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Silly things teachers think will work

(370 Posts)
NAR4 Sat 17-Nov-12 13:59:50

One of the teachers at my child's school (he is in sixth form) thinks giving out yellow cards and red cards for 'bad' behaviour in class will somehow motivate 17 year olds.

At my 14 year old's school (a different school) he was asked to write a letter to Father Christmas during an English lesson. The teacher was dead serious. REALLY?

I pressume that nether of these teachers have children of their own, but should surely have been taught at uni that these things were completely age inappropriate.

FromEsme Sun 18-Nov-12 16:03:41

There is also a huge difference in parental involvement and parents thinking they know better than teachers.

EvilTwins Sun 18-Nov-12 16:11:23

I'm head of 6th form in a small comp. I have asked a student to leave this week- first time ever. We have a duty to try absolutely everything before getting to this stage. In the case of this particular 17 year old boy, he has been a PITA since day 1 of yr 12- pushing boundaries by coming in late, flouting the dress code, missing deadlines and being rude to staff- nothing really serious though- 5 mins late in the morning, "forgetting" to wear a tie, missing a deadline but doing the work the following week, telling teachers to "chill out" etc. I have had two face-to-face meetings with his mum and I and other colleagues have spoken to both parents on the phone most weeks. Sanctions in school made no difference. Every time we spoke to his parents they said they would "have a strong word" or "sort it". Clearly his does not listen to them. He is a bright boy, but not interested. I see this as a failure in parenting, not in a schooling.

EvilTwins Sun 18-Nov-12 16:13:17

Re involving parents. We had an evening early on in the term for parents of yr 12s to come to school, meet their child's new tutor and me (as Head of Yr). About 10% turned up. Many think that after the age if 16, they don't need to be involved any more. sad

NAR4 Sun 18-Nov-12 16:15:22


Never meant to start such an explosive thread.

Just sharing a little chuckle at what I thought was a very silly thing for a young, newly qualified teacher to be doing. My children have told me how most of the pupils are laughing at them behind their backs, about it and I thought a lot of the teachers were probably also doing the same.

AViewfromtheFridge Sun 18-Nov-12 16:35:02

No...more experienced teachers don't tend to laugh at newly qualified ones - on the contrary, most go out of their way to support them. What an odd assumption.

FromEsme Sun 18-Nov-12 16:42:07

And when your child said people were laughing at the teachers behind their back, what was your reaction?

Shall I assume a stern word about how unkind and immature that is?

BrianButterfield Sun 18-Nov-12 17:17:47

Older teachers don't laugh at new ones; it's a profession where we all realise we can learn from each other. I've learnt things from the most experienced teachers and from students on their first week of teaching practice. Nice to know other members of school staff don't share that view though hmm

41notTrendy Sun 18-Nov-12 17:20:25

Some comments are seen as teaching bashing because there are comments that question the quality of the training, comments that question the skill of teachers, comments that question the targeting of a task and comments that suggest teachers without children are not as good as teachers who do.
Some teachers are not up to it. But... lots are. And as a parent your view only concerns your child you cannot understand the bigger picture.
There comes a point when you have to trust what happens in school and accept you will never know the ins and outs.
If your child is unhappy and not making progress then go and see the school. Nothing may happen but don't assume it's the same for the next parent. Or all teachers.

ravenAK Sun 18-Nov-12 17:23:21

Oh, I don't mind well-informed teacher bashing. That's OK.

noblegiraffe Sun 18-Nov-12 20:01:15

I don't think there's such thing as well-informed teacher-bashing because there are such an awful lot of teachers out there doing so many different roles that generalised complaints can't apply.

Specific complaints about an individual teacher are not teacher-bashing.

chloe74 Sun 18-Nov-12 20:25:35

I sense two groups of people are talking about different sides of the same coin. Teachers are frustrated at the lack of support/involvement from parents of poorly performing/disruptive children and parents of well behaved children are frustrated at the lack of communication/aspiration/differentiation from teachers who are to busy dealing with the disruption of the former group. I don't want to get into politics but it seems to me that comprehensive means everyone is equal at the bottom.

The only answer is selection but seeing as we are not going to get that, parents have no choice but to try and push teachers to spend as much time on the bright kids as they do on the grade boundary kids who make them look good. Like it or not us parents pay teachers wages and gold plated pensions.

noblegiraffe Sun 18-Nov-12 20:34:07

The only answer is selection

Bollocks. I teach kids in bottom set who are as well-behaved and with as supportive parents as you could possibly hope for. I also teach kids in top set who are arrogant, spoiled, disruptive, rude and poorly equipped.

AViewfromtheFridge Sun 18-Nov-12 20:36:23

"Like it or not us parents pay teachers wages and gold plated pensions."

I wondered who would be the first person to start quoting the Daily Mail/ Sun/ insert name of other sensationalist, ill-informed rag here. Talk about being equal at the bottom...

chloe74 Sun 18-Nov-12 20:38:58

As soon as you make a point teachers don't like, they swear. Way to go for education.

AViewfromtheFridge Sun 18-Nov-12 20:40:26

With respect, Chloe, that post was hopelessly ill-informed.

And swearing never did Shakespeare any harm.

ravenAK Sun 18-Nov-12 20:43:03

See, that would be an example of ill-informed teacher-bashing.

The grade boundary between B & A/A* is just as important, as a measure of teacher's performance, as the grade boundary between D/C.

I have no idea where anyone gets this notion that it's all about 'grade boundary kids who make them look good'. I've never met a child who wasn't a 'grade boundary kid', if by that you mean one who needs teacher attention to hit their upper quartile target.

Also, our cohort is streamed for English/Maths/Science, then set within those streams for individual subjects. If you've got the group which is 'best at your particular subject, in the lower stream', you are very likely to out-perform the group which is 'in the higher stream by the skin of its collective teeth, least able in your particular subject'.

Yet the first group will have lower targets.

Honestly, Chloe74, you over-simplify, because you are poorly informed. Precisely as I would come across if I tried to pontificate about hairdressing or midwifery or bricklaying or astrophysics.

Although why I'm bothering to engage, given your last sentence, I have no idea.

noblegiraffe Sun 18-Nov-12 20:44:43

As soon as you talk bollocks, be prepared for it to be called bollocks. Nothing to do with working in education and everything to do with you talking utter shite.

EvilTwins Sun 18-Nov-12 20:47:00

The boy I expelled from my 6th form this week is intelligent. His parents are professionals. On paper, he is a high performer. Doesn't stop him from being an arrogant, badly behaved twerp.

Chloe, your comments are ridiculous. I teach a non-core subject, so have a real mix of ability within my classroom. Last year, all my yr 11s got C or above and over half of them got A/A*.

TimeChild Sun 18-Nov-12 20:48:57

"Honestly, Chloe74, you over-simplify, because you are poorly informed. Precisely as I would come across if I tried to pontificate about hairdressing or midwifery or bricklaying or astrophysics."

It has always surprised me how non-teaching-qualified parents think they know better than the teachers. It was like this a couple of decades ago when I used to teach and still is now. You wouldn't get this with other professions. As an ex-teacher I am really impressed with the professionalism and competence of my DC's children.

radicalsubstitution Sun 18-Nov-12 20:49:05

Actually, I'm pretty sure the OP's DCs are at grammar schools, so that pretty much ends that particular arument.

radicalsubstitution Sun 18-Nov-12 20:51:19


chloe74 Sun 18-Nov-12 21:30:21

Firstly I wasn't teacher bashing, I was talking about the system and what some parents have to do to get a fair deal from it. Teachers are in the firing line, it is not their fault but because of the system they have to deal with the flack.

As for my views being ill informed I will dispute that and suggest its teachers that live in an ivory tower. Newspapers represent the view of millions of parents, and whilst I hate the Sun (never buy it) their views are representative, like it or not you have to deal with them and dismissing them is just snobbery. My information comes from real life and many other parents, again to dismiss opinions just because you don't like them is arrogant and exacerbates the problem. So we are left with the internet, where information is spun, stretched and transformed into lies. Recent events have proved that.

The only place where you could get the truth from is teachers and they just swear at you for daring to put an informed opinion to them. That informed opinion might not be factual but then how does any parent know that because teachers wont explain what they are doing and why.

When I buy a product for my child I expect to be shown/told how it works, if I was abused and told I am not telling you what you are buying then I wouldn't buy it. But that's exactly what teachers do, we pay them to provide a service for our children and they wont justify its relevance and explain what they are doing to give us value for money. All I hear is give us the money and get lost, we know best.

No wonder parents are setting up free schools, want Grammar schools, go private. Whether or not a parent is pontificating they deserve to be heard and their views should be taken into account because they are the people paying for it. The more teachers comment in here the more I feel justified in my view that teachers look down on parents and don't feel any accountability to them.

noblegiraffe Sun 18-Nov-12 21:37:56

they just swear at you for daring to put an informed opinion to them

I didn't just swear at you, I did actually comment as to why what you said was bollocks too.

And let's face it, if you're going to trot out the 'gold plated pensions' line, you should expect a bit of swearing.

titchy Sun 18-Nov-12 21:38:02

Except you're not buying a product for your child( unless you educate privately) by virtue of the fact that you're a tax payer. Unless of course you feel tht paying taxes means you should also have a say in how fire fighters, doctors, the army, bin men etc do their job (oh and paying taxes just like you!)

noblegiraffe Sun 18-Nov-12 21:42:31

Out of interest, does anyone know exactly what percentage of a person's taxes goes towards paying teachers' wages?

I mean, if parents are paying £100 a year (plucked out of thin air) out of their taxes and receiving a full time education for their kids, then that's a pretty good deal, isn't it?

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