Low Morale Among Teachers? Blame The Parents, Not The Kids

September 8, 2011

Do you ever wonder why teachers are just as bummed out about the start of a new school year as the kids? Did you ever think that maybe it’s because of the parents, not the kids?

A recent CNN commentary from a teacher shares the disturbing fact that new teachers remain in the profession an average of less than five years, citing “issues with parents” as one of their reasons for throwing in the towel.

It’s pretty sad to think about all the good teachers kids are missing out on the opportunity to be educated by as a result of poor parental behavior. I can’t help but think that maybe parents need to take part of the blame for how much more out of control and lacking in discipline kids seem to be nowadays compared to what they used to be. Parents seem to think their children can’t do any wrong and try to protect them from learning from their mistakes, proving costly to their futures.

Ron Clark

Ron Clark

Here are five things teacher Ron Clark, author of “The End of Molasses Classes: Getting Our Kids Unstuck — 101 Extraordinary Solutions for Parents and Teachers,” said parents should keep in mind about the people teaching their kids:

  • We are educators, not nannies. If advice is given, don’t fight it.
  • Trust us. If you are told your child has a behavior problem, don’t fight and defend them or turn to the child and ask if it’s true.
  • Quit with the excuses. Constantly making excuses for your child is not going to help them be successful or create a strong worth ethic.
  • Be a partner instead of a prosecutor. It’s OK for a child to get in trouble occasionally. It teaches them a proper lesson and it’s a great character builder.

Clark shares a story about a child who wrote on his face with a permanent marker. The teacher tried to help get it off with a washcloth and it left a red mark on the side of the child’s face. The parents of the child called the media and the teacher was fired.

It’s no wonder teachers dread the start of the school year! I can’t even begin to imagine the frustrations teachers feel on a daily basis when dealing with parents who try to take matters into their own hands. This school year, think about what’s best for your child’s future, be respectful of the teachers, handle things in a professional manner and take these things into consideration when dealing with issues regarding your child’s performance in the classroom. It will make life easier not only for the teacher, but yourself and your child as well. If we want good teachers for our children, we need to stop scaring them all away as a result of bad parental behavior.