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View Diary: Teacher's Lounge: Gifted and Talented (135 comments)

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  •  I've spoken with (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WI Deadhead, algebrateacher, rserven

    parents of students who had him in prior years.  They said that he was just there to collect a paycheck.  

    When I made an appointment to speak with him, it was certainly my impression that he wasn't interested in discussing the issues at all and just wanted to get me out of his classroom and leave.

    I was told I should expect that he would extend at all or challenge the kids at all.  Such a shame considering his age.

    •  My wife has always gone to war for our kids, (6+ / 0-)

      sometimes with me in tow (unfortunately, sometimes I am the expert on education living in the house, whether I have a clue or not).

      She has successfully irritated a number of teaching sloths into action.  They don't want to do anything and hate being challenged, but there comes a time when doing the right thing is easier as a form of self-preservation.

      Just saying.

      Hunter S. Thompson wrote, "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." I want to know who has been getting my checks all these years.

      by algebrateacher on Sat Nov 03, 2007 at 11:09:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks (6+ / 0-)

        this is our only child and we're a little anxious about pissing off the educational system.  It seems to me that they have all the power.  So much of the grading system is subjective.

        •  Think beyond grades, especially at your son's age (5+ / 0-)

          What you want is what's best for your kid.  Nothing more and definitely nothing less.

          Remember as you go up the ladder: Everybody on the way up doesn't want anybody's problems from below.  That and everybody higher up likes the occasional softball to reassert authority over those below.  An angry parent with evidence is somebody's softball.

          Hunter S. Thompson wrote, "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." I want to know who has been getting my checks all these years.

          by algebrateacher on Sat Nov 03, 2007 at 11:27:30 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  It's a difficult (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Fabian, algebrateacher, rserven

            situation because this is a brand new principal at this school.  The prior principal was a "nice guy" who never did anything and let the teachers run the place.

            We've been documenting since we realized there was a problem.  I've got a folder about an inch and a half thick.

            With respect to your first comment, then what do you suggest? He's got to deal with this teacher as his "core" teacher (two periods a day) for the rest of this year and as a teacher in the middle school for the next 3 years.  On the other hand, the guy is really treating him unfairly.

            •  Someone needs to talk with him. (6+ / 0-)

              If he is not going to listen to his students and he is not going to listen to their parents, then you need to find someone to whom he will listen.

              He is doing your son a disgraceful disservice.  I have no doubt he is doing something similar to other children.  He needs to learn that this is unacceptable behavior on his part...in no uncertain terms.

              This sort of behavior makes me ashamed to be a teacher at times.  There is no way I can defend it and it hurts all teachers everywhere.  Some day, his behavior will no doubt be used as a description of us all.

            •  Is there another teacher of the same grade? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              DMiller, rserven

              If there isn't, well, then I'm stumped at the moment.

              If there is, it's time for a class change for those two periods.

              And if you can see a future problem in middle school, it's time to investigate a change of schools.  Do you have just one middle school in your district?

              I'm sorry.  I should have asked this first: Can you describe your son's school and school district?  Are there any options?

              Hunter S. Thompson wrote, "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." I want to know who has been getting my checks all these years.

              by algebrateacher on Sat Nov 03, 2007 at 11:50:27 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  We could move (5+ / 0-)

                him to another class.  There are about 1500 kids in this school and there are 5 "core" teachers.  Our son doesn't want to be moved, because he's afraid of being branded a trouble-maker with the other teachers.  He's also concerned about being transferred into one of the other core teacher's classes who is well known to be much worse than this teacher.  (Tenure is so much fun in Calif.)

                We do have options.  We can put him in private school, expensive, but doable, and there's another public school in the area that has an excellent GATE program that we could transfer him into.  Again, he's very resistent to both these options because his friends are in this school.

                This school is a California Distinguished School.  This means that the students score well on the standardized tests.  The other public school we'd consider transferring him into is actually a better school with better grades, curriculum, etc.

                •  Get your son to make a pro and con list (6+ / 0-)

                  for changing this year's class.  If he decides to stay (not really his decision but it will seem like it), ask him what will have to happen in order for him to make it through the year.  If he decides moving might make better sense, they it's up to you to get the right teacher.  Let the person with the computer at the school make an offer; don't accept anything that includes the wrong teacher.

                  With regards to changing schools, well, I'm not being glib.  You're the parent.  Make the decision and sell your son on the idea.

                  My younger daughter was terrified that having her Algebra teacher changed was going to "brand" her.  We made the decision and weathered her whining and scowls.  In the end, she loved her new teacher because "he teaches like Dad."  Kids are afraid of change just like you and I.

                  Hunter S. Thompson wrote, "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." I want to know who has been getting my checks all these years.

                  by algebrateacher on Sat Nov 03, 2007 at 01:01:50 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  I always thought my son should work it out (8+ / 0-)

                and respect the teacher.  Then I learned the second grade teacher put him in the corner for choosing books that were too simple for him and was having him write about how bad he was.  His math teacher in another classroom had none of these problems.  Finally, in April, I switched him to the math teacher's room for the entire school day. I should have done this much sooner in the school year. At first, I thought my son needed to be able to work with all kinds of people, but there was nothing postitive in the relationship.  If she didn't want him to read books that were too easy, then she shouldn't have given him the choice.  

                •  My younger daughter's kindergarten teacher (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  WI Deadhead, DMiller, rserven

                  was truly disturbed because my daughter could read.  She was supposed to be like all the other kids and spend class time circling all the words with "b" in them.

                  That and other issues got the battle going.  Eventually, the teacher tried to deflect us by referring my daughter to the district social worker because of her "competition issues with her older sister."

                  In the end, the social worker told us that she thought our daughter was a "delightful child" who spent her time with the social worker talking about the books that the Principal let her read from the Principal's office.

                  Hunter S. Thompson wrote, "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." I want to know who has been getting my checks all these years.

                  by algebrateacher on Sat Nov 03, 2007 at 01:22:52 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  I agree, somewhat (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            algebrateacher

            I'm more interested in whether the kid is learning anything than whether she gets all A's.  Unfortunately, the A's are required to get into advanced classes.  Her NJASK scores put her in the top 2% of the state in literacy and probably higher than that in math.  (in math, they don't break down the percentiles)
            But the resentment from the educational community towards G&T kids is palpable.  If she doesn't ace every test, it wouldn't matter how gifted and talented she is, they will shove her in a class with average learners.  

            -3.63, -4.46 "Choose something like a star to stay your mind on- and be staid"

            by goldberry on Sat Nov 03, 2007 at 06:37:24 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

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