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"You stupid little girl" how should I approach the school about this?

(23 Posts)
Downnotout Thu 13-Oct-11 20:48:23

The full story of this is on a different thread but basically DD has not been progressing as expected in private music tuition in school and when I have got to the bottom of it all it turns out her teacher has been using phrases like that and shouting at children when they make mistakes and calling them idiots etc etc.

Having quietly spoken to a few other parents about why their DCs no longer had music lessons the story came back the same. However no one has actually given this as a reason to the school, they have all just said it didn't suit their child and stopped thelessons.

DD is scared of her and I think this has affected her progress.
She has 5 lessons a week with her, 3 private, 1 choir group and 1 whole class lesson.

There are other issues too but what I really want to know is how to approach the school about it. I have already decided to with draw her from these lessons and go elsewhere as I just think that talking to a 9 year old in this way is unacceptable but I don't want this to end up with DD having repercussions in school.

Any teachers on here- what is your take on this sort of thing? And parents- what would you say? Thanks to anyone who gave me advice on my other thread- it has made me realise that my initial concerns were valid.

thisisyesterday Thu 13-Oct-11 20:49:42

I would talk to all the other parents again and say that you are going to raise this with the head and would they be willing to back you up.
the more people you have on your side (so to speak) the better. I think the school ought to know and they ought to stop this person teaching there.

Downnotout Thu 13-Oct-11 21:54:07

But how unacceptable is this?

My DDs view was that the children think the teacher is nasty, but because she's like that with everyone they just think that's how it is.

I mean when I was at school we got board rubbers thrown at us and there were bad teachers who belittled you and said all sorts of things that wouldn't be acceptable today.

But times have changed haven't they? Do I speak to the teacher concerned or have a quiet word with the head?

RightUpMyRue Thu 13-Oct-11 21:56:54

Quiet word with the head, most definitely.

It's wholly unacceptable. She can't bully success out of them.

MurderBloodstabsandgore Thu 13-Oct-11 21:57:46

I'd see if you could get anyone to back you up, then go to the head.

I think it would be a waste of time going to the teacher direct sad

skybluepearl Thu 13-Oct-11 22:24:51

Write it all down and give the facts to the head in person. Can anyone back you up?

Downnotout Thu 13-Oct-11 22:58:19

Yes. One parent said it was ok for me to give her name and say she had stopped lessons for that reason. I didn't ask anyone to- it was more that I made quiet enquiries without explaining why.

I just hate rocking the boat and need to be sure that I have a genuine grievance. By that I mean that the more of you that say it's not right, the more confidence I have in confronting this. If everyone had said- tell her to toughen up and get on with it , I would know I was making a fuss over nothing.

lechildrenofthecornsilk Thu 13-Oct-11 22:59:53

Go and see the Head - poor dd sad absolutely unnaceptable

TethHearseEnd Thu 13-Oct-11 23:04:57

Teacher here; this is totally unacceptable. Let the head know, they will thank you for it. If this teacher was seen by OFSTED behaving in such a way, it would have an impact on the school. Head definitely needs to know.

Downnotout Thu 13-Oct-11 23:08:07

Thank you. Tethhearsend. That was exactly what I needed to hear.

Obvs grateful for other posters support too. Tx.

CustardCake Thu 13-Oct-11 23:10:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

amistillscary Thu 13-Oct-11 23:16:48

I agree with TethHearseEnd. As I was readingthrough the thread I was thinking 'If the teacher wouldn't do something when being observed, she shouldn't do it when not being observed'.

That was always my thinking when teaching, and I try to live by that as a parent.

I would hope the HT will be very concerned about this and be all over that music teacher's lessons from now on to make sure she doesn't continue with this.

esselle Thu 13-Oct-11 23:24:26

This teacher is just awful and needs to be stopped.

I am sure your school has a zero tolerance attitude towards bullying which is exactly what this teacher is doing! She is a horrible bully!

You or your DH need to step up for your DD and tell the head teacher. If we don't look out for our DC and stand up for them - who else will?

I too will run a mile to avoid confrontation but not when someone messes with my DC. This doesn't need to be a cronfrontation either. Just go to the HT armed with your facts and tell it how it is. Or if you are still uncomfortable doing that you could email them.

Good luck! This is a horrible situation which needs to be made right.

stealthsquiggle Thu 13-Oct-11 23:30:49

Can you de-couple the two - first withdraw DD from the lessons (no need to give any reason, just "we have decided that DD will not be having individual music lessons at school any more", get that done and dusted so that there can be no uncertainty about her stopping, or pressure put on DD to change the decision, and then ask for a meeting with the head to discuss "concerns about music tuition" and give her the whole story without nasty bully teacher being fore-warned?

That may sound like nonsense, and maybe it is, but I think in your place I would want to do all I could to make sure DD doesn't get dragged into the row - she did what was right by telling you and she should not be made to regret that in any way.

Downnotout Fri 14-Oct-11 11:20:33

I have made an appointment to speak to the head in confidence.

Apparently this has been going on for years and some people just take the easy route and say nothing for fear of making it worse for their child and some take the view- what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

IMO tough is good when tempered with kindness but I can't get over the stupid little girl bit. And to think I've put her in a room with this person for four years and she's never told me about what itslike- or complained, just accepted thats how thing are.

admission Fri 14-Oct-11 11:20:51

The other thing that needs to be cleared up here is whether this is teacher teaches music full time in the school or whether this is a periapetetic (wrong spelling I suspect) teacher employed to come into the school and teach music as and when required.

If it is the former then the head teacher needs to know as they have direct responsibility for the staff member. If it is the latter then it could well be that it is not the school who are employing this person, it could be the LA or a private company contarcted to provide staff, which would be more awkward. You still need to have the conversation with the head teacher as it is happening in their school and they need to know, but it could be more complicated in how the school will need to deal with the situation.

Shanghaidiva Fri 14-Oct-11 11:43:15

I have no problems with teachers being strict and having high standards, but humiliating a child is completely uncacceptable. Speaking to the head is the right thing to do. I just spoke to ds's head about English teacher using the 'Seat of Shame' for children who came bottom in the spelling tests - WTF! English teacher didn't understand why I was concerned as my son is usually near the top of the class for spellings - double WTF. Being humiliated in front of peers that motivates children to succeed shock

Downnotout Fri 14-Oct-11 11:44:10

No it's the full time music teacher employed by the school. So she teaches everyone. I believe the issue has been raised before but no one I've spoken to has said anything. My friend told me that she pulled her DC out 3 years ago for the very same reason but though it was just a clash of personalities so didn't mention it. She wishes she'd spoken up now.

The lessons are in a small attic room away from all the classrooms so there's no one to hear anything. (this is beginning to sound like a horror story!) if a small child says "mum she's being nasty to me" it's easy to brush them aside and chivvy them on isn't it, thinking well we've not really done enough practice or something

ShellingPeas Fri 14-Oct-11 15:09:16

I responded on your other thread and I would definitely speak to the head teacher. I have been a music teacher employed within a school and the schools has a duty of care to all pupils to provide a suitable learning experience for their students. You're not getting it.

Do you get feedback from the teacher at all? I had to provide a half termly report for all my students and also asked parents to come in to speak to me if I (or they) had any concerns.

Downnotout Fri 14-Oct-11 16:05:27

Hardly any feedback. Just a twice a year report that basically says *** is progressing well... *** sang well in her exam/ festival. General stuff.

DD has a notebook for each lesson saying practice bars 1-6 , look at the coda, aural next week etc.

She discourages parents from eating into lessons- perfectly reasonably- but as one child goes in one comes out so there is never a few minutes to discuss how they're doing. She does not attend parents evening either.

I did approach her last year as I was caring for my father at home, before he passed away and I wanted to explain that DD was having some speech therapy for a lisp and that as Dad was so ill her therapist, who was also a vocal coach and drama teacher, was doing DDs practice with her as we needed quiet at home. She just pulled a face and rolled her eyes and then told DD it was stupid and got quite cross with her after I left. I'm afraid I didn't pay much attention at the time as I had a lot on my plate.

Anyway, meeting on Tuesday with head. We have paid for lessons till Christmas and I'm not sure if there's a terms notice or half a term but either way, knowing what I do now, DD can stop straight away if she wants, I won't have this, dare I say it, bully.... Sapping her confidence any more.

stealthsquiggle Fri 14-Oct-11 16:12:52

Yes you dare - she is a bully - and when you are done with the head, I would say - "BTW, I assume we will be refunded for this term's lessons?"

StickyGhost Fri 14-Oct-11 16:13:01

What is it about music teachers? I had just such a teacher when I was learning to play an instrument at 9 aswell; a man and he made me cry every single lesson, I remember walking back across the playground in tears. I gave up soon after, and never really told anyone because thought no-one would believe me. It's such a shame that your DD and others may give up because of this one awful teacher. You have to take a stand against this awful teacher, and make as much noise as possible, this person sounds awful.
Good luck with your meeting.

StickyGhost Fri 14-Oct-11 16:14:09

(sorry, massive overuse of the word awful there!)
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