Letter to parents

There are so many things I wish I could say, but alas, I am not allowed. Ok, anyone who actually knows me, knows that I would NEVER say these things, but this is how I really feel, and this is the truth; at least it’s my truth.

Dear Parent/Guardian,

I am looking forward to a great year with your student. I have spent my summer learning new strategies, and looking at ways to improve student learning. Not a day has gone by that I didn’t at least think about something I would like to do or change in order to enhance student learning. I have ignored statements made about what I do with my summers, ignored reports of testing on the news, and done what I know is right. I know, that if I do my best to help and teach all students, tests will take care of themselves.

Every summer, not only do I prepare curriculum, but also prepare my classroom. I believe that no student should have to receive a lower grade because they can’t afford basic supplies. I stock my room with $1500-$1800 worth of supplies from my own money. I go to trainings year round. I go to school an hour early, and will stay late to help your child do the very best they can. I don’t ask for much in return. Here’s what I would like:

1. Respect my time. If your student stays late, please pick them up.
2. Don’t speak negatively about teachers in front of your student. It undermines our ability to be the authority figure in the classroom. If I can’t discipline your child because you have told them not to worry about what a teacher says, it disrupts the learning of others. If it were the other way around, would you be up at the school demanding a conference because your child couldn’t learn in that environment?
3. I don’t mind providing supplies when needed, but please don’t take advantage of me. I don’t make enough to support 110 children.
4. I need more than 24 hours to grade 110 essays. Don’t call or email complaining that grades aren’t updated.
5. Guess what, sometimes students lie; sometimes teachers make mistakes (we are human after all). If something is bothering you, please call or email so we can discuss it before you jump to conclusions.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

I am sure I have left some things out, but this is what comes to mind as I begin to shop for supplies.

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127 responses »

  1. Your letter says it all. I hope it’s ok that I reblogged it on my blog at http://www.iprojectconfidence.com. I am a child advocate and parent volunteer that works to teach girls to trust their instincts through confidence building/instincts training programs I created. Spending time in the classroom gives me the opportunity to see things from the sides of students and teachers, and relay problems to parents and work to find solutions as a “third party”. This is a letter all parents need to read. Thanks again for being brave enough to put it out there.

  2. Great post. 🙂 I’m sure you are doing what you can in the best way possible! Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed!

  3. Thank you for your wonderful response. It takes everyone. The parents were not the problem for me. It was the administration that led me to believe I was a poor teacher. Maybe I was to them. I tried to get the bad kids to wake up, and the good kids to reach for higher goals. I will no longer be frustrated. I will continue to pray for them. Thank you for your continued comments. I believe you have written well. Your blog is here for a reason. Thanks!

  4. I know where you’re coming from, and it hurts for us, teachers, to experience such things. Teachers used to be given MUCH RESPECT. As far as I could remember my grade school, high school, and tertiary years, I really gave respect to my teachers. However, as what I observed at present, pupils/students have been so “over familiar” with their teachers. They treat their teachers as if the latter is just the former’s close friends or worse, slaves. I know other students would like just to feel comfortable with their teachers, but I hope they would realize the boundaries that they have to look at.

    Another thing is about the parents. As what I heard from my co-teacher, she said that the kids nowadays feel so “overconfident” in school because they believe that their parents have been so overprotective with them. Despite committing violations and the like, they still don’t realize their mistakes, for their parents keep on defending their side. It’s so appalling to consider that the kids won’t be able TO LEARN because they’ve been so overdependent.

    I hope people (or parents/students for that matter) would be able to realize that we, teachers, are humans. We aren’t perfect, yet we are in need of what we call RESPECT.

    Bless you, Teacher! 🙂

  5. Pingback: to the new school year « Learning: Theory, Policy, Practice

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