Highly strung y5 teacher....(10 Posts)
Just wanted some advice before I go in to school all guns blazing.....
DD(9) is at a good junior school and was very happy to start y5 under her favourite teacher - who also happens to be deputy head. He is known throughout the school as being a 'whacky' and fun teacher who expects good results. All good so far.
As the year has progressed, he has shown concern for the level of reading comprehension shown by some of the pupils and has set up an after school club to help. Dd attends and is in school until 5pm on a tues. We are happy with this arrangement.
Over the past few weeks however, the kids have noticed that he is becoming more and more stressed with them. A few of dd's friends have told me that he will rant and shout on and on about results, telling them that they all should be working at the level of y6 and the work they are showing him is not acceptable. I have listened and said the usual 'you need to keep your heads down' etc etc although while they are an excitable group of 9/10 year olds I would not say any of them are badly behaved.
Last night, at the end of comprehension club, the group had not finished marking their answers together do he has told them they need to stay in at lunchtime today to finish off. I am about this as I think working until 5pm is quite enough without taking more free time so I am considering phoning the school to question this decision.
I confirmed his plans with the girls this morning, and they told me that yesterday, during one of his rants, he said that from now on, he would not accept less than X. (X is a girl in their class who is a very high achiever). The kids are understandably upset by this comment. I just cannot see how this is acceptable and why pressure these kids so much?? They are all at very different levels, mentally and emotionally. Surely this is not the best way to get results from a group of kids??
I am not normally the type of mother to go in ranting and raving at the teachers, but I do think he is putting too much pressure on them....do you think I should talk to the school? Any thoughts would be appreciated....thanks if you have got this far
As a highly strung Y5 teacher myself under constant pressure from school and ofsted for the children to all be exceeding end of year outcomes I feel his pain.
However, taking his stress out on the kids is counter productive.
Have a quiet word with the school keeping in mind he is probably under a great deal of pressure to achieve these results, possibly with his pay linked to them.
Oh and please don't forget to make a note of the impact that pressure from senior management and ofsted is having on your DD school experience in the next 'parents feedback form' when ofsted next come knocking.
Yes, I think you should talk to the school! I definitely don't think they should be kept in today for not finishing work at the booster group. And I also think comparing their work to that of another child is unacceptable. A teacher in our school did that last year (coincidentally a year five teacher) and the children started to get very irritated with that child!
It sounds to me as if he is being put under a lot of pressure himself to get them to have made a certain amount of progress.
The tricky thing in these kind of situations is who you should talk to...
Thanks for your reply kitty, it's really good to hear from a teacher.
Yes, I completely understand the pressures of ofsted/targets etc and I also know that this teacher has developed his own 'learning targets' for the school which have been introduced this year...maybe this has added to his stress as obviously it is his 'baby'.
I fully respect the pressure that teachers are under these days, which is why I usually have little comment when I hear (from dd) of the standards expected. I am just that she is clearly feeling the brunt of his stress...I do worry that it could all have a negative effect on her and make her lose interest in school?
Yes blackcat, I am unsure of who to speak to. I did have parents evening with him last week and I he told me that he was very nervous about meeting with me as dd had got upset about a telling off she had had re literacy, and he thought I was going to be really angry with him! However, I did tell him that we take a 'tough love' approach with our dc's, and I wasn't too worried. This weeks events however, make me think that things might go a little too far...
Recently my dd has noticed that her very nice teacher (man,it happens) also started shouting and showing tempers at times. Sat?
If he starts to get so stressed about reading results in Y5 that he has to shout at children in a booster group (until 5pm...seriously?), then something is going wrong. I'm amazed you are having a booster group at all at this stage. What are they boosting them to? Did they all come in on Level 2s?
I've got Y5 and I am usually expecting a lot of my children. They know that, their parents know that and senior management know that. My class' results are very good (but I still have children, who won't make the L4 by the end of the year...no point shouting at them, they came in on a L2).
I can get stressy at times. I am stressy this week, because I have an awful lot on my plate and I cannot wait for this week to be over. It means I am less likely to let things go and more likely to raise my voice when they are being annoying. However, my class are aware of that. I have told them, that if I lose the plot slightly this week, to just ignore me for a little while...while I sit in a corner as a jibbering wreck or go and shout really loudly in the staffroom. They don't tend to take it personally if I have pre-warned them. I'll be more relaxed again next week.
It might be an idea to find out why he is so stressed out, though. Are they not achieving their targets? Were the targets achievable in the first place? I've never heard of a school where results were so poor that children need to stay until 5pm to do a reading booster in Year 5. We've got booster sessions in Y6. Once a week at lunchtime. Any reading booster sessions I have ever done in Y5 have happened in lesson time, were short term (generally 6 weeks) and designed to support children's test access strategies (moving them from a low 3 to a high 4/low 5,...because they were capable, just didn't know what they were meant to do in the test).
Sounds like this teacher is under pressure and getting frustrated at lack of results. While it is very good of him to stay until 5pm for this group I can imagine that all of them are tired and grumpy by this time of day so it is possibly just all too much. It is wrong to put pressure on children to perform like this you need to speak to the school.
Ring and talk to him in the first instance.
Hi. Thanks for all your replies.
thatssofunny...the booster group is to get them ready for sat's. Although they are not until year 6, he feels that if we address the issues now then the children should be well prepared. I can't quite remember what level dd was/is at, but I do know from parents evening that she is not on course to achieve the expected levels by the end of this school year. And yes, the sessions run from after school until 5...and most weeks she does not leave the building until 5.15!!
I have decided to leave it for now, I did meet up with him just last week, so I will see how things progress throughout the rest of the term. DD came home from a happy day yesterday and she wasn't made to stay in at lunchtime after all, which I was pleased about. I do trust this teacher, he is passionate and very good in so many ways. I am also aware that when a gaggle of girls are complaining about a teacher, there tends to be considerable dramatic embellishment! Incidentally, another of dd's friends who is in his maths group told me that he is always very pleasant in class.
I will keep my ear to the ground. Thanks again
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