I Tell My Kids They Can Drop Out of School

The school year is coming to an end and it seems everyone has checked out as of last week. On Monday of last week my son’s teacher called to tell me he was having a problem with being tardy as of late. She also mentioned that he was being an asshole (my words, not hers) in class that morning when she asked him to remove his sunglasses. I should have been mad. I should have cared. Instead, I just thought, “I’m sick of this shit”.

I am a huge supporter of public schools and teachers. I cannot even imagine the struggles they must have in dealing with students, parents, regulations and social criticism. Honestly, I don’t know why anyone would choose such a thankless profession. Maybe it just feels that way to me, perhaps there are also rewarding aspects of the job that I’m not picking up on.

My son, “M” is an average student, a C student for the most part. There’s always the occasional A or D thrown into the mix. For the most part I leave him alone about school. I don’t expect straight A’s, I expect effort and a good attitude. Giving your teacher shit about removing sunglasses in class is not acceptable. When I brought the issues up the second he walked in the door from school he had a few excuses for being late but was absolutely confused about the sunglasses incident. If you have kids you’ll understand why I had so many questions:

“Did she ask you to remove ANYTHING this morning?”

“Could it have happened YESTERDAY instead?”

“Did an incident similar to this EVER happen?”

“Was another child asked to remove sunglasses this morning?”

He answered “no” to all questions. I typed up an email to his teacher asking if there had been a mistake, all the while warning “M” that he better not make me look like an idiot. A few hours later I received an apologetic email from her. She had called to tell me about the tardies but in the middle of the call got me mixed up with another parent. It was NOT my son who got snooty with her. Well, I guess there’s something to be thankful for.

However, the very next day I got a call from this same child’s Math teacher to tell me that he didn’t do any of his work in class that day. He just sat there and didn’t say a thing until the end of class when he told her he didn’t understand the assignment. The teacher asked me to work with him that weekend to get it done. I nearly told her “I’ve been failing math since 1984…” Luckily, my oldest is a math wiz, actually an everything wiz, and he helped get it all sorted out.

The older I get, the more people I meet and the more I’ve come to the conclusion that education is not the final say in the life you have. Your effort and hard work is. Sure, you can argue with me and you probably will. I have one child who I am almost certain will go off to college and graduate with some fancy degree. I am 100% OK and supporting of this. I have another couple of kids who will most likely get their GED’s and attend a trade school. I am also 100% OK with this. My youngest is still too young to make any assumptions. Once my kids turn 16, if they want to get their GED and start making plans for their adult lives, I am fine with this! They all know this is their choice and an option I will support them in.

Kids in my house have several options, beginning at the age of 16. Unluckily for “M”, he is just about to turn 14 and he has ONE option available to him. Go to school and have a good attitude about it. Keep on keeping’ on kid, you got two years.

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Comments

  1. I feel like the teacher should take better notes. Parents need to trust that what she says is accurate. Mistakes happen, but this seems a bit ridiculous.

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