Shockingly bad yr 6 parents evening, DS in disgrace, what now?

(34 Posts)
Kamer Thu 15-Nov-12 20:47:16

Every parents evening in DS's school career so far has been a 2 minute, he is doing well job.

At the beginning of yr 6 DS brought his first ever behave our sheet home and said he had been told off a few times but we thought he had settled down and DS was confident Mrs X would have some nice things to say about him.

Mrs X did not she said he was lazy, immature, silly, distracts others and is distracted by others, can't concentrate. He is doing the minimum of work to get by and not making an effort.

And to top it off she said and I paraphrase, that the class were the most challenging she had ever had, especially the boys who had an ethos of low aspiration and poor behaviour and it would be good when they were split in high school. This in a school meant to best in area and have never heard the class were such a nightmare from others.

Only positives that DS was a good reader and predicted to be level 5 at language, 4/5 maths, 5 sciences at end of y6 but as his reading age was 16 and his levels 4/5 at end of yr 5, surely that means little progress.

Me and DH came out of the meeting and told DS we were ashamed of him. He was in tears and saying he would turn over a new leaf. What do we do now in terms of improving the situation?

shinyblackgrape Thu 15-Nov-12 20:54:39

Gosh - I really don't k ow. Did you ask the teacher for suggestions? Whatever it is, I think it needs to be a joined up approach. Could you get brief daily reports of his behaviour? That might concern him in to behaving well

However, aren't lots of 6 year old boys a bit over excitable etc? Hopefully he will mature a bit and grow out of it too.

MarshmallowFarm Thu 15-Nov-12 20:58:39

Wow, I can't believe she has been so disparaging about the whole class.

I think you need to get to the bottom of this. There are various possibilities:
1) She is an inexperienced teacher or one who lacks discipline, or who maybe labels children as naughty very early on, continually berating them until some of them (maybe those she picked out as particularly "naughty" boys) realise she will groan whatever they do so they may as well mess about....
2) DS is bored at some level, or has some sort of learning difficulties that haven't been identified, especially maybe around concentration/working memory...
3) DS is acting out because he is unhappy about something at school, or trying to get himself seen as "cool" by distracting the lessons...
4) DS has behavioural issues that for some reason waited until Y6 to manifest themselves (unlikely!)

Or there's probably loads of other possibilities that others will think of. This is odd though, when there's been no issues thus far. i would be asking for a proper meeting with maybe the Head or Deputy present and ask for concrete examples of the behaviour. Talk to DS and try to unpick what's different about this year/this techer for him....Good luck!

learnandsay Thu 15-Nov-12 20:59:06

My first reading of this is that it's the school's fault not yours. It looks to me as though you've got a very bright boy who is coasting. This should have been picked up last year and he should have been stretched. (Did anything unusual happen at the end of last year which impeded his progression?)

Floralnomad Thu 15-Nov-12 21:00:23

There are often issues in YR 6 , because a lot of the children have outgrown primary school and are ready to move on . As long as he knows his behaviour is unacceptable ,and it sounds like he does , I really wouldn't worry too much about it . Have you had any dealings with this teacher before ? I would be a little concerned that she had nothing positive to say but hadn't felt the need to contact you earlier in the term.

Kamer Thu 15-Nov-12 21:01:09

He is year 6 not age 6 so is nearly 11. But yes I was thinking about suggesting some kind of home/school report book. I was a bit thrown that the teacher had a lot to say about how bad DS was and no suggestions about what should be done by us/the school. Although to be fair we were too shocked to think of practical suggestions.

carocaro Thu 15-Nov-12 21:01:24

I think a reality check/wake up call/kick up the arse is needed. My Y6 DS1 was totally vile two weeks ago, I lost it, went ballistic, made him cry, threw things at him - not my finest moment I know and not a step from 'Fab Parenting 101' but he was taking the piss and being so rude, I won't go into it all now. His parents evening was perfect, lots of issues overcome with dyslexia and he is fantastic in class, his teacher was even a bit emotional about his efforts. Not what you want to hear BUT the point I am trying to make it that sometime a tipping point such as mine or you horrible parents evening can and does make the difference for things to change. DS has been so much better since, he has said since that he had not even realised how he behaved and how it affected me and the rest of the family. Your teacher sounds like she is very pissed off and tired of it all, she was obviously trying to make the point that it was bad and she'd had enough.

Y6 is a revision year, reenforcing stuff they know, looking for gaps in their knowledge. His results are good!

Moving forward, I would make sure you DS does what he says he will do, keep weekly contact with the teacher, get your DS to write her an apology. Also set some pretty hard rules at home and for school. Y6 is time to get tough and with the programme, rewards and praise where due but no messing. Kids who are doing well at school but piss about make it really hard for others who need help from the teacher whoose attention is elsewhere with kids taking the piss. He has to suck up his bad behavior and change, secondary school will be so hard otherwise. I have said all this to my own bolshy moody hormanal 'he knows best' Y6 boy, so crack on!

LemonBreeland Thu 15-Nov-12 21:02:22

I would agree with learnandsay that he is most probably messing around beacuse he is not being challenged. If the whole class are that badly behaved then the teacher needs to look at herself.

Cahoots Thu 15-Nov-12 21:03:17

I would keep reminding him to behave, praise him when he does well and generally 'be on his case'. I would ask the school for lots and lots of feedback. There is no reason why your DS can't turn this around. This meeting and your reaction might have been the shock he needed.
It is good that he is doing well otherwise.
Good luck.

3b1g Thu 15-Nov-12 21:03:53

He sounds like a bright boy and is maybe just getting a bit of Y6-itis. He is possibly getting a bit bored of primary school or just growing out of the primary school environment. I'm sure that when he starts Y7 he'll start to knuckle down a bit. All you need to do is keep him on track for the next 8 months...

Cahoots Thu 15-Nov-12 21:05:21

I really like the idea of getting him to write a letter of apology to the teacher too.

carocaro Thu 15-Nov-12 21:06:07

"I think you need to get to the bottom of this. There are various possibilities:
1) She is an inexperienced teacher or one who lacks discipline, or who maybe labels children as naughty very early on, continually berating them until some of them (maybe those she picked out as particularly "naughty" boys) realise she will groan whatever they do so they may as well mess about....
2) DS is bored at some level, or has some sort of learning difficulties that haven't been identified, especially maybe around concentration/working memory...
3) DS is acting out because he is unhappy about something at school, or trying to get himself seen as "cool" by distracting the lessons...
4) DS has behavioural issues that for some reason waited until Y6 to manifest themselves (unlikely!)"

Or 5) he is just being a pain in the ass and needs to shup up, listen and do! It can and often is as simple as that, no big underlying issues, not the teachers fault, the crap about them being too brainy and bored is utter nonsense, after all if they were that clever they would know full well that bad behavior does not cut it!

3b1g Thu 15-Nov-12 21:10:22

In Y6 some children are given a bit more independence. If this is true for him, then it might be worth reminding him that increased privilege and trust is dependent upon increased responsibility and maturity. This works for my children, anyway.

shinyblackgrape Thu 15-Nov-12 21:11:35

So sorry! Missed he was year 6!

Thinking back to my time at school at the same age (20 years ago), we had homework diaries where the teacher wrote behaviour reports in respect of some "naughty" boys. Never had to be done for long as they got bollocked by their parents if they were bad.

The other thing I would do is examine very simply
and clearly the risks to him of it behaving. Essentially on the basis of dies he enjoy his life at the moment/current standard of living? If so, he's going to have to pick his game up or he's not going to be able to go to uni/get the same type if job as you to sustain it

Gemsie77 Thu 15-Nov-12 21:13:20

I feel that there could be a teaching issue here as well. The teacher should have informed you of any problems your son has had settling in to Yr 6 before parent interview. I also feel that the teacher was rather unprofessional saying they were the worst class ever. You can think that but don't say it. Maybe she should have said there are a few boys/ girls that would need to be split up & she'll try that. Yr 6 can be challenging & get a bit too big for their boots but the teacher needs to completely be on top of that both discipline wise & setting work that is engaging & challenging.

admission Thu 15-Nov-12 21:15:04

I think that there is a need to take this further. Your description comes across of a class who is playing up badly, but playing up because there seems to be no control,even accepting year 6 can be a handful.
The question becomes one of, is this the teacher who has lost control of this class or the school that has lost control completely.
My inclination would be to arrange a meeting with the head teacher urgently. You need to explain your shock at how bad things appear to be in the class and how much your son's behaviour has deteriated. The reaction from the head teacher will be interesting but they need to do something. Given your son's capabilities all is by no means lost and a term of concentrated effort and hard work will resolve the situation. The problem is, whether the school has the capability and capacity to turn the situation around, because we are not talking about one child here, we are presumably talking about 30. Reintroducing control and discipline is going to be a major problem in year 6 pupils who think they are the bees-knees, but that has to be a priority for the school.

TheDetective Thu 15-Nov-12 21:16:07

I don't know what to suggest - but just a post to say I have similar concerns with my year 6 DS. He shows little enthusiasm for work, careless attitude, 'that'll do' is his answer to everything. In short, he is a coaster!

He could get 3 level 5's at the end of the year, IF he pushes himself. He doesn't want to push himself.

I'm working on it. Luckily (unlucky for him!) I'm on maternity leave at the moment and have the time, where as I was working full time shifts and less able to give him the kick up the arse he clearly needed until recently.

For what it is worth though, me and the teacher agree on his faults (and his positive sides!) and I was the one to raise the point at parents evening yesterday.

Also, his Grandma is the headteacher - yet it isn't enough to scare him into a better attitude towards his education.

Also. He takes after his mother blush. I was a coaster too.

It is a battle in year 6 I fear...

Viviennemary Thu 15-Nov-12 21:18:59

Well the fact he was in tears shows he is remorseful for having let you down. Far more worrying if he didn't care. That's my opinion anyway. I think the end of year six is a difficult time. The teacher sounds very negative and might have just been having a really bad time of it this year. Sounds like she isn't in control of the class and it's a downward spiral. I don't think it sounds as if your DS is entirely to blame.

mam29 Thu 15-Nov-12 21:19:46

Definatatly appointment with head.

Here we 2nd week back term 2
so 8weeks term one sept-half term

2weeks back

10weeks in total of new year 6 class.

Its early days to rite off whole class surly?

From what i read on primaries year 6 in some schools can be very boring and abouts sats prep.

I suspect in this case as she mentions other kids its the teaching thats at fault.

What does year 5teacher say who taught class last year?

its very odd.

mummytime Thu 15-Nov-12 21:40:05

I would want to see the Head with some urgency. If your son has such good scores, they should be preparing him for level 6 SATs. It very much sounds as if the teacher lacks control, and that your son is bright and maybe bored. I would also gently sound out other parents, are they all getting similar messages?
I think the teacher needs help. How experienced are they? If an NQT it could be they need support. Are they new to year 6?
I would also lay off your son a bit, until you know the full story.

Do work with the school to see what they suggest of behavious issues, but do also use something like a behaviour book to identify when he is misbehaving (or even if his behaviour is as bad as the teacher says).

Kamer Thu 15-Nov-12 22:42:18

Thanks for all the replies. The teacher is a very experienced one, known for being tough. DS is a bit bored of the school and the limited friendship pool but that's no excuse for his behaviour.

I am annoyed with the teacher for not letting us know sooner that there was a problem, I am going to suggest a home/school report book with sanctions at home where necessary. Am also shock at the writing off of the whole class, many of whom I know are very bright non problem children.

Kamer Thu 15-Nov-12 22:43:52

I told DS to apologise to the teacher also, I didn't think of suggesting a letter.

jamdonut Thu 15-Nov-12 23:28:22

Once again the teacher gets blamed.
You obviously have no idea how soul destroying it is to have a class where the children have poor behaviour. I expect half her time, which ought to be spent on teaching, is spent instead on trying to get some semblance of behaviour for learning.
Even the best teachers can be flummoxed when all their tried and tested methods fail to work, and they don't know where to go with it next.
I'm sure she doesn't mean the entire class is bad, but the fact that there are some challenging children makes it feel like the class from hell. Sounds like she is having a very hard time,with maybe no support from management.

learnandsay Thu 15-Nov-12 23:31:58

This isn't teacher-rant-net it's mumsnet.

shinyblackgrape Thu 15-Nov-12 23:42:50

Hmmm - teacher may be having a hard time with no management support. Therefore a meeting with the headmaster would definitely be in order to ensure its brought to the relevant person's attention

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