If Mama Ain’t Happy…..


I’m very, very angry. I was hoping I could mop the floor, fold the laundry and wash dishes and the anger would dissipate. No such luck.
I got a message from my kid’s school and I’m being summoned for a meeting with Demolition Boy’s teacher and the principal for “behavior issues”. I’ll bet.
Let me tell you why I’m not going to lecture Demolition Boy on this one.
The very first day of school, I dropped Demolition Boy off at his class and helped him find his desk. Where was it? At the front of the class to the left, all by itself. The other desks were in groups or in the center of the room. Not his. Seperated. Isolated. Quarantined.
I thought it was a mistake. That it was that way from last year and they’d fix it when the class started. Oh no. In the eternal wisdom of his teacher, based on information FROM LAST YEAR he was put by himself. And then she proceeds to ambush me when I was at the school for an entirely different reason to tell me my son has issues in class. Her words? “Most children his age are compliant and he stands out among his peers.”
Really? You’re kidding me.
If you mean he’s singled out because YOU seperated him from the other kids in class? Then yes, he stands out. If you mean they tease him and he gets pissed off and hits them? Then yes, he has issues. Your fucking right. I would too.
Why are all the popular kids in charge of the schools? Don’t these teacher remember what it was like to be in grammar school? “Different”=”Bad”. Kids this age are sharks and my kid’s teacher just put his blood in the water.
So Demolition Boy hates school. Says he has “bad days” all the time. Gets in trouble EVERY FUCKING DAY. If I was going through that shit, I wouldn’t want to go either.
I’m so pissed off.
He’s a NICE kid with talent and humor. But they seem to want him to conform, comply, BEND. It’s sad because Train Boy has done just that. He’s a “good little boy” at school. I know he hates it.
I am the WRONG person to deal with this. I was tormented by my peers and chastised by the adults. Teachers complained that I “talked to much”. I was an object of ridicule and censure for most of my school years. To see my kid in the same boat is heartbreaking.
I have to stop being mad, though. I can’t go barreling into the meeting on Monday and flame them. They totally deserve it, but I won’t.
I am, however, requesting he get another fucking teacher. This woman is all about the “nice sweet children.” Redneck kids need not apply. I swear I want to give them a lesson in what it’s like to be on the outside. When a teacher punishes a kid BEFORE SHE EVEN MEETS HIM there is something wrong with that teacher.
She set my kid up to fail. And I am PISSED OFF about it.
*deep breath*
I recognize I am not the best parent in the world. I don’t ride my kids all the time and I encourage them to be independent. I don’t understand why there is so much PUSH in school. My kids are exhausted when they get home. And cranky. How is this helping them?
And it’s not like I can afford to pull my kids out of the system. It’s tempting. If I were smarter and more patient, I would thumb my nose at them and home school them. But I’m not.
So, I have to suck it up and stand my ground without burning bridges.
I hate being a grown up.
But I hated being a kid more.
*sigh*
I don’t feel much better.

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26 Comments

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26 responses to “If Mama Ain’t Happy…..

  1. verybadcat

    Wow, they aren’t even my kids, and this made me mad. I hate shitty teachers.

  2. Wow that really sucks! You should have insisted his desk be moved on that first day of school – what a bitch to judge him before she even met him. Could be his teacher last year just didn’t do a good job of channeling his creativity to more productive activities and this one is no better.

    I hope that you get what you need here – a new teacher – one that really knows how to teach.

    And a side story – not that it helps but when I was in the 1st grade I had a bad teacher – I was advanced and bored most of the time and as smart kids who are bored have done since the beginning of time I got into trouble. Instead of recognizing that I needed more work to do she labeled me as a troubled child and had me sent to a psychologist with my parents. They were horrified of course but took me. One meeting with the psychologist and she told my parents that I was bored, needed to be challenged more and basically had a bad teacher. I did not get a new teacher unfortunately but I did get to go to 3rd grade reading classes every day for a few hours that really kept me more alert and happy and much less likely to cause trouble.

    My teacher one time actually picked me up off the ground by my ponytail and dragged me back to my seat. This was 1976 so that was perfectly acceptable apparently. Nowdays she’d have been fired for that. 😦

    So sending my best wishes for Demolition Boy! Having a bad teacher sucks and is something you might still remember 32 years later.

  3. I’m so sorry you’ve gotta deal with that shit. As Motley could tell you, her adopted dad and I went to bat for her many a time because of crap like this. You’re perfectly within your rights to be angry – isolating your son before she’s met him is wrong. She’s there to teach him not make judgments and write him off before she’s had first hand experience of him. You also need to calm down before you go talk to her because no one is going to be your kid’s advocate but you. You gotta keep your cool, keep your facts straight, and above all be adamant and do not let them anger you in the meeting… because they will sure as shit try. Teachers like that are not logical, and they are often self righteous. Realize that you’re not going to change her mind. You just need to stick to your guns that she has damaged his enthusiasm for school and influenced other children against him with her isolation tactics. Just keep saying SHE’S wrong, and you want him moved. PERIOD. No discussion. No working it out. SHE caused the problem, the kids are just following the example she set from day one. Stay calm and steadfast with the teacher and the principal, and he’ll be out of that class. Believe me, I’ve done this several times before at the elementary level, the jr high level, and even once at high school. Teachers are NOT what they used to be like. They don’t give a shit anymore. It’s all lip service. Fuckers.

  4. Jennifer:

    My son had a similar issue in elementary school. He’s very talkative. And a boy. All the issues about sitting still, paying attention, etc that boys have. He’s also *very* intelligent. He was struggling to learn to read (this was the first thing he actually had to work at to get, so it was a learning how to learn issue more than an ability issue, imho) I was desperate to find something he wanted to read. For a book report, he selected a Goosebumps book a couple of grade levels above him, but he wanted to read it. It featured a hero who wanted to be the next Stephen King and so wrote a story (in the story) about a character who killed his mother and then came to “real” life. This character later died by flatulence. I told my son his teacher was unlikely to appreciate his choice. But he wanted to read the book and I wasn’t going to tell him no. He did read the book and wrote his report.

    I got a call from his teacher informing me that my son was emotionally disturbed and probably was going to have serious problems in future– I believe she implied he was going to be a serial killer himself one day. blah blah blah. I explained the above to her to no avail. I called the principal the next day and had a somewhat happier discussion. Fortunately for me, this teacher went on maternity leave shortly afterward or I would have insisted my son be moved to a different classroom.

    I later found out I was not the only parent of a boy in her class who was having similar experiences with her lack of understanding. She wanted the boys to not-boys.

    My youngest brother had a far worse experience. More like your son’s only, I’m afraid even worse. My mother took him out of that school and drove him 20 miles (1-way) every day to a different school.

    You do not have to suck it up. You only have to bolster your position by remaining calm and not letting anger permit them to ignore you because you are “irrational and angry.”

    Your son needs a different teacher. And if that doesn’t work, he needs a different school.

    Good luck with this.

  5. You’re a great parent, there is nothing wrong with letting kids find out who they are.

  6. Jen

    Tricia, I had a similar thing happen to me with my fourth grade teacher who dragged me down a hallway by my hair. Boy, he did NOT like me.
    And Winter, that is some awesome advice. I HAVE to be calm.

  7. This ticks me off. We’re struggling with issues this year as my oldest is now in Grade 4. He’s a good kid, sensitive and smart, but can’t sit still (diagnosed ADHD) and does have trouble concentrating. He can do the work, but when he’s pushed and made to feel bad (his desk is right in front of the teacher), he already feels like a failure so why bother. This teacher seems to be like, oh well, not my problem, I give them enough time to get the work done (although that’s not what other parents I’m talking to are saying).

    I’ve been to the principal and the teacher and hopefully it will get better. My problem is that no matter whether I’m angry, sad or otherwise, I start to cry and then I feel (and probably look) weak. Argh.

    You are in my thoughts and prayers for calmness and strength to deal with this. You are a fantastic mom and you do what is best for you and your kids. Big hugs.

  8. Jen

    Oh thank you so much Carolyn. That actually helps that I’m not the only one.
    And Thanks Dana.

  9. she was out of line. You’re DB’s only advocate and you’re doing the right thing by sticking up for his rights as a student. Give yourself a gold star, give DB a hug, and then have a nice strong drink. 🙂

  10. damnit… some folks sure know how to kill a lust for learning… crush an independent spirit…
    and just generally make a poor kid miserable….
    tell him Einstein didnt like school either…
    and give him an extra hugs from down here…
    and take and extra shot whiskey for yourself!

    xoxo

  11. Jen

    MG, I’ll keep you in my thoughts too. I know Demolition Boy would be diagnosed with ADHD as well, but I won’t drug him. EVAH. I hope things work out for you.
    Thanks Mel and SB. I’ll break out the whiskey this weekend.

  12. If you need to talk just let me know. One thing about having a high IQ, low producing kid who is now out of school, is that I have been through it all several times over. Teachers hate kids like my daughter, and me. I pretty much had a rough time too because of the IQ. However, teachers were more dedicated to kids and learning when I was a kid. Now, they are all about “their” rights and what it says about “them” when their students test well, etc. I hate self centered people who try to play off that they aren’t that way by having these jobs that are supposed to be all about giving back.

    I remember Motley’s adopted dad telling me once, “Just don’t cuss him out (the principal) cause the district isn’t gonna get rid of him which means we ‘re stuck dealing with him. Just be calm and firm in your demands and have the logic and evidence to back you. Don’t let him sidetrack you and piss you off. It’s not about you having a battle of wits with him… it’s about getting what is due Annicka.”

    Every time I had to do battle with a teacher or administrator after that, I would remember those words. And one day, I got to regurgitate them to her dad because he blew a gasket at the Jr ROTC administrator. LOL

  13. Jen

    Well, my school days were so awful and for five years while I was in grammar school, there was a principal who hated me. She thought little girls should be “sweet”, “quiet” and “feminine”. I was swinging my Barbies from trees and playing tackle football with the boys. If there was trouble, I was in it.
    I’m hoping the weekend will give me a chance to cool off and NOT go in there guns ablaze.

  14. Gosh, Jen, I feel terrible for you. What a way to set a kid up for failure and make him feel like an outsider his first day of school. This is normally a great school but that teacher seriously has her head somewhere it shouldn’t be. There are other options around our area if you’re not happy with this school. I know of a small charter school taught at the LDS church (don’t believe it’s affiliated) where he might be better served. There is also the other grammar school and a private Christian school (which I don’t suggest!!). Way to be a Momma Bear and advocate. You know what’s best, not some teacher hearing information from another and then basing her relationship with your son on that.

  15. Jen

    Thanks Sandi. I don’t think we’ll have to switch schools, but my choices are limited since one of the other first grade teacher is her HUSBAND. I just think that’s weird. I’m hoping we can come to some sort of agreement.

  16. jodi

    Jen.

    try this link

    http://www.k12.com/cava/

    it might be just what you’re looking for. Seriously.

  17. jodi

    it’s the CA version of the school my daughter goes to. It’s a REAL school. Online. Courtesy of your state.

  18. Holy cow. This is probably the last thing you want to read, but I am SO glad I don’t have kids. There’s no way I would tolerate anyone (adult or other children) who thumbed their nose at MY child. At me, sure, but not at MY child.

    Ahem.

    Being calm and cool…not letting anger sidetrack you? That has to be the best way to handle it. So I’m hoping you do…praying you do.

  19. Jen

    That link is great, Cup. Only problem? My county isn’t on there. *sigh*. I’ll have to contact them and see if Humboldt is approved through one of the other counties.
    Thanks, Andi.

  20. Hmm…I know who you’re talking about ‘cuz Tater had her for the first grade. She was fine for us because Tater is a people pleaser/over achiever (not always successful but she tries hard!) and buttkisser! I hope that she can see where you’re coming from and tries to at least make some healthy, positive changes in the classroom. I don’t know much about her hubby as a teacher but hopefully you won’t need to go that route and have him changed out. I thought there was a third 1st grade teacher but I’m probably wrong.

  21. First of all, your boys are freaking adorable! And, I would have a huge problem if my kids new teacher was judging them soley based on what the previous years teacher had to say. That is ridiculous.

    Every time I have gone to school because a teacher was unfair to one of my kids- when confronted, they ALWAYS say the same thing, “I don’t recall this or that”. You watch, when you give specific examples of things your boys relayed to you- all of a sudden, the teacher will pull that famous line.

    Funny, they remember each incident that our kids do, but when it comes to them losing their temper or saying something hurtful to their class, they all of a sudden “don’t recall that”.

    Keep your cool. Don’t lower yourself to her level. You are better than that- don’t let them tell you that you are wrong, you know your son better than anyone. And, you are a great mom! Take notes if necessary of what they are telling you…. for when you have to go above their head!

  22. Pingback: Conundrum « Redneck Romance Writer

  23. I’m totally throwing gas on the flame–That b%^ch did what on the first day of school?

  24. Jen

    Thanks JavaQueen! I’m hoping I can keep calm.
    And I love you Melissa.

  25. Kym

    I’ve been gone and missed this. I’m flabbergasted. I’m a teacher and NO ONE should have been “time outed” before they’ve done anything wrong. Holy Cow!

    I’m sure she thinks of it as giving him quiet and space to work but that should have been worked through with him and you before she isolated him. (Though I think she shouldn’t do it at all in any case.”

  26. Jen

    I think I blew that one Kym. I noticed it and didn’t address it. I couldn’t believe it either, so I let it slide. Now, I wish I’d said something right away.

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