Teachers! I have an excellent parents' evening tip for you.

(157 Posts)
OoozingCervix Wed 23-Oct-13 19:45:10

1. If you have a 10 minute slot and you are still talking after 25 minutes to a parent there is quite obviously an issue that needs to be discussed further at a later date.

2. May I suggest you get a timer? Put it on your table. Set it for 9 minutes. If after the allotted time you are still talking, hand over a card with your email on it and suggest the parent book a further appointment to see you.

IANBU.

LIZS Wed 23-Oct-13 19:46:48

Ours are run by strict buzzer, like speed dating !

parkin2010 Wed 23-Oct-13 19:48:23

Ermmmm..... do you think we really want to voluntarily sit there all night after working all day when we've got our own kids we are dying to see?? Blame those parents who don't get the hint to bugger off!! smile

OhYouWickedWickedWitch Wed 23-Oct-13 19:48:30

Dds school rings the school bell every time it's time to swap. Makes me jump and I'm a quivering wreck by the end of it grin

Euphemia Wed 23-Oct-13 19:48:30

Our school sets the school bell to go every ten minutes. Works a treat. smile

Snargaluff Wed 23-Oct-13 19:50:21

Parents! I have a hint for you! When I keep saying 'it was good to meet you' or 'thanks for coming'... What I really mean is sod off. We only have 4 min appointments so go away!

OoozingCervix Wed 23-Oct-13 19:50:43

parkin. you need a timer. and a buzzer.

I'm so unutterably frustrated I need gin.

phantomnamechanger Wed 23-Oct-13 19:50:45

we get 5 minutes, then a 2 minute change-over interval, big screen on the stage ticking down each slot, then a buzzer!

it's manic!

onefewernow Wed 23-Oct-13 19:51:05

I think parents evenings have improved since the days when we were given the children's seats to sit in.

chibi Wed 23-Oct-13 19:51:47

can i not just hide under my desk and gibber til they retreat

i am 87% kidding

BrianTheMole Wed 23-Oct-13 19:52:56

Ours uses the school bell. Its great, no hanging around.

Ragwort Wed 23-Oct-13 19:53:01

Teachers - I have a great suggestion for you, when a parent emails you, please be kind enough to take the time to reply. Thank you smile.

noblegiraffe Wed 23-Oct-13 19:53:06

I'm ace at parents evenings, I always run to schedule, even with five minute appointments.

It comes from being socially awkward and incapable of small talk. My more sociable colleagues always have a queue.

OoozingCervix Wed 23-Oct-13 19:53:15

25 sodding minutes Geography was with this one couple. That meant I missed Biology and English and by the time we got to see then the poo teachers were so hanging they couldn't be arsed to tell me how wonderful my PFB is.

Snargaluff Wed 23-Oct-13 19:54:08

I need this buzzer system at my school! Like speed dating!

Every school I have worked in has has Parents Evening in the classroom. Some parents just won't go!

OoozingCervix Wed 23-Oct-13 19:54:18

poor not poo. they weren't that bad.

Idislikemymil Wed 23-Oct-13 19:54:36

Haha. As always, blame the teacher for EVERYTHING.

Honestly, how many times can you say, 'thank you for coming, it was lovely to see you,' before the parent gets the hint!

Fakebook Wed 23-Oct-13 19:55:29

My dd's teacher told me "thanks for coming" and then stopped making eye contact! She's only just turned 24. Can't believe how assertive she was. She's a brilliant teacher.

flumposie Wed 23-Oct-13 19:55:40

And what are your tips for other professionals?

OoozingCervix Wed 23-Oct-13 19:56:14

then be firmer. stand up and say 'Your slot is finished, if you need more information please email me'.

MarshaBrady Wed 23-Oct-13 19:57:09

Bell at ds' school too.

Snargaluff Wed 23-Oct-13 19:57:10

Ok thanks for these hints.

OoozingCervix Wed 23-Oct-13 19:59:48

you're welcome.

parkin2010 Wed 23-Oct-13 19:59:56

I would get a telling off for a bringing a buzzer. Even though I would love to. 90% of parents are ok, it's the 10% who either don't get social norms and cues to leave and those who think their child is the centre of the universe. Prompting them to an email address is no deterrent it seems with some and you can hardly tell them to piss off!

TeamEdward Wed 23-Oct-13 20:00:23

My first parents evening as an NQT, the last parents of the evening turned up with a photo album detailing the adoption process of their PFB, included photos of his extended birth family and their neighbours.
The Head had to come in and rescue me! It was nearly by force they were removed from the classroom. grin

Spikeytree Wed 23-Oct-13 20:02:12

At our parents evenings all the parents sit at a desk in the hall and we queue up to see them. No appointments, first come first served.

It's a bloody nightmare and my feet hurt by the end of it. Plus we have to have 2 per year group as there are too many kids in each year to see in 1 night. 14 sodding parents evenings.

Best one was the one where a parent asked me to write him a quick essay so that he could check I was clever enough to teach his son.

CitrusyOne Wed 23-Oct-13 20:04:08

Having stayed at school til 7pm actually doing parents evening, this thread has put me in an even better mood. Thank you op. Bring on tommorrow's.

SayMyNameSayIt Wed 23-Oct-13 20:04:19

I keep my clock on my table. Then when time is up, I say thank you very much for coming, I know you're very busy, I won't keep you any longer.

As they are leaving, I always say, "Please feel welcome to come and see me any time if there is ever any problem, or just phone me after school."
Then I tell them what days I'm available to talk.

MOST of the time, I can keep to my appointments. Doesn't work if parents get held up at siblings' classes. Or if the parents are late!!! Or just don't turn up!!!

NipNaps Wed 23-Oct-13 20:05:19

I really try to stick to my timings but often find that it only takes one colleague runnin late to mess everyone else up...

Plus it's so weird that the pupils who I have absolutely no issue with are the ones with the parents who take absolutely ages. Those who I either want to bollock or gush over in front of parents often just don't want to know! Grrr...

Snargaluff Wed 23-Oct-13 20:06:23

Sorry op, don't know why I was so snotty in response to you. It is a valid point but sometimes it's difficult when parents won't shut up... Anyway I ran to time last week <preens>

Annagramma Wed 23-Oct-13 20:06:54

My last parents evening, I made a lot of hints. 'Oh, thanks so much, it was so useful....Oh, we've got our maths appointment in five minutes...' the teacher in question Did Not Take The Hint. It was so annoying. The maths appointment came and went. Talk, talk, talk. If it was useful, great, but it really wasn't, it was basically talking about events which had happened but she hasn't been involved in (in fact, which her yeargrop hadn't been involved in).

There's people like that in all walks of life. Some are teachers, some are parents (although, as there are more parents than teachers, presumably more parents will be like that on the day?). And however much you hint, some people will never get it.

parkin2010 Wed 23-Oct-13 20:08:37

Anyway, now you have told our profession so wonderfully and succinctly how to do our job, please tell us what your career is so we can offer our well trained expertise on how to do it........... Even better, see if you can answer a few emails and do a parents evening after a 5am start with no time for breaks or a lunch and see if you need the gin more or less than you do now ;) oh and if you don't run to time I'll have some marvellous tips waiting for you ;)

80sbabe Wed 23-Oct-13 20:08:57

Our DD's primary school changed the system after lots of complaints about parent's evenings running late.
One day each month is parent's evenings from 3.15-6.30pm. You can book up to two fifteen minute slots per child per year. We get given the dates for each class in a newsletter at the start of each term.
It works brilliantly - enough time for everyone to say what they need to and the time allocations no longer over run.
Mind you DD is at a smallish primary school - we still have to endure the utter chaos that is secondary school parent's evenings for DS.

ReluctantBeing Wed 23-Oct-13 20:09:01

I don't get to go to see my son's teacher for his parents' evening tomorrow (he is year 2) because I have the parents of 30 year nines to see instead at my school. sad

ReluctantBeing Wed 23-Oct-13 20:09:37

Oh my smiley didn't work. Sod it.

stillenacht Wed 23-Oct-13 20:10:50

What snargaliff said.

Parents: when you write an email to us please bear in mind we teach all day (I see 300 kids a week not just your one), run clubs every lunchtime and after school, have meeting and marking to do, endless emails from colleagues and admin tasks to do. I may take more than a day or so to get to your email.

WooWooOwl Wed 23-Oct-13 20:11:18

Our teachers put a timer on the smart board thing so the time is there being counted down on a great big screen right behind the teacher, and right in front of the parents.

It amazes me that so many parents are so rude and selfish that this is necessary, and I'm usually the pushy parent elbowing others out of the way to get a good view at school shows and the like!

You need a trap door operated by a foot pedal. Or maybe an ejector seat if they don't take the hint.

CaterpillarCara Wed 23-Oct-13 20:13:20

Last parent's evening we basically had to escape our "strict 3 minute slot" with the SENCO by backing down the stairs as she followed us, talking about South African golfers. We are not South African and do not play golf. Neither does she. Most odd.

wordfactory Wed 23-Oct-13 20:13:28

Last year my mate tapped an overtsaying parent on the shoulder and asked him to move along grin. The teacher thanked her grin grin.

carabos Wed 23-Oct-13 20:16:55

Here's my tip for parents having got to the other side - don't bother to go. If there is anything that a teacher can tell you about your child in the 5 mins allocated that you don't already know, you're not doing your job properly and your time would be better spent with your DC.

IME teachers have little or no idea which child they are talking about and do not much more than read a list of results off a spreadsheet while having a random stab at the memory bank along the lines of "he's a redhead right?" hmm

Finola1step Wed 23-Oct-13 20:18:40

Oh and to the parent who deliberately books the last flipping slot at the end of a very long evening... Who then thinks its ok to ask every question possible about PFB's progress because there are no other parents waiting. We know your game.

OP, in all seriousness, do you really think the teacher actually wants to be there longer than need be. I have always found that it is the parents with the appointments between 4 and 5pm who cause the backlog. They are usually late because they have taken PFB home first, or they couldn't get out of work as early as planned. All it takes is one or two to be running late and it's bedlam.

AllDirections Wed 23-Oct-13 20:19:08

Our primary school has a brilliant system. We wait in the library till it's our allocated time. A minute before that a year 6 helper enters the hall and tells the teacher that their time is nearly up. They then send us in regardless of whether the last parent has gone or not and we're told to hover because the other parent will be leaving 'any minute now' grin

It doesn't always work and I've had to hover a couple of times which can be a bit awkward but at least the parent knows that they are taking up someone else's time. It did annoy me once though when I got in nearly 10 mins late to see the teacher and 2 mins later the year 6 child gave us our warning that our time was nearly up hmm

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Wed 23-Oct-13 20:20:26

3 minutes
5 minutes

... what's the point???

I'd be hopeless <as a teacher> ... I'd be there gabbing all night, to the first set of (nice) parents grin

GW297 Wed 23-Oct-13 20:22:59

A timer would not be appropriate. Fellow teachers have a 'please knock when it's your appointment time' on the door in order to keep to time. If I do keep to time it's just by coincidence!

OoozingCervix Wed 23-Oct-13 20:23:52

Geography actually looked like he was enjoying his 25 minute chat. smiling and everything.
English was not happy to be kept waiting.
And I was so mbarrased to be so late for Biology that it was a quick 'any problems, no. ok then. bye.'

Spikeytree Wed 23-Oct-13 20:25:32

As we have no appointments, nobody knows if parents are going to come or not, so as the night slows down you get packs of tired teachers stalking the hall, pouncing on parents as they arrive, in the hopes of getting out of there a bit quicker. There was almost a fight once as someone tried to push in front of a colleague. Then at 9pm the caretaker starts removing the desks as you try to extricate yourself from the parent who is still talking. One walked me to my car once, still talking. It is like some kind of psychology experiment.

VikingVagine Wed 23-Oct-13 20:26:27

I have this ready to go on my PC for talkative parents, I press play when they overstay their welcome grin

HSMMaCM Wed 23-Oct-13 20:27:54

I get so stressed about going over time that I only talk to the teachers for about 2 mins

- all fine... Thanks

I'd love to spend half an hour with each one, but they are busy people and there are other parents with more pressing needs.

All the teachers (except science) can condense really great info, particularly leading up to option choices, into a few sentences. (ie geography ... She's perfectly capable, but if she's not interested, don't bother)

SummerRain Wed 23-Oct-13 20:32:22

I got one slot with a teacher who has two of my kids yesterday. Thankfully she's not one to be held to a schedule and didn't cut off after our 'allocated time'. It didn't affect anyone anyway as I'd gone in early as the previous parent had wandered off so she brought me in early... Technically it was the other parent who held up everyone after me wink

I think the problem is that 10-15 minutes just isn't long enough in the first place

ilovesooty Wed 23-Oct-13 20:34:01

IME teachers have little or no idea which child they are talking about

In 23 years of teaching I never failed to know who I was talking about. I would imagine your experience is unusual.

Teachers! THANK YOU. You do an amazing job. My children are thriving thanks to you. I appreciate all the work you put into their learning. You're ace. Thank you again.

Apologies for the hijack. As you were.

chocoluvva Wed 23-Oct-13 20:38:59

I sometimes wonder why so many parents go to see all the subject teachers when there's clearly no problem.

Ragwort Wed 23-Oct-13 20:39:41

One of the teachers at my son's parent evening had to have a file of photographs to look at so you could point out your own child grin - he then gave me and all my friends exactly the same comments about our children grin.

VikingVagine Wed 23-Oct-13 20:41:17

Our music teacher for example has every single pupil in the school (600 kids), I can understand her not remembering every single one of them (not my case; I only have 100, by October I know them all pretty well).

parkin2010 Wed 23-Oct-13 20:42:02

Outrageous THANK YOU

stillenacht Wed 23-Oct-13 20:45:19

Yup Vikingvagine that's like me!

Ragwort I have pictures too and would prob say the same thing to many parents if (a) your child wasn't overly musical, or, (b) your child wasn't overly disruptive.

viewwitharoom Wed 23-Oct-13 20:45:27

Here's a tip for you lovely parents. Please do not turn up pissed or stoned to parents evening then talk about your marriage breakdown with me, in front of your child. That usually takes longer than 5 minutes. Thank you

I agree choco-no need to go and see every single teacher. Some parents insist on doing it. confused

At First School the teachers would just stand up when they had finished even if you were mid sentence. One said about 5 minutes into a ten minute slot 'Well moving on.....' I thought we would talk about Numeracy next but no-we were moving on out. That was the teacher that said DS2 was trying too hard to be her friend. sad

stillenacht Wed 23-Oct-13 20:48:37

Oh yes viewwitharoom I know that scenarioshock

In previous school I had two male colleagues shielding me either side because a parent had been overheard saying something threatening about me. I was 7 months pg at the time- parent was pissed off I was having DS and going on mat leave during his DC's gcses.

Hulababy Wed 23-Oct-13 20:48:42

If I am honest...secondary school teaching

GCSE/A level students - knew well
Form - knew well
When I taught jut one class of the year group - knew reasonably ok and enough to talk about individual progress
When I taught every single Y7 and parent's evening was before Christmas - knew very little! Unless the were extreme ends of ability spectrum or poor behaviour I had to keep it quite vague. I used to make notes about individuals in the run up to parents evening to get it right.

I always used photographs as a visual aid to match name and photo. When you teach 300 children a week sometimes a jog for the memory is handy. I wrote notes next to each too, though not on display for all parents to read.

I'm on the other end now for DD, just started Y7. Had a parents evening last night but was only with form teacher. Was shortest meeting ever known!

Secondary School Parents' Evenings are really stressful. For everyone I think.

Primary parents evenings tend to go without too many major problems, but once you hit the comp... oh, boy! It took 3 years (!!) before we managed to get an appointment with DDs science teacher. We assumed (reasonable assumption?) that if there was an issue she would contact us? Wrong! angry after teaching my DD for 3 years! she commented that DD was NOT suitable for the triple science GCSE course, despite DD being flagged as an exceptional science student in yr 7 and being a "high flyer" in EVERY other subject. I was not impressed. (anyway, that's another thread)
Time keeping when you are trying to fit in as many core subjects as possible is a nightmare, even with leaving a 10 minute gap between appointments and having 2 parents present so you can separate when necessary doesn't serve the purpose!

Hassled Wed 23-Oct-13 20:57:44

I don't blame the teachers - must be really quite awkward to say "well it's been lovely chatting about Little Jimmy but I must get on".

I blame the parents who think it's completely acceptable to use what they know to be a 10 minute slot as an opportunity to have a half-hour rant-fest. I've been ready to kill them before now.

First parent evening last year for yr 7 DS was interesting. Meet the tutor, no other teachers. Phone call from school,
Form tutor -"dear Mrs Just, I notice that you haven't made an appointment for our parents evening tomorrow, I have a slot if you can make it"
Me - "Oh, right, ok we'll be there"

Next evening, after a 1/2 wait because they were running late
Tutor - "Little Just seems quite happy, we have no concerns, do you have any?"
Me "I don't think so, he seems happy"
Tutor "Bye then"
Now, why, oh why couldn't they have said that on the phone???

3bunnies Wed 23-Oct-13 20:59:12

NipNaps don't you think that maybe the ones which you don't want to bollock or gush over are the ones who's children might be slightly overlooked? Dd2 is almost never picked for rewards etc - she's not good enough to gush over but not bad enough to bollock. We don't get loads of positive feedback winning house points for every smile, but we're never called up to school to deal with fighting or being nasty. The only feedback we get other than from dd is two parents evenings and a report. Those who you gush over know their child is doing well because their child gets loads of praise/rewards/good marks, those who you want to bollock know their child is getting into trouble. Parents evening is for everyone in between too.

KingscoteStaff Wed 23-Oct-13 21:04:00

I tried 'Well, it's been great to talk to you!'
I tried 'Why don't you take Little Johnny's books outside and have a really good look at them.'
I tried standing up.
I tried walking to the door and opening it.
I tried ushering the next set of parents in...

Oh and YES about the parents who sign up for the final slot and go on for hours - I was rescued by the caretaker on Tuesday...

ThePuffyShirt Wed 23-Oct-13 21:08:13

God I hate parents' evening and the poor teachers! They always look knackered by the end.

We get one hour to see them all (they allocate hours to alphabetical groups). In reality, this is impossible. I stay for as long as I need to to see every teacher. I don't do more than a few minutes each though.

EastofEast Wed 23-Oct-13 21:13:38

I spend Parents evening circling the school every 15min, making myself visible at glass doors behind parents. Slightly widened eyes mean 'come in' and I pretend to offer tea/ coffee enter, assess and assist! I have interrupted threats, asking teachers on dates, impromptu marriage guidance, custody disputes and the legalities of sharing information, careers advice and all manner of inanae and unrelated chit chat. The ones who talk about the kids are mostly brief...

englishteacher78 Wed 23-Oct-13 21:15:31

I usually run to schedule. For the first 10 appointments and then the art effect kicks in. We are meant to have 5 minute appointments - they often speak to students for about 1/2 hour.

marriedinwhiteisback Wed 23-Oct-13 21:18:21

What really used to get on my nerves was the newsletter "we really need some parents to volunteer to make tea for the teachers on parents' evening because they have been working all day". Umm, what do the PTA and many of the staff think many of the parents have been doing all day?

We get one opportunity to talk to teachers about the progress of our children every year. We donate, we make, we bake and many of us do full time jobs as well. Every week there is a request for something else to be donated and it gets donated even though we might stay up until 1am making it.

The beauty of indy schools is that at least they give you a cup of tea when you get there to wait in line for the allocated appointments and they are still only five minutes. Wouldn't it be an idea if a couple of TAs or dinner ladies were paid a couple of hours overtime to make tea for everyone and charge parents a £1. I'm sure it would pay their overtime, raise money and extend a little understanding to very hard pressed parents too.

Coldlightofday Wed 23-Oct-13 21:18:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

innoparticularorder Wed 23-Oct-13 21:22:00

We had the stop watch projected on the big screen with the bell going off every 5 mins. It worked a treat but we had to tell DD not to book all appointments in consecutive slots as trying to get from one end of the hall to the other at the same time as another 100 parents & students wasn't a pretty sight.

Goldenbear Wed 23-Oct-13 21:25:54

Well I agree about it not being enough time to really get much out of it. We have a 10 minute slot tomorrow for DS but my DP is going to it as she is an awful teacher and I can't see the point in me arranging a babysitter to listen to her insincere observations! She is so unprofessional that she told one parent to 'stop moaning' in her parent consultation.

Incidentally, we have chosen the last slot at 7.10 but not because we want to discuss anything in depth with her or that we are sneeky, it's just the earliest DP can return for, taking into account his commute. 7.10 is actually pushing it as he is often still working every night at that time and often later, returning at 9. It is therefore sometimes not sneeky just that people work!

mameulah Wed 23-Oct-13 21:37:39

I have been standing up saying 'I AM REALLY SORRY I HAVE TO TAKE MY NEXT APPOINTMENT NOW!!!' With the Head teacher there saying their time was up. And still the parents sat there.

FourEyesGhoul Wed 23-Oct-13 21:39:56

Who would have thought us teachers would be so touchy about a bit of passive-aggressive criticism? It's not as if we've had a long half term* of babysitting educating large classes of children, being put under increasing pressure to reach unattainable targets in GCSEs in which the goalposts are constantly being shifted. Oh, and being slagged off for striking to defend standards in employment and education.

* Oh yeah, we get next week off. We're so lazy, aren't we?

OutrageousFlavourLikeFreesias Thanks. smile

PansOnFire Wed 23-Oct-13 21:40:06

of course it's the teacher's fault that you were kept waiting. We love nothing more than discussing every single detail about every child's life with every single parent. No? of course we can't be arsed to even learn every child's name. Hmm, I'm confused. Which is is? Well?

This thread has proved that teachers cannot win either way. Parent's Evening is dominated by parents who either a) love talking about their pfb, b) cannot accept that their child has not out performed every other child, or c) feel the need to tell you how to teach their child because they are unlike any other. Parent's evenings are painful for all involved, most parents don't understand that if there is a major issue then a different appointment needs to be made, unfortunately reminding them of this does not work. We end up being accused of not caring or being dismissive of a life threatening issue.

I'd much rather be at home with my own children!

wickeddevil Wed 23-Oct-13 21:41:29

Carabaos thank you. Thank you.
I get really cross when I queue up at DDs parents evening, and the teachers surreptitiously look at the photo list before speaking to me. She is in year 11. And she not even that quiet.

CaterpillarCara Wed 23-Oct-13 21:47:49

Our school offer wine, perhaps that might help everyone?

Hulababy Wed 23-Oct-13 21:48:32

wickeddevil - why would you feel cross that a teacher uses a visual reminder to match to a name in order to make sure you get the most accurate parent's evening comments about your child? Some people just remember better with a visual to consult, rather than just a written name. Teachers are just people - not super-humans who can instantly recall several hundred people's names and progress at the flick of a switch.

MulberryHag Wed 23-Oct-13 21:53:25

Not so easy when you have ten minute slots and one turns up 25 minutes after their appointed time "traffic on the M25 was simply GHASTLY! I guess that's the price I pay for working in London.' (Uuuhhh... The price I pay more like it) and then says "you can just slot me in at the end-I don't mind waiting!"
I ended up feeling VERY rude as I was packing away the chairs in the classroom while they were hanging about after their new appointment. I ended up being 45 minutes late to pick up my 9 Monty old from the childminder sad It's hard to kick parents out!

Another set, after being 5 minutes past their allotted time, still sat talking to me after I'd said thanks for coming and had WALKED to the door! And their DC is top of the class! Nothing left to discuss people, move along!

MulberryHag Wed 23-Oct-13 21:54:45

Errr that would be " nine MONTH old".
I did not name my pfb Monty....

Dubjackeen Wed 23-Oct-13 21:54:50

It strikes me that it is like many situations in life, there will always be people who have no consideration for others, in this case, neither for the parents waiting, nor for the teachers.

Goldenbear Wed 23-Oct-13 21:58:23

Pans and what exactly are parents expected to discuss with a teacher on 'Parents' evening' if not their own child? I just don't believe it is 'dominated' by these kind of people- talk about an exaggeration. My DP would probably prefer to 'see' his own children if he is to be back as 'early' as 7pm but what kind of parents would that make us- ones that can't be bothered!

Ihatespiders Wed 23-Oct-13 22:06:07

Tips for parents...

Please do not whine if your allotted time is not the exact one you requested. 6 families wanted the 3.10 slot.

Please do not interrupt me taking the register to ask me when your appointment is. I wrote it in your child's diary... last week.

Please turn up at, or shortly before, the allotted time.

If you are late, please do not get huffy that I have started to speak to the parent due after you. I will see you next. Please do not interrupt us ... and certainly not 3 times.

Please do not whine that I booked myself one slot as a break. I was talking to parents up to 7.30pm. It was a 12 hour day.

The first thing that I said to you after Hello was "Is there anything that you'd like to ask me or any issues that you'd like to raise?" That was your cue for your list of questions. The end of your 10 minutes is not the time to say "Just one thing ..." and produce a list of four points.

Please do not complain to the Head the following day that I was unprofessional for having a bottle of water on my desk and daring to take a sip. (see above comment about the 12 hour day).

Please do not complain that I have not yet marked the work that was done earlier that day.

... and breathe...

3bunnies Wed 23-Oct-13 22:09:06

Oh well it will soon all be done on skype and when your 10mins is up you just disconnect! Maybe they should set it up so the parents stay put and the teachers move around!!! That way any long conversations are interrupted by a teaching colleagues which might make it easier to move on as they want their chance to tell them how wonderful their child is. Might be tricky co-ordinating so that they see the right parents when streamed - maybe the parents would need to be streamed.

Spikeytree Wed 23-Oct-13 22:11:28

3bunnies, my school has parents evenings where the teachers move around to the seated parents.

FriskyHenderson Wed 23-Oct-13 22:13:38

Last parents evening we sat outside DS1's class watching the previous appointment overrun by 20 minutes. The door opened as we got up to go to DS2's appointment - we had to explain we couldn't wait any longer. Zero apology from either parent or teacher - the parent giggled and said something about talking a lot Yes, and now we will not have an appointment at all.

PurpleGirly Wed 23-Oct-13 22:18:49

I also don't need to hear how good/bad you were at school. If little Johnny is good/bad at English I really don't need to hear how you liked writing stories and reading books, that you haven't read a book since school or that you can't spell... I am here to talk about your child, not you.

I always know my pupils' names but do refer to a spreadsheet as I cannot remember every grade, assessment or target they have off the top of my head.

PurpleGirly Wed 23-Oct-13 22:20:05

Spikeytree - how does this work? I have huge boxes of stuff to show parents?

mumofweeboys Wed 23-Oct-13 22:28:15

Did anyone else's parents approach secondary school parents evening like a military operation. Mum took half, dad took half, each had note pad and pen. Got there early with list of teachers. My job was to run around and see who didn't have queues. Of course I had to stay in corridor while they did their interview. They always managed to get round all the teachers. Quite funny thinking back

SilverApples Wed 23-Oct-13 22:32:05

NQT, Cervix?
Or the sort of teacher that parents describe as lovely and approachable, because they can't say no?

I agree with you, I've done hundreds of parents' evenings and never run over.

ivykaty44 Wed 23-Oct-13 22:37:13

two separate occasion I had to leave parents evening without seeing the teachers as she over ran, I had to go to work and had allowed enough time - but after an hour of waiting I walked up to the desk and said excuse me but I can't stay any longer I have to go to work. As I was left in an awkward position by the teacher I couldn't just leave but need to excuse myself from the appointment.

For it to happen once was excusable but for it to happen twice wasn't

I was told they needed longer with the other parents and I said exactly the same as Op - then get them in at another time or give them a longer slot at the end of the evening, but don't have other parents sitting their for an hour and then have to leave for a nights work, it is unfair and down right rude.

Secondary school is far better and well organised with all the teachers in the hall sat in alphabetical order, we see 10 teachers in 40 minutes and leave, most we have appointments but some we don't and slot in when they have a gap.

Spikeytree Wed 23-Oct-13 22:38:03

We don't show stuff, PurpleGirly. We take our mark books and that is it. Queue up for parents in the order they arrive, do your stuff and move on. In reality you get hordes of marauding teachers wandering the hall looking for a free parent and then swooping in. If you have no parents in the hall at a particular time, you pop into a 'holding pen' and wait. Name of pupil belonging to a particular set of parents is on the desk plus projected on the whiteboard e.g. table 1, Joe Bloggs. By 9pm the atmosphere in the holding pen is verging on hysteria.

SilverApples Wed 23-Oct-13 22:38:15

I'll always remember the parents who turn up with biscuits, or a bun, or samosas, or a cup of coffee for me because they thought it was a long night and I might need a bit of a snack. smile

stillenacht Wed 23-Oct-13 22:44:31

Oo parents please don't tell me that," I play guitar and am in a band"," I can't read a note, don't know where he/she gets it from","can he/she have their instrumental lesson at lunchtime?"(yeah with the other 30 parents wanting half hour lessons in the 50 minute lunch 'hour'), "It must be fun teaching music"( Sometimes yes, mostly its loud and knackering and full of technical issues... My headphones don't work, my batteries have run out, can you tune my violin/guitar/ukulelee).

I could go on. I won't though.

stillenacht Wed 23-Oct-13 22:45:17

Ukulele argh. Long daygrin

FortyDoorsToNowhere Wed 23-Oct-13 22:54:42

I often think why not spread parent evening over a few weeks. There the teacher could see perhaps 2 parents after school. Then the teacher could leave at a more sociable time.

Spikeytree Wed 23-Oct-13 22:57:55

How does that work when you teach hundreds of pupils?

MidniteScribbler Wed 23-Oct-13 22:58:13

SilverApples, I had one turn up with wine. Best parent ever!

stillenacht Wed 23-Oct-13 22:58:19

No thanks Forty less parents would mean more time spent with them over more days. Err, no.

noblegiraffe Wed 23-Oct-13 23:00:27

Teachers have other things to do after school on the days they don't have parents evening. And you just know that if you are only seeing two parents, one set will be late and the other will bang on for half an hour because you've got nothing better to do, right?

And then some parents will want you to stay till 7:30 because that's the only time they can make.

Twoandtwomakeschaos Wed 23-Oct-13 23:09:19

One year (prob new Year 10), my Mother asked me if I had any issues, I said no; they didn't have either so we didn't book any appintments. It was fine!!!

morethanpotatoprints Wed 23-Oct-13 23:18:43

My dds last school would always offer to make longer appointments for problems at a later date.
Any general advice/info was displayed on boards in reception throughout the evening.
Y6 volunteers showed parents to seats, operated a waiting system and were strict with timings, they buzzed the teachers.
They loved the authority for the night. grin
Merciless, every one

FortyDoorsToNowhere Wed 23-Oct-13 23:24:25

didn't think that one through properly did I.

DC are both in different schools and there is 3 parents evenings per school year, I swear when i was at school there was only 1 a year.

teachers have a life outside of work.

NeverKnowinglyUnderstood Wed 23-Oct-13 23:30:45

I loved our most recent one with a timer and buzzer on the big screen in the hall.
it was my first experience of this system and I think it worked well. Well enough to know who we should now make an appointment to go and see after school sometime to talk about difficulties.

TheDoctrineOfAnyFucker Wed 23-Oct-13 23:31:10

I would LOVE a Skype parents' evening.

HogFucker Thu 24-Oct-13 01:27:54

We were placing bets last night about how long one mother would over-run. I think she may still be there talking about PFB

Eggsiseggs Thu 24-Oct-13 08:11:14

AS IF I would be handing out my email address to loads of parents!!! <dies laughing>

They're just hideous, aren't they? I actually enjoy talking to the student and the parents, but the timing is so pressurised that it's unpleasant for everyone. Oh well.

Fleta Thu 24-Oct-13 09:07:10

Ours school is excellent -offeres a variety of different time slots of different lengths from 10 minutes to 30 minutes - so those that have more to discuss choose a longer slot, those that don't get a short one. The list of time slots is put up in the entrance hall and you simply sign up.

20 children over two nights for our year group - everyone finishes at a civilised time.

All very civilised not to mention the tea and biscuits made by the head as we wait.

Lovely.

lucysnowe Thu 24-Oct-13 10:24:57

Oh god I confess I have been guilty of this. At our school the headteacher goes round every ten minutes with the school bell so you know when your time's up. So was happily discussing my v. interesting and talented DD and noticed the teacher was getting a bit restless, standing up, etc. DH was doing the same. Annoyed me because the bell hadn't rung yet and we clearly had loads of time. confused As we finally left I said to DH 'we didn't get our full ten minutes' he replied 'oh yes the bell rang ages ago, we got about half an hour!' I didn't even notice blush. Sorry lovely teacher and undoubtedly put-out parents behind us. sad

AnyFuckerGotBunnywhacked Thu 24-Oct-13 10:36:55

There was one parent who always tried to take half an hour noone wanted to go after her as you knew you would be waiting. If you really want to talk to the teacher and have that many concerns then then book a separate time.
However a tip for teachers don't send out dates that people then choose and arrange their lives around then send out another letter two days later explaining that because of another class these dates aren't happening so people who cannot change their arrangements cant go anymore

AnyFuckerGotBunnywhacked Thu 24-Oct-13 10:38:24

<bitter> with creepy wee brackets

MiaowTheCat Thu 24-Oct-13 10:46:05

Our head used to check our appointment lists for the usual suspects wanting a 3 hour discussion and then mysteriously do a culpa delivery to our rooms at the scheduled end of appointment time to chivvy them along.

Had one mum once rock up at school 30 minutes after her kid had gone home, yelling about something that had gone off that afternoon when I wasn't teaching the class, I took all the details and said I would have to follow it up in the morning when I could talk to the cover teacher who had already left and kids involved, but I really had to dash now as I had to get to the doctors and I'd update her when I'd looked into it the following morning. She proceeded to follow me through the school, out of the door, down the drive and along the street until I got into my car because I HAD to make the appointment I had!

Salmotrutta Thu 24-Oct-13 12:01:30

Always tricky things, parents evenings.

I tend to get the greetings over, say something like "Now then..." And launch into the pupils attainment levels. I swiftly follow this up with where their keys skills lie, how hard they work and suggest some areas that require work.

I then ask if the parent has any specific concerns (I don't want to hear a long rambling monologue about how much they love/hate my subject) and after that I start rustling paper officiously and saying how nice it was to meet them.

Usually works!

Mind you in Secondary it's maybe better for us as parents are aware they need to get going to the next one.

I have had SMT patrolling the corridor discreetly "following" a famously "difficult" parent on more than one occasion!

ivykaty44 Thu 24-Oct-13 12:07:37

AS IF I would be handing out my email address to loads of parents!!!

all the teachers give out their email addresses from the school my dd2 is at, if there are problems we can use the email and get things sorted and the teacher encourage this as a way of being able to communicate as the telephone can be difficult if the teachers is teaching and the parent is working etc.

I have used it a couple of times and the teachers have been remarkably quid at responding and things sorted very quickly - in fact far quicker than phone calls

Treadmillmom Thu 24-Oct-13 12:28:27

OP are you Mrs. Robinson? If yes you're lucky I didn't smash that bloody timer with a hammer when my son was in your class.

uptheanty Thu 24-Oct-13 12:33:43

We entered our dd parents evening 10 minutes late due to an over run, nothing unusual about that.

5 minutes in a parent swung open the door and exclaimed " are you finished yet? It's my time now."

Right in the middle of a CONFIDENTIAL discussion.

Rude cow angry

usuallyright Thu 24-Oct-13 12:46:36

Parents evenings are a waste of time. The hassle in driving there, waiting around, driving back. And for what?5 minutes face to face time with a teacher. What can't they phone the parents? It would be much easier and quicker for both parents and teachers.

MadeOfStarDust Thu 24-Oct-13 12:50:18

We are lucky to have 2 kids who perform well enough in class. ... what we do is write in their planners "Do you need us to come to parent's evening?"

Usual answers are "No - and thank you for asking" or "Only if you have any concerns, all is fine here" once we got a "Yes please - we will be discussing language options".

Has saved a lot of hassle over the years....

noblegiraffe Thu 24-Oct-13 12:52:13

Phoning parents isn't free, especially not mobiles and on my school only certain phones can phone mobiles. Also, you can only talk to one parent at a time, can't show them anything, and you can't involve the child in the discussion.

Plus parents never bloody answer the phone when you need them to.

chocoluvva Thu 24-Oct-13 12:52:30

Sorry I've only skim read this thread, but are most teachers happy not to see parents where there are no problems? (DS' parents' evening is next week)

In his case there are only three subject teachers I'd really like to see. I'd love to have the option of splitting my time between just those three but I suppose the English and Maths teachers would be swamped if this was allowed.

I tried for over a month to find out if he was meant to be doing English homework and what the brief for a piece of work he was doing in class was - there is no way of speaking directly to anyone from specific depts - all contact has to go through guidance or the year head, who presumably act as middlemen - getting the info from the relevant teacher/dept then relaying it back to the parent. In his three years there it's the first time I've asked for anything - they've phoned me before to advise me about his detentions..... sad He has slight special needs, identified as a communication disorder. There are about six things I'd like to ask his English teacher......aaaagh.

Mummyoftheyear Thu 24-Oct-13 13:04:03

My best tip:
Ask parents whether THEY have anything they'd like to discuss at the outset of the meeting. Once that's done with, you can squish your bit in - or thank them for bringing XYZ to the meeting and invite them back to chat through stuff you still need to cover.

MsGee Thu 24-Oct-13 13:04:39

Our system was run very well, Head rings a bell every ten minutes.

Last year DD teacher (in Yr R) told us not to rush off as no-one else had the appointment after us and was generally great. She was clear on DD learning and how she was working with her to build her confidence.

This year, the teacher doesn't seem to know much about DD or who her friends are (was guessing random names at one point). She also said DD is too terrified to answer questions in the class but gave no indication that she was even thinking of helping her through this (or that it was a problem).

Given I have only had a couple of parents evenings in my life it was a really stark difference and I can't work out if DD previous teacher was amazing or the current one is a cause for concern. Or if it was just a bad day after loads of meetings with other parents.

ImperialFucker Thu 24-Oct-13 14:44:41

"Best one was the one where a parent asked me to write him a quick essay so that he could check I was clever enough to teach his son."

Spikeytree, that has to be one of the funniest things I've read on MN.

Salmotrutta Thu 24-Oct-13 15:17:14

Oh Spikeys post was very funny - but a colleague of mine was grilled about their qualifications for teaching their subject shock

Bearing in mind that up here in Scotland you cannot teach in a state Secondary without sufficient subject content in your degree and have a PGDE and have successfully met the criteria for GTCS registration!

(I understand private schools can have untrained teachers though up here)

OrmirianResurgam Thu 24-Oct-13 15:27:17

This is quite timely as it happens. Had DS1's first consultation at college last week. Appointment was 7.10pm. It was our 21st wedding anniversary that day and were were going out for a meal afterwards so didn't really want to hang about. We got there 5 mins early and were still there at 7.50! We could see the table that the tutor was sitting at and he seems to be a lovely man and might have authority with the kids but none at all with parents! You could see him doing the summing up sort of thing, picking up papers and shuffling them, starting to actually get up out of the chair to say goodbye but each time this particular couple stopped him...either dad would start to ask a question or mum would gently grab his arm and steer him back down to the chair. He began to have a look like an impala trapped by lions.... I felt sorry for him TBH but FFS!!! They were with him for 27 mins!!!!! I was at the point of going in there and begging them to let him go! Then another dad went in and I can only thank gawd he wasn't quite so 'involved'... and then finally us.

Spikeytree Thu 24-Oct-13 18:30:26

Reader, I declined to write the essay. He wanted a comparison of Hitler and Robert Mugabe.

IHaveA Thu 24-Oct-13 18:53:40

YANBU

My DCs school did the everyone book your timeslot then everyone ignore your timeslot Method. It drove me crazy.

All you need is a loud buzzer and an evil stare.

Rigging up the chairs to give a mild electric shot to dawdles is a good idea too

EvenWickedierDevil Thu 24-Oct-13 21:31:48

Hulababy. My DD is in year 11. The teacher in question has been her form Tutor since year 8. I am not bashing teachers in general, but I do think that my Daughters form tutor should be able to discuss her with me without having to check her photo first.

Hulababy Thu 24-Oct-13 21:52:27

Yes that is somewhat different. After 4 years of seeing her daily I would expect instant recall tbh.

DS's parents appt (primary school) will be done by DP, as I'll be at work that afternoon. DP is usually fine, but I have had to gently steer him out of the room to keep to time before.

As for DD, her secondary school has most of the teachers sat at tables in the main area to make going between them easier, and an online booking system that prevents appts being made right next to each other. It's set up to ensure a 5 min gap between each appt to allow parents to get between teachers without too much overrun/time lost.

Works mostly okay, although on one occasion we swapped appts with another set of parents as the parents before them had overrun and it allowed them to reach another appt on time and come back. We did make sure the teacher knew so they weren't surprised.

I also only book appts with the subjects that are either necessary or are the subjects that DD is considering for options (Yr 9). She hates PE, is bottom set, but as she still gets complimented and receives points for her good attitude and effort in the lessons, she and I have agreed she just regards it as her necessary keep fit. grin I don't bother going to see the PE teacher.

teacherandguideleader Thu 24-Oct-13 23:09:46

We have a queuing system. I teach the challenging children, I never have a queue sad

One thing for parents, when you email me with an issue, and I email straight back saying 'thanks, I'll look into it' then email back ASAP with more information, a quick reply saying 'thank you' would be nice. If I hadn't got back to you, I'm sure I'd get one demanding to know why!

Caffe1neAddict Fri 25-Oct-13 07:18:19

The worst parents are the ones who come with spreadsheets/forms with headings they want to fill in. Not kidding. Had one dad stop me talking so he could telle what box he needed to fill next! His form was negatively-weighted: one box for overall comments and others for "areas to improve", "behaviour" etc....

I've had one colleague actually recorded on a dictaphone too.

I now make less appointments and only see the ones I need to- the rest can email or wait for glowing reports.

jamdonut Fri 25-Oct-13 07:56:43

6th form parents evening has always been great. All the teachers sit in the hall at desks, with chairs in the middle, and everyone can see each other.

The teachers don't have so many to see as in the lower school,so they can take a little bit more time. If you turn up early, you can nip in quick,and still not put the rest of the appointments out....you learn this by experience!

Further down the school at parents evening the teachers are grouped by dept so there are 2 or 3 to a room. This way they can support each other if it gets a bit overheated with anyone!

And again, with experience, you can work the system to your advantage,without putting anyone out . Without trying to boast, my children have always have good reports and don't need the teachers to talk about 'issues' as such so, it is a quick nip in and out.

Sorted!

ILikeTrains Fri 25-Oct-13 08:09:32

I think a Graham Norton style chair with a huge lever next to the teacher could help?

Also, does the fact that my daughter's teacher has made our appointment the last one of her day mean that really she wants to marvel at how wonderful my daughter is unhindered by time restrictions? That's how I interpret it anyway grin (I'm only joking - please don't flame me)

TeamANYFUCKER Fri 25-Oct-13 08:18:51

ILikeTrains Your teacher booked you in as last of the day because she knows you'll go on time and she'll be able to get home for her tea at a reasonable time!

Xenadog Fri 25-Oct-13 08:24:20

I accept it is annoying to be waiting around a school hall for an appointment and you see parents hogging a particular teacher but there can be many reasons why appointment slots aren't stuck to and often something comes to light on a parents evening which either the teacher or parent has no idea about and then has to be discussed In a little more detail than 3 or 5 minutes allow. (Btw would love a bell to say it's time to move!) I had a parents evening last week and as per usual I was one of the last ones out. Why? It was a Year 10 and Year 11 combined parents evening, no appointments made and I teach 4 groups as well as having a tutor group in Year 10. No one else had as many groups!

I was the busiest teacher there - regarding number of pupils I teach - and even though I started at 4.30pm I didn't get out until 8.00pm after starting work at 8.00am. This is quite annoying when a set of parents turn up 5 minutes before the close of play and expect to speak to every teacher.

I would say, OP you do have a genuine annoyance but trust me no one is more annoyed about parents evenings that drag on than the teachers. If your school doesn't operate the speed dating bell I suggest you mention it to the head teacher - they make the policies not the regular class teacher who has to put up with parents discussing the minutiae about little Johnny's life in and outside of school.

MamaBear17 Fri 25-Oct-13 08:48:59

Why should we use a buzzer? It is wonderful sitting there being ranted at by a parent who will not leave because their pfb is the most important person in my class and feel the need to pull me over the coals about everything I do. I love it! YABU.

MadeOfStarDust Fri 25-Oct-13 09:08:41

I was looked at in absolute shock by two mums of my DD's friends when I said I wasn't going to parents' evening this time (I had asked in her planner if I needed to - she is Y8 - and we would only have been able to see maths/English/languages/science anyhow.. answer "no- all is fine" )

Both parents whinge about "wasting an evening turning up and hanging around to be told they are fine, working hard, no issues"

I said "Why go then?" - you would have thought I'd suggested skinning babies and serving them for dinner -

Is parents' evening REALLY that important to folks whose kids have no issues - in Y8? It is not as if our school does not communicate, tutors put comments in the planner all the time, work is marked with comments, books come home etc... I know exactly how DD is doing - SO DO THE OTHER GIRLS' PARENTS - so why go?

I know what you mean made. I have also never understood why both parents are necessary.

DS1 came back with a list of one teacher who wanted to see us. It was about Maths Sets. V quick.

cory Fri 25-Oct-13 10:24:39

I feel horribly guilty about having burst into tears at the last parents' evening I went to, thus wasting valuable time for other parents who wanted their tea. But then- my daughter had tried to kill herself.

Of course I had already made separate appointment with the HoY and pastoral support to discuss the overall situation. But I also needed to discuss her GCSEs in maths and science and French. And then I burst into tears...

I apologise to anyone whose tea might have got cold.

noblegiraffe Fri 25-Oct-13 10:42:06

Y7 parents evening is the worst for parents dragging it out. They sit down, make themselves comfortable and launch forth into a monologue about how little Johnny wasn't good at maths until Y4 when he had a good teacher then he got moved to the top table and blah blah blah. Parents evening just goes in a blur and I remember nothing when I get home (obviously I make a note of anything I need to action). Even parents who say 'little Johnny is loving maths this year and that's down to you', please put it in writing!

HogFucker Sat 26-Oct-13 17:07:49

sad Cory

tearoomtrash Sat 26-Oct-13 17:34:08

OP! Please understand that sometimes a fellow parent raises something that it is impossible, as a human being, to deal with in 5 minutes or even to dismiss until a future meeting. For example, the parent who discloses a life limiting illness and their concerns for their child's future (whilst in floods of tears). Yes, every appointment after that one ran late. Luckily, the parents at my school are generally reasonable people who understand the difficulty of running to time, and usually are magnanimous in accepting my sincere apologies.

Not every appointment is a quick "these are X's levels, this is what she needs to do to move on, she's settled in well and there are no issues". Unfortunately. Whenever there is an appointment or queuing system there is the potential for having to wait sometimes. That's life.

I'm glad my school doesn't operate a buzzer system. I think it would feel quite hostile.

I can just imagine the doctors kicking people out of their offices at the sound of a buzzer - I bet that would go down like a lead balloon.

tearoomtrash Sat 26-Oct-13 17:43:10

Cory. Only just read your post. It has illustrated my point. I don't think you need to be concerned about people's tea getting cold. It puts things into perspective really, doesn't it.

I'm sorry you are having to deal with this sad x

BoneyBackJefferson Sat 26-Oct-13 19:12:42

My personal favourite is the parent who books the last appointment of the evening and then doesn't show up for it, what fucking fun that is. How we laughed not

marriedinwhiteisback Sat 26-Oct-13 19:31:22

teacherandguideleader really, you want to be thanked for thanking parents for an e-mail, acknowledging receipt and telling them you will get back to them hmm. You really want your in-box clogged up with inconsequential shite. I would say thank you when you have replied with an answer; I certainly wouldn't thank you for acknowledging my e-mail.

Euphemia Sat 26-Oct-13 19:31:57

Boney Especially when you had no-one booked in for the previous three appointments. angry

youarewinning Sat 26-Oct-13 19:49:43

Last parents eve I arrived 10 minutes early and teacher was free - he invited me in and I jokingly said "hopefully you get get out of here earlier than planned!" He did however say he'd booked a longer slot for me and had further appointments. Bless him - he wanted to show me how well my DS has been doing and what they have put in place (he has SN and SEN). Its these things I really appreciate as I'm sure he does have better things to do of an evening grin

pootlepootle Sat 26-Oct-13 20:08:55

I'm not proud of this fact, but I got banned from parents evening because they thought i might argue about the teacher's methods of dealing with my daughter who has SpLD.

Her method was to ignore her so they tried to ignore me as well.

New school is working so so much better but it's left me very nervous of parents evenings!

IfNotNowThenWhen Sun 27-Oct-13 11:58:09

Hmm. I have to say, threads like this remind me why I found becoming a parent of a school child so intimidating.
Reading teacher threads on here I am always a bit shocked by the sheer vitriol directed towards parents.
Some of you teachers must be parents yourselves, so how does that work? Are you always perfect in that role?
I have a friend who is a teacher, and when her oldest started school she was quite freaked out by realising how different it feels on the "parent" side of the equation.
Not teacher bashing btw-I support teachers and know they work very hard.
I also bring biscuits to parents evening, partly because I am starving coming straight from work too!
I just don't like the the tone of discussions like these. It reminds me of how harshly I used to judge customers when I was a waitress. Especially the ones with kids, God help them!
We are most of us trying to do our jobs in the time frame we have to do them, and we most of us have kids, so can we ever drop the "us and them" attitude?

HarryStottle Sun 27-Oct-13 12:16:33

I don't think the OP was being anti-teacher - more encouraging them to stand shoulder to shoulder with the normal parents and deal swiftly with the parents who feel the need to discuss their speshul snowflakes for 5 times longer than anyone else.
I think we all understand that there will be times when an appt over-runs because of something unexpected coming up but that doesn't appear to be the case when I've sat behind the PFB brigade.
Cory - I'm sorry to hear about your DD and I hope she and you are getting all the help you need.

ForalltheSaints Sun 27-Oct-13 12:26:28

Like it! Just as long as all teachers at the school do it. Pity some other professions could not have the same so that appointments are on time for a change.

Lomaamina Sun 27-Oct-13 17:11:50

This thread has reminded me to put in writing the superlatives our DS (year 11) regularly mentions with regard to his teachers. I did manage to mention to his English teacher when I bumped into her how much he loves her lessons and apparently she was so chuffed she thanked him at his next lesson grin.

And more to the point - we aren't enamoured when his school's system of 5 minute appointments that overrun, but we've never blamed the teachers, just overeager parents. We're super-conscious of the teachers working a 12-hour day, especially how tiring it is doing so in such an intense setting - being switched on and clued up on dozens of students. I find it astonishing how much they seem to know about our child personally, despite being responsible for so many others.

BabyMummy29 Sun 27-Oct-13 17:17:36

At my school parents have 10 minute appointments. A senior pupil stands outside the door with a stopwatch and knocks on the door when 10 minutes are up.

If the parent doesn't leave, they give it another minute and then knock again and open the doorl

As the teacher, I stand up and thank them for coming and show them to the door.

Works perfectly.

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