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Does every class have a high maintenance parent?

(110 Posts)
Rottenluck Fri 16-Nov-12 18:31:11

According to said friend: The teacher coming to the house prior to the start of reception was just an excuse for snooping, the settling in was a waste of time, the reading books are crap, and now there's something wrong with the nativity.

We're only half way through the first term of reception and I just want to tell my friend to button it! It's a good school, her first choice but in her eyes they will never get it right. 9 times out of 10 she has to speak to the teacher at pick up and they have already had several heated discussions about the reading books. Her DC apparently warrants twice as much of the teachers time at parents evening.

She's so absorbed in her battle with them she's lost sight of what really matters and I can't help thinking she won't ever be taken seriously as she complains so much.

Sparklingbrook Sat 17-Nov-12 11:07:10

These are the parents that look at all the other kids' books and not just their own when they are put out at Parents' Evening.

clam Sat 17-Nov-12 11:09:08

Sure, there are people who push the boundaries, or attempt to. But it's the school's choice as to whether they tolerate it or not. but I'm still staggered to hear that so many other parents seriously believe that that sort of behaviour guarantees teachers bending to their will and giving their kids a lead part in the Nativity! In my experience it has the opposite effect.

Sparklingbrook Sat 17-Nov-12 11:11:49

Re the school nativity. In my experience they just gave all the gobby confident children speaking main parts whether they had HMP or not. Less chance of messing it up.

AmberLeaf Sat 17-Nov-12 11:18:34

No way would a child get extra time/room of their own to sit sats in, because their parent was pushy!

Unless by pushy you mean, supportive of their child who has SN and made sure they got 'help' to take their sats.

A child with no additional needs would not be allowed to sit sats in their own room.

What rubbish!

Sparklingbrook Sat 17-Nov-12 11:20:02

I did think that Amber. I don't think the parents can be that pushy can they? Well not in my experience anyway.

TheNebulousBoojum Sat 17-Nov-12 11:21:42

It's part of the deep and unyielding ignorance that many parents have about the SN needs of other children, Amberleaf.

Ruprekt Sat 17-Nov-12 12:11:55

Clam - I totally agree with you!

However, she was given a list of readers and shown where to sit. Next minute, she was next to her DD, helping her with her literacy!!

Teacher (not me) VERY cross!

clam Sat 17-Nov-12 12:14:20

That would be the last time that parent was asked in to class then. Although our Head doesn't allow any parents to help in their own child's class, partly for that reason. Readers are heard in shared areas around the school, for instance.

TheNebulousBoojum Sat 17-Nov-12 12:15:56

HM parents never get to come on school trips IME.

AmberLeaf Sat 17-Nov-12 12:19:57

It's part of the deep and unyielding ignorance that many parents have about the SN needs of other children, Amberleaf

Sadly, I know it only too well!

tethersend Sat 17-Nov-12 12:24:50

As I teacher, I wholeheartedly agree that there's one in every class.

Unfortunately, in my DD's class, I think it might be me blush

ceebeegeebies Sat 17-Nov-12 12:26:54

Oh yes, we definitely have them at DS1's school. There are 2 of them that spring to mind that seem to spend their lives at the school for one reason or another.

I remember helping out at a PTA event last year and one of them asked me to take something up to the HT's office and when I said I didn't have a clue where the HT office was, she literally rolled her eyes at me and why would I know where the HT office is because, unlike them, I do not spend all my spare time at the school hmm

Now guess whose children were the first ones to be picked for Star of the Week in their resepctive classes this year?? Conicidence or not??

FushiaFernica Sat 17-Nov-12 12:27:16

I agree with your friend on two of her points:-
teacher coming to the house to snoop before starting school-government ploy.
reading books are crap i.e. won't engage your child.

So I am not help to you sorry.

ListenUpIdBeAGreatLifeCoachMe Sat 17-Nov-12 13:01:27

If anyone wants one we have a large cohort in DS's year R/1 all of which are to be found in the cluster fuck surrounding the local millionaire's wife (Queen Bee QB) trying to get their kids in the same phonics, maths &activity groups as QB's DD.
1. Would have gone to local private dame school but the QB went state shock now can't get her head round 28 kids in a class, etc.
2. Plumbers wife, playing money catch up, kids reading band part of ascension to local royalty.
3. The volunteer mum readers, are mostly there to spy and observe - Fact straight from their mouths, got very cross when once ordered into another year group and most dropped out.

clam Sat 17-Nov-12 13:23:51

"Now guess whose children were the first ones to be picked for Star of the Week in their resepctive classes this year?? Conicidence or not??"

Star of the week is a pain in the bloody neck. But there is No. Bloody. WAY. that pushy mums' kids are selected for it first. I'll repeat my earlier point: how low do you rate us teachers, ffs? Do you really think we're that stupid?

TheNebulousBoojum Sat 17-Nov-12 13:26:08

Yes, yes they do clam. Surely you've been on MN long enough not to ask such a rhetorical question?
Have some more gin in your teacup
<passes bottle>

TheNebulousBoojum Sat 17-Nov-12 13:28:22

I tend to select PITA children for the first few certificates if at all possible TBH, because the lovely children will have lots of opportunities to show their loveliness, whereas the PITA might only have a few days in the term when you wouldn't be lying.

clam Sat 17-Nov-12 13:32:48

<<whispers: what, you mean that the HMP's child in ceebeegeebie's child's class might be a PITA?!>>

Gin very welcome <<wipes mouth on sleeve>>

TheNebulousBoojum Sat 17-Nov-12 13:35:23

Opinionated, arrogant, inflexible, unable to share time and resources appropriately, lacking resilience when facing a challenge unless supported intensively by adult approval? Dismissive of others? Controlling of relationships?
That sort of PITA?
Surely not.

TheNebulousBoojum Sat 17-Nov-12 13:36:19

Although sometimes you do look at a child and think that they remind you of a parent. Often in a good way, sometimes not.

Sparklingbrook Sat 17-Nov-12 13:40:05

I couldn't be a teacher. I just couldn't deal with the parents.

TheNebulousBoojum Sat 17-Nov-12 13:44:08

It can be a source of great amusement though.
Many parents are wonderful and a pleasure to know, and they definitely counterbalance the less lovely ones.

Sparklingbrook Sat 17-Nov-12 13:49:46

My Mum is very cat's bum mouth about the parents all going in to harangue the teachers. She said in her day you just accepted what the school and teachers did and it wouldn't have occured to her to question it.

ceebeegeebies Sat 17-Nov-12 13:50:07

Clam I apologise if I have offended you - I promise I do not rate the teachers that low (apart from DS1's Yr1 teacher wink). However, I am sure that Star of the Week is difficult, and in particular that first week when you barely know the children so imo, the teacher just randomly picks a child who just happens to be the HMP's child wink

Trust me, I have witnessed conversations on FB between the HMP parents and the HT's wife/the Yr1 teacher etc...and there was definitely favouritism shown last year in Yr1 - things have improved this year although the worst parent's child did not go into the same Yr2 class as DS1 so that might be why grin

teacherwith2kids Sat 17-Nov-12 14:05:57

In answer to the OP, yes every class has a POTENTIAL HMP.

However, the extent to which they dominate is absolutely under the teacher / school's control.

No way would a lot of the behaviour described here be tolerated at my school BUT there are parents I seek out every morning to make sure that their child is OK, and I have had several 1 to 1 meetings with parents since September (as well as parents' evening) because of genuine concerns. It's a case of being proactive and open-door with the parents of children where there are concerns, and being assertive in the face of parents wanting to take up more 'bandwidth' than they should. It's a bit like the children in the class - making sure that the quieter children contribute as fully as the loud ones is part of every teacher's classrrom management.

In the same way, I have been a HMP for relatively short periods with both of my children. I have had lengthy meetings with class teachers and heads during those periods BUT they have been properly arranged and booked so that they are not at the expense of other children's learning.

Plays etc - it's an unwinnable situation. Even if the pfb of a HMP is in fact the most confident, loudest, most dramatic child in the class, or has the best singing voice then the other parents will grumble if they're picked, thinking it's the HMP's influence. If they aren't picked despite being the most competent, then the children will lose faith that selection is fair and basd on ability.....

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