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Next question: The absentee teacher.

 
 
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 07:01 pm
As some of you know I'm investigating several options regarding Mo (my son, for those of you just joining my saga) behavior.

My next question concerns his absentee teacher.

His teacher is only there four days a week with a different teacher every Friday. This is on a good week. It is not unusual for her to miss another 3 or 4 days a month. This week she was there on Monday and Tuesday, missed today, won't be there tomorrow and there is no school on Friday.

Let's just say Mo deals with a lot of substitutes.

And Mo does not deal well with change of any kind.

I haven't complained about the teacher's attendance because I like her, I think she's a good teacher, and I don't know why she misses so much -- maybe she's sick, maybe she has a kid who is sick, maybe, maybe, maybe.... I like to give people the benefit of the doubt but......

Anyway.....

Could having an unpredictable teacher create problems for a child who is resitant to change? (He has reasons to be resistant. I'm not making this up.)

Would I be out of line to set up a meeting with the school's principal to discuss this in hope of making sure I don't end up in the same situation next year?

Am I over-reacting?
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Green Witch
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 07:08 pm
I can't say I have the answer to your question, but I know the topic of Waldorf School for Mo has been batted around in the past. Students have the same primary teacher for 6 years and it creates a lot of stability. Any chance there is a Waldorf School in your area? If you nixed the idea of this system of education on your own, you don't need to give me the details. Just carry on.
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 07:15 pm
Also, some public schools do looping where a class has the same teacher for 2 years.

I think that you have a good reason to speak with the principal. And if you do get Mo evaluated, you'll have a firmer footing to stand on. Principals should be planning for next year's classroom now.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 07:20 pm
I may be bald here, but change happens. Do you want to be growing a petunia? No, of course not. Get him used to the fact that change happens. That will help him in the future.

Your boy is robust.

(and yes, I get the ways he isn't.)
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 07:34 pm
Well if he's a petunia I'm going to damn well find someone who knows how to cultivate petunias. I don't think it's too much to ask that if I am expected to send him to class 20 days a month that he have a teacher who shows up at least 13 of those days.

That's what I thought, little k -- that they might be making plans for next year now. I'm going to try to talk with the principal tomorrow.'

Waldorf.... oh yeah..... We know a couple of kids who go to the nearby Waldorf school. I'd love to send Mo there but right now it sounds really expensive. I'm not opposed to seeing how I might be able to afford it though.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 08:32 pm
Now is the time to be talking to the principal about next year (at least if your school board's working on a schedule like ours).
0 Replies
 
dadpad
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 08:45 pm
Boomer I have been through the absentee teacher thing with my son. I was given all the assurances that it wouldnt happen again but it did. I was completely ignored. It took me 6 mopnths of letter writing and complaining to achieve a result.

I don't think its to much to ask for a teacher to actually teach for a majority of the time they are supposed to regardless of their personal situation. teacher may well have some problems however if continuing over a period of time she should take a leave of absence get things right and come back again.

Yes talk to the principal but write as well. Document your meetings and the teachers absences. Once you have documented the teachers absences write to the school board and board of education that supervises the school.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 08:46 pm
No, I don't think that is too much to expect, Boomer. But that your son falls apart without so and so?


Nobody gave a sht if I, so called only child, fell apart as we moved across country many times. I understand Mo has major problems. But, life is a cumin in. You/he don't want a nineteen year old petunia, who has to have the exact right teacher. Or, do you?

It seems mixed, in that he gets into the sturm and drang, doesn't he, to some extent. Surely more than I did. Still, the trick is getting a sense of self. That may relate to his early diagnosis or not.

I'm probably a diagnostiphobe. I wish the understanding of earlier problems could be set aside sometimes, to let him just be a kid without all the layers of instruction.
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 09:16 pm
What Osso says about petunias has some validity. But, with a kid like Mo, getting used to change needs to be planned and cultivated.
0 Replies
 
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 10:28 pm
I think this could be a difference between private/public school.
In all the 6 years my daughter has gone to school now, with a different
teacher each year - not one of them (teachers) was sick more than a day
for the entire year. Either they don't get paid for sick days in private
schools or they have other arrangements, or we have been plain lucky
in this, I don't know.

Other mothers whose kids go to public school do complain though, lots
of substitute teachers and lots of new teachers.

boomer, don't talk to the principle yet, talk to other mothers who have
kids in higher classes, they know.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 01:47 am
On the other hand, children here have different teachers for different subjects here, even in primary school, and class teachers may change every year ...
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 06:43 am
Mo does have different teachers for different subjects but those other teachers show up every day.

Last year his teacher only missed, I think, two days. This week Mo's teacher has missed two days, three if you count Friday. I think most public school teachers are there most every day.

I'm not really sure if I want to quiz the upper grade's parents. You don't get to select your teacher here so it wouldn't make any difference in class assignment. Plus, I'm worried it would get back to his teacher and I don't want to be a "gossip".

And no, I don't want some 19 year old petunia but I've also been doing a lot of reading and the doctor spoke with me about things that could be going on -- including classroom environment -- so I'm investigated things that might effect the classroom environment, including his teacher's attendance.

Getting Mo to relax and be the kid is the goal and that simply just won't happen if we set the earlier problems aside. Every level of instruction is designed for just that cause. Trust me, he completely out of the grown up loop in all of this.

dadpad, I remember you talking about this problem before. I would love to know what was going on with kidpad during this time -- what his reaction was to the absentee teacher, if you're willing to share.

If you are willing to share but don't want to share with everyone you could PM me. I'd be really interested.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 06:53 am
Yikes! That certainly sounds like you have reason to complain. My kid's teacher has also been out maybe once all year. Mo has very specific issues with change/ instability. I think it makes sense to have a discussion with the principal about that -- preferably with some sort of backing from a medical professional (like Mo's therapist, if he currently has one).
0 Replies
 
Bella Dea
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 07:04 am
What the heck? Why is she (you did say she, right?) always gone?

Why is she a full time teacher?


I'd do what DP did and complain, complain, complain.

Kids have enough to deal with at school without having the added stress of a new teacher every week.
0 Replies
 
fishin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 09:19 am
Since Mo has some specific issues with instability, IMO, you should raise some questions with the school. If it is determined at some point that he is ADD/ADHD the school will have to do an EAP for him anyway so addressing this now may head some of that off down the road.

Why the teacher is out and such isn't the issue. That's between the teacher and the school system and I'd avoid getting anywhere near that.

Stick with "Mo needs stability and he's not getting it." and work with the school system to figure out how to get there.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Apr, 2008 09:59 am
Yeah, fishin' that's exactly what I was thinking. I don't want to complain, per se. Her being gone so often isn't the issue -- how her being gone so often might be affecting Mo is the issue.

There is only a bit left in the school year and I absolutely DO NOT want them changing his class, I just want to avoid a repeat performance next year.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Apr, 2008 01:03 am
Re: Next question: The absentee teacher.
boomerang wrote:
As some of you know I'm investigating several options regarding Mo (my son, for those of you just joining my saga) behavior.

My next question concerns his absentee teacher.

His teacher is only there four days a week with a different teacher every Friday. This is on a good week. It is not unusual for her to miss another 3 or 4 days a month. This week she was there on Monday and Tuesday, missed today, won't be there tomorrow and there is no school on Friday.

Let's just say Mo deals with a lot of substitutes.

And Mo does not deal well with change of any kind.

I haven't complained about the teacher's attendance because I like her, I think she's a good teacher, and I don't know why she misses so much -- maybe she's sick, maybe she has a kid who is sick, maybe, maybe, maybe.... I like to give people the benefit of the doubt but......

Anyway.....

Could having an unpredictable teacher create problems for a child who is resitant to change? (He has reasons to be resistant. I'm not making this up.)

Would I be out of line to set up a meeting with the school's principal to discuss this in hope of making sure I don't end up in the same situation next year?

Am I over-reacting?


Yes.

Substitute teachers/new teachers are a major drama for these kids.



Yes, I think it would be fine to raise this as an issue re his placement next year......and ask for as much stability as possible (given these things are inherently unpredictable.)


Mind you, if he gets a stable teacher he doesn't click with.....
0 Replies
 
Noddy24
 
  1  
Reply Fri 11 Apr, 2008 06:40 am
Quote:
Mind you, if he gets a stable teacher he doesn't click with.....




There are frying pans and frying pans and fires and fires. Sometimes a kid can walk on hot coals if he feels secure enough.
0 Replies
 
 

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