to think that teachers should wait to see all parents even if they are running late

(70 Posts)

I went to my 14 yo DS2's parents evening last week, we had to book appointments online but teachers were over-running by quite a bit. I went to my 6.05 appointment but she was busy, with people waiting, I returned to my 5.55 appointment (who was running late), waited a bit longer, returned to the 6.05 - still busy, back and forth, managed to see my 6.20 appointment but when I went back to 6.05 she had gone home. Now I know that parents evening is supposed to finish at 6.30 but she must have gone out of the door as if there was a rocket up her a***! and I still haven't managed to get hold of her to find out how DS2 is doing. I took an evening off work so I could find out how he is getting on in school and it wasn't MY fault that teachers weren't running to time. In fact it took 2 hours for me to see 6 teachers! AIBU to think she should have checked whether I had signed back out before leaving.

Oh god, I have this later tonight. 8 teachers I have appts for. And that's not all the teachers my DD has. I tried to cut it down a bit.

I agree that the teacher shouldn't have gone like that. If you were shuttling backwards and forwards surely she would have clocked you were there.

exoticfruits Tue 23-Apr-13 16:07:41

Phone up the school and ask to speak to her.

Pozzled Tue 23-Apr-13 16:09:09

When I saw your thread title, I was ready to say Yabu, but actually I don't think you are. If the teacher knew you were there, and wanted to see her,

meditrina Tue 23-Apr-13 16:11:58

There should be no need for them to stick around, because there should be a system which ensures time-keeping. Ours is like speed dating - bell every 5 minutes and move on. They need to rethink how they run the sessions - perhaps you could find the constructive way to suggest this?

Bloody annoying that you were frustrated at every turn, but also unfair to single out one teacher (who may have had good reasons for prompt departure) when it's the whole set up that needs an overhaul so it's not wrecked by overrunning.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 16:12:02

In our school each parent has 5 mins and literally a bell sounds and there are 'helpers' who move you out of your chair to ensure that no one falls behind. I have seen some parents getting ready for a good old chat to find they only have 5 mins (which is plastered all over the website and letters sent home).

If you want longer you need to make a seperate appointment.

Not for everyone but it does work!

Pozzled Tue 23-Apr-13 16:12:56

Sorry, posted too soon...

If the teacher knew you wanted to see her, she should really have waited. However, she may have had to rush off to collect children or whatever. I would try to make phone contact, or send a note in asking how your DS is doing.

FreyaSnow Tue 23-Apr-13 16:13:10

Parents' evenings, at secondary school, are not long enough for all the parents to see all the teachers, in my experience. They need to hold them on more evenings so there is more time.

ArtemisatBrauron Tue 23-Apr-13 16:14:05

Maybe she has her own children to collect or cook dinner for and had to leave at the agreed time... teachers are people too!

Tailtwister Tue 23-Apr-13 16:22:04

If she knew you were there she should have waited. It's her responsibility to see everyone who made an appointment and if she's running late for whatever reason then it's not an excuse to just get up and leave. Maybe she does have things to do at home, but parents' evenings are part of the job and she should have made provision for her own family. Surely she knows these things run late most of the time and if she was sensible should have taken that into account.

knittingirl Tue 23-Apr-13 16:23:31

Did she know you were there and wanted to see her? If so, then maybe yanbu. If she hadn't seen you, then I think yabu as there are parents who don't show to parents evening and teachers can't just hang out waiting in case they come.

From the wife of a teacher who has parents evening tonight, and really hopes that he's not massively late home as we have other things to get done.

I signed in (as we have to) and hadn't signed out so I was obviously still there. She must have seen me looking through the door (looking very harrassed) and she hasn't returned my calls or replied to my email. I'm just feeling very frustrated as my DS has told me that he is struggling. We have also suggested on several occassions that they implement a bell system or other way of ensuring better time keeping. I've also suggested a way of marking on the teachers time sheet that we are there but running late. The school ignores all suggestions - thank goodness there is a new head teacher in September!

mummytime Tue 23-Apr-13 16:46:31

For my DDs last progress monitoring, someone set off the fire alarm in the middle. Made everything even later than normal.

I did get to see everyone I was supposed to, however we're still dealing with the fall out. Two subjects had less than ideal teachers, one gave bad news with no prior warning and the other seemed incompetent (fortunately the school is very good and we now have the heads of departments and a head of year involved).

mummytime Tue 23-Apr-13 16:47:06

Oh OP YANBU, in the circumstances.

soverylucky Tue 23-Apr-13 16:47:21

It depends how late you were for the appointment. I have had parents sign in and not turn up for their appointment. I have assumed that they were somewhere in the building trying to see another teacher and have waited and waited and waited. Turns out that they went home without seeing me as they had somewhere else they needed to be.

When did you call or email her? I think it is reasonable to wait 24 hours for a reply. Any longer than that is not on (although she may be part time and not in school)

I hope that you get something sorted op.

manicinsomniac Tue 23-Apr-13 16:49:48

YANBU at all. She must have known that she was seeing, for example, her 5.30 at 5.55 so must have known that her 5.35-5.55 were around and would miss out.

Completely out of order

soverylucky parents evening was last Wednesday and I rang on Thursday. I emailed on the weekend. I was also outside the door at 6.32, so given that the evening was supposed to finish at 6.30 I wouldn't count it as "waiting and waiting".

Blissx Tue 23-Apr-13 17:17:00

I'd be more annoyed that they have not replied to your emails or telephone calls. I wonder if they are off sick and perhaps contacting Head of Year or Head of Department might help.
I agree it is annoying. On the flip side, it is also annoying when a parent leaves without signing out and I'm there, waiting for them 7:30 to 8:00 as my subject isn't one of the "big three". Happens almost every parents evening!

soverylucky Tue 23-Apr-13 17:21:58

I think you misunderstood me - I was refering to what happened to me. What I meant was that you might have been her last appointment at 6.05 and therefore when you went back later on she may have waited a while. I can see that 20 minutes is not that long to wait - I was waiting over 45 minutes before I gave up. Perhaps she had just left? At any school I have worked at you leave after your last appointment not when the evening ends.
It would seem to me that since this was last week and she has not replied to your email then you have a right to be cross. If she didn't see you on the evening and you took the time to email/call then it is wrong that she hasn't got back to you yet.

Finola1step Tue 23-Apr-13 17:28:08

As a teacher, I read your thread title and was ready to say YADBU. But in the situation you described, she should have waited. Or if she really had to go (transport, childcare etc) she should have made a new appointment with you as she was running late and not you. Email her for a written update on your child's progress in the subject.

Finola1step Tue 23-Apr-13 17:29:54

Oops. Just seen that you have emailed. Def email head of department

YokoUhOh Tue 23-Apr-13 17:32:01

More parents' evenings, Freya? I already have seven (one for each year group) across the year, not to mention Open Evenings, tutor group parents' evenings (2), concerts, school productions, Carol services, I could go on...! Not a moan, just an FYI. I'm already dreading the logistics of going back to school after maternity leave; I have no idea how we'll cover those evenings! sad

BackforGood Tue 23-Apr-13 17:32:38

No, YANBU.
If she isn't able to keep to the appointments, then the onus is on her to stay later to see everyone she's agreed to see. I say that as a teacher.
The fact you've only seen 6 teachers in 2 hours is pretty poor tbh. What's the point in them having an appointment system if they don't stick to it ? It's also appaling that you've not had a reply in a whole week. I would speak to the head of department about it.

It's interesting to me, that, as ds's school which never had appointment systems, I always used to be able to see all of his teachers - 10 or so - without any problems, yet at dd's, which has an appointment system, several of them refuse to see you (on their own, made up criteria) and then it still takes twice as long to see half the teachers, and you get the situation OP describes where parents don't know if they should wait by the teacher that's running late, or move to their next appt, etc.

nokidshere Tue 23-Apr-13 17:47:36

I haven't yet seen all the teachers at my sons secondary school parents evenings. I think she should have found you and apologised but that the overrun meant she couldn't stay longer for whatever reason and made a new appointment.

However, I do feel that parents evenings are not the time to find out if your child has a problem. If you think your child is struggling you should speak to someone immediately. Likewise they should call you if there are problems and not wait for parents evenings!

Mum2Luke Tue 23-Apr-13 17:57:35

I'm sorry but the ones who are teachers and have said on here about getting back to your family - are you not being paid to be a teacher, to see parents of pupils if they have made appointments?

I have all this to come again when my son starts secondary school, trying to get to see teachers is hard enough but when they go home before the session is supposed to finish is not on. I think it is rude not to inform parents of their child's progress, most want to know how they are getting on/settled etc.

I also think teachers should know the children they are writing reports on, I know when there are 100's in the school it must be tricky but surely you must know whose work you have marked. I remember a teacher who didn't even know who my eldest son was yet he wrote a report on him.

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