To set you all a challenge?

(43 Posts)
FeltOverlooked Wed 30-Jan-13 14:30:22

I work in a school.

Every day we get complaints, moans and concerns expressed from the parents. Some of these are fair enough - lost gloves, wrong reading books, confusing communication. Some are less so.

But what we barely ever seem to get is any thanks or nice comments.

Can I challenge you all, for the next couple of weeks, that if something nice happens at school you SAY SO! Drop a note in the contact book, send an email, say it in the line...

I have sent an appreciative email to my DD's school today, as they had an external workshop group in yesterday and she loved it. I have already heard back from the teacher who ran it, saying how thrilled she was to be thanked.

Go on, give it a go.

If they don't do anything worth thanking, so be it, but if they do - please, just try saying so.

Ponderingonaquandry Wed 30-Jan-13 14:33:10

I will the day they do something worthy of gratitude

Nixea Wed 30-Jan-13 14:34:14

Challenge accepted! It's a point that applies to so many industries as well. People are quick to complain but slow to compliment.

So I'm off to write a note to drop in at reception thanking them for various "above and beyond" acts.

FeltOverlooked Wed 30-Jan-13 14:40:26

Well done, Nixea. Bet they'll be thrilled.

And sorry to hear Pondering that you are having such a rough time with school. Always a shame when that happens.

wonderingsoul Wed 30-Jan-13 14:45:26

agree with nixa. it applies to other places.alwsys ready to put a complant in but rarely so to compliment.

I can bad word ds1 school at all and have said to friends etc how they really do careand try for the kids. but I shall take up your challange.

wonderingsoul Wed 30-Jan-13 14:46:17

cant not can

Nixea Wed 30-Jan-13 14:48:02

On an aside though, wouldn't it be strange if you receive a thank you note today as a result of this post!

MammaTJ Wed 30-Jan-13 14:48:17

The last inset days I told me DD they had time to learn how to be better teachers, she said 'My teacher doesn't need to learn that, she already makes learning fun and interesting'. I did tell the teacher and the HT what she had said.

zukiecat Wed 30-Jan-13 14:52:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

EmpressOfThePuddle Wed 30-Jan-13 14:52:28

I do! Honestly!
DD's in Yr7 now and we have less contact with the school, but when she was at primary I made a point of going along to the school coffee mornings (hosted by Head and Chair of Governors) and telling them what we were happy about.
Her Yr 6 teacher was absolutely fucking amazing in many different ways, the best teacher she's ever had, so when DD left we wrote to the Head about her and gave her a copy of the letter.
Only seemed fair!

FeltOverlooked Wed 30-Jan-13 16:02:45

Interesting responses - thanks all, some really nice stories.

And I do absolutely know that schools are not always perfect and you are sometimes let down. I had to complain to my son's school when he was being bullied and they weren't taking it seriously. They are making huge efforts now though, so I am trying to say thank you and that I have noticed the difference since their approach has changed.

FeltOverlooked Wed 30-Jan-13 20:28:24

Go on, night crowd, kids are in bed now - is there anyone you could thank at school?

YorkshireDeb Wed 30-Jan-13 20:47:30

What a lovely idea. My ds isn't old enough for school yet but I'll try to take your challenge & apply it to some of the other industries people have mentioned. Would be great to be part of your spread the love agenda. X

EllaEllaElla Wed 30-Jan-13 20:48:16

I work an a private International School overseas.....just last week a parent sent her PA (!) in to see me - the poor woman seemed to be under strict instructions to make it absolutely clear to me that I was an inspiration to her employers child! It was a very funny conversation (through a language barrier!) but even though it was from a PA rather than from the parent, it was very lovely to hear!

blackeyedsusan Wed 30-Jan-13 20:51:08

you get a lot more by being nice...

FeltOverlooked Wed 30-Jan-13 20:51:47

Ella, that sounds so sweet! Well done you for being so inspiring.

YorkshireDeb, yes, am sure the same applies in many industries.

larks35 Wed 30-Jan-13 21:05:38

I usually get 2 or 3 thank-yous at the end of most of my lessons, particularly lower school (yr7,8&9). I think at Secondary it means a lot more to hear it from the kids. Generally when I speak to parents I am fully supported and sometimes thanked for what I do for their children.

Thinking about this, I actually think that what we do (you in infant/primary and me in secondary) is for the children, not the parents. Thanks from parents is nice but doesn't mean anything. Thanks from the kids, even when it isn't expressed as a "thank-you miss" but more as a general enjoyment of the lesson, is much more affirmative.

However, I realise your and my roles are very different and I don't get complaints about lost stuff etc. so understand if you feel a bit fed up with only hearing negatives from parents.

HoHoHoNoYouDont Wed 30-Jan-13 21:12:42

Online shoppers are the same. They're quick to give poor feedback/reviews but never so quick as to write good stuff.

PotionMaker Wed 30-Jan-13 21:17:52

Felt I'm totally up for your challenge - and try to make a point of doing this myself. I gave some positive feedback to DS1's teacher last year (as I was aware lots of parents were griping and bitching and I thought she'd done a great job in very difficult circumstances) and she now hugs me whenever she sees me, she was so astonished to receive a compliment.
People are really ready to complain but feel awkward giving praise and positive feedback, or simply forget to. Well done you for flagging it, this is a really important thing to do grin

HollyBerryBush Wed 30-Jan-13 21:20:44

Not just schools, I always send emails regarding customer service and if it somewhere like a restaurant and the waiting staff have been exceptional I always ask to speak to the manager and tell him so as well.

FeltOverlooked Wed 30-Jan-13 21:22:05

Larks - the kids are wonderful and yes, thanks from them is worth more than anything.

It's not that I even need affirmation from the parents, but something to balance up the gripes would be nice - something for us all to remember maybe. (including on Ebay - HoHoho!).

Potion - agree, it is just so easy to forget in the haste of life. Problems seem urgent, so that message gets passed on. The nicer messages don't always.

FeltOverlooked Wed 30-Jan-13 21:25:00

Holly, yes, restaurants is another good one.

Have realised one of the things I really love in my life is the library. Their service is amazing. Can't quite work out how to get brave enough to say something, but had better take my own challenge and try!

withgreatpower Wed 30-Jan-13 21:30:00

The other day I phones the manager of a "Subway" shop to give positive feedback on one of her employees.

Here is the story: I went to Subway in a big city, I bought myself and my two children a sandwich (each!), and I realised too late that I didn't have my debit card (I had left it with DH as he had to return some things that I had bought with the card). I had left the house with £ 55, but then I spent £ 50 when I left a deposit to the new childminder (I had forgotten about not having my card with me, as I had given the card to my DS the night before, to be very organised!).

Oh, and I had spent the remaining £ 5 on a train ticket, so I was quite far from home anyway.

So, I am at the Subway till, with the sandwiches all ready for us, but no money at all... I really didn't know what to do. I was thinking of phoning DH (who would have been so happy to have to spend £ 10 in petrol to bring me £ 5 to pay for sandwiches - assuming his mobile phone was switched on!)... after a couple of minutes, this very nice Subway girl tells me that she has seen me before in the shop, so it's ok if I come back before closing time and pay then. I offered to leave my ID, but she said it was not necessary.

What a lovely, lovely girl!

Luckily I was going to meet a friend of mine, so I asked for a bit of cash and went back to the shop within 1 hour. I asked the girl for the manager's phone number so I could pass on to her some positive feedback on the helpful Subway employee.

I am the one that phones shops to complain when something has not been done "properly", but I do try to remember to say good things when someone has being particularly professional and helpful.

OP, you are right that we should give positive feedback more often.

Ok, I'll do that. The Yr1 teacher I now wish DS1 had had explained really well how kids understand maths at the school's maths fair last night. The whole thing was useful but him in particular.

FeltOverlooked Wed 30-Jan-13 21:39:45

withgreatpower - great story!

Jammy - bet he'd be pleased to hear how much help he was!

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