Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Student Education Plan

Every year I am forced to attend my school district's version of the parent-teacher conference. But, instead of this little get together being just between me and the teacher, I get to bring along my child. Then the three of us sit together and first ask my child what his/her strengths are. Then we ask that child what he/she can work on. We set goals. We write what the child will do to attain these goals. Then we talk about how I, as the parent, will help the child reach the goals.

This is the most retarded, idiotic, waste of time I have ever encountered as a parent. I cannot believe I am forced to this every single year. What is the point? Let's address each of my concerns:

1. I take my child with me. Why? I want some one-on-one time with the teacher. I want to get the real low-down about what is going on with my kid. I want privacy and reality.

2. What are my child's strengths? Why am I asking the child? I want to know what the teacher thinks are his/her strengths. Come on! I want the teacher's viewpoint. They are the ones who spend 6 hours a day, 5 days a week with my kid, supposedly teaching them. The teacher should know what the kid's strengths are.

3. My kids weaknesses. Okay, I think its fine to have the child fess up and own up to their own problems. I think it is a good exercise in self-realization for them to come clean.

4. Goal setting. Again, I want the teacher to help me out here. The teacher ought to know what is up. The teacher should be very aware of what my kid needs to work on. I am busy after school trying to get the kids to do chores, finish homework, get shuffled off to soccer or piano or whatever, make dinner, clean up from dinner, get baths, scripture study, and prayer. Like I said before, 6 hours in an academic environment with my kid ought to clue the teacher in.

5. How the child can attain the goals: Again, I'm fine with this part. The kid should come up with their own plan.

6. How can I, as a parent, help them attain their goals: This is the horrifying part for me. As I stated in problem #4, I'm a busy gal. I have a hard time committing to completing anything else around here between 3:30 and 9:00. I'm up to my neck in what I like to call, "schtuff." This is similar to the grade the kid gets for homework and home reading. Those grades are not a reflection on anyone else but me, the mom. If I wanted to get graded on being a mom, I would call up DCFS and have them do a home study just for fun. Then I would contact the police department, fire department, my local clergy, as well as a peer group and ask them to grade my performance.

If you haven't heard me say it before, Parenting is one long guilt trip after another. Like a Merry-Go-Round that keep spinning and spinning, faster and faster, with no sign of letting up and no brass ring to grab because some other more put together, well-coiffed mother has already grabbed it and has it grasped in her perfectly manicured hands as her clean, well behaved children smile gratefully and admiringly up at her.

NOTE: I'm pretty sure I've blogged about this before, but it's on my mind and I have to gripe about it.


Katie said...

Totally agree. Any chance you're in Nebo school district? In lieu of breaching confidentiality I will stop there. I want to meet the perfect mom or at least follow her around for the day because I'm sure she is using some sort of illegal mood booster.

Jules said...

I get to go to mine today. Last year I was working in the clssroom, so the teacher would basically give me the lowdown while I was there so I wouldn't have to come back. It never involved McKell, and I liked that. I don't want to take McKell either I want what you want, reality. You're right this is a joke and a waste of time.

On a other note I hear you about the busyness. Yesterday McKells reading tutor told me she was guessing and words and forgetting some of her skills. Great, now I gotta feel bad that I've let her read on her own sometimes, because I can't get a few minutes of alone time to read with her. I have two other children who demand my attention too. We are going to try to keep McKell up an extra 30 mins and see if that will help. Now I have to worry about her not getting enough rest, it never ends. Thanks for letting me vent too.

mom/Janet said...

I hear you and the others that have made comments. Trust me, the hardest part of parenting is letting the child be accountable for his behavoior or lack of. You can't always be there and can't always do their homework or make sure they do it. Follow up on what they need and help where you can but they are the ones that have to do it. Wait until they go to college - - you can't ask if they have their homework done or if they're working on their paper etc. It's easy to say but don't put the guilt on yourself. They'll eventually get it. Try to relax. Jeanna, you're a good mom and you have good kids. They have life lessons to learn and they'll be just fine. I think I would rebel and not take my kid to conference. That is the craziest thing I've heard of. It's kind of like "let's not do anything that might hurt the poor little thing" "Let's be positive with them" Come on!!!! Life is not always great or positive. Keep on trucking.

Holley, Dane Brien & Wesley Berry said...

I know exactly how you feel. This student "empowerment" thing that the schools think is so progressive is just a bunch of bunk. I pay my property taxes so I want the "expert" to tell me what they think.

That perfect mom, she's from Stepford. Doesn't she realize she's throwing off the mom grading curve?

hyker said...

This is why I'm childless. :) Too much stress for me.

Nelsonranch said...

Thanks for the recipe- sorry I didn't give you my email- I thought you had it:(
I agree about the parent conf. I always feel guilt when writing how I will help my child with their goals especially since I have so many other things to do. I don't ever think about those goals until the next guilt trip- I mean conf. I just do my own thing in the mean time.

mooney said...

Wow! It sounds like a job interview. Talk about pressure! The things I get to look forward to someday...when I get married and have kids.

jillicious said...

Maybe you should just show up by yourself, because your child is at home "sick" and was unable to come...that's what I'd do and then I could get the one-on-one that is supposed to be a "parent/teacher" conference. My mom taught school for over 30 years...she only had conferences with the parents...she already saw the kids during the day. Sheesh, I'd be annoyed too! :)

Erin. said...

Amen, sister friend!