The phone rings while I am on the phone with a friend. I don’t answer it in time but I decide (against my better judgment, mind you ) to check the message…
It is a call from the substitute teacher telling me that she has been the sub for the week and that Milo has had a pretty “rough” week. I am almost laughing as I listen to the message. He has not had a rough week, his teacher who knows her class is not there. Who’s at fault? Milo? The rest of the kids in class? The rooster up the street? No. The substitute teacher and the administrators at the school. Maybe even the teacher herself.
Teachers, if you have a difficult class, please feel free to take the time to tell a substitute teacher about the class. Do not assume that the children will behave differently read: positively, when you are gone. Please expect the behavior to remain the same in your absence. Please let the parents know that you will be absent so that we can help our children prepare for the change, set boundaries and present them with consequences if things do not go as planned. Hell, ask for parent volunteers for that week. I know there are others who have signed the list to help and have not been called ( me included )THAT is how you set a child up for success.
The substitute wanted me to “have a little chat with” Milo so that he can have a better day tomorrow. Do you need me to beat his ass? Do you need me to ground him for a week from his video games? Do you want me to come get him for the rest of the day? Yes, let me have a little chat with my son about something that I have nothing but second hand information on.
Apparently, he splashed water on a kid in the lunch room and got a citation for that.
Do you really write citations for water? Did you only write one for Milo because the other kid was wet? Do think maybe the other kid ( who Milo said did it first ) had bad aim? I get so tired of people expecting me to discipline him for behaviors unknown to me. I say if they want to teach him how to act at school, THEY handle it at the school. Don’t send him home to me so I can ask him how his day went, only to hear that he was on a green day and that everything had gone fine.
I would expect more from people trained exclusively to work with children. You change behavior when you correct it at the source. You don’t send it home to an overworked, stressed exhausted parent to handle because it is too much on your plate. Make the kids run laps. If there is no medical excuse on file, it is not cruelty. If they need to leave you class for a while, please make sure they are doing something active and helpful. Don’t just send them to be idle in another class because ( duh ) they will get in more trouble.
From now on school, you are going to get my opinion on the back of your useless ( and unsigned ) citation letting you know that I cannot punish my son based on hearsay.
Now if you want me to come sit in your class all day….
I didn’t think so.