Tuesday, March 01, 2011

When Kids Are In Charge

I really like my kids, for the most part, this year.  (Okay, I hate my Seventh Period Class From the Very Depths of Hell Itself but there are kids in there I like - it's just the combination of kids which make me crazy).

Their parents, on the other hand, are making me insane.

Case in point.  We have a kid I'll call Absent Boy, because, you guessed it, he's absent all the time.  He misses every test.  He misses every benchmark.  He's usually gone on Fridays and often times he's gone on Mondays.  When he comes back he's healthy as a horse, nary a sniffle or a sore throat in sight.  In short, he basically tells his mom when he wants to come to school and she lets him get away with it.   He was absent yesterday, the day we had our two hour delay, and when one of the teachers asked him why, he said, "Well, there was a two hour delay and we didn't know if they'd cancel, and mom didn't know how she'd get me to school, so I didn't come". (Did this lady never hear of a bus?)

Absent Kid has a whopping 37% in my class and he's pretty much doing the same in all his other classes.  He's a bright kid, when you can get something out of him, which isn't often.  He is on an IEP as a special education student, but seriously, he does well on the things he does.  He is capable.  As a sped kid he can turn in late work (never does) and in my class he gets a homework helper which basically is an answer key to help him do his homework.  All he has to do is copy it and turn it in.  But he doesn't.  He has, in fact, informed his sped case manager and the enrichment teacher that he's not bothering to do much in seventh grade since he'll get passed anyway because he's on an IEP.   He won't even turn in things we do in class.

We have tried to get his mother to come in for a meeting.  She'll agree to a meeting, then five minutes before she is to show up, she'll call and cancel.  Today, yet again, she pulled this stunt. So we have yet to get her in here (she also apparently doesn't show up at IEP meetings either.)

This kid is running the house.  If we wanted any more evidence of this, Mr. Math ran into Absent Mom (how appropriate) and Absent Boy at a local fast food join yesterday.  Absent Boy didn't see Mr. Math at first and was running around being a brat and talking back to his mom.  She told him he couldn't have something and he went off and slapped her in the face!  And. She. Did. Nothing.

Apparently this is her coping mechanism...to do nothing.  The kid talks back...she does nothing.  He fails his classes...she does nothing.  He whines and complains and wants to stay home from school...she does nothing.

But I'm the one being held accountable.


Unknown said...

That is child neglect and should be reported to the authorities!

Mrs. Bluebird said...

Legendsilver, I'm not sure where you live, but a case like this would get laughed out of Department of Children's Services. Unless a kid is hungry (not - overweight if anything), has no shelter (nope, he's living in a decent place), or is abused (nope), DSC won't talk to us. They can't even deal with all the hungry, abused, homeless kids they have now. This one is spoiled. Mom has been reported to the truancy officer however.

Unknown said...

I have a student in my own class who has racked up 17 days since we came back in Jan! I hear you!

Darren said...

I've got no advice for you.

Yes, I understand that you're being held accountable for the child's performance. Me, I wouldn't care, and would trust that anyone holding you accountable would understand.

Is that too much trust where you work?