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AIBU to think most kids hate school

124 replies

StitchInLime · 16/09/2022 07:54

It’s not just mine but other people’s kids too from
talking to other parents. Most school mornings are a battle to encourage them in. ‘I have a bad tummy’, ‘my leg hurts’ ‘I don’t want to go to school’. It’s all made worse by the fact we have a family member (my nephew) who is home schooled so they see there is a possibility NOT to be at school.

Maybe it’s normal. Most of us, when faced with being forced to drag our arses out of bed to go somewhere and do something we’re not always enthusiastic about (work!) don’t adore it. But we’re adults so don’t try to manipulate our ways out of it (most of the time). Has it got worse since the pandemic?

Or are the kids I know unusual cases? Do your kids love school?

I guess I’m just sick of the daily battle on school mornings. We always say school is important, plus we can’t always lounge around at home as life isn’t fulfilling that way, this the routine and learning is good. But still, the morning drama!

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?


You have one vote. All votes are anonymous.

Autumn101 · 16/09/2022 08:56

I didn’t like secondary school, was so happy when I left and then loved university!

My eldest is year 10 and loves secondary, prefers it to primary. He’s a summer born and it took a while for him to mature emotionally and find his way socially. He is academic and loves learning which is a huge factor in enjoyment I think.

My youngest is year 8 and he likes school but was also quite happy during lockdown at home. He does hate getting up in the mornings and although he enjoys learning and is doing really well he’s not the quickest so can find school a bit stressful sometimes with moving rooms and packing/unpacking his bag all the time. He loved primary though


hellswelshy · 16/09/2022 09:03

NovaDeltas · 16/09/2022 08:55

Not really, no. Children brought up around the importance of education, lots of books, educated parents etc, they love school. The ones we see with fake illnesses and bad behaviour come from the disordered families where academic prowess gets them called 'little swots', where absence and sickness are rewarded and where bad behaviour is praised as 'just the way they are'. Those families spread and encourage that behaviour among themselves by swapping tales of their kids' various needs and demands and declare it's all the school's fault.

Disagree. I am educated to degree level, but both my dc currently are struggling with school. They have always had myself and dh as an example of working hard and achieving. But they are teenagers, shy and often anxious, get exhausted by the trudging back and forth to school, the tight schedules between lessons, disruptive pupils in some lessons...I could go on. Mainly I tell them to just concentrate on their own work but deep down I remember how it was at that age. Both dh and I encourage and support their education so your theory is not as clear cut as you think!


RagingWoke · 16/09/2022 09:05

I hear it from a lot of parents that getting dc up, dressed and to school is a battle most mornings. My own dd, in year 3, claims to hate school because it's 'boring'.

There are lots of reasons it's difficult for dc though, some struggle with the work, some are bored because it's too slow for them, some struggle socially, bullying, ND- not every child can be catered for and certainly with my own DCs class there is a huge difference with the children with ND/behavioural issues being given a lot of attention then 1 or 2 of the brightest being given special attention and the rest are just left to it.
My DD is one of those 'grey children' where she's bright but not vocal or noticed so just left to get on. She get bored and frustrated, reading books are too easy, she often knows what's being taught so attention drifts but equally doesn't help herself because she doesn't apply herself when she's lost interest eg, they're learning about light and how it travels but she's been fascinated by black holes for a while so we've been looking them up, watching videos so she knows a decent amount about it. she doesn't speak up in the class to say 'I also know x, y and z' and instead ends up day dreaming or distracted, her teachers are focused on the 5/6 dc with SEN so DD is overlooked.

I'm not saying she needs extra attention, but I do understand why she's frustrated. Being summer born doesn't help as the teachers have always had low expectations of her because of that almost like a summer born isn't acknowledged as being able to be advanced in any way.


KvotheTheBloodless · 16/09/2022 09:07

DS likes school, but prefers being at home with me and DH. I was the same at primary school (I absolutely hated secondary school but that's a different issue).


whenwillthemadnessend · 16/09/2022 09:08

One hates it. But is bright. Luckily. Now in sixth form If she sticks that out.

Other is meh but doesn't hate it.
Still rather be at home on Xbox tho

I think lockdowns haven't helped. Got kids used to being at home to much.

I loved school myself but it was the 80s. We didn't have huge pressure on us then. My life was looking at cute boys. Having a laugh with mates and dating. My teens were brilliant. But no social
Media then so 🤷‍♀️


NumericalBlock · 16/09/2022 09:08

Depends massively on the kids, but I don't think that the majority love school which is what we all seem to be led to believe, I think there are a lot more in the middle who don't love it but don't hate it. I also think that this push for passing GCSEs and A Levels is insane when a third of kids are failing to get the grades at GCSE and there are many different routes through education that are ignored in favour of academics.

I hated it and have done all of the training and education related to my career years after I left school as I was discouraged from doing it in school as I was 'too smart' for childcare (flunked my A Levels as I couldn't manage, recently diagnosed with ADHD so it's understandable how that happened). Husband was the same and went back into education as a mature student. School didn't give either of us a solid foundation in core subjects and we were both bullied which we're still having issues from nearly 20 years after leaving school, me especially.

We always planned to home educate but even if we hadn't the school options for our kids locally were dire in our first location (literally the worse rated junior school in the country), not great in our second location and now it's meh where we've just moved too.


Buzzybeeinmybrain · 16/09/2022 09:10

I'm ND and I had the best time at secondary school but primary school was mediocre. It was just so samey and boring!

Secondary school was so fun. I would go home with an achy tummy from laughing so much. I had so many friends and was never bullied. The teachers were very relaxed and not pushy and that made school better. Nobody gave two hoots about exams and grades and it was just a fun environment.

University was awful at times. Being ND I really missed the support I had at Secondary.

Now in my 30s? I HATE work but that's definitely an autism issue.


PinkHeadphones · 16/09/2022 09:11

Neither of mine hate school as such but they both would rather not go on any given day, although I think the older one has realised that actually he missed school when it wasn’t available. I find it difficult to understand because I did actually love school and learning when I was young, and they are both bright and engaged so it’s strange for me. I don’t know if it is schools and curriculum are worse now, or there’s more to engage them at home than we had, or what.
When they were little I know part of it was just a dislike of change of circumstances, ie having to move from school to home - I remember telling the lovely young Year 1 teacher how DS1 didn’t like school and what a battle it was to get him there and her surprise, because he was fine when he was there.


Sswhinesthebest · 16/09/2022 09:11

Most people prefer to spend their time doing stuff they want to so that will always be preferable to being in school or work. Hopefully it’s ok for most though, when you are actually at school or work.


TheYearOfSmallThings · 16/09/2022 09:12

DS(7) loves school, as did I at primary level.

I had a much more mixed experience at secondary level, both because the social side becomes more savage and because the lessons are more demanding and some of them I really dreaded. I still feel a frisson of fear on a Tuesday morning because of the year I had double maths, double accounting and cross country running that day.


NumericalBlock · 16/09/2022 09:17

NovaDeltas · 16/09/2022 08:55

Not really, no. Children brought up around the importance of education, lots of books, educated parents etc, they love school. The ones we see with fake illnesses and bad behaviour come from the disordered families where academic prowess gets them called 'little swots', where absence and sickness are rewarded and where bad behaviour is praised as 'just the way they are'. Those families spread and encourage that behaviour among themselves by swapping tales of their kids' various needs and demands and declare it's all the school's fault.

That's utterly bonkers and not accurate at all. I hope you don't work in education!


DoNutSweatTheSmallStuff · 16/09/2022 09:21

Not all kids love school.
Not all kids hate school.
And those who 'hate' it will have good days & enjoy parts of it.
And those who 'love' it will have bad days & dislike some of it.
Blanket statements can't ever be true for 100% of a population/ cohort so YABU.


Hoowhoowho · 16/09/2022 09:30

I’d say a third love school, a third are ok about it, dither in the morning, like it well enough but enjoy home and a third hate it.

My son is in the latter group so I don’t send him. I think my youngest judging by her reaction to nursery will be in the ok group so probably won’t send her either but at least it’s an option if it better suits our family circumstances.

Occasionally you see a kid who loves/would love school in home Ed groups and I think that’s generally not fair either. For some kids school is great.


Flatandhappy · 16/09/2022 09:32

Sometimes it’s the kids, sometimes it’s the schools. My eldest had pretty shit experiences in English (State) schools, including being assaulted by a teacher, all three absolutely loved their Australian (private) schools and went off and came home happy each and every day. DS2 is currently doing a Masters of Teaching as he said he was so inspired by his history teachers at school he wants to do that for other kids.


Needmorelego · 16/09/2022 09:33

@ThisisCollie2022 @BecauseICan22 my daughter is autistic, has anxiety, sensory processing disorder and anxiety based school refusal.
Much of my feelings about school are based on how she has struggled so much and how unhelpful and almost cruel mainstream school has been for her.
Thankfully she is still a SEN school now but the fact getting diagnosis (especially for girls) and a place at a SEN school is like golddust I want to cry for those children still struggling every single day.
As for the comment about 'weekend family tasks' what I meant was that yes 90% of the time it's normal family life but the times you can't go to the park to collect leaves because it's pissing down with rain/you need to help granny with her food shop/gone to visit aunty/watch a siblings footy match/go to an art festival or the 1001 other things families do some poor children get in a panic because they believe that they HAVE to do the family task and will get into trouble if they don't.
As for careers advice.....yes that should be part of what schools do. Otherwise why do they have 'careers day' and 'bring your parent to school to school and they talk about their job day' etc.
I would have liked to work in publishing when I was younger. No clue how to actually do that. My working class parents had no clue what I needed to do. My school was "well go to university" (and do what... I didn't know).
Plot spoiler.... I never ended up in publishing.


ZeroFuchsGiven · 16/09/2022 09:35

Needmorelego · 16/09/2022 08:07

There is such a lot of pointless faffing when it comes to school. Uniforms for a start. Having to wear such restricted clothes from a young age. Homework from such a young age - special 'family tasks' to do on the weekend. Make a cake together, go to the park and collect leaves etc. All those dull reading books and reading diaries and "you MUST read for 15 minutes each day".
It's just off putting to enthusiastic learning. Makes everything a chore.
And then secondary....urrgh. Everything is about "this is important to your GCSEs....exam, exam, exam..." and "if you don't do this now in Year 7 you will FAIL your GCSEs" and then they spend to much time caring about the colour of socks rather than finding out a child's interests and giving them actual career/job advice and helping them choose a decent path.
It's all just so tedious.

what a load of shite.


Needmorelego · 16/09/2022 09:36

@ZeroFuchsGiven read my follow up post above.


Thepeopleversuswork · 16/09/2022 09:41

PAFMO · 16/09/2022 07:57

You're conflating not wanting to get up with school.

This. The fact a child fakes malaises and faffs about getting ready in the morning doesn't mean they "hate school". That's just children being children.

If a child is struggling with their peer group or finding work really difficult that will colour the way they feel about it but that's usually situation specific. I wouldn't accept that most children "hate school" in the abstract. Honestly if they did it would be quite worrying.


Thenightwemet16 · 16/09/2022 09:46

My DD loves school, as do seemingly most of her class. She literally ran in on the first day back after the summer holidays 🤣 She's s very sociable, seems to be an extrovert (unlike me and DH!) so thrives from being around people. She also likes the structure and routine.

The school itself seems to be a big factor too.. The opening line on the last Ofsted report was "The children love being at school..."


Kellie45 · 16/09/2022 09:46

Let’s face it the nonsense about school days being the happiest days of your life is a load of rubbish. For many kids especially teenagers, it can be the most anxious days! But they are something to be faced and got on with. Of course we have all the trials of getting up in the morning and getting on with it but usually when they’re at school they cope with it and it is all the training for coping at life. If we feel there is any real problem we have to see the school who are better at seeing where there are problems than they used to be. The main thing is to get the kids into a routine where they get up in the morning and get to school. Another secret is to make sure they take to bed at night in a reasonable time. Some parents allow their kids to remain a part of the night and wonder why they can’t get up in the morning


Thepeopleversuswork · 16/09/2022 09:47

NovaDeltas · 16/09/2022 08:55

Not really, no. Children brought up around the importance of education, lots of books, educated parents etc, they love school. The ones we see with fake illnesses and bad behaviour come from the disordered families where academic prowess gets them called 'little swots', where absence and sickness are rewarded and where bad behaviour is praised as 'just the way they are'. Those families spread and encourage that behaviour among themselves by swapping tales of their kids' various needs and demands and declare it's all the school's fault.

This is snobbish and simplistic.

I was brought up in a family like this: gave huge priority to education and academic excellence etc. It turned me massively against school in secondary and I went out of my way to fail at it because I felt oppressed by the expectation and fetishization of education. I pulled it out of the bag eventually but I'm sure I would have got a lot further in life if my parents hadn't hit me over the head relentlessly about the value of education.

It's true that families need to put a high priority on education and make the idea of learning fun and rewarding. And certainly its true that families where school and self-advancement is sneered at are not constructive.

But its also surprisingly easy to turn kids off education by being too evangelical about it.


Buttons294749 · 16/09/2022 09:51

Mine are two small to draw a conclusion but i personally loved school, especially senior school. There were lessons/teachers/bits i didnt like but on the whole was excited to learn new things and have new experiences

I hated homework!


Luredbyapomegranate · 16/09/2022 09:51

I think lots of kids love primary, secondary not so much fun.

But I think if they are regularly making lame attempts to fake illness, then that is unusual.

why are they so unhappy do you think?


Dis626 · 16/09/2022 09:52

Despite really struggling academically due to severe dyslexia, my DS loves school. Obviously occasionally he has days when he doesn't want to go, but generally goes racing in happily.


Bluebellsand · 16/09/2022 09:53

My children are all early birds and wake up at the crack of dawn. Ds2 is starting to dislike school. He use to love it, but it is still September and it is taking him longer to adjust to leaving the house early.

His older brother loves school.

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