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The DSes school sent a letter home about parents being abusive to teachers

(24 Posts)
saltire Wed 19-Sep-07 10:43:17

saying that some parents had been verbally abusive and threatning and pyhsically agressive towards teachers, office staff and the janitors. i was shock at this. DS1 said that when they go in the door to school in the mornings the last pupil in had to close the door, as all parents have - understandably- to go through the front door into the office. He said that sometimes parents come and bang on the door and shout to get let in, and that on one occasion a boy was last in and was closing the door,a dn a mother grabbed it from him. being bigger she managed to open it, and she went into the classroom and started yelling at the teacher.
I would never dream of carrying on like that, even less so in front of my children

flatmouse Wed 19-Sep-07 10:48:48

omg - where do you live? surely this is not normal behaviour.

saltire Wed 19-Sep-07 10:53:04

In hampshire. I'm a bit shocked TBH and wondering what kind of school they are going to

TheArmadillo Wed 19-Sep-07 10:54:06


I know teachers do get some abuse, but never though it could be that bad. That is appalling.

robinpud Wed 19-Sep-07 10:57:11

Oh, I could post all sorts of horror stories on this theme, but will limit myself to just 1. DH's school have parents on ASBOS as a result of repeated abusive and agressive behaviour towards staff including the Head. This sort of behaviour is not confined to any type of school or type of parents, so sadly timely reminders are needed.
Just look at the bashing schools/teachers etc come in from posters on here and imagine how less reasonable people deal with their issues...

BellaMummy Wed 19-Sep-07 11:17:33

I used to be a primary school teacher and when I moved to the UK I did some supply teaching in London at various schools. The OP does not surprise me at all after what I saw!
I know teachers aren't perfect and parents may have issues with their methods etc at times, but most of the abuse I received from parents was relating to discipline. I vividly remember one mother screaming at me that I had no right to send her son out of the classroom - after three warnings I sent him to the deputy head's classroom to do work as per the school's policy - and she would not hear a word against her son, or accept that his behaviour had been inappropriate/dangerous/unacceptable.

String me up for saying this, but when a parent would come in behaving like that, it explained a lot about the child, IYKWIM.

Blu Wed 19-Sep-07 11:25:38

My organisation runs a summer school project for young teenagers and 3 times in the last 5 years we have had parents come down and fight with other parents or even attack other young people. As a result of a ruck between the young people.
It isn't the nowm, at all - most parents are keen to support good behaviour in their children and react constructively when teenagers get out of hand. But there is a generation of people now who were off the rails as teenagers themselves and are now doing an even worse job as parents of thier own kids. They seem to make no transition whatsoever between being teenagers and then taking on parenting.
Also, the whole climate of rights and entitlement gives people the idea that they can barge around schools demanding this and that for their children, on their own terms. All v depressing.

dayofftomorrow Wed 19-Sep-07 11:29:37

I wonder sometimes if some parents are just becoming angry due to frustration, trying to get to speak to a teacher is becoming akin to getting to see GP, and then having to get through a security system that the bank of england would be proud of. The few times I have had a problem with any of my DC's or a complaint I have never had a straight answer but I am able to read between lines of teacher speak so could get a reasonable solution.

It is not surprising that some people will get angry to the point of aggression if they feel they are being spoken to as if they were a reception age child

CharlotteDeBerry Wed 19-Sep-07 11:34:40

Dsd had to move schools as her mum was abusive to the Head and teachers, over something to do with dsd's half-brother.

She was doing really well there and had already been in 3 primary schools, dh didn't want her to move. He spoke to the Head, but she said that even though the issue hadn't been about dsd, it was better if she changed schools as she had seen her mum treating the teachers with no respect and this would rub off onto dsd, and she may well follow suit.

TheQueenOfQuotes Wed 19-Sep-07 11:37:04

I don't care how frustrated a parent is - there's no excuse for being abusive towards teachers (or anyone else for that matter).

TheArmadillo Wed 19-Sep-07 11:51:45

agree with QofQ - no excuse for being abusive.

TheArmadillo Wed 19-Sep-07 11:52:23

plus it doesn't really get you anywhere and causes more problems that it solves.

MummyPenguin Wed 19-Sep-07 12:39:22

Imagine it from the child's perspective - imagine being the child who's parent goes in screaming and shouting and swearing at teaching staff. How sad.

saltire Wed 19-Sep-07 15:08:53

I agree with QoQ, no matter how angry you are, as a parent we should set an example to our childrena nd others children and not abuse teachers. I can honestly say i have never raised my voice to a teacher, but then at the same time my children (who aren't perfect, believe me) have never been in so much trouble or had such a big problem that I have felt the need to.

islandofsodor Wed 19-Sep-07 22:20:20

Dh had a drunken parent screaming abuse at him during the Christmas production. Dh put himself in a very vulnerable position by taking him to a classroom alone but he just wanted the parent away from the children who were performing. All other staff were supervising children backstage etc.

Very scary.

cece Wed 19-Sep-07 22:25:40

It happens quite a lot sad

I have had various incidents over the years - you would be surprised...

Hulababy Thu 20-Sep-07 10:07:54

Unfortunately physical adnd verbal assaults of teachers and teaching staff is not that uncommon either my parents or pupils. The occurences are increasing, although I would have throught the problems were worse at ssecondary (well, re pupils doing the assualts anyway).

In Sheffield last year 2 teachers a week reported (and many will go unreported!) physical or a serious verbal assault whilst at work.

OrmIrian Thu 20-Sep-07 10:15:20

It makes no difference how frustrated a parent is, there is no excuse. I find it humiliating that my child's teacher, looking at me as a parent, has to wonder whether I might be the kind of nut that is likely to lay into them. Unforgivable angry There is always a way to communicate with a teacher - it might not be immediate or at the parent's initial convenience. But if a parent is spitting feathers it might be better to wait until another time anyway. No disagreement is going to be solved by one side yelling and throwing punches at the other.

And I have to say that I am frequently shocked at the simple rudeness of some parents when they speak to teachers. Not aggresive as such, and certainly not violent, but downright rude. I'd struggle to keep my temper if some of the things I've overheard were said to me.

Hulababy Thu 20-Sep-07 10:17:42

There is never any excuse for being abusive to teaching staff at school. There are proper ways of going through things. Being abusive will not get parents there on way and will only make any problems already there worse, and there will be a higher risk of alienating the staff.

If a parent has a problem with an aspect of school they should go through the proper channels in a mature and adult manner.

As parents we must set the right example to children.

OrmIrian Thu 20-Sep-07 10:22:13

"there will be a higher risk of alienating the staff."

I totally agree there. I am always surprised when I see parents wading in over something as petty as what kind of fruit their child is given right at the beginning of their school career (I was told this by the mother yesterday). I mean why? Is it honestly worth jeopardising that important relationship right at the start of the year?

meemar Thu 20-Sep-07 10:31:01

It's disgraceful but sadly not shocking. The public are abusive to health workers, transport workers, anyone in the service industry, so it's no surprise that teachers are in the firing line too.

TheArmadillo Thu 20-Sep-07 15:00:59

It's disgusting really.

I was working in retail till a couple of years ago. Verbal abuse was almost daily and physical attacks were not unknown. I have often had thigns thrown at me and I was good at my job. Dp got punched in teh face once by a customer. He didn't get worse, cos they had a panic button and he ducked down behind the counter. BOth of us choose now to do customer service by phone (though I am still applying for jobs) as at least no one can hit you down a phoneline. I have heard similar things from many working with the public (purely in retail).

I think it is appalling that in any industry - public or private, working wiht the public carries a high risk of abuse.

Story in teh local paper the other day of paramedic being dragged backwards by her hair when she was trying to help a badly injured woman.

spugs Fri 21-Sep-07 19:33:39

we had a parent come in and trash the corridor outside my classroom, pulling toy boxes of shelves etc shock my classroom had big glass windows so my class of year 2s saw the whole thing and also heard the abuse she was screaming at the head. she was banned and her child removed from the schoool - she actually had the cheek to go to a newspaper and complain about her treatment shock

Heated Fri 21-Sep-07 19:48:49

DH got this all the time when he was a HoY at his last school - water off a duck's back to him thankfully - but he's had parents storming into school looking for him (incandescent that he won't stop teaching a class to see them); parents explain to him how c**t is not a swear word (used by their child at him); interviews with parents high on drugs; verbal threats; refusals for their children to do detentions...and that's on top of the behaviour from the pupils. To give some context to the school he was in, one of his pupils, aged 14, murdered another teenager last year.

What really angers me is that DH gets amazing exam results with his students (he was also a head of faculty) yet these parents give no thought to how lucky they are having ANYONE standing in front of their kids, let alone someone who can keep them so entertained that they perform way beyond what all the stats say they should do.

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