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Discussion Starter #1
My son was tentatively diagnosed w/ depression(no big surprise, family history is there)...and I emailed all of his teachers(as a whole..one email cc'd to all) this morning to explain what was going on and what was bugging him. Well it singled out a teacher(but it did list other issues he was having too) that is giving such hard tests, that she HAS to give curves in order to have kids pass! This is in all 3 grade levels (6,7,8). My son has no test issues in any other class. She said kids need to apply themselves more
but if this is the only class he has trouble in, who do YOU think has the problem?!
Two tests in a row this has happened so who can blame my son when he gets stomach aches from worry about this class? She also announced in class that she was so discouraged w/ the other two grade's tests that she didn't get to grading their tests. My son has always been in the top levels in his grade. Now, his confidence is failing and i wanted all the teachers to know what was going on so if son wasn't comfy talking to English teacher(which he isn't)...he could go to another and talk to them. Teacher is miffed that I complained about her class in a group email. I did hesitate but in the end, I have to do what is best for my son and the other teachers need to know what is bothering Cory so they can help him


Son is so upset that he is asking me to consider switching schools (he goes to a Catholic school). The public schools are fine here...just didn't want the hassle of religious education every Wednesday for 2 hours.
 

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Man, I'm sure we can all remember that at least one teacher we just dread going to. What grade is he in right now? Does he have her for all 3 years? How bad is his grade in that class and what subject is it? I think he'll always run into bad teachers. But if in the end, it's just more convenient to change schools, maybe consider it. But he should know, he'll probably run into more bad teachers.

I hope I don't offend anyone when I say "bad teachers." I've known teachers who are just so mean, hates to help their students out, and you can tell they hate teaching.
 

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is there any wya for him to get another english teacher? i feel so bad for him. i hate those really hard teachers where NO ONE passes! ugh!!

i hope everything gets resolved. and im sure 2 hours on wednesday would be a little better than an hour everyday in church at school.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
lol Cathy. He goes to church 1 hour twice a week for school and religion every day.
I do think he'd be better off at the school he's at now b/c he's been w/ the same students since he was in Kindergarten(this school is K-8). His best friend (since he was 3) is at this school too. This English teacher he has is th ONLY junior high English teacher at this school. While I understand she would perhaps want a bit more private complaining....my son's health mentally and physically is more important than her pride! :excl:
 

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My nephew had the same problem.. His English teacher was always writing letters saying his work was "inmature" and that he needed to try harder. He was 5!!!!.
He was doing really good in all of his other classes but this one teacher was so disturbing that it affected his mood and he even started fighting and failing his other classes. After a couple of meetings with his English teacher we knew she was the problem. He barely passed. My sister immediately transfered him to another school and thank God, He is now doing great!!!!!
I hope you really find a solution to your son's situation.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Originally posted by Nichole@Jan 3 2005, 12:46 PM
As a teacher, I understand your concerns and I know "those kinds of teachers" you are talking about.  Perhaps your next step is to go to the principal.  Have a conference with the principal and/or the teacher as well.  It is their job to be aware of your son's issues and work with you and him.
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Nichole, I've notified the principal but she is saying she is a last resort, that she doesn't want to get involved until then. Her teacher is acting unprofessional by talking about how aweful the upper grades are doing (scaring my son about the next two years)..yet no comment from the principal about this. The comments I am getting from the teacher is "the students need to apply themselves" but this doesn't excuse the toughness of the tests...and there is no way she'll admit she sux as a teacher!
 

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I am no parent and I just finished my University degree several years ago so my views may be a little off. I am not here to offend but would like to participate in this discussion. I apologize if I upset anyone.

I went to an all girl's private school and both my parents lived half way across the world. Throughout junior high, high school and university, I have been among the top of my class. My parents never once intervened when I had a tough teacher nor when I had problems in classes. I don't believe it is right for a parent to mass email all the teachers or deal with problems with peers. It will single out your child and subject him to gossip among the teachers.

I am not sure what his causes of depression are but the root cause has to be identified and I really doubt that it is just the english teacher. My sister also suffered from depression and was diagnosed with a mental illness. She was not able to cope with the stress from school and my dysfunctional family. At first, we thought it was simply because her studies were too difficult but it turned out to be a lot more.

You can't ask his teachers to change or give him special treatment but you can put him into another school. You also can't remove all the stress and pressue he feels but you can help teach me how to cope with it.

From my experience, I have found the toughest teachers are actually the best teachers. I hated my calculus teacher because she gave us really hard tests and put a lot of pressure on us. Our entire class did poorly and I cried frequently because I had such high expectations on myself. But when I graduated from high school, I realiezed what a wonderful teacher she was and I appreciate everything she has done till this day. The teachers that put the additional pressure are usually the ones that believe in the students and expect more - call it "tough love". Imagine what would happen if all teachers made tests easier just because some students are doing poorly. What would happen to our education system if we keep lowering the standards.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
well Charmy poo, actually when I child suffers from depression, it is appropriate to ask teachers for help. He is getting ill in school from anxiety and the teachers need to help him out in the coping department. They are not only there to teach, but to help the kids become better human beings. This is why I am sending them to a Catholic school. It isn't a boarding school but a school that is 5 blocks from my home. The depression is eating at his memory and he is having difficult remembering assignments in his home room as well as other things(he is required to carry 4 classes worth of books at once...leaving that room at the beginning of the day and not returning till after lunch) and the teachers need to help remind him that he has to remember his things. Depression is a funny thing...it has robbed me of my memory as well and it helps when I have constant reminders. Without help, my son will just get lost...but w/ caring attention...he can gain his self confidence back
He is getting so frustrated with himself that he is just giving up all together on school. This just isn't a case of a tough teacher, but an insensitive one as well. And no, I am not blaming the teacher for his depression but she can help alleviate his frustration some as well. No two kids function the same and to ask them all to be treated the same is WRONG.
 

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Life isn't easy all the time. But, there's a problem when everyone's failing English in the school
. Nothing wrong with a challenging test, however, you have to teach well! And in grades 6-8, they need alot of guidance. I didn't even know I was good at math (or any subject) until my 10 grade. My math teacher gave fair, challenging tests, BUT she taught well. I think teachers play a HUGE rule in kids' future! They do contribute alot to building confidence. I do think it's necessary to contact the teachers and let them know of your concerns. It's your child's future that's in their hands. Nothing wrong with having a mature adult conversations with a teacher. I find it sad that someone who chooses to be a teacher wont be really concern with their students when there's something wrong with them. It's sad to know that Triste's son has depression, and the teacher just brushes it off.

I dont know what Im saying


Oh yeah...What about a TUTOR?! He gets undivided attention from someone! If taking him out of the school isnt an option, find a tutor!
 

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my cousins went to a catholic school k-8 and then to a catholic highschool. they arent good examples(they take drugs, drink, and my aunt found a condom in one of their rooms and he was only 14 yrs old)..........BUT i totally get what you're saying. having the same friends and feeling comfortable and stuff.

again...i had a class at san diego state university--i had to read the bible.
it was soo confusing. and then i read about Lot having sex with his daughters. it makes me feel uneasy. :eek: and i also read this WHOLE chapter where they talk about who "begot" who. sorry....i was going out of my mind!! lol
 

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Triste,
I have never dealt with depression so I really can't speak from experience. I apologize the I made such an uneducated post. He is very lucky to have such a caring mother like you.

I went to a Catholic School till I was in grade 7. In my opinion, while it is the teachers job to help us become better human beings, they can only do so much. They can teach the basics but with large classes, there is no way they can give the individual attention needed for special cases. Maybe it is because my expectations of a teacher is lower. I expect the school to teach the basics but the real morales and growing up is taught by parents.

I know your son will make it because you are a loving and caring mother. You are experienced and know the right thing. I have no place to say anything since I am not a parent and have never lived in a real family situation. I did raise my younger sister but our family is different. We also failed my other sister who we are no longer in touch with. She was so depressed and we had her in a hospital. She refused to see us and one day she left and we don't know where she is. We have been looking for her for the last year and we know she is alive.

Next time, I will just keep my mouth shut since it is clear that I don't know what I am talking about. I am talking about typical cases and not a child that is suffering from depression. Something beyond my understanding.

I really hope he gets better and he will be in my prayers. I know you will help him through.
 

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Well, I'm a catholic school teacher, one of 12 in the whole school, so lets see my thoughts on this one...

First: I'd arrange a meeting with this teacher. Many teachers get pissy when their students parents go over their heads. Perhaps this teacher may be reasonable. Being on the recieving end of this occasionally, teachers may feel on the defensive. But I believe that this is the fairest place to start.

Second: Your principal is givin you a bunch of BS. Granted the principal is there to protect the teachers, but at the same time they have a greater responsibilty to the kids. I would start there. I hate to suggest shoving it down her throat, but I'd demand a meeting.

If that doesn't work.

Third: Talk to parents of other students in this class. How are their children doing and feeling? Are they having the same issues with the teacher. If they are also having issues speak to your school board.. Catholic schools are supposed to have a special ingredient to them, the Christianity aspect. Our school is 80 kids an I know we bend over backwards for all of them. The school board will be in control of this teachers contract, so if you're going to go there, please be certain. I'm not saying if you talk to them they're gonna fire this teacher, but realize they control this teachers destiny.


I will say we do have a majority of our seniors failing our english class, even the very good students.. Our schooli s meant to be a college prep and we're known for it. The class is VERY hard, but the teacher is willing to help outside of the class however many of the kids are too intimidated to ask for it.

Just start with the teacher if you havent already. I know I'd be upset if a parent did this to me.
 

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Originally posted by CharmyPoo@Jan 3 2005, 09:01 PM
Next time, I will just keep my mouth shut since it is clear that I don't know what I am talking about.  I am talking about typical cases and not a child that is suffering from depression.  Something beyond my understanding.

I really hope he gets better and he will be in my prayers.  I know you will help him through.
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Don't say that Charmypoo! I think it's a good thing that we can explore every angle of every situation and review every point of view. It helps all of us become more openminded.
 

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Originally posted by Triste@Jan 3 2005, 11:25 AM
My son was tentatively diagnosed w/ depression(no big surprise, family history is there)...and I emailed all of his teachers(as a whole..one email cc'd to all) this morning to explain what was going on and what was bugging him. Well it singled out a teacher(but it did list other issues he was having too) that is giving such hard tests, that she HAS to give curves in order to have kids pass! This is in all 3 grade levels (6,7,8). My son has no test issues in any other class. She said kids need to apply themselves more 
but if this is the only class he has trouble in, who do YOU think has the problem?! 
  Two tests in a row this has happened so who can blame my son when he gets stomach aches from worry about this class? She also announced in class that she was so discouraged w/ the other two grade's tests that she didn't get to grading their tests. My son has always been in the top levels in his grade. Now, his confidence is failing and i wanted all the teachers to know what was going on so if son wasn't comfy talking to English teacher(which he isn't)...he could go to another and talk to them. Teacher is miffed that I complained about her class in a group email. I did hesitate but in the end, I have to do what is best for my son and the other teachers need to know what is bothering Cory so they can help him


Son is so upset that he is asking me to consider switching schools (he goes to a Catholic school). The public schools are fine here...just didn't want the hassle of religious education every Wednesday for 2 hours. 

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Well, from another teacher's point of view...in defense of the teacher you singled out...I would be a little upset about the group email.
I am sure she maybe got embarrassed and defensive. I know I probably would have, whether I was right or wrong either way. You could probably clear that issue up by talking to her one on one and apologizing in some way. Surely she will understand that you are just worried about your son and that you didn't mean to upset her with the group email.


BUT, it does sound like she herself, or her teaching/grading strategies definitely need to be evaluated by either herself, or someone of authority. If that many people are struggling, surely either the guidance counselor or principal can step in and look at some things.

As for the principal...maybe you can set up a group conference with all the teachers and the principal and guidance counselor. Our kids often go talk to the counselor instead of the teachers. She is really good. But at least if you talked to everyone at once, then everyone is on the same page. I think it is important that SHE...the teacher in question is aware that he is particularly stressed in her class for whatever reason. She should be also be aware of his medical condition and maybe have some statements from the doctor explaining it. Along with the statements, maybe the doctor can suggest some basic strategies ALL the teachers could apply to help him through this. Is he going to be taking medicine? I know that will take some time to kick in and adjust if he is...but in the meantime, this should be treated as an extraordinary case, and she (as well as the other teachers) may have to take some extra steps to help him adjust to it all and regain his confidence.

I don't know that I helped any...
. But, I can understand your frustration as a parent. Good luck and keep us posted.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
well, I am not liking the school counselor for a few reasons...SHE told my son he was depressed and SHE is telling/asking him when/if he's going on meds. He is in no position to tell/talk to him about these things. He's 12 for gosh sakes! He has no idea what is involved w/ depression and taking meds!
 

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Originally posted by Triste@Jan 4 2005, 07:29 AM
well, I am not liking the school counselor for a few reasons...SHE told my son he was depressed and SHE is telling/asking him when/if he's going on meds. He is in no position to tell/talk to him about these things. He's 12 for gosh sakes! He has no idea what is involved w/ depression and taking meds!
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:eek: That is not her place!!!! Good grief!!!!
You definitely need to set up a conference!!! That is my suggestion. You have rights as a parent. She is not qualified to make that evaluation on him, let alone talk to him about meds if they have not yet been prescribed etc.
My advice is to set up a conference with all of them asap.
 

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Originally posted by Triste@Jan 4 2005, 06:29 AM
well, I am not liking the school counselor for a few reasons...SHE told my son he was depressed and SHE is telling/asking him when/if he's going on meds. He is in no position to tell/talk to him about these things. He's 12 for gosh sakes! He has no idea what is involved w/ depression and taking meds!
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Geez that is awful. Poor lil' guy was probably really scared and worried after she told him he needs to be on medicine. It is hard for kids that age to be 'different' from their peers anyway. I would do like Tlunn said and set up a conference, the way the counselor approached the situation was definantely not the best way to go.
 
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