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2 Bumps

Teachers telling a kid to "shut up"

He is 11. A teacher saying this seems extreme. I tell my kids to be quiet. I think her choice of words were poor and she was relieving her own stress on him. This isn't the first, she just doesn't seem to like him. Which is fine with me, but I want her to know she must still show him respect.

I read this new school is facing budget cuts and is on our state's failing list. It's not a real happy and warm place to walk into when everyone is fearing a job loss and I can see the stress levels are high there.

I don't want to attack the teacher with words, but do want to ask her side of the story. Any helpful tips on what to say?

Answer Question
 
toorandmom

Asked by toorandmom at 4:29 PM on Sep. 3, 2010 in Tweens (9-12)

Level 3 (25 Credits)
Answers (13)
  • IMO, there is no choice between "Be Quiet," "Stop Talking," and "Shut Up." It all means the same thing... So I honestly wouldn't have an issue if it were my kid... It's her classroom, her rules. She didn't hit him, belittle him and she wasn't inappropriate... I wouldn't say anything to her.
    SabrinaMBowen

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 4:34 PM on Sep. 3, 2010

  • I was feeling a little upset with the teacher until I read this all the way through. I can tell that you're wanting to do what's right, but you may not like what I have to say. While I think that you're right in that she made a poor choice of words, I think you have it backwards. HE must show HER respect. It's possible that she had already asked nicely, maybe even more than once, and he just chose non-compliance. And even if she hadn't asked previously,kids certainly know by age 11 when they are supposed to be working quietly and when it's ok to be talking.
    I'd be talking to him about why he needed to be told to be quiet, what he was supposed to be doing, how he could make better choices. I'd give the teacher the benefit of the doubt.
    If you want to ask her, just say "(son's name) told me about the difficulty in class yesterday (or whenever). Can you tell me what happened?" and that leaves it open for you to her side
    aliceinalgonac

    Answer by aliceinalgonac at 4:39 PM on Sep. 3, 2010

  • I would be angry too. I had to deal with a teacher like that when my oldest was in 3rd gard, she would tell the children to shut up, slam books on their desks, told one girl she was stupid and to shut her trap, and refused to help them with questions...it was just one thing after another. Come to find out she was a HS teacher that started teaching elementary students and obviously didn't understand the difference in HS students versus elementary students. I tried talking to her it got worse, basically because she was a moron. I tried twice and finally went to the principal (which is how I found out where she came from). I was very clear that it was unacceptable and would be handled, and if it wasn't I'd be back every day until it was. If you expect children to be respectful then the same should be expected of adults and especially a teacher.
    blessedwboysx3

    Answer by blessedwboysx3 at 4:48 PM on Sep. 3, 2010

  • cont... I would suggest talking to the teacher after hearing what your son has to say. Reminding him the importance of being quiet in class.
    In my opinion if you're son was doing something so disruptive that she had to say shut up then he should have been sent to principals office. The biggest mistake you can make is not being an advocate for your child. I made this mistake because I believed the teacher was in the right...it got to the point where my child was coming home crying after school and didn't want to go back (and this is a kid that was excited every day to go to school). Get both sides and make your decision, and don't hesitate to escalate...it is not appropriate at any point for a teacher to be disrespectful to a child regardless, they are the adult and should handle the situation like an adult.
    blessedwboysx3

    Answer by blessedwboysx3 at 4:59 PM on Sep. 3, 2010

  • My daughter would be on restriction if I found out that she had to be told to shut up. She knows how to behave, she knows what she should/should not be doing. She knows how to act in the classroom, and she sure knows I won't put up with her disrespecting a teacher.
    justnancyb

    Answer by justnancyb at 5:12 PM on Sep. 3, 2010

  • If you have any issues with your son's teacher there are always Parent-Teacher conferences which you can discuss mostly everything that is classroom related from rules, to homework, etc. Maybe you should discuss her version of "rules of respect" and see what her viewpoint is on this area in general and compare it to how she speaks to her class when you are not present during regular class hours.
    CafeMochaMom1

    Answer by CafeMochaMom1 at 5:18 PM on Sep. 3, 2010

  • You should ask her what your son is doing that is pushing the boiling point. He needs to respect her and her authority. I think your getting mad at the wrong person, but if the teacher is having issues with Your child, she should call you.
    Maybe you should go sit in class, and see what is going on. Or have a video camera in there taping the class, with her consent, and without your son knowing that its for you. You might see what IS really going on.
    But if she has it out for your kid, I would talk to her about it, and if she cannot seem to control her dislike towards him then she needs to be reported.
    browningmom

    Answer by browningmom at 5:28 PM on Sep. 3, 2010

  • I would have to ask her exactly what happened. That it is her classroom does not wash. It's asking for trouble to just give the teacher the benefit of the doubt and never think they could ever be wrong. She needs to be an adult and telling a student to shut up is not adult or professional. If he was acting up that badly he should have been sent to the principal's office. If she is that stressed, she doesn't need to be around young people. Things happen sometimes but if she is doing this regularly, her behavior needs to be reported.
    wildflowers25

    Answer by wildflowers25 at 5:41 PM on Sep. 3, 2010

  • The teacher acted in an unprofessional manner. However, you can't do a thing about it. Thanks to the teacher unions once a teacher is tenured they can do whatever they want short of physical assault. At my son's high school there is a certain teacher who verbally abuses the students to the point of tears. Parents and students line up in the guidance office and nothing has been done.
    Your best option would be to write a letter or e-mail to the principal and maybe it will be placed in her file. But in the end it will come down to his word against hers. We even had a teacher here who was helping students cheat on state testing. Numerous kids told the same story. She was let go, but the union helped her get her job back.. Teaching is the only job where you are not held accountable for your job performace.
    jcm62497

    Answer by jcm62497 at 8:04 AM on Sep. 4, 2010

  • Number 1 if someone told my kids to shut up its on. Number 2. I would call her and see what goin on and tell her that you don't like her saying that to him. Number 3 if it happen one more time and you don't do anything about it then it goin to happen over and over, umber 4 you need to call all the other kids ( mom and dad) and see if they are saying the same things about her,
    sguy1983

    Answer by sguy1983 at 2:51 PM on Sep. 4, 2010

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