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Parent/School Relationship February 23, 2012

Posted by sunflower71 in my opinions, Uncategorized.
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A few years ago, in my pre-children time, I would have thought this to be a simple and straightforward matter.

Fast forward to the present and I can confirm that this relationship is as straightforward as causes and solutions for global warmth!

Now, it’s not like because I have 3 children matters are made simpler.  They aren’t. They are just more complicated.

Here goes the background before I start with my list of reasons.  Catherine and Maria attend the local primary school.  Francesca, the youngest has started attending another school that happens to be closer to where I am working right now.  Being that during the day, I am the one who is called upon every time something or other happens, I chose for Francesca, who will probably be involved in more ‘mishaps’  to be closer by.  Another reason is that we have a 30 minute unaccounted for time every morning where both my man and I are already gone to work but school hasn’t yet started.  We have our blessed home helper who takes care of Catherine and Maria….but I couldn’t ask her to mind also Francesca, who even alone is a real handful.  So for Francesca we chose this other school that while closer to my place of work has also added services such as child minding before hours.  (Yes carton jigsaw puzzles have been fashioned on the juggling families do to balance work and family life!)

Back to today’s topic:

I deal with one school in respect to two of the girls  and with another one for the third.

1.  The School’s Administration think that all mothers can come for meetings, talks, and social gatherings every few days.

2.  The School’s Administration writes notes to us about said meetings, talks and social gatherings in tones reminiscent of the good old days when women were asked to leave their job when they got married.

3.  Every few days the girls bring home notes asking for money for outings, publications and other assorted activities.  Please note that even the two girls attending the same school do not have the same requests for us.

4.  Number 3 happens so often that I think next year I’m going to suggest they ask us for €100 at the beginning of the year and take from time amount until it finishes.

5.  We are asked for parental consent (one of the parents) for every little thing that is happening to our children outside the class room.

6.  Francesca’s school takes number 5 one step further and asks for the parental consent of both parents.

7.  The fact that two local schools have different policies (number 5 and 6) makes me wonder how much in reality this procedure is needed.

8.  Whenever I have the need to call the school things are explained to me in tones that remind me of when I was my self in primary school and the head of school told me for something or other.

9. The single most infuriating thing must be the us-them attitude.  When I’m called in to pick up one of girls because she’s unwell, I’m made to feel like some irresponsible parent who sent her daughter to school when she was sick instead of keeping her at home.  When we’re called in for class visits, teacher-parent conferences, general info meetings, whatever visit in reality, I can help but feel under scrutiny and about to be told off for a wrong step.

Now this might seem like I’m someone with a few childhood unresolved issues.  Please belive me.  I am not.  I have very happy memories of my childhood school days.  I am generally very positively disposed towards schools.  I choose teaching as my profession that I went back too and am enjoying after dabbling in a couple of other jobs.

The only thing I hope and wish for is that whoever is administering schools takes into consideration that in most families there is more than one child and that parents struggle to keep down jobs.  I think that with these two basics in mind, parent/school relationships could be made far smoother and friendlier.



1. Anne Cremona - February 25, 2012

Most schools in New York now had a parent coordinator. Any issues that the parent has will be addressed by this person. It helps the schools to run smoothly!! When the parent and the education system works together, its always a win win situation!

sunflower71 - July 26, 2012

One day I hope our education system will have that too. For now they still think they are working with us when in actual fact the feeling I get all the time is that …. we’re doing you a favour Mrs…tag along please 😦
What you say is true though … win win comes only when working together…. that counts for all situations.

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