Middle school teacher problems

Christine - posted on 12/18/2008 ( 8 moms have responded )




My son is 13 years old and is in 8th grade. He has been having some issues with his music teacher. My son feels that his teacher does not respect him in any way, shape or form. My son has anxiety attacks and has ADD. The teacher doesn't explain anything to my son to where he understands and when my son asks questions he is told not now. We had a meeting today and nothing got solved. My son now thinks that no matter what he does they are going to pick on him and blame him. I don't want my son to give up but I want to help him understand that he will not get along with everyone he meets. His teacher called him a liar in this meeting and when I went to say that my son is not a liar and doesn't make up stories because he got caught in a lie once before and was ground for a long time the teacher cut me off and said tht he was telling the truth not my son. Then got up and left the room. Any suggestions on how to try and handle this? help!


Marie - posted on 04/14/2012




I have sat on both sides of the table. Was eviscerated by a very disrespectful and out of control bunch of midle school students in my first full year of teaching last year. And my own kid is ADHD and, while not a behavior problem, is constantly getting up, tapping things, always two steps behind the other kids. It frustrates the teacher.

Through all of it, I see: 1) Teachers, some of whom are good and some of whom need improvement, and who have very little self protection and control over kids ... 2) Kids who are feeling their adultness at this age and who may or may not be telling their parents the whole truth, and who are taught to think they somehow deserve the same level of "respect" adults have EARNED; and 3) I see parents who are desperate for their child to have a smooth, positive and affirming education.
There is a Yin and Yang to this issue:
YIN: I think the most important protection you have, besides documenting everything (as teachers are instructed to do) is to get your kid a 504 or IEP, so the reasons behind his behavior have a name and a diagnosis. He will then get specific accommodations such as extra time, small groups and sitting in a place that minimizes distractions. It adds traction to your requests.

YANG: Secondly, and I don't know if this applies to you, but I really want to say it: Parents should teach their kids self control and respect for authority at an early age. I deeply rue the self esteem movement as it has given kids an overblown sense of entitlement that runs amok in classrooms where disciplinary action is legislatively curtailed. Teachers should clearly put forth expectations and kids should follow them, Period. That is what classroom management is all about.

Jackie - posted on 01/18/2009




You HAVE to be present... emails and phone calls will not work (not in my experiences anyways) I really feel strongly that you need to GO to the school. Sit down face to face. I would not accept the teacher walking out. He blatently disrespected you by leaving when the conversation was not finished.

You also need to somehow teach your son that... some people in life... will not like you... just like you will not like them... but also... some people in life will not respect you...no matter what. And basically you have to 'suck it up'

I have taught both my children to question things... Just because someone says soemthign it does not make it right... so if you have questions...ASK-- one teacher felt this was disrespectful... It was a long battle filled year... and yes, I think my daughter came away from that year a bit more timid and not as confident.... But in the end we (her and I) did our best.

Good Luck


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Anny - posted on 05/15/2014




I have found in my own circumstances that most school district teaching staffs are not familiar or educated in Spectrum disorders.(adhd,add,aspergers etc..) They apply all the wrong disciplines and communications for these kids and most kids really. I have found most teachers to be unprofessional and unqualified, always blaming the child and parent when they themselves forgot to finish their education in social human behaviors. There is nothing wrong with spectrum kids, They are the brilliance of this planet.... There is however a problem with ignorant educators who are too arrogant and carless to complete their education in the arena of being a teacher/educator. ( hello mcfly teaching is about the business of little people!!) Bottom line, your the parent , your in charge and boss of your child. If this teacher is not respecting you or treating your boy with kindness and respect? then call school district director of student services, by law they have to honor your requests. look up your parents rights online. Teachers will bully because they often think their the parent of our kids and they have job security. BUT... they are in fact simply teachers as a profession. Almost every teacher my daughter has had i would not have paid to baby sit for me, so i finally pulled her out of public school and became her teacher myself by way of k-12 independent study program at one of our district schools here. It's been awesome . Independent study staffs are usually on board and trained to socially deal with our special kids.. be firm and protect your child, know your parent rights. Our kids are precious human beings. best wishes...:)

Kerri - posted on 02/07/2009




Hi, I'm new to the "Circle of Mom's" site, and i can TOTALLY relate to your situation. I had a similar incident occur with my now 12 1/2/ year old son's teachers last school year. It was not until my husband and I threatened the school with a lawsuit siting the ADA (American Disabilities Act) that they finally got a clue and it stopped.


The rude/inconsiderated behavior towards my son had gone on for years (since preschool to be exact), but it was last year that things went horribly bad with the staff/administration regarding how they treated (and had been treating) my child. I put an end to it real quick like. A majority of the teachers/staff (administrative)  are very "clicky" and lie to cover up for one another quite often. I've seen in in his IEP meetings...quite unprofessional not to mention inappropriate behavior for members of a school staff. As a former educator myself, they realized that they didn't have a leg to stand on, and they knew that all of the other situations w/ students would go public if my husband and I decided to pursue legal action. Since that day, we have the staff eating out of our hands. (Literally). We hated to threaten leagal action, but it was the only thing that seemed to not only grab their attention, but to put an end to all of the nasty behavior that they were displaying towards him (and they did it in the presence of his classmates which made him feel even worse)!


I too have had staff members get out of the room and leave, but they KNEW they were wrong, and didn't want to sit and be scolded anymore for their irresponsible behaviors. The legal papers not only scared the life out of them, but they also cut the egoes of a LOT of the staff down quite a few notches.


I also have an advocate that attends all of his IEP/MFE meetings with me. She is wonderful, and the administration is scared to death of her because she has turned them in before for unethical/discriminatory behavior towards special needs children within our respected school district.

I think what it all boiIs down to is standing behind our children, and taking a firm stand against school staff members who need to be put in their place. I hope that this helps you out a bit.

Susan - posted on 01/08/2009




First you have to remember to be the adult here. Both you and the teacher. No teacher in their right mind wants a power struggle. Set up clear and distinct rules that work for all. The thing you have to think about is that you are not present in the room when he is in class and have no idea the class room makeup that takes place. Talk to the school about support for him when he is in music class, lots of add kids have trouble in regular situations and a music class is an area that has a lot of chaos, the class itself could be an overload on his senses.

Christine - posted on 01/08/2009




We are back to square one, when school resumed after the break the teacher has given my son 3 bad marks and a 30 minute detention and now says whatever the asst. principle sees fit to pass out as a punishment. I have emailed the teacher and the asst. principle and asked them what they want me to do. I have talked to my son and he still tells me that he feels disrespected by the teacher and that the asst. principle only listens to the teachers. I also told the teacher that I can't make my son feel respected in the classroom, that he will have to do that. I don't know what else to do.

[deleted account]

I too have been through this similar situation with my son last year. After repeated emails and phone conversations with the teacher, we called for a parent-teacher conference and requested that the Principal and his Asst Principal be present in the meeting. Once the Principal heard from the teacher and the Asst Principal, he said that they were wasting his time as well as our time and that there wasn't anything wrong with my son except that he was immature. Once we told them that he has ADHD, he said that they needed to give him some extra time and explain things clearly to him.

If we hadn't gone to bat for our son with the Principal present, this teacher would have eventually had my son expelled from school! Don't let this teacher be a bully to you or to your son. Make him do his job. I realize that they have lots of kids to deal with at one time and they don't want to stop to explain something to the kids that might need extra explanations. But it is their job as the teacher! That's what being a good teacher is! Hold him to it.

Does this teacher know that your son has ADD? This could be an issue that needs to be discussed openly with the teacher and the administration about your son. You need to make sure that this teacher knows that you will back your son (since we all know that if we don't do it, no one else will).

Good luck with this teacher! Don't give up! Celebrate with your son once the school year is over and he makes it through!!

Julie - posted on 12/28/2008




Sounds like this teacher is either young, unexperienced or old school. I have gone through this with some of my son's teachers. I think you are right in teaching him that he will have people that are difficult to get along with. (This will go far later when he hates his boss!) The best thing is to be frank with the teacher and get a detailed report of what the teacher thinks the problem is and how he suggests that it be solved. After all it is his job. He is the teacher - don't let him give you his responsiblity just because its not easy. If the problem continues call in the principle and ask for her opionion. You son must be shown that you will go to bat for him and as long as he does his part - you will do yours. Don't expect miracles. If he can survive the class - celebrate. Show him how big an achievement he has made by sticking with a difficult situation. Then, see if next year he can have another teacher. I know how frustrating this situation can be. I have gone through this 2 times before with select teachers and am going through it now with one. Its funny how the other teachers think my son is doing just fine! Just hang in there!

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