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How to approach this with Head?

(11 Posts)
Happypiglet Tue 22-Jan-13 12:52:39

I have a meeting with Head teacher about the issues in one of my DCs classes. The teacher seems to be having issues with behaviour management. I do think the school are already aware of it.
My DC is reliable and forthcoming about what he does at school.
The issues are resulting in missing PE lessons due to lack of time as children muck about. Him being sent to get the HT to deal with particular children. The teacher abandoning lessons and allowing children to colour in instead as they won't listen on the carpet. DC is not sure what he should be doing as he can't hear in carpet time. Etc etc
Not major issues but my DC is becoming increasingly disillusioned and switched off. He said to me the other day "I just want to learn something mummy".
I have waited until now to say something to allow the teacher to get to grips with this class but it seems to be getting worse not better.
I feel awful having to say something.
How should I approach this meeting so I don't come over as a moany old cow.
DC is year three.

Happypiglet Tue 22-Jan-13 12:54:15

School just called to say i need to collect one DC so won't be able to reply to replies for a while...

WowOoo Tue 22-Jan-13 12:56:38

That really is worrying. I very much doubt that you'll come across as a moany old cow. You sound like a concerned parent to me.

I'd list your concerns and ask what the HT intends to do about it.

Please don't feel awful. This teacher clearly needs extra training and support and she won't get it unless HT is made aware of the issues. I'm sure she/he already is aware.

Best of luck.

crankysaurus Tue 22-Jan-13 13:00:19

The HT might already be aware but hearing it from a parent might make the difference in the support the teacher recieves. Hope the meeting goes well.

PastSellByDate Tue 22-Jan-13 13:02:31

Hi Happypiglet:

First - you're not being unreasonable. You are sending your child to school to learn. Taxpayers are paying the salaries of staff in school to educate the next generation. It's not unreasonable to expect teachers to be trained to deal with keeping order/ discipline in the classroom. Endless disruptions hold back learning and result in poorer progress than is expected or necessary.

I would approach it positively.

Your DC loves school. He is really interested in learning new things and likes his teacher(s).

However, you are growing increasingly concerned to learn that lessons are being abandoned, that your DC is regularly being sent to get him/ her (the Head) to discipline pupils, etc....

You don't want to complain, but you would like to understand what steps the school is taking to support this teacher and give her additional training to deal with unruly or disruptive pupils.

You would also like to understand whether it is possible (if this is not a single form school) for you to request that your child to be moved away from these disruptive pupils in future years.

If you are suspicious (apologies but I'm an old cynic) and feel this may ultimately result in your complaining to the governors or LEA - I'd ask for minutes on this meeting or acknowledgement that you two have discussed this issue and confirmation from the Head that she/ he will be monitoring this situation. I would also request an update in six weeks (by meeting or letter) from the Head to demonstrate what steps have been taken to mediate against further disruption in class and loss of learning opportunities for all children.

Finally every teacher has their strengths and weaknesses - and each class is different - this may be a boisterous class that an otherwise good teacher with a strong record for performance is seriously struggling to get under control. However, this is 2nd term now, and a lot of time has passed by with no obvious improvement, so it is important that something is done swiftly to support this teacher and make the learning environment more orderly.

kilmuir Tue 22-Jan-13 13:15:21

we had a similar experience. My DD is in year 6 and she said nearly every day the class is disrupted when a boy from year3 is sent to their class.
He is noisy, doesn't do as he is asked etc. Apparently my daughters teacher is the only one he listens to! Obviously distracting for the class.
Turns out it was only when some parents mentioned it to the Head that other stragegories had to be used so his own teacher could try and deal with him.

musicalfamily Tue 22-Jan-13 13:18:05

this sounds exactly identical to the situation my DD has in her class, also Y3. I wonder if it is the same class/school. We have decided to remove our DD next year, she will have to put up with it this year but we are really upset about what's been happening. If it is the same school, I know this teacher has received hundreds of complaints by parents and the headteacher has largely brushed them off and done nothing.

However it is probably a different scenario, sad situation. My DD is very upset and is desperate to move because most lessons are disrupted and exactly the same as you describe, the teacher abandons the class regularly and chaos reigns.

I would be very interested to see how you resolve this, as I have other children who'll have to go through this and really dreading more years like this one....

Happypiglet Tue 22-Jan-13 14:51:57

Thank you so much for your replies. I feel better knowing that I am not over reacting! This class is difficult but previous teachers have coped with it.
Thank you PastSellByDate that is exactly the sort of advice I was after. It seems like a very good way to play it. DS does love school and learning and actually this teacher who he had in another year when discipline wasn't so much of an issue.
I hadn't thought about the fact that it might result in more support for the teacher not just an ear bashing for him/her so that makes me feel a bit better.
At the very least a class mix up next year might help. They haven't been mixed for a couple of years.

cansu Tue 22-Jan-13 18:58:03

It is probably an issue with a small group of children. Perhaps by raising it the head will provide the class teacher with more support? Please also be aware that dc are very quick to report naughty behaviour. You may not be getting the full picture. What you are perceiving as terrible disruption could be your dc noticing that the children are disciplined!

Happypiglet Tue 22-Jan-13 19:40:11

Cansu you are right and that is why I have been cautious about leaping in too soon. However it's been a whole term and his comments (unpromted) keep coming and I just have the feeling all is not well. He was with the same children last year and within two weeks all of these sorts of comments had stopped (as I assume the teacher had got to grips with them).... Anyway will play it how PastSellByDate said I think.

kitsilano Wed 23-Jan-13 10:53:48

I am dealing with a very similar issue in DD's class (also Year 3). We have just moved her to this school so really don't see changing schools again as an option.

The class is well-known for being a very difficult one with several disruptive children. My DD constantly comes home complaining about the behaviour and distractions around her and says the teacher "can't cope".

The class has been given to a teacher who is also the head of music for the school and manages all the school drama productions so she is often absent and they are taught by a variety of different members of staff which I dont think helps.

The school doesn't have a policy of mixing the classes up.

I have spent this morning feeling very despairing and wondering if I am going to have to end up doing extra teaching at home to make sure DD doesn't fall behind.

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