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Appointment with head after parent evening - need advice please

4 replies

gtimama · 21/03/2007 14:15

I attended my 8 year old twin daughters parent evening last week. They are in year 4 of juniors - in same class.

Teacher informed me that they were struggling, which I already knew, sort of. In as much as I knew that they were slower to learn than some of their friends. They can read, obviously, but they are not as confident as some, their spelling is pretty bad, their number skills are not the best. For example they only know their 1/2/5/10 tables confidently, they cannot buy penny sweets at the shops by themselves, they lose count and they do not know what change they should get back. They can only tell the time when its O'clock, quarter past/to or half past/to.

However, I was pretty shocked to hear her say that they had not progressed since infant school! That is a good 18 months ago. At the time I just accepted what she said and went on my way, but after thinking about it and discussing it with others I am pretty annoyed. She said that they will get extra help, but she didn't tell me what, the emphasis seemed to be on what I should be doing at home. I do things with them at home, same as any mum. I hear them read, we made a clock face and I tried to teach them the time, we prentend to play shop and I give them real money to work out what to spend and how much change and I write down sums for them to do. I help them with their homework when they have it and ask for help. But saying all that, I now find myself to be a single parent with three children (eldest 14), I work and run a household. I AM NOT a teacher. I feel let down by the school. If it is true that they have not progressed since infant school surely they should have noticed and informed me before now.

I've made an appointment to see the head teacher tomorrow afternoon, but I don't really know what to say to her. I know what I'm angry about, but I don't know how to put it, I don't want to be confrontational. Any advice appreciated.

OP posts:
powder28 · 21/03/2007 23:28

I had terrible trouble with maths and telling the time around that age, just sounds normal to me. Just make a list of everything you want to say. Good luck

chopchopbusybusy · 21/03/2007 23:59

Great that you have an appointment with the head teacher tomorrow. I think it's important for you start a dialogue now with the school so that you have some idea about the progress your DDs are making. I think you are right to feel let down by the school but if you can set up regular "progress" appointments then i'm sure your DDs will catch up with their peers.
Be assertive

isgrassgreener · 22/03/2007 13:26

Hi gtimama
I would ask what intervention they have in place for children who are not keeping up or slipping below their expected levels.
Most schools have some type of small group intervention that are targeted at helping then to keep up or catch up.
School action is the first stage, this is often all that is needed to bring a child up to the same level of the rest of the children, and is usually a small group that is taken out of class to work together or it can be done in the classroom alongside the class.
Some schools will move a child on to SA for a few terms then they catch up and they stop taking them out in the small groups.
I am surprised that your teacher has said that they have not progressed for 18 months and nothing has been done.
I would be very cross. They are failing your children.
Try and keep calm and ask them what help they can give. They may say they need to be seen by the senco, don't let that worry you, extra help is always a good idea and is much better than having them in class and not making any progress.
You need to find out what help they will get and how often, you also need to keep up really good contact with their teacher to ensure that you know what is really going on.
I am not surprised you feel let down, now you know the real situation, you need to work with the school to get as much help as you can.
Working with them will hopefully bring good results, good luck.

gtimama · 22/03/2007 21:49

Went to appointment today which went quite well. The head teacher there is only temporary at the moment, but she was very good. She has arranged an appointment for me for next week with the deputy head who will also be there when the new head joins the school. In the meantime she is going to get a plan of action together for my daughters, who are already getting some extra help. She will show me what their plans are and let me know what I can be doing at home to support them. It was all very positive.

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