Agree or disagree? If a child is retained from kindergarten, should they have the same teacher or a different teacher for the next year??

Christina - posted on 05/05/2013 ( 14 moms have responded )

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I am having a battle with this issue with the principal....she told me my child will be retained....and will not have the same teacher....I disagree....she acts like my option don't matter....but I know my child....just like the teacher does....she knows where he is....his attitude...etc....I think the child should be with the same teacher.....anyone have any thoughts about this....looking for advice.....thks

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♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 05/08/2013

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Several ladies (Jodi, Little Miss) have stated it well. And, Jodi works in a school system, as do I, so have a little insight on things...

1) Your child is going to have a different teacher every year through elementary grades, and several teachers in a single day as they advance to secondary and university. Why is it a big deal for them to have a different kindy teacher if they are repeating?

2) You are not the registration officer for the school. It may be that the class is already filled to capacity with the incoming students, thus necessitating the placement of your child with a different teacher.

3) You have not been privy to the discussion between the teacher and administration in deciding the best placement for your child. Perhaps the teacher requested different placement so as to better serve the child.

4) Generally school systems strive to meet the needs of every student. That does not necessarily mean that every parent is happy. But, if the students are happy, and progressing forward in a positive manner, that is what's important.



The bottom line is, you can rant and rave all you want, but unless you approach this calmly, and with a non confrontational mindset, you will be dismissed by the school

And, no matter what some of the responses have advocated, the school system is NOT out to sink your child. But, they see (as Jodi pointed out) 20-30 kids per teacher at times. If you become the demanding, confrontational parent who doesn't know or understand how to work through and with the system, you will find that you have continually poorer and poorer relations with the system until you are the bitter person who thinks that the schools are out to get you.

Be patient. Let your child experience school life as it is meant to be, with a new teacher each year, learning new methods and having new experiences. If the new teacher TRULY is not working out (not just your perception, but TRULY), then you still have the right to request a change.

Jodi - posted on 05/05/2013

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Well, if your child WASN'T retained in kindergarten they would have a different teacher....so I don't see why it is so important that your child have the same teacher if being kept in kindergarten. After all, that's school life. Your child has to get used to it sometime. You'll be surprised how quickly a new teacher gets to know your child. The other teacher is also likely to discuss strategies with the new teacher.

And you need to realise that your child is one child in the school. While your opinion DOES matter, it isn't going to dictate staffing in a class of 20-30, or a school of however many children. Think about what would happen if every parent had the total choice of teacher. It simply wouldn't work.

I know the schools around here like to mix up the kindergarten teachers. One year they will teach kindergarten, then the next they may be put with Year 2. Teaching kindergarten is hard work, and sometimes they need a break from it.

I think you need to take a step back and let it go. While I understand wanting to protect your child, I think you may be taking it a little far and perhaps being a bit over-protective. Give it a try - you may be quite happy. Save your battles for "if" it turns out not to be okay. If you battle it before you even give it a chance, no-one will listen to you when it counts (you know, the story of the boy who cried wolf? You will be just seen as the pushy parent).

~♥Little Miss - posted on 05/05/2013

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I think it would be helpful to have a different teacher. That way your child will gain a different style of learning and possibly more success at repeating a grade. I think it is a good thing. I personally would want a different teacher. Not that the teacher failed you and your child, but to give my child a different style of teaching/learning.

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Mj - posted on 12/07/2013

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I'm not understanding the question? Is your child being retained because of academic purposes or because the principal feels your child is not socially ready to move to the next grade. i feel that the child should stay in the teachers class he or she has already become accustom to being in class because that teacher knows there learning ability.

Melissa - posted on 06/23/2013

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My daughter also was retained a few years ago. She had a different teacher. And it was a blessing. Her previous teacher had only been teaching for one year and had not had very much training on children with disabilities. But my daughters new kindergarten teacher helped her tremendously. And my daughter felt more confident in her learning and was able to make friends whereas previously she did not. Things will work out better for your child this next year but with a different teacher.

Danielle Elizabeth - posted on 05/08/2013

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I do not feel as you are being confrontational or "ranting or raving" by your tone of your post . As some have stated the school as tons of kids and they do not always take the time to realize each child Is an individual and they can not lump each child together . It's our jobs as moms to make sure we always stand up for what's right for our kids, and If that means a few less people like us then oh well. I've learned this on my own bc a dr tried insisting my daughter have a medical procedure done ( a spinal tap) and I as her mother knew that she did not need one so I fought tooth and nail and it turns out my gut instincts were right. The bottom line is if I have just went along with what the" professionals" said then my baby would have had a spinal tap done for no reason . I know as a mom when we have a strong instinct towards something we should not ignore it , and if this woman feels so strongly that switching teachers is harmful to her child then she has every right to make sure she is heard. I'm proud of you! Too many people push their own instincts down the tubes bc someone tells them they are being overly protective or " confrontational ". As I stated , these years are critical in having your child develop a love and passion for school so don't let anyone tell you what's best for your child bc your the one that will be there to clean up the mess if they are wrong

Danielle Elizabeth - posted on 05/08/2013

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I think it's different for every child . The way the school is looking at it is that maybe the child and teacher were not a good fit and hopefully a different teacher will be able to reach the child through a different teaching style. You as the mother know your child the best though so if you think there are different reasons for why your child is being retained and the teacher is doing his or her best with your child then I'd keep fighting for what you believe is best . It may only be kindergarten ,BUT these early years can give your child a love for school or teach them to detest going to school so i think it's important to make sure our kids start off in the right learning environment from the very beginning

Dove - posted on 05/08/2013

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It's pretty normal for them to have a different teacher the second year. My opinion would depend on a variety of factors pertaining to my child. I think it is most likely that your child will be fine. Learning to deal with a different teacher while still repeating the same kindergarten work could prove to be a valuable experience for him.

Rita - posted on 05/08/2013

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My son is 14 now, but I remember his elementary school days well. My experience with elementary school principals (we had 3 different ones at the same school in 6 years) is that they give you lip service and then do exactly as they please. You know your child the best, but that doesn't mean the school administration cares. Usually they don't. That sounds harsh, and it is. That said, the principal may think that the first teacher was ineffectual and a change is called for. Variety is the spice of life. Your child may do well with another teacher too. I'll keep my fingers crossed for you. It'll probably be OK. Kindergarten is a sweet time, enjoy those early years.

I don't know why your child is being held back; whether it's age or something else. My son has dyslexia, and we started to see it in first grade. The school ignored it despite our pleas through 3rd grade. That principal (1st-3rd grades) left the school system at the end of 3rd grade, but before she left she created disasters. Save your energy for bigger, more important battles. And remember: DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT!

I disagree about having the school district evaluate your child. By law, you are entitled to have it done for free if you are in a public school. However, the schools are geared toward saying nothing is wrong because it saves them aggravation, work, and money. It's all about money. You will probably not get a good evaluation because the district does not want to pay for individualized education or services, and my experience as well as my friends have shown that school psychologists tend to be hacks who do the district's bidding.

It's an evil, adversarial system. I don't believe you will get objective feedback because the school districts have an agenda (deny, deflect, dismiss). I hope you do not have to go through it. If you do, I recommend an outside comprehensive evaluation aka: neuro psychological educational evaluation. It costs a lot of money ($3,000-$5,000). It was the best money I've ever spent. And DOCUMENT everything.

Good luck!

Evangelyna - posted on 05/08/2013

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A different teacher definitely could be beneficial. The new teacher will get to know him just like his current teacher and may be able to help him advance in ways his teacher now cannot. Every teacher has different methods and teaching styles, the way this new teacher may be might help. He's going to keep changing teachers for the rest of his academic time anyway, you can't have the same teacher/professor throughout school and college. I always struggled with math in school so I had tutors. Some tutors helped and others didn't, it wasn't a matter of them knowing me, it was a matter of teaching style. You might be pleasantly surprised with the new teacher and your sons improvement. The principal and the teachers do want your son to succeed, they've been working with probably hundreds of kids, I think it's worth giving their suggestion a try. (Not to say principals and teachers are all knowing, they make mistakes but in the end it is their job to help their students, not hinder them) :)

Margaret - posted on 05/07/2013

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Was this child already in kindergarten or were you TOLD to NOT enroll him/her in kindergarten? I'm guessing that this child already WAS in kindergarten....so, with that in mind, I think that the child should repeat kindergarten w/ a different teacher. Sometimes, the teacher-student vibe/chemistry just doesn't work out well. I feel guilty writing that, since our daughter's kindergarten teacher is fantastic, and our daughter's done beautifully this year socially, academically, and developmentally.

Stick to your gut instincts as a Mother, do what your CHILD needs you to do. If you think that he would benefit from having the same teacher for another year, then go for it. However, if you can have him evaluated through your school district (so you don't have to pay for it out of pocket), then do THAT to get objective feedback. Also, talk to your pediatrician and find out what he/she says before and AFTER the evaluation.

Good luck, hope I was helpful. :)

Ev - posted on 05/07/2013

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When my sister was in kindergarten she was having trouble learning certain things, letter recognition and such. She went on to first grade and had the same problems and so the school and my parents discussed it. My parents wanted her to repeat first grade but the school wanted her to go on to second grade and have resource classes to help her get through it. We ended up moving and my parents had her repeat first grade when we got there. Not only did it help her, she had a different teacher and all; she became an A student and overcame her learning disability she had. We figured it was a form of dyslexia. My son had some learning delays and got the help he needed but he did not get to repeat a grade. The point is that even repeating a grade might be helpful but also different teachers are also helpful. As someone pointed out, the other teacher did not fail your family, but another teacher could have a different method that works better with your child. I would look at all avenues and see what choices are available. You can also get outside tutoring for your child too. THere are a lot of other options to get the help you need you just need to know where to look.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 05/05/2013

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Some times a different teacher can give a different perspective also. I think the principal is right. Also, another way to look at it, if your child was advancing to first grade, he/she would be having a different teacher anyway.

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