June 6, 2008
Problems at home?
I have had problems with my youngest son in school since God knows when. He has ADHD and its always been a constant struggle. Recently, I learned he was failing a few of his classes. When asked about his grades, he said he slacked off and was trying to recover. In reality, he wanted to go off of his meds ( I know alot of people are against them but some kids really need them). I allowed him to try school for a month and see how he did. Well, his Progress Report said it all. His English teacher called me at work to let me know about my sons failing grade after I had already received the report. This is the second year she has had him in her class so she really should know how he is by now. Anyway, towards the end of our conversation, she asked me if things were OK at home. What?? I guess as a teacher you might venture into a conversation like that with the parent of a troubled teen. My son, however, is not troubled. He can be very lazy when it comes to school work. I was offended. I explained to her his desire to go off his medication and she acted like I was full of crap. She took it the next step further, I guess, because she wasn't satisfied with my response. First let me state that my son is not on illegal drugs, he doesn't die his hair or have piercings, he's not a rebel, and does nothing that would constitute your typical cry for help. She told the school counselor that he MAY have a problem, so he was called into her office. The first thing the counselor asked him was if there were problems at home. His answer, "no, I slacked off at the beginning of the semester and I'm trying to make up for it now." Why, just because my son slacks off in his school work, does that mean he is having problems at home? And why wasn't she satisfied with my answer? In hind site, one might say its a good thing that a teacher cared enough to ask. I, on the other hand, feel like she has questioned my ability as a mother and parent. If a child shows continual signs that they are in distress or has a drastic change in personality, then would be the time to seek further assistance. Making the parents feel inferior is not the answer. Am I wrong to take that personal? Since then, I have clamped down hard on his school work and we are hoping it will be enough for him to pass his classes. I would just like to add, I had no idea there was an issue until his Progress Report arrived. If a student is having problems, shouldn't the teacher contact the parent before hand so its not too late?? I would really like to know the answer to that question. Maybe I should forward this to his teacher so she knows exactly how she made me feel. Im I being too sensitive?