When we were school kids, we had teachers we liked, and teachers we loathed for one reason or another. Now that we ourselves have become parents with kids in school, we realize that not much has changed. There are teachers we’re okay with, and there are teachers we don’t like for one reason or another. The big difference is that we are now grown-ups, which means you have to do something way more mature than scrawling graffiti that says what you think of this or that teacher, or openly mocking him or her in class.
Here are some age-appropriate things you can do when you don’t like your kid’s teacher.
Keep your cool
Maybe this teacher gave your child a bad grade despite his or her best efforts. Or maybe you feel like that particular teacher is picking on your kid. Whatever the reason, never let your anger get the better of you when you don’t like your kid’s teacher. Don’t go ranting about your teacher in front of your child, and definitely never storm into your teacher’s classroom during class and embarrass yourself and your child by confronting the said teacher. It will confuse your child, not to mention make him or her lose respect for the teacher. It is essential to your child’s education that your teacher is perceived as a smart and competent person of authority.
Watch and listen
In case your child expresses complaints about a teacher, it is imperative to make your own observations first before taking any sort of action that could affect your child’s education. Not that you shouldn’t believe your child straight away, but many children do have the tendency to not like teachers for the flimsiest of reasons. Whatever your child’s complaints about a teacher, make sure they are all legitimate. Talk to your child’s classmates, their parents and see if they have the same complaints about a teacher. If need be, spend some time at your child’s school and see and hear everything first hand.
Be sure about what’s bothering you
Do you have extremely opposite views on how to discipline your child? Are your ideas and approaches to educating your kid different? Do you suspect something fishy about that teacher and you don’t feel that your child is safe with him/her? Does you child constantly express complaints about a teacher? Or do your respective personalities just don’t jibe? Whatever it is, you need to be clear first about what’s bothering you about this teacher before you can actually take any kind of action.
Meet with the teacher
If there is something you definitely don’t like about your child’s teacher and you think it’s affecting your child, request a meeting so you can share your concerns, even when they appear to be small and insignificant. It is, after all, our right and duty as a parent. However, don’t go mouthing off the moment you find yourselves face to face. If possible, list down your complaints about a teacher so you won’t forget them during the discussion or when your emotions start to get the better of you. Start the conversation on a positive note, and ask questions that are open-ended and non-accusatory. For instance, ask the teacher if he or she has noticed anything in your child. You might be surprised, for all you know, because teachers often see things in our kids that we may fail to see ourselves.
Talk to the principal
You should talk to the principal, but only when nothing positive comes out of your talks with the teacher concerned. If you think that your child is really having a hard time with that teacher to the point where his or her education is being compromised, only the principal can help you solve this problem. The principal is the one person authorized to transfer your child to another classroom under the tutelage of another teacher. Just talk to the principal, and he or she might just act as a mediator between you and your child’s teacher and resolve any conflict caused personality differences.
Keep in mind though that while there are people in faculty lounges that you don’t like, teachers are generally wonderful and have the best interest of their students at heart. So when you don’t like your kid’s teacher for whatever reason and you really want your child to switch to another classroom, make sure that your issues are legitimate before you talk to the principal, and that you don’t get personal about it.