to think that some parents just don't care?

(163 Posts)
SarahAJ Wed 23-Oct-13 19:06:31

Firstly, I know it sounds bad to judge other parents but just as a GENERAL impression of what other parents reckon.The situation is thus.....My DD (reception) is due to start the Read, Write, Inc programme at school. As such, the teachers arranged a great meeting/presentation to help the parents understand the system and show how they can help their children learn to read/write/spell. It was only 45 minutes, starting after drop-off. Out of 50 pupils, less than twenty parents turned up. Its not the first meeting that hardly anyone has attended (we have been to them ALL)and I find it disrespectful to the teachers and quite disgusted that some parents just don't bother.Before anyone mentions the "some parents have to work..... " stuff at me, I fully understand this as both myself and DP work but isn't your childs education important enough to get half a morning off?! My biggest priority right now is my DD's early education. Rant over. Don't get your knickers in a twist too much. Its just a general thing I was wondering. Ta muchly.

Heartbrokenmum73 Wed 23-Oct-13 19:07:43

Not everyone CAN get time off though. You can't really comment on everyone else's situation because you don't know their situation.


hazeyjane Wed 23-Oct-13 19:08:15

There are a myriad of reasons why parents won't be able to go to any number of things like this at school.

I don't really think it is any of your business.

Sirzy Wed 23-Oct-13 19:09:12

Given how many probably have older siblings so already know how these things work I don't think 20 out of 50 is bad really.

Because parents have jobs that don't allow them to attend anything other than domestic emergencies?

I'm a teacher. As is my DH. What would you like us to do?


pixiepotter Wed 23-Oct-13 19:10:17

People have
1)jobs to go to
2) Have older children they have already taught to read and don't feel it necessary.
I wouldn't turnm up for both of the above reasons.

MurderOfBanshees Wed 23-Oct-13 19:10:38

If you can only get limited amounts of time off surely the sensible thing is to save it for when your children need you?

Sirzy Wed 23-Oct-13 19:10:44

I also think for things like that generally after school/early evening is going to be better for a lot of working parents. Or offering more than one session (both of which I know are more of a hassle for the poor teaching staff)

AngelsLieToKeepControl Wed 23-Oct-13 19:10:53

I don't go to any of those types of things for my dds because I attended them all with ds and I don't need to, I imagine a lot of other people would be the same.

MrsDavidBowie Wed 23-Oct-13 19:11:11

As others have said.

However, yes, there are some parents who just don't care.

HandMini Wed 23-Oct-13 19:11:16

YABU. Was the session held during "normal" working hours? If parental attendance is vital, school needs to hold the session outside usual working hours. There are so many reasons in the school calendar for a half day off work here or there that its not possible to do them all. A session before morning school might have been more thoughtful to more working parents.

ChoudeBruxelles Wed 23-Oct-13 19:11:19

People work, have other children to look after, are ill, have other responsibilities, have older children so have already done that with them and don't feel they need to do it again. What does it matter to you?

fieldfare Wed 23-Oct-13 19:11:44

Yabu and a bit sanctimonious. You have no idea of their commitments.

sturdyoak Wed 23-Oct-13 19:12:21

Maybe a combination of other children / babies to look after or even elderly relatives and work. Not everybody has jobs where they can take time off. Maybe some of the parents are actually teachers. Maybe they know what it is all about anyway.

Yes, I agree with your first statement, it does sound bad to judge other parents. I don't think this is really worthy of disgust, save that for something much worse otherwise you will spend your life disgusted. Unless you actually enjoy being ranty and disgusted. grin.

17leftfeet Wed 23-Oct-13 19:12:28

They may have other children

There is no way I could get a morning off without 4 weeks notice

They may have caring responsibilities for a parent

They may have a meeting at the job centre, a dentist appointment booked 6 weeks in advance

You don't know and actually it's none of your business -just concentrate on your own children!

Howsuper Wed 23-Oct-13 19:13:49

What a tolerant, empathic and open minded person you sound, OP.

As everyone else has said there are tons of reasons parents have for not being at a school event during the day.

I work FT. I go to pretty much every assembly, Christmas play, sports match and parents meeting (plus time off for inset days, teachers' strikes, sick kids) etc but any 'extras' I simply can't do.

NynaevesSister Wed 23-Oct-13 19:13:57

Wow I would have thought close to half was an excellent result given the problems people have with child care and work. I have never been to a meeting at school for parents that got such a good result.

HesterShaw Wed 23-Oct-13 19:14:04

You're right - some parents don't care.

But your example is not definitive proof of it.

AnaisHellWitch Wed 23-Oct-13 19:14:31

I'm a former teacher. I would consider it a waste of time as I am perfectly able to Google it. DS could read before starting school anyway.

LEMisdisappointed Wed 23-Oct-13 19:14:39

biscuit YABU it will all change by next year anyway! and you will have gotten over yourself by then.

IHatePingu Wed 23-Oct-13 19:16:01

About 5 seconds googling brings up the presentation they are probably using.

hettienne Wed 23-Oct-13 19:16:05

20 sounds a pretty good turn out to me.

nocheeseplease Wed 23-Oct-13 19:16:15

I've missed these as well because between us me and dh have 8 weeks holiday a year (4 weeks each) and the kids have 13 weeks off school a year. We use our holidays to cover as much of the half terms as we can so don't have any extra days to use for this sort of thing.

NoIHaventHadTheBabyYet Wed 23-Oct-13 19:16:52

I cant always ask someone to babysit for my other children. I could bring all the little ones but I am sure you would all have a headache and it would just not be fair on anyone.
So I cant go.
Good to know I am being judged.

SarahAJ Wed 23-Oct-13 19:17:03

For the record, I work (as I mentioned) and have another child DD3

It was just a general question to gauge opinion. Clearly I was wrong.


And I don't expect the teachers to "do" anything PotteringAlong. I don't believe I ever suggested anything of the sort. Teachers do an amazing and difficult job and should be respected in every way.

3asAbird Wed 23-Oct-13 19:17:06

ours does meetngs after school some whole school primary 130kids in total.

some ks1 and ks2.

There have been a couple hubby attended they were at 6pm after work as i have 2younger kids, not allowed to take even school age child with me, no family about to babysit so parents evenings its just 1 of us not because we dont care.

Another factor is I walk 1.2miles each way and weathers been rubbish and getting darl early so could be lots of valid reasons.

maybe more vital for a pfb.

at last ks2 meeting 80 ks2 about 20-30were there.

most stuffs on newsletters or website.

Euphemia Wed 23-Oct-13 19:17:07

YABU. I'm a teacher and I'm not allowed time off in term-time.

AlexaChelsea Wed 23-Oct-13 19:17:27

YABU and totally sanctimonious and judgemental.

Don't dare suggest that I don't care about my children because I can't get a morning off work. Not all jobs are flexible like that.

IHatePingu Wed 23-Oct-13 19:17:49

And this being mumsnet, there are probably a few free readers anyway.

movingaway Wed 23-Oct-13 19:18:34

20 out of 50 is pretty good! It's the kind of thing people only go to for their first child. I'm a TA so I haven't been to any of these things, I can't take rhe time off and I don't feel it would teach me anyrhing new anyway.

DevilsRoulette Wed 23-Oct-13 19:18:37

You think that everyone who works can just 'get half a morning off'?

Many people have employers who would not allow this.

Many people have jobs where this would not be possible.

You are fortunate if you have a job where you can 'just' get half a morning off. All casual, like. ack, it's just half a morning off.

I didn't go to lots of stuff. I have 2 kids born 15 months apart. I really didn't need to go to something explaining something that I'd already had explained to me. I wonder if the parents in my second born's year judged me. grin So maybe some of them have an older child and already know this stuff.

lyndie Wed 23-Oct-13 19:18:44

Our school never gives more than a weeks notice for most events so it doesn't surprise me that people can't attend! If I can't go to something important like a curriculum meeting then I would arrange to meet with the teacher another time. I'm sure plenty of those that 'didn't turn up' would have made other arrangements to get up to speed and you wouldn't have seen them doing that!

YellowTulips Wed 23-Oct-13 19:18:44

YABU and frankly coming across as smug and sanctimonious.

There are a lot of reasons (very reasonable) why some parents couldn't or chose not to attend. That doesn't add up to not giving a shit.

Equally attending this event doesn't automatically make you a great parent - even murderers can attend church on a Sunday.

Would urge you to be less bloody judgmental tbh - here have a biscuit

mamaduckbone Wed 23-Oct-13 19:19:00

Yabu. I am a teacher. I care very much about my children but I simply cannot take time off in the school day. Please don't judge.

dontsufferfools Wed 23-Oct-13 19:19:00

I didn't go to the one my school organised. I was at work and didn't particularly want to take the time off.

My children's education is important to me but I am quite able to read the paperwork they sent me as a non attendee.

What more did you learn by attending the non compulsory event than I did reading the paperwork that followed?


AlexaChelsea Wed 23-Oct-13 19:19:01

I think pottering was making the point that her and her DH can't get time off as they are teachers.

Glad you realise how wrong you are though.

Please do stop being so judgey.

Mamafratelli Wed 23-Oct-13 19:19:26

I didn't go because my dd could read before she started reception, her dad is a headteacher and my ds was poorly. I do go to 90% of stuff. Don't forget lots of the children won't be pfbs so the parents may have been before.

chocolatecrispies Wed 23-Oct-13 19:19:34

Given that the Early years are meant to be about learning through play I would probably not go on principle - because I care too much about my child's early education to want to be pressured into focusing on reading and writing too soon.

Sidge Wed 23-Oct-13 19:19:41

I need 4-6 weeks notice to switch my working hours, as my clinics are booked that far in advance.

And having 3 children means that I've often been to these sorts of meetings before.

Oh and I prefer to save my annual leave/time owing/shift changes for things that are unmissable such as parents evenings, Christmas concerts, special assemblies and award ceremonies, as well as school closures and school holidays.

When you have more than once child in more than one school you have to be very selective as a working parent regarding which events you prioritise!

Mamafratelli Wed 23-Oct-13 19:19:58

Only mentioned the dad as headteacher as in - he already knows the schemes of work etc.


20 out of 50 isn't bad anyway.

Just because parents don't show up to a read write inc talk doesn't mean they don't care.

Some parents already know what it is from having older children or even being teachers themselves.

Some parents have to work full time and are capable of googling read write inc, or are confident that they know how to support their child at home and are happy with what the school do with their child during school time.

Only a very tiny minority, if any at all, of the 30 possible sets of parents who didn't turn up are actually uncaring about their child's education.

HandMini Wed 23-Oct-13 19:21:06

OP, out of interest, what job do you do?

AnaisHellWitch Wed 23-Oct-13 19:21:10

I judge people who are too lazy to Google. They are the ones jamming up the phone-lines because they prefer to talk to a person to confirm something when I need an answer to something that is not on the fucking website grin

Canthisonebeused Wed 23-Oct-13 19:21:31

20 out of 50 is not bad, many of them may have heard the talk last year or the year before with older siblings. Many just simply are not vale to get time off and some may be teachers or educators them selfs so already know the speal

HicDraconis Wed 23-Oct-13 19:21:36

I am unable to take a morning off for any reason unless booked at least 6 weeks in advance and even then only if there are enough people to cover the roster.

My children could already read and write when they started school so not sure this presentation would have been relevant.

Yes my children's education is hugely important. It's why I don't let them sit around in a mass-produced one-size-fits-the-middle "learning" environment waiting for the rest of the class to finish - they're now home educated (by DH).

I don't judge people who don't home ed - don't judge people who have to work. YABHugelyU suggesting parents don't care.

NutritiousAndDelicious Wed 23-Oct-13 19:21:45

I cannot take time off to attend school meetings. You are very lucky that you are able too.

Sometimes my mum goes, sometimes XH goes, if they can get time off work.

Tbh I care more about putting a roof over his head and food in his stomach than attending a meeting, when I could read about it in 10 seconds from the letter they always send home.

Mamafratelli Wed 23-Oct-13 19:22:04

Ha ha just read IHatePingu's post. Dd can read but only through some fluke of nature. We haven't hothoused her she just gets it.

3asAbird Wed 23-Oct-13 19:22:11

lol I hate pingu re free readers!

Very true also will the school colour code the new books so parents can work out what reading level they on and how advanced they are.

read write seems very commercial and expensive to me from what I have seen.

give me some 1970s ginn and biff and chip any day.

Phonics kind of self explanataory

HavantGuard Wed 23-Oct-13 19:22:41

If you cared more you'd already have taught her to read and write.

SarahAJ Wed 23-Oct-13 19:23:40

It was just a general question.

Apologies for offence.

As I pointed out I also work as does DP and I have a DS3.

And PotteringAlong, I don't expect the teachers to DO anything. Teachers do a difficult and amazing job and should be respected.

Oh good, you realised you were being unreasonable. Apology accepted. smile

honeybunny14 Wed 23-Oct-13 19:24:29

It all depends on the reason they didnt turn up i go to everything i can.i can also take my youngest dc with me sometimes but alot of parents do have work.or more dcs

bearsmum123 Wed 23-Oct-13 19:26:04

There is one mum of a school kid in my office all the others have toddlers. Catty comments are thrown around just because she does the school run and starts at half 9 they call her part timer but she knows their only half joking.

Mamafratelli Wed 23-Oct-13 19:26:35

The big about "biggest priority right now is my dds early education". Really? That's your biggest priority?

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Wed 23-Oct-13 19:26:35

20 parents for 50 kids is a bigger than average turn out.

As you can see - lots of reasons why people wouldn't/couldn't go.

There are things the school can do to improve turn out if they think there is an issue with the attendance rate and parents can be provided with presentations and printed information if the teacher thinks it's necessary.

I suggest you have a weeeee think about how you come across - clue 'smug'.

sturdyoak Wed 23-Oct-13 19:29:02

Lots of people do difficult and amazing jobs, paid and unpaid.

I think when you get to know the other parents a bit more you'll probably find out the reasons why people may not attend along with how they feel about their children's education.

It is very easy to make snap judgements when you don't know people very well - we all do it to some degree. When your child has spent more time at the school and you have engaged with some of the other parents you will probably get more of a feel their motivations.

I think sometimes schools can be slightly unreasonable in expecting parents to be able to go to something like this after morning drop off, or bake cakes, make costumes, come to a class assembly, or to sports day.
Over the years we've been lucky to manage quite a few of these, but lots of working parents (as I've been too) cannot manage them all.
Schools do often seem to operate on slightly old-fashioned expectations where Mum is at home to do all these things.

BellEndTent Wed 23-Oct-13 19:29:38

Some of us work. If we took time off for every school meeting, we would barely be at our places of employment. grin

I try very hard to prioritise the important meetings but sometimes it's just not possible to make things like this.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Wed 23-Oct-13 19:29:59

Mama - are you telling me it's not your 'biggest priority'?? Really, it should be - over and above keeping a roof over their heads, food on the table, shoes on their feet... you need to prioritise woman!!

<eye roll>

olivo Wed 23-Oct-13 19:32:01

Sorry if this has already been said, but I don't make it to any meetings like this at DDs' school, as they are all at 3.15 and I am a teacher at another school. The teachers know they have my full support, as they have most parents' support. I would say around half turn up, the other half were mostly at work. You are lucky you can have the time to go, but don't judge.

WooWooOwl Wed 23-Oct-13 19:32:29

I can see where you're coming from, I go to pretty much everything the school invites me in for and always have done.

But if I was in a position that would make going difficult, I'd save my time off for the things that directly involve my child, like assemblies, church services and plays. I'd get info about the reading system from the Internet or ask the teacher when I got a chance. RWI isn't too complicated though, you can just read the information in the books when they start to bring them home.

pianodoodle Wed 23-Oct-13 19:33:27

I imagine the parents who go the most are ones that have their first child starting school.

You need to draw a line under your judgements and move on. You don't know other peoples circumstances, only your own.

nancerama Wed 23-Oct-13 19:37:29

In some cases they parents can't read. It's not that they don't care, but they don't see the point in attending because they physically can't help their children at home. sad

YABU. DS has just started reception. He is DC4. The school haven't changed their teaching so I tend to ignore meetings about teaching schemes such as this. I went for the first 2 children, I already have the information.

BackforGood Wed 23-Oct-13 19:40:03

I think that's an amazing high % turnout!
No point in repeating all the reasons why people might not be able to get there, but just thought I'd say.

I often miss these meetings for several reasons
1. I work.
2. I have 4 dc's so have sat through them several times.
3, I am a governor so have often sat through these presentation's already.
4..Part of my work involves knowledge of these enrichment schemes.
5, I may be attending a presentation/parents evening for anither of my dc's.
6, Doctor/ dentist etc appointment.
etc etc etc etc
I am a very involved parent but I am too busy to judge maybe you should try it op.

parkin2010 Wed 23-Oct-13 19:44:35

Re teachers- you suggested all people should be able to get time off work. I'm a teacher- if I asked for time off for this I'd be told NO. Does that make me one of the 30 shit parents who don't care?

nulgirl Wed 23-Oct-13 19:45:42

I obviously don't care as there is no way I would book a half day holiday to attend this type of session. I prefer to use my holidays for doing nice things with the kids and covering for invariable kids sick days. These things with the best will in the world are tedious and worthy. My dcs are read to every night and do not suffer from lack of attention/ love. My dd is just turned 7 and is a free-reader. In fact I'm downstairs pissing about on mn whilst she reads her younger brother his bedtime story.

DigestivesAndPhiladelphia Wed 23-Oct-13 19:47:45

Read Write Inc isn't so complicated that you need to attend a special session to understand how it works.

When my DS started this, I didn't go to any of the info. sessions (selfishly, I didn't take a morning off work). I think I googled it & found information about the way it worked. We bought flash cards & DS taught me how each sound should be pronounced. DS now reads very well, despite the fact that I didn't care enough to trot along to the morning session.


needaholidaynow Wed 23-Oct-13 19:52:57

My DSs education is FAR more important to me than my job, yes. But sometimes I might not be able to attend things at school because my boss won't allow me to have the time off.

Rhubarbgarden Wed 23-Oct-13 19:55:28

Was there a crèche for those with babies? Thought not. Not everyone has childcare on tap for younger siblings.

missorinoco Wed 23-Oct-13 19:57:45

This has tipped me over the edge.

I need 6 weeks notice to take time off, and am lucky to get two weeks notice from school for these events. DH likewise can't just drop his work. My mother with dementia lives 200 miles away and my PIL without dementia live 400 miles away.

When I am not working I have my two year old at home with me, who would not sit still for such a meeting without the aid of horse tranquilizers.

Add me to your list of non caring parents. You might have apologized., but I suspect you are judging me for all the other things you think I ought to be doing if only I cared.

Pobblewhohasnotoes Wed 23-Oct-13 19:59:11

I work 12 hour shifts, I can't just get a morning off. I don't even know how DS will even be picked up from school when he starts.

BrianTheMole Wed 23-Oct-13 20:01:00

I'm lucky that my work is flexible enough so that I get to attend most of these things. But plenty of people can't. It really upsets some of the parents at dc's school that they can't get the time off. But they need to work and they have little choice. Stop being so judgey, its not pretty.

ToucanBlack Wed 23-Oct-13 20:01:32

Honestly? At my school we would be celebrating if 20 out of 50 turned up!

Out of about 90 pupils in a year group, the average meeting will have maybe 10-15 parents.

But anyway YABU.

Haribojoe Wed 23-Oct-13 20:02:55

When DS1 started reception I wasn't able to attend any meetings like these as I was nursing my terminal ill Mum.

I'm not a bad parent but my situation at the time meant something had to give.

YABVU as you have no idea of what reasons other parents may have for not attending.

pianodoodle Wed 23-Oct-13 20:04:16

P.s yes I think it's very unreasonable to draw the conclusion that the parents just don't care.

jamaisjedors Wed 23-Oct-13 20:04:25

"My DSs education is FAR more important to me than my job, yes"

You know what, my job is more important to US ALL than one teeny tiny bit of DS's education, and as multiple posters have pointed out, plenty of people interested in their children's education will already have this info or be able to find it out without actually attending.

Plus my job happens to be looking after several hundred young adults' education, so no, I can't take a morning off to go to the DSs' school.

Xmasbaby11 Wed 23-Oct-13 20:05:02

YABU. Many parents work and there are a million other events to try to get time off for. I don't think it means they don't value education.

littlebillie Wed 23-Oct-13 20:08:00

Our school does this sort of thing after7 in the evening greatly appreciate the way the accommodate those who work

I wonder if the other parents were thinking me a bad mother for not staying for the reading meeting last month? Quite frankly I would rather spend the time reading with my children. I couldn't be arsed to stay for a lecture on the importance of daily reading (which we do anyway) and I know the other stuff already.

I hope your judgy pants aren't chafing too much.

It was for DC4 I should add! Plenty of other people have made the point that many have older children and know the score.

29chapel Wed 23-Oct-13 20:17:51

YABU and judgmental. I am freelance as is my OH so if we don't work we don't get paid. I would never not take on a project because of a presentation on phonics - if it were considered important enough that all parents attend, the school would ensure it took place outside normal working hours. Some parents have to balance out their responsibilities. Assuming people 'don't care' is frankly, ridiculous.

needaholidaynow Wed 23-Oct-13 20:18:41

You know what, my job is more important to US ALL than one teeny tiny bit of DS's education

Of course it's important. It pays the bills as does mine. But on a personal level His education is more important to me than the figures at work, what paperwork needs doing etc..

JerseySpud Wed 23-Oct-13 20:20:14


I can't make half of the school things for DD1 because im not allowed to take DD2 and she is a menace to the other kids

Caitycat Wed 23-Oct-13 20:22:13

Well I spend a lot of time feeling like an inadequate mum and am therefore looking forward to being judged on this sort of thing when dc are old enough. I am also a teacher so no chance of time off during the school day (don't imagine op would be very impressed if I were her dc's teacher and took a morning off for this!) and also wouldn't have any childcare if it just happened to fall on my day off. Yes some parents don't care but I imagine the vast majority of non-attenders had a perfectly good reason for not attending. No doubt they will forever have a black mark against their name in your opinion though.

May09Bump Wed 23-Oct-13 20:23:24

Good for you, your perfect. I'm one of the mums who didn't turn up. Doesn't mean I don't give a shit - I have turned up for everything else and missed it for a good reason. What you don't know is I've been through the website, teachers advisory guidance notes and various you tube tutorials - taking a lot longer than 45 minutes.

And as to being disrespectful to the teachers, I notified them I wasn't attending, asked if above research would be enough and said I would available for an appointment at another time if needed.

Finally, my DS (reception) can already read, so maybe I look at people attending these events thinking they haven't put in the effort to teach their LO to read before school. But then I'd be as much as an idiot as someone who thinks people can always get time off when they want, as I know kids progress at different rates.

HerrenaHarridan Wed 23-Oct-13 20:27:28

Maybe the other 30 were computer literate enough to google it grin

Mumsyblouse Wed 23-Oct-13 20:28:57

YABU to think that attending a very pedestrian meeting about a new reading and writing scheme is any kind of litmus test for a caring parents.

It's a litmus test for who has flexible working, not got other little ones to care for, isn't busy teaching other children/adults, know about the scheme or similar already, know their kids are reading/writing already, etc.

I can't get a half a morning off work for anything except an emergency in term-time. However, even if I could I've been round the block reading/writing wise and probably wouldn't attend. I've attended similar ones and found them pretty useless (esp. maths) so it's not for me.

I missed something similar for dd3 earlier on in the year. However seeing as I was attending a hospital appointment which was session 1 of a 2 part assessment for ds autism that we had been waiting years for I had to unfortunately miss the school thing

But of course you are right op. I clearly dont give a shit about my dc education. angry

TheFabulousIdiot Wed 23-Oct-13 20:46:53

Perhaps rail agains the fact that everything is arranged for weekdays when they should be arranged in the evenings.

QueFonda Wed 23-Oct-13 20:54:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Canthisonebeused Wed 23-Oct-13 20:55:46

Just to add this week alone I have supported my dd who is in y3 to make a large numeracy poster. Along side usual home work of spelling, story writing and numeracy and daily reading. This is a normal home work week. On top of that I have had to make a gas mask box, print out instructions for gas mask, an id badge, find a family photograph, come up with a a WW11 costume, sponsored readathon, fireworks colouring competition £1, fork out a further £6 for a book signing. Create a story box (have not done this one yet, hope to tomorrow evening). Come up with yet another book costume for Friday and an additional £1 for this. There is also fashion show my dd isn't involved in but had I had another child I would need to have done all the above as well as make a fashion show outfit. I wouldn't have made any meetings as all weeks lunch breaks and time off has been dedicated to organising all of the above.

amothersplaceisinthewrong Wed 23-Oct-13 20:58:08

Don't you just hate the smug perfect parent....

ATailOfTwoKitties Wed 23-Oct-13 20:58:22

Mine could read before school.

Just saying...

lisad123everybodydancenow Wed 23-Oct-13 21:00:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

So, in my last few jobs, I have had to be there because; I was in SS and there were Court dates and meetings and Care Plans and criminal matters; I teach so there is no room to move (I am the only facilitator so no one can cover); I was part of a team that had to have certain numbers or the shelter had to close so if I left 100+ homeless people were on the street.

I know you now know YWBU so sorry to rant on. grin

kungfupannda Wed 23-Oct-13 21:10:19

I didn't go to ours.

Was this because:

a) I had no childcare, and I'm not a complete idiot who is incapable of figuring it out for myself.
b) I just don't care.

I'm going with a) myself, but nice to know there were some parents sat there smugly assuming it was b)

I care and I could get out of work because I work from home, but I still wouldn't have gone. It sounds like a load of old bollocks that I doesn't necessitate time off.

You'll soon learn what you need to go to and what you don't.

I have a computer and internet access, I have 5 DC who I taught to read at home and my hourly rate means that I only stop working for emergencies or enjoyment.

mumandboys123 Wed 23-Oct-13 21:13:52

I care about my children's education very, very much. But I'm on my own, my ex is next to useless, and I work full time as a teacher. I can't always be there. In fact, it often feels to me that other people's children are more important than my own. My head would not consider me leaving early to attend such an 'event', however supportive he tries to be of his staff's personal circumstances. I speak with my children's teachers regularly, but I do it when I'm picking them up, usually between 5pm - 6pm, from afterschool club. I also e-mail them if I'm concerned about anything. Perhaps they should display a list of the contact every parent has had with them to stop parents like you make judgments about us?

Perhaps you would prefer that I fulfill the lone parent stereotype, get myself sacked, go on benefits and then not bother with my children? would that make you more comfortable? My job is important to me - I love the kids I work with and the people around me, my children depend on me working for the roof over their heads, food on the table....I can't just 'book an afternoon' off to please people like you.

maddening Wed 23-Oct-13 21:14:26

If it is so important then the school should run two sessions one in the evening and one in a morning - not everyone can get time off and that should be accounted for.

Hulababy Wed 23-Oct-13 21:15:29

20/50 is pretty good going ime of these kind of things. We run ours after school, about 7pm for an hour. Out of 90 pupils it is common for only get 20/30. Rarely the ones you actually want to get. In school time turn out is often even worse.

However, I do understand how hard it is for working parents to do such things esp in school hours. I work in a school. I can't take half a morning off, regardless of what the talk is on. I need to save up any grace for the odd morning/afternoon off for things like nativity, school assembly or sports dy - the times when it is really important to DD that I attend.

MissBetseyTrotwood Wed 23-Oct-13 21:19:02

YABU - very. I'm a teacher - should I take time off from teaching someone else's children to attend workshops? Don't think their parents would like that much.

I have an older child who has learned to read recently. I know how it was done.

Hope the judgeypants weren't too uncomfortable as you sat through the meeting.

LynetteScavo Wed 23-Oct-13 21:24:16


I work school hours term time only, and are therefor not able to take holidays whenever I like.

There is NO WAY my boss would OK time off for this. I would do my best to make sure DH could attend (which, in all honesty, unless we had LOTS of notice would be unlikely), and then resign myself to not going and have a little weep to myself.

Grandparents can be deployed to nativity plays and class assemblies, but not to meetings like these.

I get school to re-arrange IEP meetings to my convenience, and am grateful reading/phonics/maths evening have always been in the evenings when I could attend. I haven't thought single parents who can't get a baby sitter so they could go to the meetings don't care about their DC education. hmm

Again, YABU.

friday16 Wed 23-Oct-13 21:30:33

Don't you just hate the smug perfect parent....

When my children were of a similar age, I had a job where casually taking a morning off was very easy, so I started going to these sorts of events. The school had a sequence of workshops through Y1, as I recall. I stopped going, because they were full of a mixture of sanctimonious show-offs and obnoxious bullies.

There were the people who were primary teachers but had gone part-time since having children, who took the opportunity to point out that they were professionals, don'cha'know, and as teachers knew far more about whatever the topic of the presentation was than anyone else, including the people giving it. They'd engage in obscure debates about the nature of phonemes, desperate to catch the teacher out (there's a thread over in Primary at the moment about whether or not "so" is a sight word, which has a bunch of primary teachers desperately trying to top each other) but also to show off to the other parents that they Knew, while other parents Did Not Know.

There were the aggressively aspirational parents who were secondary teachers and university lecturers, similarly gone part time, who wanted their children to be reading at three and viewed primary teaching as all a bit trivial, really. They would ask questions like "I'm concerned that you aren't teaching my son about negative numbers in year 1, because it seems so important to understand that the number line stretches in both directions" and look around them to check we all realised how how clever they were. The father who did this the most frequently, an alcoholic secondary teacher, appeared completely indifferent to the fact that his children were struggling desperately with the syllabus as it stood.

There were the slightly dippy mothers who regarded spending money on a haircut as an extravagance, a waste of money that could be better spent on their children. They would say things like "this is all very well, but don't you think it's more important that the children should be happy and playing?", a premise I'd be very inclined to support if it didn't mean that they'd then start talking to me about fucking homeopathy afterwards. A subset of those were Very Religious, and would always take the chance to make sure that the books being used that year didn't include The Books That Cannot Be Named. Yes, this was a school where, thankfully to mass derision, a couple of religious whackjob parents got up a petition about Harry Potter, who they wanted banned for various incoherent reasons but not because the books are baggy, badly written and dull.

And then there would be the relentlessly dim parents who would interrupt every presentation on maths to give their half-remembered accounts of being at school in 1976, the year in which (it would appear) arithmetical techniques reached their very zenith, since when all change has been decay (yes, the day they explained chunking was horrendous, since you ask, with the aforementioned alcoholic coming close to blows with the headmaster over long multiplication).

People outside these groups just cowered and let them get on with it, and as the year went by just didn't show up. The people that needed to know, or at least would have benefitted from being told, were driven away by a small hardcore of people whose every question screamed "I Am In The Room, You Know", and who either knew the answer already or were certain not to like it when they were told. It was, all told, a complete waste of everyone's time. I wanted to scream "shut the fuck up and listen" but, to my shame, just skulked away.

arethereanyleftatall Wed 23-Oct-13 21:34:37

I didn't go. Like others dd can already read and write before reception. What have you being the past 4 years op. Do you not care?

tshirtsuntan Wed 23-Oct-13 21:35:22

Exactly the same happened with me- same system, same time, the only reason I know we're not at the same school is that out of sixty potential parents six turned up!! ( including me) work, other commitments are not the only reason as when I went through the other hall where a coffee morning was taking place it was rammed..quite a lot of reception parents in the crowd. Make of that what you will hmm

LynetteScavo Wed 23-Oct-13 21:37:34

friday16 grin]

You have made me how.

You are my new best friend. grin

Phineyj Wed 23-Oct-13 21:46:41

Friday what a fantastic sitcom that would make. Sorry you had to sit through it in real life though grin

shallweshop Wed 23-Oct-13 21:48:52

Friday - that is just one of the best accounts of a parent/teacher meeting I have read! I recognise all of the characters in my own DC's school.
OP - I think you are being very unreasonable to assume that parents don't turn up to these things because they don't care. Hopefully you can see that now.

morethanpotatoprints Wed 23-Oct-13 21:56:19

OP when my eldest ds started school there was a similar thing, this is going back many many years. I had no baby sitter for ds2 who was a noisy tot and couldn't go.
I made a separate appointment, teacher happy to facilitate this.

Some parents don't care, but the majority will have been working or couldn't find baby sitters.

You would do well to stop concerning yourself with other parents caring capabilities and concontrating on being a good parent yourself, and less judgemental

Dawndonnaagain Wed 23-Oct-13 21:56:27

My dh cannot go to the lavatory without me. If the care doesn't turn up, I don't get out. I care about my children,I care about dh, too.

ZangelbertBingeldac Wed 23-Oct-13 21:57:41

AIBU to be enjoying the mauling you're getting? blush

Sorry OP!

Katkins1 Wed 23-Oct-13 22:00:55


Well done for going to them all, what a marvellous super parent you must be. The children will all be at pretty much the same level by the time that they finish reception anyway.

What if I just didn't want to go something like this, and that was my choice? Get over yourself.

ThePinkOcelot Wed 23-Oct-13 22:02:59

Well, I had to take a day off last week for a teachers strike, so there is no way I could take time off this week to attend a meeting on reading.

Katkins1 Wed 23-Oct-13 22:06:32

Why are people explaining themselves to the OP? You don't have to justify yourselves. You either went or didn't, or go to things like this or don't. Its none of her business either way.

Feminine Wed 23-Oct-13 22:12:53

op has said sorry btw.

DuckToWater Wed 23-Oct-13 22:22:45

Has anyone also pointed out that half the parents may already have children at the school and know how it is taught?

Also you don't really need to attend these sessions. All you need to do is read to and with your children, show them where maths and science crop up in every day life and encourage them with homework. It's not rocket science.

When I can see a reading record that hasn't been written in by a parent for months of a child who could really do with the reading practice then I might raise an eyebrow, but not attending these sessions does not equal not caring.

DuckToWater Wed 23-Oct-13 22:29:53

And another thing. When DD1 started school the teacher put an explanation of the phonics scheme on the class website and I read it. Bob's your uncle.

Swimmyfishy Wed 23-Oct-13 22:38:06

My children are my world ( sorry a bit slushy!). I have very little annual leave remaining and am not allowed time off without a months notice. Therefore if the school suddenly 'spring' an event or a meeting on us as they do i cant have time off. I managed to attend one evening to be told by the head teacher that " just by being here shows you care" thus implying those who werent dont! So yeah YABU, and this view makes my blood boil!

DesperatelySeekingSedatives Wed 23-Oct-13 22:43:15

DP would be at work at that time of the morning and get any time off at say, less than 2-3 weeks notice, even if someone has died.

I don't work but only ever been to one of these types of meetings as toddler DS doesn't tolerate hanging about for them especially when hes raring to go for the day. Teachers have always offered me and other parents the chance to go through it all at a more convenient time.

YABU and sound a bit smug and patronising to assume other parents do not care as much as you do.

Fakebook Wed 23-Oct-13 22:47:16

I have a small toddler and a DH who works away and long hours. I did attend quite a few of Dd's parent work shops in foundation but found that I actually have enough common sense to help aid Dd's learning at home without having to attend them with a fidgety toddler.

I do care about my Dd's education, that's why she's above average in all areas as I found out at parents evening. I do a lot with her at home.

FredFredGeorge Wed 23-Oct-13 22:53:44

I'm pretty sure I wouldn't go to it, because it just sounds a really crap way to spend an hour when I could be playing with my DD to get the information I could get in 5 minutes (if I really needed to know it anyway, why do you need to know the techniques teachers are going to use?)

So yes, I wouldn't be there because I couldn't be arsed, judge me all you want, spending time with my kids would be more important than some education meeting...

ouryve Wed 23-Oct-13 22:57:54

Some parents have to be at work at certain times, with little leeway. Others might have older kids and already know. Others might simply already know. Other may feel that they can find enough out in other ways.

Nice of you to judge, though, OP.

Soopermum1 Wed 23-Oct-13 22:59:15

If I took time off for every event related to DS's education, there would be less time to spend with him in the holidays and more time he would have to spend in holiday club. The only things not scheduled in working hours are a very small chunk of time on one of the parent's evenings and I have to send a friend into battle to baggsy the late slot for me.

kinkyfuckery Wed 23-Oct-13 23:05:33

Wow, you are totally a better parent than me. Than everyone else, in fact!

kali110 Thu 24-Oct-13 09:44:05

Not all employers will give you the time off! Busy periods, staff shortages or amount of people allowed off is full. I tried to book a week off a year in advance and was denied!
Does not mean these parents dont care at all.

lolarose2591 Thu 24-Oct-13 09:53:16

I missed my daughters first school play - was gutted , her education is important .. but so is food and rent !

twitchypalm Thu 24-Oct-13 10:10:11

Yabvu I dont attened meetings like this at school and neither does dp due to work.

Im an early years teacher and dp is a peadeatric surgeon. To make us care more for our children do i cancel my class for the morning or does dp cancel operations! Sorry op you really need to get over yourself.

BurberryFucker Thu 24-Oct-13 10:13:46

i never went to meetings like this as i knew they would be full of judgemental sanctimonious fuckers.
Besides my son could already read as I had spent the previous five years reading to him.

Dolallytats Thu 24-Oct-13 10:20:15

YABU. I am agoraphobic and getting DS to school and back on a daily basis is tough enough. Sitting in a room for 45 mins is impossible most days.

Also, I am fully capable of teaching my child to read write and spell.

Oh I'm even worse.

I clearly do not care about my ds1 education at all

I was the talk of the fucking playground when I did not go to the year 6 SATS meeting and the secondary transfer meeting.

I didn't go because the meetings were at 9:45. I start work at 8:45.
And because I did not want to go. At all.

Because I am quite able to find out the information myself. And because I have a child who is a year older than ds1
And because, like most people I would imagine, I do not only rely on the school to give me important information about significant events in my children's lives.

I know they transfer to a secondary school at the end of year 6. Clearly, I am quite capable of finding out when open evenings are, information about schools, application deadlines etc by myself without taking a half day from work.
But I was constantly asked "but what are you going to do? How will you know what to do if you didn't go to the meeting?"

Really? Are people that simple that they think if you miss a meeting there are no other sources of information?

The parents at ds2 school think I am very uncaring because they do not see me at parents evening. That's because I cannot get there by 6:00. This is the last available appointment.
They don't know that I go in the day before, or the day after at 3.30.

MiaowTheCat Thu 24-Oct-13 10:57:59

I would have skipped that particular one - I'm an ex teacher, I know the scheme, having taught it on supply numerous times (more of a jolly phonics girl myself) so it would have been a waste of time.

Callani Thu 24-Oct-13 13:05:47

When I saw your post title I thought it was going to be along the lines of:

"I've recently found out that some children in DCs class have been turning up to school without lunches and aren't signed up to school dinners. My DC also tell me that they don't get breakfast at home and frequently asked to have some of their lunches. I'm worried about the children and noticed that they are often unwashed and in dirty clothes and have shared my concerns with the teacher. I feel really upset that they might not be being fed properly and that their parents just don't care"

THAT is a situation where you could believe a child isn't being cared for, a parent not being able to take time off work is NOT. The average person is entitled to 28 days off a year including bank holidays. With 2 parents you still can't cover the 13 weeks school holidays with that, never mind take off mornings to attend non vital meetings. Be grateful you have the ability to go to thse meetings and stop judging others who can't.

friday16 Thu 24-Oct-13 13:22:26

Are people that simple that they think if you miss a meeting there are no other sources of information?

Especially as, in the cases you cite (KS2 SATS and secondary transfer) there's a strong chance that the information obtained from the council's website and other official sources will be right, while the information given in a primary school meeting will be utter bollocks. Primary school gatherings are the best places to be told that SATS are used by your local school for setting, that you should put down your local secondary first to be sure of a place because they'll have allocated the places to the first preferences before you get to the second, and all the rest of the utter nonsense that parents of 10 year olds are told by teachers who should, but don't, know better.

Tanith Thu 24-Oct-13 13:56:15

Did you attend, Op?

That's all that should concern you.

GobbolinoCat Thu 24-Oct-13 14:27:24

Sarah you sound very young and immature.

There is a myriad of reasons why parents cannot attend these things, one might be that their DC can already read, and read very well! Therefore it would serve no purpose to that parent to go!

Again, whilst some DC may not write or read well some parents do an awful lot with them at home and again, feel they do not need to further back this up.

Some parents do also have many jobs where no, time off, a morning off is not ok, not with other children as well, sickness, covering parent when they are also sick and again a host of reasons why they can not get to the school gate.

I agree with you in that right now, my DD's education is the most important thing but you would I am afraid call me a bad parent too, as I was laid up with post operative issues when DD's class thing came in for the reading support and my DH was too busy helping with me and the baby.

babywipesaremagic Thu 24-Oct-13 15:03:46

It sounds like this is your first child in reception.

I think if I were you I would save the judge rants until I had more than one half term of school juggling under my belt.

lifeinthefastlane1 Thu 24-Oct-13 16:58:17

I dont give a shit how they teach them I have looked around the school, its great, all the children in the school seem to be able to read and write judging by the ofsted reports, I am not a teacher, I have no patience for teaching, and I did not want to go to the meetings to see how they do it. She has to go to school by law, its out of my hands , now they can get on with it, shes reasonably bright I am sure she will do ok, if not the teacher will let me know. I will sit and read with her at home and help with homework but I am afraid that is the extent of involvement I want in the world of education.grin
also was not disrespectful as I opted out with the reply slip so I was not expectedgrinand they actually fell on the days I was doing my induction training for a new job after months of unemployment (bit irrelevant though as I still wouldnt have gone if they hadnt)grin

havatry Thu 24-Oct-13 17:08:12

They usually give a handout after the event at our school.

We have quite a lot of these things in a year - we can't take time off work (at ridiculously short notice usually) for all of them.

So I tend to prioritise. If I can get a handout, I don't need to be there. If dc is saying a line in a play, they'll get upset if I'm not there. So I'll try and make that one.

It's really nothing to do with how much people care, just their availability.

everlong Thu 24-Oct-13 17:39:09

There's no need for all the parents to go.

If there's a meeting at school either myself or one of two other mums will go,get the relevant information and pass it on.

Ds's education is a pretty big priority too OP but I'm not letting him down if I don't attend something wink

Dayshiftdoris Thu 24-Oct-13 21:05:39

Maybe parents don't go because they've heard its full of smug perfect parents and can't bear to be in their presence....

MidniteScribbler Thu 24-Oct-13 21:21:23

I'll let you in on a little secret...

Teachers don't actually give a toss whether you show up or not. We really don't care. We would much prefer to just get on with the job we are trained to do rather than having to waste hours holding 'information sessions' to explain to parents why we are capable of doing our jobs.

FutTheShuckUp Thu 24-Oct-13 21:44:55

Wow bully for you and a old star for your services to perfect parenting. Personally my first priority is working to keep a roof over the kids heads. Reading workshops don't pay the bills sadly.

midlandslurker Thu 24-Oct-13 21:50:52

I can never recall my parents ever being expected to attend such "events" IIRC Parents were only ever summoned to school for parents evening once a year.

My oldest DS is now 27, and again,the only time we were ever invited into school was for parents evening and the nativity play.

Guess what we all learnt to read and write.

TheBitchesOfWeestick Thu 24-Oct-13 21:59:10

My DS is in Reception. I've missed all three info sessions on this sort of thing, and I'm a SAHM. Somebody slap me!

Session 1: forgot
Session 2: DS had been sent home from school that afternoon with croup
Session 3: DD had been to A&E the night before with croup

I expect we'll muddle through hmm

TheBitchesOfWeestick Thu 24-Oct-13 22:01:27

Oh, and when I opened this thread I thought it was going to be about the mum who was walking ahead of me on the school run this afternoon, who blanked her toddler's repeated efforts to get her attention until he was screaming, then yelled 'shut up! just shut up! no you can't have it! no I'm not carrying it, SHUT UP!' and threw the stick he'd been carrying over her shoulder so it hit a stranger's car. And then gave him a clip round the ear before going back to ignoring him.

Thants Thu 24-Oct-13 22:06:46

I can't just take time off at my work. If someone else is off then I can't take it off simple as that. What would you expert me to do?

kungfupannda Thu 24-Oct-13 22:07:12

TheBitches - she was probably late for her phonics meeting. wink

TheBitchesOfWeestick Thu 24-Oct-13 22:10:31

arf grin

Applefallingfromthetree2 Thu 24-Oct-13 23:35:08

As the replies have shown there is a myriad of reasons why a parent might not attend a meeting like this, very few of which makes them uncaring.

Once again though so much hissing and spitting and venom directed towards the OP. Also hypocritical comments on smug patronising parents by other smug patronising parents who feel the need to talk about how their DC could read before starting school and how able they were at bringing this about.

pigletmania Thu 24-Oct-13 23:39:58

Yabvu just because parents don't attend a meeting on reading does not mean they don't care.

Judgy much.

ATailOfTwoKitties Sat 26-Oct-13 21:49:53

Me, Apple?
Yep, he could read. Taught himself. He could write, too, or at least draw words, because he has a photographic memory.

He's also autistic', has needed one-to-one help throughout school, and phonics meant nothing to him.

Not really being smug about preschool reading, therefore.

ATailOfTwoKitties Sat 26-Oct-13 21:50:33

Not sure where that rogue apostrophe appeared from!

Retroformica Sat 26-Oct-13 21:56:05

If it's a second child, all the information is old hat anyway. I already gave a very good understanding of how things work in reception having been through it two years ago.

AndHarry Sat 26-Oct-13 22:06:31

DS starts school next year and I imagine I won't be going to this sort of thing either because I'll have used up my entire annual leave allowance on six weeks' worth of 'settling' hmm for a child who has been at full-time nursery since he was a baby.

EndoplasmicReticulum Sat 26-Oct-13 22:15:59

I can't get half a morning off.

Who would teach my class?

grumpyoldbat Sun 27-Oct-13 00:32:30

YABVU and quite frankly you are being offensive to. I do not appreciate being told I do not care about my DC.

I can't just take the morning off. Yes I'm entitled to holidays but they're allocated so I can't chose to fit them in with meetings like this. I hate my job so certainly don't go because I prefer it.

The thing is if I don't go to work I don't get paid. Without my pay I can't pay the rent, energy bills or buy food. What impact would that have on DC do you think? Do you really think it's worth risking that for a meeting that gives information that I can read myself? Do you honestly think not being prepared to risk that makes me a bad parent?

YoureBeingAnAnyFuckerFan Sun 27-Oct-13 00:35:26

Think beyond the end of your own nose OP

YoureBeingAnAnyFuckerFan Sun 27-Oct-13 00:39:39


Does Op have dd3 or ds3? She seems unsure.

What's that sound?

toobreathless Sun 27-Oct-13 01:24:04

Some patents just don't care....

And some parents are intelligent enough to be able to research the programme in other ways. I work full time & there is no way I would use a day of annual leave up during a school day when I could spend it with my children during the holidays.

This doesn't mean that my child's early education is not a high priority just that I don't need to be spoon fed it by the school.

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