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Teachers behavior towards 1st Grade son

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    Teachers behavior towards 1st Grade son

    Long time lurker here, This is only my second or third post. I've looked all over the internet and this site, but cannot find any similiar situation.

    My husband is a T12 para, and our son just started 1st grade. We attended 1st grade orientation with his new teacher, which was last Friday. On Monday, my son came home from school and told us that his teacher had lots of questions for him. She wanted to know what happened to his Dad, when, and were we married before the car accident. My husband and I were a little unnerved by this. We are no strangers, as I'm sure many here aren't, to well meaning but intrusive questions, as well as the downright rude and offensive, but we wish she would have directed her questions to us, and not our seven year old. He was not upset, just a little puzzled. We were alot more uncomfortable than he was. It would be over with, but then...

    His class is starting a unit on community, i.e. local government, etc. To start off the unit, many parents who are policemen, volunteer fireman, etc. came in to speak to the class about their role in the community. One of the parents was an emergency room physician. When his presentation was over, the teacher then said to our son "Your father was in a car accident, right? Do you have any thing to ask or add about what Dr. ______ does for the community?" Both my son, and the wife of the physician who made the presentation, told me what happened. The Dr.'s wife, who I do not know very well, actually called that evening to let me know that she and her husband were uncomfortable with the teacher's behavior and thought I should hear from them what transpired. I don't like what was done. We are not trying to hide my husband's injury and are very active in PTA and after school athletics, but I don't feel my son has to explain his Dad's injury unless he volunteers. I don't know if I should speak to his teacher, she seems somewhat hard to approach, or just let it go.

    Anyone have a simliar thing happen

    #2
    This is unacceptable behavior. I would take it up directly with the principal with the teacher in attendance.

    Comment


      #3
      I agree, talk to the teacher or principal. When I go to my daughters school they have never singled her or I out. The kids are all very curious about my powerchair and if they ask I answer them.

      I'd be uncomfortable too.
      Emily, C-8 sensory incomplete mom to a 8 year old and a preschooler. TEN! years post.

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        #4
        Please speak to the principal about this. Include the details about the doctor's wife calling you.
        The sooner after the incident the better.
        If you talk to the teacher she may get defensive and deny it. Since she is such an insensitive idiot she might even take it out on your son.

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          #5
          She could be a devo. Speak with her first, don't go running to the principal. Shemay have a relative or someone close in a chair.

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            #6
            I say set up a meeting with both the teacher and the principal.

            If the teacher wants to know so much she should ask you, not your 7 year old its not his job to know or fully understand the disability
            Blog of Me

            http://brianemartin.blogspot.com/

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              #7
              Originally posted by Patrick Madsen View Post
              She could be a devo. Speak with her first, don't go running to the principal. Shemay have a relative or someone close in a chair.
              Agree with this. Her level of interest in your husband's situation is a bit creepy, IMO.
              MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

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                #8
                Originally posted by Patrick Madsen View Post
                She could be a devo. Speak with her first, don't go running to the principal. Shemay have a relative or someone close in a chair.
                What ever the situation, I think PM is right, go to the teacher. Go with your gut as to taking it higher than that after having talked to the teacher...

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by Patrick Madsen View Post
                  She could be a devo. Speak with her first, don't go running to the principal. Shemay have a relative or someone close in a chair.

                  I respectively disagree Patrick, this is more serious than a chat with the teacher. What she said and did was so out of line.
                  Maybe requesting a meeting with both teacher and principal would be good.
                  My (now adult) son has a condition called alopecia areata. In third grade he lost all of his hair, lashes and brows. We told the teacher what was happening, gave her literature and she knew he was part of a study at the U of MN.
                  She still asked him about his "cancer" and asked odd questions at conferences. She seemed to think he must have had terrible stress at home etc.
                  Finally I did talk to the principal and we had a meeting that went well.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    This teacher is completely inappropriate. Your son should never be put in the position of explaining anything about your husbands injury, let alone fuel her seeking personal knowledge about if you were married before or after the injury. I would definitely speak to her or her principal so that this is stopped now, when the school year has begun.

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                      #11
                      In my opinion (as a member of the school committee for over ten years), it is almost never a good idea to go over anyone's head without giving them the courtesy of talking to them first. There could be a simple reason for the behavior that can be easily worked out at the personal level. If there is a genuine problem, it is much easier to then go to the principal with solid facts than with an uncomfortable feeling, and it does not add much time to the process.

                      It looks to me like the teacher might feel that your son may need to talk about his dad's condition and is giving him the opening to do so. This is a bit misguided, but certainly not malicious, and a simple conference could clear the air. If something like *was* the case, and you were the teacher, think about how you would feel if someone went to your boss and blindsided *you*. There it too much ZT (zero tolerance) in the school system already without parents adding to it.
                      Don - Grad Student Emeritus
                      T3 ASIA A 27 years post injury

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Thanks for all the responses. At certain points, I thought I was being hypersensitive, so its nice to know that others thought her behavior inappropriate as well. I'm not looking for heads to roll, and don't want to make a bigger deal out of it than I should, since my son seems to be okay with it all. We've explained to him that he can politely say he is uncomfortable discussing it in class and take it from there. I mean, its all out there now, I don't see any reason for his teacher to keep probing or bringing it up.

                        I'm also afraid that if I make too big a deal out of it, my son will, too. Kind of like when he was little and would fall and scrape a knee, he would look at me to see if I gasped or looked horrified, and would either scream and bawl or shrug it off based on what he saw on my face. He said he thought it was a little weird, but he's used to people and their questions. It just bothers me that his teacher acted that way, its almost like she took advantage of him. She seems rather cold and stern, (made us feel like were back in school!) but this is just a first impression from 40 minutes at Open House. Maybe she was nervous, too. I just sometimes feel like whatever I do or don't do is bound to be wrong. Thanks again for all the input, it was truly helpful and appreciated.

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                          #13
                          I agree w/ Donno about talking to the teacher first. I think it is better to do this first before going over her head. It may be just something as simple as her making too much of an effort to make him feel comfortable talking about it. She may be uncomfortable about it, and putting that feeling on your son.

                          (Obviously, if you feel the conversation with her doesn't go well, then is the time to go over head.)
                          T7-8 since Feb 2005

                          Comment


                            #14
                            I would do nothing at this point. If something similar happens again, then you'll know there's a problem there. If nothing more happens, then it was just an anomaly.

                            If it does happen again, then you might try to feel her out, but if she's cold and stern in reality was well as projection, it might be better to speak to her superior. Good luck.
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                              #15
                              This made me so uncomfortable for your son just reading it. I would be so all over this, if it were my son. She had no business taking these liberties especially with a 7 year old child. What a first impression for him in school. I would take it up with the teacher and/or principle asap to ensure that nothing like this ever occurs again, because if you don't, it probably will. Good you are keeping your cool and giving thought and getting input as how to proceed though, because if it were me, i'd probably be blowing up, i could feel myself getting pissed just reading it.

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