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- The Importance of Feedback in Distance Learning - October 9, 2020
- What a Teacher Wants: One Teacher's View - March 25, 2018
- Artist is Not a Dirty Word - March 18, 2018
- The Death of Reflection in English/Language Arts Classrooms - March 9, 2018
- More Than A Teacher - March 4, 2018
- Real Teaching Resolutions - January 5, 2017
- 23 Times I have Questioned My Sanity While Teaching - September 7, 2016
- Part 3: Adventures in Real Word English/Language Arts - Let Them Be Great - August 23, 2016
- Part 2: Adventures in Real World English/Language Arts: Making Them Care - August 4, 2016
We often speak of students saving our teaching career through notes or actions. Sometimes we even speak of other teachers helping keep our sanity, but we rarely speak of parents. Parents and teachers rarely seem to be on the same side which is upsetting because we have the same goal. We want what is best for our kids. We just disagree sometimes. I had a parent save my teaching sanity this year. This article is dedicated to her. Thank you for opening my eyes.
[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent="yes" overflow="visible"][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type="1_1" background_position="left top" background_color="" border_size="" border_color="" border_style="solid" spacing="yes" background_image="" background_repeat="no-repeat" padding="" margin_top="0px" margin_bottom="0px" class="" id="" animation_type="" animation_speed="0.3" animation_direction="left" hide_on_mobile="no" center_content="no" min_height="none"]I had a parent save my teaching sanity this year. Click To Tweet
My classroom is known as a safe space. All day long kids pop in and out asking advice on careers, relationships, and the future. All high school teachers have the burden/privilege of guiding young adults to a career path or life changing decision. This year I had to deal with something a little different. A student of mine had a situation where he was in serious emotional distress. While teachers do have training in this area, there should be more training and not just “briefings” or just watch this video trainings. I was conflicted. I paced back and forth with the information he had given me. I had to report it, there was no question, but I also worried about the “betrayal” this student would feel. I knew he would hate me for the rest of his life, but I would rather that than keep it and something worse happen. I also knew I had to call home. This made me sicker than anything. I did not know this parent, and I was worried she would blame me for twisting words or causing a problem where none existed. But I put myself in her shoes if my child was going through something like this, wouldn’t I want to know? I think we all should stop once in a while and place ourselves in each other’s shoes.
So I called and braced for the worst. But I received the words that made me want to stay in education a little longer, “I’m so happy you are in my son’s life.”
A parent had never made me feel validated. In ten years, I had never been thanked by a parent. I’ve been dragged to parent-teacher conferences, brought to the administration, or given excuses. These words made me realize the importance of the parent/teacher/student relationship.
We all play an important role in education. It seems we are always teaming up against each other, and it should never be this way. We should all support each other, could you imagine what our schools would be like if we worked together instead of against each other?We need to be more open with each other. Click To Tweet
We need to be more open with each other. The only way a school system can truly excel is if the three main components are working in harmony and each is holding up their end, after all, the triangle is the strongest geometric shape. If the student, teacher, and parent are all working together, the results would be outstanding. We can all agree that our schools are in need of a better communication system between parents, students, and teachers. Once we have established this “triangle of trust,” we have the potential to grow even stronger. (Source)
The role of Parents. Parents must to provide working numbers and emails and respond to them if a teacher sends them. Parents must feel comfortable enough to contact their child’s teacher if there is a concern. Most school systems offer a way for parents to check online grades and discipline records, and we know that our teenagers usually do not share this information, so our school system should teach our parents how to access these systems and contact parents if there are any concerns.
The role of Teachers. Teachers must call and contact parents and trust them to support us. Teachers have to share our goals with the parents so they can help us achieve them. Teachers must establish relationships early with parents making sure to call or email BEFORE there is a problem. This lays the foundation that we truly care about your child, and we want what is best for them. If you call only for discipline issues and failing grades, the parent can be frustrated. Imagine if someone only called you to complain about your child’s behavior. Imagine that phone call every week. Teachers need to form relationships with parents, and I understand that having one hundred different parents to contact is difficult, but send a letter home with contact information. Put the school’s phone number, email, and professional period information in your letter and make sure you encourage contact. Put a signature line and make it a five-point grade. If you do not receive the letter, those are the parents you need to contact because chances are they did not see the letter.
The Role of Students. Students have to understand that it is not the teacher and the parent against them. Or student and parent versus the teacher. Students have to accept that they are ultimately responsible for their education. No one can make anyone do anything. It is up to the parents and teacher to support and encourage, not to carry the load. Some students have a tendency to play the adults in their lives against each other, but once they understand we are all in this together, and there is communication between parents and teachers, they will perform better.All together we can achieve greatness. Click To Tweet