What more can we do to get our 10th grade son to pass school?

Jalene - posted on 11/11/2012 ( 3 moms have responded )

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I have a 15 year old son in the 10th grade. His father and I have struggled with him and his grades since 5th grade. (His father and I are divorced from each other.) Every year since 5th grade he does very poorly throughout the school year but has always been able to get it together enough before the end of the school year and pass all of his classes. In 9th grade he failed English and Geometry. We live in CA where kids cannot be held back. We put him in summer school to make up the credits he needs in order to graduate on time. We thought losing most of his summer would be a good dose of reality. He passed English with a C and Geometry with a C-. Last year he discovered a passion for basketball and we thought the desire to be on his high schools team would force him to do better with his school work. We also told him that he would not get his driver's license or be able to get a job if he does poorly in school. His father also threatened to take him out of this school and enroll him elsewhere. He is currently failing his Algebra, World History and Biology classes. He lost the opportunity to to try out for the basketball team. I am not in agreement with his father's threat to enroll him in another school. We have had him tested and he doesn't have any learning or mental disablities. He is not organized and doesn't seem to care about school. He is a very bright, polite, sweet kid. No behavioral problems. Is there any more we can do?

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[deleted account]

I am sorry you are dealing with this. I am too, but on the receiving end! I teach 9th grade English in AZ.



We also struggle with apathetic students who really don't care about school, refuse to attend tutoring, or seek any intrinsic motivation to improve their grades. I wonder if your son would benefit from any of the virtual on-line accredited high schools? As long as he is meeting the set number of log in seat hours, complete, and master all classes, your son may have a chance to actually graduate high school earlier.



Honestly, when it gets to the point where it is such a struggle to beg and plead with your child, constant communication with teachers/guidance counselor, it really is up to the kid to control his own education. Perhaps his current high school is not the right academic setting-maybe it's too big? The high school where I teach is almost 1800 kids. Is a smaller charter/private school he might academcally succeed in compared to his current high school? No more sugar coating the inevitable: He steps up to the plate in regard to school work or you, as parents, have to put your foot down and remove every privilege and personal item he owns. In our high school, my principal is attempting to pass a policy mandating that repeat failing students will be "kicked out" of school and asked to attend a different local high school. He simply does not want any slackers. I understand his pending policy, not sur eif it will be approved by the board, but it's the train of thoguht by many administrators.



All the best to you & your son.

Jalene - posted on 11/11/2012

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Thanks for you reply Dove! I can't speak for his dad, but in my home he is being stripped of everything, just like you suggested. Hopefully we'll see some change. And yes he's capable of doing the work. Most times he does it and then doesn't turn it in.

Dove - posted on 11/11/2012

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Does he have a cell phone, computer, video games, etc...?? Does he just not do the work? Or is he trying and just not able to get it?



Personally, if it were my kid.... all electronics would be gone until report card time. If he gets anything less than a C... electronics stay gone. That is assuming he CAN do the work. If he can't.... electronics still stay gone, but he gets a tutor as well.



I wouldn't pull him out of the school unless the school was the problem, but from your op it's the kid.. not the school.

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