As my oldest kid gets older and older (despite me asking him to stay little) I find myself struggling with how other teachers run their classrooms. He's in 5th grade now - heaven help me when he reaches high school! And although I try my hardest not to be "that mom", I also feel the need to stand up for my boy. It's the balancing act that I have a hard time with.
So far this year I've been pretty good, I think. I emailed his math teacher after I felt like I had no idea what was going on in class - her response wasn't pleasing, but I can deal. It's hard going from the lower elementary years when we as parents know so much of what's going on to upper elementary, where I feel like I have no idea what they're doing. His teachers very rarely assign homework and only send papers home once a week (on Fridays). I couldn't tell you what he's studying in most of his classes at any given moment. That's tough.
On Monday after school my son told me that he hadn't been able to find the social studies assignment that was due in class that day. I checked the recycling bin outside (that was fun - ick) and luckily found the packet that he was referring to. So he took it to school on Tuesday and turned it in.
The next day I checked and noticed that his social studies grade showed a 70% on the packet. I assumed he'd missed a bunch and left it at that.
Until today's Friday folder came home. The late assignment was in there, graded. His grade? A 95%. But adjusted for turning it in late? 70%. I know I haven't taught math for over a year now, but that seemed like a huge penalty to me. Especially for a 10 year old!
Here's the kicker. They only "do" social studies for part of a quarter and have had a total of 50 points of work. The late penalty dropped my kid's grade 10%. He went from a 100% to an 88% with five days left in the quarter.
Oh - and he had to sit out a recess for turning in an assignment late. For a kid with ADHD, recess is probably a salvation. I HATE that it's held over them as a 'behavior' thing, especially when we're just talking about turning in a paper late!
I can't let this go without registering my disapproval... Here's my draft email to his teacher:
I hate being "that" mom.