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AIBU to be feeling bad...

(20 Posts)
sandy1969 Mon 17-Nov-14 22:35:01

I help in school in my daughters classes voluntarily in lessons each week. I do feel this is a privilege and mostly very enjoyable, but equally it does help out and has sometimes in the past been repetitive. In the last year or two our school has changed how they choose people to help with school trips. They often seem to chose people who don't usually help out to give them a go too (depends on the teacher). I work too and miss income to help out. Whilst I understand choosing others, it doesn't really feel fair. Couldn't they volunteer to help out for a day in school? They only volunteer for trips. The school seems to accept most offers of help. It just feels a bit unkind to ignore those who help regularly when there is something fun to do but perhaps I am missing something? Perhaps teachers have a different perspective. I'm sure I will breeze on, get over myself and not feel bad soon enough.

mindthegap79 Mon 17-Nov-14 23:00:51

I'm a teacher and would say yanbu, but I can understand why this might happen. In my experience we are very likely to take offers of help on trips from parents who are more removed from school, as it's a really good opportunity to engage them. I can see your point of view though.

hallamoo Mon 17-Nov-14 23:06:30

YABU, most parents work, or have pre schoolers, and so can't easily 'volunteer in school once a week', but for a one off trip, they could take annual leave or arrange temp childcare.

Why do you think you should get priority over other parents, who, would dearly love (and their DC would love it too) to help out, just because you happen to have more spare time during the week?

TheRealMaryMillington Mon 17-Nov-14 23:08:57

Sorry but YABU a bit
Are your efforts otherwise appreciated, or do you feel taken for granted?
Some people can only volunteer once in a blue moon (other kids to mind, work that cannot be scheduled around a volunteering commitment) - e.g. for a specific date or trip - one offs are no good in the actual classroom. It's also possible presumed that people who volunteer in class are getting some form of payback in terms of experience for ever-coveted TA jobs etc (this may not be the case for you but it certainly is for all the parent helpers I know). PS at our kids school they pull names out of a hat (and possibly put your name back in if you've gone on a trip before)
Are your efforts otherwise appreciated, or do you feel taken for granted?
Personally I can't think of anything worse than shepherding a bunch of other people's kids outside a controlled environment

BlueGreenHazelGreen Mon 17-Nov-14 23:11:41

Why not consider it from the children's point of view.

I work full time I can't volunteer in school. However I do volunteer my time for one offs. These are every important to my children. They see other parents at the school gate everyday and some Mums in school ever week and wish I was there too.

The thrill of Mummy coming to the trip is massive.

sandy1969 Tue 18-Nov-14 09:10:47

As I said people can volunteer to help for a day or half day in school no problem but they don't. I know of only one parent who did this.

I do get asked a lot by the children why aren't you coming because they are disappointed because I have helped for so many years.

Wish I hadn't posted this just made me feel much worse.

sandy1969 Tue 18-Nov-14 09:13:23

And a mean one day or a half day. Not one day a week obviously.

sandy1969 Tue 18-Nov-14 09:13:41

Sorry "I" mean

sandy1969 Tue 18-Nov-14 09:15:01

In answer to Mary no I don't want to be a TA or teacher.

sandy1969 Tue 18-Nov-14 09:18:27

Hallamoo the thought that I have "spare time" running our own business is a joke. I end up working at night and missing other things. Most people seem to get out more than me and watch more TV too.

Only1scoop Tue 18-Nov-14 09:18:52

Yabu ish....

I think the first post from mindthegap possibly sums up the schools perspective....

sandy1969 Tue 18-Nov-14 09:52:28

Yes Only1 that was a nice post from mindthegap. I don't begrudge them it really, I am happy for them and their kids but can't stop feeling sad no matter what everyone says here. Silly. Must pull self together, perhaps I needs to stop helping so much, it is a real stretch to be honest.

Littlef00t Tue 18-Nov-14 09:58:09

Sounds like you feel taken for granted and that you're missing out on the fun stuff.

I would perhaps take a step back next term and see how things go and how you feel after half a term. Perhaps offer to do more ad hoc stuff instead?

Brittabot Tue 18-Nov-14 10:01:33

Have you asked the school if you could go on the occasional trip?
I volunteer weekly at the school but to be honest I wouldn't give the trips that much thought, perhaps the school don't realise how keen you are to go?

Otherwise, if you feel it is a sacrifice for you then don't volunteer weekly, just volunteer for trips although that would be a shame if you and the children enjoy it.

sandy1969 Tue 18-Nov-14 10:32:44

Thanks Little and Britta, I think the school know, and I think ad hoc stuff might be a better idea, scale it back a bit. One thing I've learned primary schools need funding for more TAs!

BlueGreenHazelGreen Tue 18-Nov-14 13:10:13

I (and probably most people) wouldn't get permission for a days holiday for a random day in school, asking to go and help with the zoo/theatre/safari park trip is rather different.

And yes, it does sound like you should scale back your volunteering if it is leading to feelings of resentment and upset.

TheRealMaryMillington Tue 18-Nov-14 13:15:02

You sound tired and sad. If it is too much, do less. If there is some resentment creeping into voluntary work it is often time to reassess.

You didn't answer my most important question though - do you feel otherwise that you and your voluntary work are valued and appreciated by the kids/teacher/school as an organisation?

Would you be able to say to the teacher that you work with that you would really like to be able to go on one of the trips, if that is the thing that would make it all work for you? They might not know how you feel!

PoirotsMoustache Tue 18-Nov-14 13:20:54

I completely understand what you're saying, but if you work during the day (for a company or another person I mean) then you can't give the school a list of days you'd be free to help if they needed you. I would love to go into my son's school to help out, but I can't book leave for a day on the off chance that would be the day they ask me to come in.

So YANBU for how you feel.

poppy54321 Tue 18-Nov-14 13:46:07

There is generally only one day trip a year Mary so maybe next year. Yes I feel the work is valued.

Poirots, that's a real shame they don't let you go in when you are available. Schools are so short with help listening to read that some would benefit from being more flexible. They are missing out on a valuable resource. If they allowed people to come in adhoc you could cover so many readers in a day. Many young children don't read at home to parents and so school reading is important. I suppose we are lucky it is encouraged at our school, I just wish more people did it.

poppy54321 Tue 18-Nov-14 13:46:27

Sorry changed username!

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