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I am butting heads with my son's school ...

My son started kindergarten in public school Aug 18th.The first few days were fine, followed by a few weeks of bad behavior.Nothing was too crazy or naughty, but he is a smart kid & knows how to push buttons, so, of course, he did.Recently, things got MUCH better, (we instituted a behavior chart that allows him to see how his behavior is for each day).The new behavior chart was working and the teacher even admitted she needed to be more authoritative.But when the teacher was out recently, the sub had trouble with him.Instead of handling it the way the regular teacher does, she sent him to the principal.Now, my kindergartner HATES school, doesn't want to go and doesn't always get up from nap time.The teachers let him sleep through the last part of the day and honestly, I think he is sleeping as a way to escape.If I was constantly going somewhere where the rules are always changing, I would want to 'tune out', too. Any ideas?


Asked by vampirediva at 8:26 AM on Oct. 2, 2009 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

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Answers (11)
  • Are you volunteering in the class? Visiting him at lunch?

    Make sure you attend school whenever you can. I find it best to volunteer in the class but work with other kids. If the substitute is gone then that problem should be done.

    Mostly BELIEVE your son can work this out. Spend a few minutes each morning when you send him off to school giving him positive words about how you know he can behave. If the teacher knows she needs to be more authoritative then support her discipline 100%!

    Focus your thoughts (after he's gone) on envisioning what it's going to be like when he gets home with a good report. PRAISE him EACH time he gets a good report! He WILL work it out! Every kid WANTS to succeed and you and his teacher WILL know what to do to help him.

    Also my smart kid needed more stimulation. I found that if I had the teacher give him extra assignments his behavior improved GREATLY!


    Answer by calmmarian19 at 12:48 PM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • 1st off they need to wake him up once nap time is over. And make him feel like part of the class. YOU need to explain bad kids go to the principals sometimes. a sub is NOT the teacher and he has the right to send ur son up there. tell the school to get their shit str8 so ur son isnt confused about school. but again about the sub the teach doesnt explain how do deal with certain kids. theres more then just your son and he delt with it the way he/she thought was right.

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:40 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • Explain to your son that sometimes, when you act out, you get sent to the office. That while at home, the rules are the same whether it's Mommy or Daddy that's with you, but it's different at school. Some rules, like no running, no hitting, etc are always the same. But other rules, like (whatever your son got sent to the office for) can be different. Which is why it's important to always be on our very best behavior when there's a sub.

    Explain that this is like when he gets in trouble at home - just because he got in trouble one day doesn't mean that it can't be a good day (and lots of fun) the next. Because we all have bad days, just learn from it and try again.

    Then, as far as the teachers and administrative staff of the school goes -


    Answer by sailorwifenmom at 9:20 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • cont

    You schedule a meeting with the principal and the teacher - whether it's the sub or the regular teacher is back, or whatever. You tell them that you understand that what he did was wrong, and that he did need to get in trouble for it. But, you hope that, by the same token, they can understand that inconsistency in the rules and how they're applied can be confusing for a child his age, and that you hope next time, if there's a problem, you hope that the staff can help him understand the different rules before it reaches such a disciplinary level.

    Then, you tell them that, regardless of that, you have a VERY big concern that it appears that the staff has, in essence, "given up" on your child already, because it is NOT acceptable that he be allowed to sleep the afternoon away. If the other kids are up and working, then he needs to be, as well. He should not be allowed to withdraw from class, or shoved aside by them!

    Answer by sailorwifenmom at 9:24 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • It seems as though he has a hard time respecting new authority. Thats something he has to learn. The sub did what she felt was best and its not really her fault that he hates school. Hes prob used to answering to just you and your husband and needs to respect his elders also. Hell get there. This is normal. GL

    Answer by Steph319 at 9:35 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • Well this is the age where they start learning that not everything is fun, and sometimes they have to do stuff they don't want. They also learn that not everybody is the same

    Answer by Zakysmommy at 9:35 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • also keep in mind that the school needs to handle things their way without parental intervention every accurance. Its good to be involved but if every parent was unhappy with discipline styles then it would be chaos at school. The need to teach every child to respect they way they handle situations and expect them to behave.

    Answer by Steph319 at 9:37 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • It sounds like he isn't ready for school. Take him out.

    Answer by Gailll at 10:54 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • Ok, this is K, correct? My question is, what is the student : teacher ratio? Most places I have seen, at that age the teacher usually has an aid to help out , along with a small class size.
    Also, IMO, sending a child that age to the principle's office is a bit harsh. Granted I do not know what the offending behavior was that promted the punishment, but typically I have seen from my dealings with my ds's schools when he was that age, they focused more on redirecting the children and positive reinforcement, rather than on harshness and negatives.
    At the same time however, they were ALWAYS looking out for the safety of the other children as well. I think consistency, structure and a strict schedule would benefit your child the most at school and at home. Children thrive on routine and they can anticipate what happens next and eliminates alot of unwanted surprises.
    I would schedule a meeting with the teacher ASAP. GL

    Answer by Melindakc at 10:55 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • Thanks for the feedback. For clammarian: I work 9-5 M-Th and until 1 Fr, so I volunteer on Fridays (1:15-3) For melindakc: the ratio is 1:20 (14 are girls, 6 are boys) and today I got the chance to speak to the guidance counselor who agreed that he was misbehaving, but felt the principal's office was 'jumping the gun'. She wants to work more with him in a positive-rather than a negative way. For Gailll: I can't take him out, he is required to attend all day K-12 in this state. FOr stephmommy319 and a lot of the other responders: thanks for the great input. I feel like I have a much better handle on how to PROPERLY redirect and motiviate him - I especially liked the 1st responder who equated letting him sleep with giving up. His guidance counselor thought EXACTLY the same thing.
    And finally, for anonymous who felt it necessary to name call & bash: Thanks so much for your opinion :)... and you know what people say about THOSE

    Answer by vampirediva at 3:30 PM on Oct. 2, 2009