to use the bathroom as well. If I am not capable of doing this, she will arrive each morning to take this child's water bottle out of his backpack for him.
Now...I will tell you, these are the kinds of notes/emails/phone calls I tend to deal with every single week and sometimes daily. I just have "those" kinds of parents this year. But, this week, well, I had ENOUGH! Truthfully, I am disheartened by the lack of respect. Is it me? Since when is it ok to curse at a teacher? Since when is it ok to berate a teacher and tell them they are incompetent for sending an obviously sick child to the nurse? (mind you, the school nurse called this parent at their job-they are an educator, they never bothered to call back) I do not profess to be a nurse, I am a teacher, who saw a child with glassy eyes, who looked sick, I turned her over to the professional, she makes the calls. I am only looking out for the best interest of their child. I guess I am missing something. Sadly, it is these types of situations that have seemed to crop up so often these days. They make me wonder if I belong in the profession anymore. Do I have what it takes to remain? Why do these things bother me so much? When I began teaching 23 years ago I never encountered such things. Yes, perhaps, on occassion a parent was somewhat difficult. This is beyond that. It has me out looking for alternative ways for me to finish out my days until retirement. Truthfully, I just don't think I can take the abuse anymore since no one seems to stop them from treating us this way. Sorry, I could not find a silver lining tonight.


Joanne said...

Sorry for the hard day! There are many like that and some years are harder than others. I have had a few of those this year as well. I usually take a long walk, breath and let my emotions settle before I react to any thing. You are seeing and feeling the stress in the lives of your parents. They to are struggling.
Hang in there! Tomorrow is Saturday and I hope the sun will shine of you!

Wendi Richert said...

I'm so sorry for the kind of week you have had, and for the deflated feeling you're having. :( You are a blessing to your kindergarteners. Hang in there. The silver lining may be your letting go of this horrible week and starting fresh on Monday. These parents will have to answer for their actions one day. But you will have been that teacher who cared when nobody else would.

Becky said...

Having begun teaching in 1978, I'd say the lack of respect from students and from parents is one of the biggest changes I've seen through the years.
You do not deserve such disregard from parents. Especially when your primary purpose is academics.
Sometimes when my thoughts keep going back to those irritating parts of the day, I try to think of the great parents or great learning kids did.

Julie said...

I completely understand you. This post could easily have been written by me last year. I wish I could offer you some words of wisdom or strategies that worked. I never found any. I had difficult kids and difficult parents. I hope you have some administrative support behind you. I had the same questions and am seriously considering a move out of the classroom to finish off my career in education. Don't take the disrespect. You don't deserve it.