Cant sleep, need advice please, unpleasant primary school teacher related(19 Posts)
there is a back story so briefly...
My DS1 was 4 in June, he started reception class in Sept. We will call his teacher (mrs x) and his teaching assistant (mrs y)
He was potty trained about 2.5/3 and was great at it, although he has had a couple of patches where something has been bothering him where he has repeatedly poo'd in his pants, this can be a week, a couple of weeks, just a one off, but it always coincides with something he is bothered about.
He started school and loved it, settled in quickly and all was well.
There is a book which travels back and forth in his book bag which we can write messages in for his teacher and vice versa.
A couple of weeks in he had an accident. There was a note to tell us. I asked him about it and he said he hadnt made it in time and that was that, it happened again the next day and we got a note saying 'he has soiled himself again today please encourage your DS to use the toilet, it would help us in school'
I was annoyed by the wording as it suggested i left him feral at home but...!
It also said, 'he can't wipe his own bottom' now i had tried at this point to teach him, sometimes he would do it, sometimes he would ask me or dh to do it.
I wrote in his book that it wasnt an issue at home and that i had reassured him that it was ok to go to the toilet whenever he needed it and asked them to do the same.
We had a week or so accident free... then another one. Accompanying note was just to inform us.
On thursday there were two notes in his book, one from the morning he had done a wee in his pants (this is so unusual i was really shocked by this) then a hugely exasperated note saying 'and now, he has just done a poo in the playground line, we think he is just lazy'
Now i didnt read this note until i got home, by which time mrs y had pulled me to one side for a word when i picked him up, she said to me 'we are starting to think he is just lazy' i was shocked she said that but was a bit speechless because i understand how frustrating it is to have to change him but also that i cant magically find out what is bothering him.
That night he told me mrs x had 'shouted at me for pooing in my pants and scared me, she said it was naughty' i took this with a pinch of salt but also was slightly worried in case that was the case.
When i read the note in his book at home dh wrote a note back to say we would go in and see mrs x and mrs y after school that day (friday)
We went in, she confirmed she had shouted at him but not used the word 'naughty'
We suggested saying hat he was lazy wasnt helping matters and he is obviously worried about something at school as he doesnt have problems at home, he now goes to the toilet and wipes independantly at home.
We put our point across and a plan was agreed.
(DS went home with a friend so wasnt in this meeting)
Tonight at bedtime i said to him i was really proud of him for having a day without and accident and praised him for going to the toilet at school (he had a poo at school, despite also having one at home this morning) he said 'mrs x thinks me and bob (namechange other child in his class) are lazy'
Now i know we didnt discuss any of this near him or with him in earshot, he wasnt in on the meeting and bob was never mentioned the other night so i feel like this was said again today.
I dont want to be the overreacting mother but im not happy if she is continuing to say he is lazy, and too him, im disgusted!
Should i mention it or just leave it?
Sorry for the epic ramble but i would like another perspective, also sorry if i have left bits out and therefore dripfeed im tired!
I wouldn't take it personally. Teachers are busy and are trying their best to teach `king at it as an outsider, I don't think the teachers meant anything by it but we love our kids dearly and rightly don't want them shouted at, spoken to badly in any shape or form. Hope that helps x
Please ignore my message, it got truncated and doesn't make sense they way it appears now, will do again tomorrow as its getting late. Night night.
Personally I think the teacher has behaved appallingly. I would ask to see the head teacher. We had similarish problems towards the end of Reception year whereby DS kept wetting himself at school, after a few weeks of gentle probing it turned out there was 'bullying' issues. Also if the teacher is making a deal out of it and chastising him for it he may feel that he can't ask for the toilet which in turn leads to the accidents so rather than helping you and supporting you is probably making a situation worse. Honestly you do wonder how and why some of these people become teachers.
I agree with Minoush, it is a terrible attitude for a teacher to have
I would make an appointment with the Head asap. The teacher and the TA are well out of line shouting and calling him lazy.
I'm not part of the PC brigade where kids can't be told they are 'naughty' or 'lazy' or whatever, but in this case it's highly inappropriate. No teacher should be shouting at Reception aged kids, not even if they are being properly naughty (which your DS clearly was not). They are too small to be shouted at
by people other than their parents.
Honestly you do wonder how and why some of these people become teachers You do, don't you Especially of new entrants
I wouldn't accept a teacher telling a child that they were lazy
well except maybe dd1 cos she is! In reception anyway, and not about such an issue. I can see why they are finding it frustrating, especially when you tell her he is fine at school, but it does show that she isn't really understanding the problem.
It may be that there are further issues with the teacher which are leading to the problems, or the reception environment is so exciting that he leaves it too late. Obviously you want to know if it is the first one, and it will be interesting to see how the school deal with your complaint. It tells alot about a school when you need to complain - not that you have had to complain - all schools/teachers make mistakes, but how they handle it.
I would say the way to go for them is gently reminding him throughout the day, but not making a big deal of any accidents. Schools often do seem to think though that a parent half a mile away will exert some magic influence on their child, when what is really needed is a common sense analysis there and then of what might be the triggers. Maybe ask them to keep a chart of when he has an accident and what he was doing just before, to see if you or they can work out any patterns.
Sadly I think if a teacher is willing to tell two little boys together, hopefully not infront of the whole class that they are lazy, when they are just 4 then I'm guessing there might be other issues going on, hope I am wrong.
Do try to sleep, it will make dealing with tomorrow easier. I'm only awake cos I fell asleep on the sofa, dh left lights and TV blaring, which explains my wierd dreams about Alan Carr and I'm guessing either Jamie Oliver was on or they were talking about him. That's probably made it harder for you to sleep!
Thankyou all, chipping, i am also not one of those people who thinks children shouldnt be told etc, which is why asked, so i am glad you said that, i was afraid i was losing perspective!
He is one of the youngest in the year and is in a mixed class of reception and year 1.
I also dont believe every word that leaves his mouth and accept some of it could be him repeating things he has heard elsewhere etc but i know him and i know when he is making things up, i really dont believe this is one of those times.
I was thinking about it today and i think the issue stemmed from the fact she initially made an issue of him not being able to wipe his own bum, she left notes to say 'your ds says he doesnt wipe his own bum at home when we asked him' i think he has been worried about asking for help and so ended up doing it in his pants and then that made the problem worse.
I think i will make an appointment to see the head, i just dont want to be one of 'those mothers'
at Jamie Oliver and Alan Carr related dreams... Yes that should make for soothing restful sleep! Im off to bed now, thanks all so much
Stuff it, be one of 'those mothers'. You know your child better than them and their job is to help guide, educate and ready your child for life, not to belittle them or add to problems. As mothers we do a good enough job of messing our kids up without teachers 'helping'
He is 4 FGS!
Shouting at a 4 year old over them soiling themselves in this context is beyond pathetic.
The teacher is out of line and I would be speaking to the head at this point.
First off I'm projecting wildly so feel free to ignore/dilute this...
Last year we had a teacher who took a dislike to my son - I could go on and on with examples but frankly thats what it boiled down to.
So for me I think you have two issues
i) soiling himself which obviously needs resolving and I think you are absolutely right to encourage him go more often, reward him when he is clean - and the school should do the same, he can't be the only reception kid to have ever had this problem.
ii) the second and for me bigger issue is the relationship this will forge betwen the teacher and your son. She probably sees him as hard work - I'm judging based on her use of language and frankly it must be annoying to have to deal with this. And he will be feeling judged and already has flagged that she thinks he is lazy. Please dont let this get into a vicious circle - - where these views have a danger of spilling over into every interaction she has with him. As well as taking steps to resolve the soiling, also speak to the school about how to keep the relationship on track.
I would not be "that mother" on the soiling but I would be on the relationship. As I say I'm projecting, but I let didnt push that side of things and it really hurt my DS' year at school in terms of confidence, enjoyment of learning and just believing that he wasn't stupid (or in your case "lazy"). We lost a full year - and it took all summer and his wonderful P1 teacher that DS has started to realise school can be fun and actually he's pretty good at it.
I would complain. She has no business shouting at a child this age. It is not necessary and it is not going to help solve the issue. Therefore it is both unpleasant and counter-productive. If he hasn't heard the word 'lazy' coming from you in relation to this (either at home or when she spoke to you at school before you read the note) then he has got it from the teacher. It is a nasty and unneccessary thing for a teacher to call a child in this context.
Dexavia, that is exactly my concern, i feel she has branded him hard work, like you say. She doesnt seem very tolerant at all really.
I only got about an hours sleep last night and lack of sleep maoes me cry easily (i get that from my dad unfortunately) i dont want to get upset as the point im am trying to make gets lost.
I will try and talk to her later, DH suggested talking to the other reception teacher, who is head of foundation stage, and so far lovely. I am concerned going straight to the head after only one day has passed since our meeting might cause more trouble than it achieves.
Thankyou all so much for your perspective, i really appreciate it.
The head of foundation stage was also in our meeting on friday so is aware of all the info (just to be clear)
Hi OP, just wondering how things are getting on?
I Hope the situation is resolving itself.
Hi LDNMummy, thankyou for asking, he had a full week with no accidents last week, so i decided not to say anything further. I do worry that other children may have the same problem either now or in the future, it shouldn't have got to the stage it did with my DS but, as far as he is concerned, we had a great week. He seems to be more confident in asking to go, and whatever it was bothering him, so far, is past.
So fingers crossed it continues!
Thanks all again for the advice, you really did help me out
I am so sorry this has happened. I am a teacher and a mother of a young child. I would be very upset if a teacher labelled my child as being lazy for soiling himself. It s quite simplistic. Perhaps you might consider approaching the head about your concerns. Your child is the top priority. You are not an unreasonable parent.
It definitely shouldn't have gotten to that stage but I think if this teacher really has a personal issue, which it seems she does, it will come to light eventually.
Glad your LO is having a better time of it lately
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