Are all schools like this?

(60 Posts)
FineAsWeAre Fri 25-Mar-16 13:03:08

My DS enjoys school but sometimes gets a bit disheartened at not being chosen for things. It seems to always be the same kids who get the lead parts in plays, win competitions or achievement awards etc. and it's always the ones whose mums are on the pta or board of governors and go on all the school trips and things. The teachers always chat to them at the end of the day but never say anything to me if I happen to do the school run occasionally. As a nursery practitioner, if I didn't see a particular parent often I'd make an extra effort to involve them in some way. It almost feels like my son's missing out because I work.

Inkymess Fri 25-Mar-16 13:21:16

Our school is definately not. Everything is done by ballot, pulling names from hat, chosen by school council, on rotation so everyone gets a turn or awarded to children who get the most points for effort in class etc Loads of fair way to choose DC for things.
I have heard others on hear say their school is though.
I'd be speaking to the governors personally as it shouldn't be like that at all.

HopeClearwater Fri 25-Mar-16 13:23:08

You actually believe your child when he says that? All kids say that when they don't get picked.

soimpressed Fri 25-Mar-16 13:36:58

My son's school is exactly like this! The teachers even say to my son that one day he'll be really proud to say he went to school with x . Recently the children who always get chosen for everything went out for an all day competition and came back with all sorts of goodies and tales of the fantastic day they had. The other half of the class had to stay behind and work. I wrote to the head to say, very politely, that it seemed a little unfair and she never even replied.

TheTartOfAsgard Fri 25-Mar-16 13:38:11

This happened at my kids primary school. There's a very active cliquey 'friends' association of around 15-20 sahp who raise money for the school, and it was too much of a coincidence that every lead in play/competition/award/photo in local paper was always given out to one of their children. Even on the school website the gallery only featured the children of these 'friends' and It got to be a running joke amongst us other parents. Kids are both at secondary now and it uses a ballot system so all children have a more equal chance.

clam Fri 25-Mar-16 13:39:16

It seems to always be the same kids who get the lead parts in plays, win competitions or achievement awards etc. and it's always the ones whose mums are on the pta or board of governors and go on all the school trips and things.

This is such a hackneyed cliche that is so often trotted out here on MN. It's got nothing to do with who's on the PTA as to who might be given a speaking part in a play. That notion is such an insult to teachers.

Makes me angry. For one thing I've no idea in who's in the bloody PTA, and secondly, I've just spent half a term working extremely hard on putting on a production, which was cast on a reasonable modicum of talent and willingness to audition.

Dellarobia Fri 25-Mar-16 13:40:07

Not at our school. The PE teacher is on a mission that every single child in the school will have the opportunity to represent the school in a sporting activity held outside the school. However this does mean we lose a lot!!

Dovinia Fri 25-Mar-16 13:43:03

Maybe there is a correlation between parents who are outgoing and confident enough to join the PTA and chat to the teacher, and their children being outgoing and confident enough to push themselves forward, be reliable in main parts in plays etc.

SuburbanRhonda Fri 25-Mar-16 13:47:14

Wasn't there an identical thread to this only a few days ago - when the OP claimed her children never got any prizes, were never picked to represent the school in sports, were never the lead in school productions etc? And IIRC it was always the children of PTA members who were picked in her school also?

Maybe it's the same school hmm

TeenAndTween Fri 25-Mar-16 14:40:56

I think what Dovina says is partly true, confident parents can help make confident children.

However, I have been on the PTA for nearly 7 years. My DD doesn't get picked for plays, or sports teams, or awards, or anything much at all.

The only things she gets are for regular things because we make sure we do them. Such as things for reading regularly.

(Whereas when DD1 was in primary and I wasn't on the PTA, she had some good roles in plays and did readings at carol services. But she is good at drama and speaks confidently).

clary Fri 25-Mar-16 14:46:33

I was a governor and on the PTA at my DCs' primary and was never aware that they had the main part in the play or any other special treatment, so no, not all schools are like this

In fact DD who is a good girl won star of the week in year 6 - which as the first time she had ever won it in 4 years at the school (junior school)!

On another matter, even if you work you can still be on the PTA you know - I have always worked full time but went to meetings, helped at weekend and evening events etc. Please get involved if you can - every bit of help will be welcomed.

Twowrongsdontmakearight Fri 25-Mar-16 14:47:29

When I worked in a school it was generally the same group that were chosen for leads in plays etc. But nothing to do with PTA. it was because they could be trusted to actually learn their lines etc. In one play a different child was chosen for a bigger part but still didn't know his lines a week before.

Inkymess Fri 25-Mar-16 17:04:39

Good point re PTA etc - almost all of ours work as do most of the volunteers. Same as parent governors. All work. They find time. They plan and make sure their DC don't suffer cos they work. They are often the confident sociable types so yes a lot of their DC are prob the same, but not all !

JasperDamerel Fri 25-Mar-16 17:18:05

There are some children at the DC's school who are picked for lots of things. Often they have parents who are involved in the PTA/volunteer at the school/are governors. Usually the parents are involved in other community activities, too. But it's not favouritism. Plenty of similar parents have children who don't get picked for stuff. I have one of each. DD is confident, sociable, hardworking, likes praise, and bonunteers for anything going. DS is quieter and doesn't like standing out. I don't think it's surprising that the children who grow up seeing their parents volunteering, organising stuff in the community and participating in various activities are often the ones who volunteer, organise stuff in the school and participate in school activities.

irvine101 Fri 25-Mar-16 17:53:59

At my ds's school, it's always the same face who gets picked. Bright ones and one who has PTA and governors for parents. But seems like those with parents who are involved get priority. If you are unhappy, why don't you get involved more? There are a lot things you can do even you are working parents.

PollyPurple Fri 25-Mar-16 17:58:47

Ds had a lead role in his school play last year, I'm not on the pta, I don't really have time to talk to the teachers much at drop off and I'm rarely there at pick up due to work. He's also had varying certificates for this and that, yet still, he will come home sometimes saying he's never picked for anything halo

PollyPurple Fri 25-Mar-16 18:00:07

I think Ds school hand out certificates quite regularly to all dc, that wasn't a stealth boast.

exLtEveDallas Fri 25-Mar-16 18:13:07

DD is in all the sports teams - because she's good at sport and volunteers for them.
She has speaking parts in church services/assemblies - because she has a clear speaking voice.
She was a prefect and is now Head Girl - because she has never been in trouble, works hard in class and takes part in all extra-curriculars.
She won a reading achievement award - because she reads nightly (by choice)

I'm not on the PTA nor a Governor. DH did most of the school runs until recently and neither of us are 'well known' in the playground.

DDs achievements are down to her own hard work and nothing to do with me.

irvine101 Fri 25-Mar-16 18:19:28

Yes I can understand some school are fair and some are not. But it happens. My ds is picked and I'm not in pta or governor. But I see lots of children are chosen for that reason.( One Christmas concert was just painful to watch, because the main girl was completely out of tune and she couldn't remember her lines.)

AChickenCalledKorma Fri 25-Mar-16 18:21:45

DD1 is one of those children who is always picked for things. However, DD2 is the complete opposite - constantly under the radar and overlooked for things, even when she has lots of talent in that area.

The difference is personality. DD1 puts herself forward and is cast iron reliable in terms of putting the work in, turning up on time and learning lines etc. DD2 is much less self-confident, and frankly also quite keen on shirking hard work and hanging out with her mates.

I'd quite like it if DD1 got picked a bit less and DD2 was pushed out of her comfort zone a bit more. But I can understand why things are as they are.

(Mind you I did admire it when DD2 used her grammar homework about imperatives to write several different sentences that boiled down to "pick me as a prefect or else!" That seemed to do the trick!!)

FineAsWeAre Fri 25-Mar-16 18:21:54

I'd love to be involved but I genuinely don't have time. I work full time and I'm at uni, and I'm trying to juggle studying with DS's after-school activities. Plus the fact that I'd have no-one to look after DS while I went to meetings or events. It may just be a coincidence but I know full well my DS is very confident and he's been given roles in his drama club shows with no bother. It genuinely does come across as favouritism as it's a very cliquey estate with a lot of the teachers and TAs living local, plus it seems to be the same kids week in week out who get the star of the week certificates etc despite my son's teacher telling me at parent's evening that he's clever and works hard. It's not just mine being left out either, I know a couple of other mums are feeling like they're in the same boat. Hope Clearwater, I'm not sure what you mean by 'do I really believe him', it's not my son telling tales, it's what I've seen at school.

Inkymess Fri 25-Mar-16 18:38:40

You then need to raise it with the school.

clam Fri 25-Mar-16 18:45:19

But seems like those with parents who are involved get priority.

But I see lots of children are chosen for that reason

Sorry, but this is just bollocks. Complete chippy nonsense.

irvine101 Fri 25-Mar-16 18:52:36

clam, I am not saying it happens at every school. But it is true at my ds's school.
It happens, unfortunately. Not all school and teachers are like you. (I wish they are.) Can you tell me where you teach? I will think about transfer!grin

BertPuttocks Fri 25-Mar-16 18:53:46

DD's school tries to get as many children involved as possible. They have different roles and responsibilities that they sign up for.

What tends to happen is that after a couple of weeks some of the children decide that they don't want to do the job anymore and it gets offered to someone else. By the end of the term/year there are several children who now have two or three roles and others who have none.

When certificates are handed out for it at the end of the year, it looks as though some children have been picked for everything and everyone else has been left out. The reality is that they're the only ones who've actually done what they volunteered to do.

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