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To be annoyed at DS teacher for missing taking time off for this?

(191 Posts)
Seriouslyirritatednechanger Tue 07-May-13 19:06:50

My eldest DS is at a notoriously crappy school as it is, I have tried to move him at various points throughout secondary to no avail. One of his teachers is guardian to a child in his year. As a result we have had restricted parents evening times available meaning my dh could not attend with me because she wanted to see her child's teachers on the same night hmm, the child frequently behaves badly and on some occasions the teacher has missed the start of DS lesson to be called in by the head when he deals with bad behaviour. The teacher has missed several lessons to take her child to appointments this term already and it is gcse so DS needs the teacher to revise with. This teacher is the only one for the subject in the school so cover teachers can't teach them. The teacher has refused to give DS extra revision sessions even though it is a subject he really struggles with and he did badly in his controlled assessments so needs a miracle to do well overall. No doubt the teacher will be giving her child extra help outside school but because I do not teach the subject or at all this is not an option for my child. I thought teachers were not meant to miss school time as they have short days and all the holidays to have appointments etc so I don't understand why she cannot do this like any other teacher. Others of DS teachers have children and this does not happen half as often. I feel like she is putting a child she looks after over my son and the importance of gcses for the whole class hmm

FreddieMisaGREATshag Tue 07-May-13 20:07:18

I am utterly and completely gobsmacked.

Here's a hint.

Your child is not the centre of the universe.

CloudsAndTrees Tue 07-May-13 20:09:24

Think yourself incredibly lucky that you don't know what it's like trying to deal with appointments for medical or emotional or educational reasons and stop being so selfish. And wake up to the fact that some of these appointments will always take place in term time, because the professionals in these fields often only work term time too!

If your child is struggling then you find a way to help him instead of blaming someone who is trying to do a good thing in life for someone who probably desperately needs it.

You sound like a very horrible and self centred person.

BatmanLovesVodkaAndCherryade Tue 07-May-13 20:09:49

1. As has been pointed out several times, teachers do not finish at 3.30
2. As has been pointed out several times, appointment times for certain health / welfare services are not very flexible
3. As has been pointed out several times, it appears to be the school which is handling the child's misdemeanors badly (ie, disrupting lessons by calling the teacher away)

I do agree that it is having an impact on your child's education, but you are wrong to blame the teacher. It is not her fault. You need to be asking the school how it is providing for the educational needs of that class.

noblegiraffe Tue 07-May-13 20:12:26

Teachers don't get paid for putting on revision sessions and seeing your attitude, I'd be far less inclined to give up my spare time for free to help your DS.

Why don't you hire a tutor?

Littlefish Tue 07-May-13 20:14:14

OP - You are making yourself sound like a complete idiot. I'm sure that's not what you want, so I suggest you just leave the thread.

Hulababy Tue 07-May-13 20:14:21

Teachers do not finish work at 3:30pm.

Meetings of all manner
Planning and Prep
Parent's Evening, etc.

A teacher's teaching hours may finish at 3:30pm but this does not mean they finish work then.

regardless of this - not all appointments can be made when it suits. Many are made for you.

ShipwreckedAndComatose Tue 07-May-13 20:15:49

Maybe teachers shouldn't be allowed to have children... That would solve this issue! I Mean, who does she think she is trying to put her child's needs above yours... hmm


yorkshirepuddings Tue 07-May-13 20:17:12

I often have to take my son to medical appointments. They are impossible to rearrange to a time convenient to me. As a teacher I have to fill in a request form, have my line manager sign it then it gets discussed at the leadership meeting before the Head makes a decision.

Time taken off as a teacher is not done lightly. My son actually has an appointment every 3 months with a hospital consultant which is more of a check and separate to his actual illness. In 4 years I have only managed to take him to this appointment once! (I'm lucky to have great parents to help out.) I appreciate that my A Level classes are important and do my best, but I get the impression that it still wouldn't be enough for you.

Just to clarify - yes my son is more important to me than anything.

ouryve Tue 07-May-13 20:17:37

seriously - my boys both have SN and during the diagnosis stage, it was common for them to have 3 appointments a week with various people. And it goes on for months. It can't all be arranged for just in school holidays. Especially not if Dr X only has Clinic Y at Hospital Z for 3 hours on the 3rd Monday of every month.

weebarra Tue 07-May-13 20:18:08

I'm not a teacher, but I am the mother to two children with medical issues as well as being one of the kind of professionals who attend multi-agency meetings of the type your DS's teacher has been going to (I assume).
I have had to miss two mornings of work this month because particular consultants hold their clinics on days that I work. Absolutely nothing I can do about that.
As for the meetings, often the LA or school will have a statutory obligation to have these, with particular professionals attending, at certain times.
No, it's not great for anyone involved, but I don't think your DS's teacher is trying to be difficult somehow.

stiffstink Tue 07-May-13 20:18:37

You should write her a note and tell her that your biological child comes before this "child she looks after" and that there is to be no more of this parenting lark going on when your child hasn't had extra revision allocated (I mean seriously, what is she doing, having some sort of home life ffs?)

Also, tell her that your DH's work/social calendar should be prioritised above her child. She sounds like she hasn't got your family's needs as her number one objective and that's just n
Tell her to hand her kid back s over to Social Services so yours can revise. Its so oobvious

ProphetOfDoom Tue 07-May-13 20:19:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

whosiwhatsit Tue 07-May-13 20:19:33

It's not the teachers job to spoon feed the gcse topic to your child. If the average results for the teachers classes taken as a whole aren't too much worse than the national average then the teacher has done her job correctly. If this isn't enough for your child he can study from materials on the Internet, get extra tuition from a private tutor, or fail the course. Not everyone is cut out or every subject at every level and if your child needs to work harder than most to pass but chooses not to do so then that is hardly the teachers fault!

LaGuardia Tue 07-May-13 20:20:00

Here, OP, have my first biscuit

edam Tue 07-May-13 20:20:18

OK, I can see why people are irritated BUT your beef here is really with the head who should be providing adequate cover if the teacher has unavoidable absences. It may be a good idea to arrange an appointment with the head (or head of year?) and say you are concerned about your son's progress and the impact of a lack of proper cover. Explain how it is affecting your son and ask them what steps they are planning to take to minimise any disruption and ensure everyone taking this subject is given the opportunity to do their best.

StrawberryMojito Tue 07-May-13 20:21:29

This thread is full of disgruntled teachers pissed off about the "short days" comment.

OP-YANBU. Your child does deserve for his teacher to be there, on time, each lesson. I'm not unsympathetic to the plight of the teacher in question but if the school are willing to allow the teacher time off then they should put in place provisions to assist the other 30 or so kids that need attention in their absence.

Complain to the school, make your complaint about the situation rather than the individual.

And to Freddie...OPs child may not be the centre of the universe but he's the centre of her universe so of course she wants the best for him. Yours was a stupid comment.

threepiecesuite Tue 07-May-13 20:21:31

OP, I think you meant the children finish school at 3.30.

For teachers, usually - the 'working' part of the day is just beginning. Today, at 3.30, I ate my lunch, went to the toilet for the first time, went to two meetings, phoned several parents and said hello to some colleagues in my dept who I'd not seen all day. Then I held a revision lesson from 4-5pm.

I do kind of agree with you point about the teacher missing parents evening to attend for her foster DS, she should have spoken to their teachers whilst in school, after school, before school etc.

FreddieMisaGREATshag Tue 07-May-13 20:21:46

It's the first week of may. Don't you think you have left it just a tad late?

Takver Tue 07-May-13 20:22:22

This is an interesting one. I can see 100% that the teacher needs to be absent in order to deal with appointments. BUT, it does sound as though the school are not dealing with this appropriately if it is having an impact on the class.

I'm reminded of my O level maths teacher who was a carer for her elderly mother. She was often away, and also very often distracted in lessons.

I was lucky, I got a good result anyway. But I am very certain that many of the other pupils in my class dropped one or two grades if not more compared to what they could have achieved had we had a teacher who was present both in body and mind more often.

So the question is - what should be done in these circumstances? You're in a situation where 30 children could potentially miss out on opportunities because they haven't had decent teaching at an important time in their school career.

FreddieMisaGREATshag Tue 07-May-13 20:22:51

No, Strawberry, because the point is that the teacher's child IS THE CENTRE OF HER UNIVERSE.

And she's entitled to go to exactly the same sort of appointments and meetings and whatever else that the OP would go to if it were her child.

StrawberryMojito Tue 07-May-13 20:24:49

Yes, but as I said, the school should provide cover for her so that the other children are not let down.

Takver Tue 07-May-13 20:27:27

To the teachers on here - is it appropriate that children miss out on teaching if their teacher is, for whatever reason, regularly absent from all or part of lessons?

I have to say that as an employer, if I had an employee who had to take very regular time off in such circumstances, I'd absolutely do my best to be sympathetic and make things work. BUT I would expect them to work out with me some way that they could also continue to do their job fully and properly.

MiaowTheCat Tue 07-May-13 20:30:47

Waiting for this to degenerate into a bitch fest about teachers daring to take maternity leave etc etc too. Or get ill... or anything else.

It's May. If you're pissing and whining about wanting extra revision sessions personally provided for your child now... you've left it too late. You've also left it too late probably to get a tutor and have any real impact.

Would YOU expect YOUR job to insist you put IT ahead of your child? Fuck God no. So why do you think the teacher should do that (newsflash- it's a job at the end of the day) for someone who sounds utterly ungrateful and vile in their attitude towards them? You're pissed off because the teacher won't drop everything to spoonfeed your son a miracle GCSE pass basically.

The demanding extra revision sessions sounds incredibly entitled by the way, and the "child she looks after" sounds really nasty - like this child isn't a "proper" child, but has some kind of similar status to a cat or whatever.

It's posts like this that remind me why there is no way I'd go back into teaching while I have kids of school age myself - because of the whole attitude that your soul is owned and your own family is a hideously unpleasant inconvenience you were fucking downright unreasonable to dare to have for it getting in the way of Tarquin's GCSEs.

AmIGoingMad Tue 07-May-13 20:31:05

In short.... Yes! YABVVVU!

I'm trying to ignore all the ridiculously selfish and misinformed/ignorant comments that you have made op, and to just focus on giving you some websites that YOU can use to help YOUR child with his exam preparation.

Google the following:

Mfl ashcombe
Mfl Sunderland
Languages online

The ma France/ Spanish or German equivalent have some good listening resources.

Try watching tv5 online if French or espana directo if Spanish.

Also the exam board websites usually have free access to past papers including the listening tracks to go with them.

These are all ways that you and your child can approach revision without the need for teacher participation. At some point, your son/you must realise that not everything can/should be spoonfed and that some independent work is necessary in order to improve in a subject he finds challenging.

Obviously it is not good that so many lessons are being missed. As others have said before, this is an issue that the slt should be dealing with as the teacher likely has no control over the timing of these appointments and will also be unhappy at missing the lessons but must understandably prioritise the well being of the child in her care.

I hope that these are of some help to you.

MiaowTheCat Tue 07-May-13 20:31:59

Your real beef by the way should be with the head if they're half-arsing cover arrangements. There'll be plenty of subject specialists out there on supply lists - but too many heads now view cover arrangements as finding something with a pulse to stand at the front of the class and hand out a worksheet or read out a bit of paper with "they know what they're doing" on it.

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