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    #122531 - 02/09/12 10:20 AM Not sure if this response is good or bad. Help!
    sydness Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/07/11
    Posts: 259
    Dear VP,

    I feel that dd9's math homework has been increasingly below her challenge level.  Tonight she was given a time consuming page where she was asked to shade in the shapes that were equal to one half. Her sister, who is six, enjoyed the challenge.

    The other page asked her to add, subtract, multiply and such. She has never had to practice her multiplication facts at home and is still getting all of them right on her timed tests. Asking her to do homework that she has mastered a long time ago is becoming frustrating for her. Along with other tasks that lack meaning for her , it is too much to cope with.

    She spent the evening sobbing because she feels that if she chooses to take risks and challenge herself there will be nobody there to support her. She feels this way because out of the four social studies projects, she chose to create a PowerPoint presentation, but was told she would receive no help whatsoever. Feeling uncomfortable she was would be receiving no support while doing the project on the Mac, she chose the diorama instead, even though she is an avid PC user. Then she was told she was not to use the classroom's tape for her diorama, among other things that made the project impossible  The children who chose to do the poster received poster paper and the teacher traced the map of the country onto the poster board for the student. But when Dd asked for ideas on how to incorporate a map into her box, she was told "it's up to you". When I talked to the teacher, she said that Dd was welcome to change her project.

    I believe Dd is feeling alone at school, lacking challenging, meaningful work, lacking opportunities to make friendships with others who have similar interests, and is in need of some adult support.  I believe that Math teacher may be able to take Dd further in Math and give her appropriate homework. I am hopeful that Dd can feel like her teachers want her to succeed and will support her when she tries to reach her potential.  I would like to discuss this with you as soon as possible. I know we have discussed some things already in December, such as Dd meeting with the librarian every other week and receiving guidance regarding friendships from Mrs. Psyc or another counselor. As far as I know this hasn't happened. After our last meeting I was hopeful that the math enrichment would become more meaningful but Dd thinks it is still very easy for her.  I have already expressed my feelings to the teachers, so I feel I need to discuss it with you or Mr. Principal. 

    I will call the school to make an appointment.
    Thank you.

    Sincerely,
    Mom

    And her response.
     
    I have forwarded your concerns to the teachers.  Please follow up with them tomorrow.  If you feel as though you need to address them further, please inform them that you will be requesting a meeting with Mr. Principal and me.

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    #122542 - 02/09/12 11:08 AM Re: Not sure if this response is good or bad. Help! [Re: sydness]
    st pauli girl Offline
    Member

    Registered: 01/29/08
    Posts: 1917
    It looks like Mr. VP thinks this is an issue for the teachers to resolve first. I would guess, from what you've said, that you have likely already had this conversation with the teachers, but maybe Mr. VP didn't realize this. I guess if the teachers do actually respond in follow-up to Mr. VPs forwarding this to them, then maybe it's good? I wouldn't be especially happy with that sort of response, because he's passing the buck again.

    If you'd like my opinion about what I would do in your situation, I would forward the message with VP's reply (just to be sure that the teachers received all the message) to the teachers involved, and request a meeting to discuss the issues with the teachers. Copy the VP. (And if this has been an ongoing issue that has not been resolved with the teachers, request that the VP and the P be included in the meeting.)

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    #122552 - 02/09/12 11:29 AM Re: Not sure if this response is good or bad. Help [Re: sydness]
    sydness Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/07/11
    Posts: 259
    Interesting. I was not sure if the vp was coming from a place that is supprtive or not. I'm not sure she, the vp fowarded my email to the teachers. I talk about her not following through on plans made in December. I have a feeling that she left messages or spoke with them. This has been a very ongoing problem and dh and I had a very long conference back in dec to talk about these things after getting frustrated with dd making games in math. So, maybe vp is sick if me? Or maybe she is supporting me and wants the teachers to own up to their end?I don't know. Thanks though.
    Interesting that she wants me to wait until tomorrow to speek with them. I wonder if they are going to have a meeting today to discuss it. Hmmm.


    Edited by sydness (02/09/12 11:47 AM)

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    #122555 - 02/09/12 11:46 AM Re: Not sure if this response is good or bad. Help! [Re: sydness]
    aculady Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/31/10
    Posts: 1040
    I would choose to view this as a supportive e-mail.

    If I were the VP of a school and sent an email like this to a parent who had sent me an e-mail like yours, this response would mean "I've told the teachers they need to knock this nonsense off and get on board actually teaching your child, so I don't expect you will have any trouble getting them to agree to the needed changes...but if they don't, I have your back: Principal and I will help you help them see the light, and you can tell them that."

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    #122557 - 02/09/12 11:56 AM Re: Not sure if this response is good or bad. Help! [Re: sydness]
    sydness Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/07/11
    Posts: 259
    Aculady. I tend toward this way too. She agreed with us a lot about meeting dd educational needs when we spoke. I just want to know I have her support before going AGAIN to the teachers and making them crazy. The LA teacher called my dd by the wrong name on the phone with me yesterday and told me that there is no computer in her classroom to do the pp presentation on so she would have to work in another classroom and not ask any questions. Dd told me last night that there is a perfectly good unused computer in the classroom. O think the teacher is embarassed that she doesn't know how to help the kids with it and maybe can't admit it or she may be reprimanded for it. She is older. Ugh. My dd was identified as gifted along with six other forth graders a few months ago. I received no mention of this from either teacher and there has been no word as to how they intend to extend the curriculum for her. I might just have to ask why they haven't adressed the fact that she was deemed a person with superior learning ability by the school. It's like they were nevr even notified and I know that they were.

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    #122558 - 02/09/12 11:57 AM Re: Not sure if this response is good or bad. Help! [Re: aculady]
    ColinsMum Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/19/08
    Posts: 1898
    Loc: Scotland
    I agree with Aculady, but I would be very careful not to betray that interpretation in talking to the teachers - IOW, I'd stick to the letter of what the VP said to do as a next step if you had any trouble, without suggesting to the teachers that I had any idea of what would happen next.
    _________________________
    Email: my username, followed by 2, at google's mail

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    #122563 - 02/09/12 12:09 PM Re: Not sure if this response is good or bad. Help! [Re: ColinsMum]
    aculady Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/31/10
    Posts: 1040
    Originally Posted By: ColinsMum
    I agree with Aculady, but I would be very careful not to betray that interpretation in talking to the teachers - IOW, I'd stick to the letter of what the VP said to do as a next step if you had any trouble, without suggesting to the teachers that I had any idea of what would happen next.


    I agree that I would not go in saying that I had the support of the principal and VP, I'd just meet with the teachers, and only if I didn't get anywhere, would I tell them that my next step would be scheduling a meeting with the administration. I realized my previous post could be read differently.

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    #122564 - 02/09/12 12:12 PM Re: Not sure if this response is good or bad. Help! [Re: ColinsMum]
    st pauli girl Offline
    Member

    Registered: 01/29/08
    Posts: 1917
    I guess i'm just jaded! If the VP has sounded helpful, then the message was probably a good thing, and the waiting until tomorrow could have been to give him time to talk with the teachers. It's really hard to tell what's going on sometimes from electronic communications!

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    #122565 - 02/09/12 12:16 PM Re: Not sure if this response is good or bad. Help! [Re: sydness]
    sydness Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/07/11
    Posts: 259
    So, what should I do to "follow up with the teachers tomorrow" as told to do. And should I really tell them I am going to meet with p and vp if the response isn't satisfactory? I imagine something like the techer syaing "I don't know y your dd feels lonely. All the girls just love her and she is doing fine". The math teacher may show me something she did wrong and claim that she is unable to do harder work. So what do I say to teachers tomorrow?

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    #122567 - 02/09/12 12:35 PM Re: Not sure if this response is good or bad. Help! [Re: sydness]
    ColinsMum Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/19/08
    Posts: 1898
    Loc: Scotland
    Others with more experience doing tricky advocating may have better ideas, but I think I'd go basically, "I need to talk to you because my DD is unhappy. She doesn't feel able to do challenging work at school. For example...". Let them talk. If you aren't satisfied, end with, "Well, thank you for explaining and I hear what you say, but my DD is unhappy and we really need to address this. VP said I should request a meeting him with and P if necessary, so I'll do that next; hopefully they can help find some solution."
    _________________________
    Email: my username, followed by 2, at google's mail

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