"The Parenting Cafe" had a few points to make about one of my homeschooling posts recently. The comment was written in such a way that I had to read it, read it again, sleep on it and read it yet again.
Something about the post nagged at me and while I would normally overlook comments that are odd, the fact that she is "The Parenting Cafe" stuck with me. I came back and really READ the comment. I pondered it and have come to the realization that I am not only troubled by it, but very concerned that she will be handing out parenting advice.
Here is the comment and my concerns...(my words are in peach)
"I don't homeschool. I am pleased with my children's school. Well, the ones that live with me full time.
My one child lives with his dad. I had to fight the school to make accomadations for him. They wanted to label him as a problem child. They insisted on me medicating a 5 yr old. I wouldn't have. I told them where they could stick it. Instead, I did behavior modification at home and told the teacher what works for him.
(Why is the child living with his dad and not her?)
As far as patience, I don't have the patience to teach him. I don't. I tried homeschooling him and it was a nightmare. We both cried every day and fought.
(When did she try homeschooling? He was 5 years old when they wanted to medicate him. Also, Wasn't she the one who did behavior modification at home so she could tell the teacher what works?)
It took some persistance from me to get the school to realize that not all children are square pegs. Some, all, children are unique and learn in different ways.
(She sent him to school because she couldn't handle him and cried when she had to teach him, but now she has the persistence to tell the school how to handle him and teach him? ...and the term is a "round peg in a square hole.")
He enjoys school and his friends now. He's 3 reading levels ahead and a year ahead in math. I couldn't be prouder.
(He's also living with his father now.)
My other son had a speech delay. I put him in an early childhood program. It was a wonderful program. The school system he is in is very unique for a public school. They don't group all kids into one category. They let children andvance when they are ready. The kids sit at tables and work as a team until 6th grade. They have different level classrooms. The teachers actually love teaching. I'm so happy with the school I refuse to move out of the district.
(If she moved out of the district would she be closer to her other son?)
I think that education is a personal decision. They are your children and who knows them better. If you want to and have the ability to, then home schooling is wonderful. If you send your kids to school then you should be involved and not leave it to the school to educate them completely. As a parent, it is your responsibility as well.
(Why does she think a teacher who does not love her child, can control him and teach him better than she, his mother, who does love him? Why does she think a teacher, who does not love him, will be able to handle him if he is so unruly that she cannot?
I have had so many teachers tell me that one of the major problems in schools is that parents who cannot control their children, will send them to school expecting the establishment to handle the "problem." Then those same parents show up and try to tell the establishment just how to do it when they, themselves cannot. Isn't this exactly what she is doing? How is that good for the son, the teacher, or the students who are affected by this situation?)
No, I probably couldn't teach my children chemsitry. I have enough resources to be able to provide that to them. And it is not a requirement in life to take chemistry. It is a requirement that you can read and write and problem solve. Most of what children learn in school is teaching them problem solving skills. That's what Algebra is. It's more about them being anayltical then being able to figure out 1+1.
(If school is mostly teaching life skills then why is she having to go in and tell the school how to raise her son? They are "trained" and "certified" so why? Because they teach Algebra and analytical thinking?)
I love your answers. I get questions about why I don't medicate my son. Wouldn't it be easier on you if you medicated him. Probably, but that doesn't mean it is good for him. Just because it's easier doesn't mean it's better. And it's not about me. It's about them. Their needs first.
(What they are really asking her is, "If you can't handle your son at home why are you forcing a teacher, with 20 other students, to deal with him when she's at work?"
This "Parenting Expert" is his mother and she goes into tears when she tries to teach him at home at 5 years old. She can't handle him. Why is she expecting a teacher, who does not love him, to deal with the behavior his own mother cannot handle?)
I'm glad she thought it was a great post. I certainly didn't get that vibe from her answers. I got a lot of round and round talk. The SAME talk I got from a mother when I taught at private school. She came in to tell us how to handle her ADHD son because she knows him best. She always brought him early and picked him up late. She expected us to move the room and sequester the other children when he needed to bounce off the walls and run around the room but she couldn't handle him herself.
I submit that this is EXACTLY the mentality that is a huge problem in the public school system. The parents are not being parents but are using the system as a glorified babysitter, while they sit back and call shots, point by point, telling the school to "stick it" and touting what they think the school is doing wrong with their child.
This is one big cop out as a parent. In the end they will be the ones who blame the system when little Mikey robs the corner market but take full credit when little Sarah goes to grad school.
Look, Parenting Cafe, I'm not your friend so I can tell you this flat out without beating around the bush.
You can't have it both ways. Either the school system and teachers know what they are doing or they don't. Either you can handle him or you can't. If he is miserable at school and making the teacher and other kids miserable, medicate him. If you are sending him to school because you can't handle him one on one, they sure the heck can't handle him with 20 other students in the room.
I am the bad guy. I know I'm sounding harsh but I lived this. Somewhere out there is a teacher losing her marbles, a classroom full of kids who are nervous wrecks and one little boy who needs help. God, I hope this helps someone somewhere and if I have to be this blunt to do it, So be it.